Archives for posts with tag: solutions

They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder and believe us when we say there is no more critical judge of your face than your set of eyes. Lines, wrinkles and puffiness can all contribute to signs of aging but perhaps the most frustrating problem to face is dark under eye circles. Sometimes referred to as “bags” because they can be accompanied by puffiness, this is something that affects men and women equally. Luckily there are steps you can take to banish the darkness and greet the day with eyes that look as great as you feel.

Before you can treat a problem you have to know the source. Late nights are often blamed for this occurrence but if that were the case a good night’s sleep should provide a simple cure. Anyone who has developed dark eyes knows that sometimes no matter how great your sleep was those bags still taunt you in the morning.

So what could be causing those dark shadows to develop?

Common sources of under eye circles include:

• Allergies
• Heredity
• Pigmentation Irregularities
• Nasal Congestion (there is a reason you don’t look so great when your sick)
• Thinning Skin (result of intrinsic or natural aging)
• Loss of Collagen and Elasticity (result of intrinsic or natural aging)
• Sun Exposure (result of extrinsic aging or aging influenced by the environment)
• Lifestyle Factors like smoking, drinking alcohol or caffeine

Self Treatment versus Professional Care

Seeing a specialist such as a dermatologist can be an expensive choice when dealing with a problem like under eye circles. If you are worried there might be other factors contributing to your dark eyes consult with a physician but there are several at home treatments that you can try as well.

• Cold Compress – try placing a cold or cool compress against your eyes. This can reduce dilation and puffiness temporarily.
• Pillows – an extra pillow under your head at night can prevent fluid from pooling in the lower lids.
• Get More Rest – while it is true that a lack of sleep is not a direct cause of your dark eyes, less sleep can make your eyes appear more hallow and impact the overall look and feel of your skin. Catch some extra “z’s” to keep your skin looking fresh.
• Protect Your Skin – the environment and especially the sun can wreak havoc on your skin in the long run. Overexposure can lead to a myriad of health problems to cover up when possible (sunglasses are an inexpensive way to protect the fragile skin around your eyes) and use sun block, even in the Winter.
• Make Up – Although not all make up will cover those dark circles, try an oil free concealer to help minimize the appearance. This should be paired with a cold compress to reduce puffiness at the same time.
• Serums – There are several great serums available that utilize natural ingredients to minimize the appearance of dark circles. Try using one twice daily to see incredible results!

Don’t let dark circles ruin your day! Fight back against this premature sign of aging by taking control. Home remedies may take time to show full results (allow up to 12 weeks) but are worth the investment on the road to healthier, happier skin care.

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Microdermabrasion may sound like a scary procedure to undergo but in actuality it may be a wonderful alternative for those seeking a facial rejuvenation without going under the knife. More commonly referred to as microderm, this procedure is a non invasive way to remove the uppermost layer of dead skin cells from the face, neck, back, shoulders or anywhere else on the body. Techniques may vary but most practitioners will utilize a mechanical mechanism (such as crystals or bristle tips) and a small vacuum to clean up the removed skin cells.
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Exfoliation is a natural process undergone by the skin and although it occurs throughout our entire life span, the rate slows down considerably once we reach our thirties. Dead skin cells need to be shed by the body in order for new, healthy cells to reach the surface. As this process slows sometimes dead skin cells will cling to the surface and prevent those new skin cells from taking their place. Over time this will begin to form fine lines and wrinkles as dead cells accumulate on the surface. Microdermabrasion removes this outermost layer of the epidermis to get rid of this build up, allowing new cells to surface and improving circulation at the same time.

There are many benefits to microdermabrasion that can make it an ideal alternative to more drastic cosmetic procedures. By removing dead skin cells your skin will appear smoother, more even in tone and feel healthier. Microdermabrasion can help minimize the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and acne scars. After undergoing treatment, skin care products will be able to penetrate the surface much better and be more effective to help maintain healthy, glowing skin.

Although it is best to get your initial treatment done by a trained professional, you can keep the fresh feeling going with an at home skin care treatment plan. Consult with your esthetician for their recommendations for your skin type if you are unsure or have any other skin conditions you would like to address. The use of proper skin care products and a regular routine at home will help your skin feel smoother, more even in tone and looking younger for years to come. Try a microdermabrasion cream at home following your initial treatment to prevent future build up. Remember to follow all instructions carefully and discontinue use of any product you have a negative reaction to such as rash, swelling, itching or redness.

Microdermabrasion is one way to keep your skin feeling fresh and rejuvenated. Your friends will be amazed at how fabulous you look after only one treatment and there is no need to go through a painful recovery period following your appointment. Look into your alternatives for skin care treatments and research local spa’s and estheticians in your area. You may be surprised at how easy it can be to beat the hands of time!

Winter is coming and that means cold temperatures, wind and oh yes, chapped lips. Dry skin may be the most frequent skin condition to flair up in the general population during these colder months because of the sudden drop in humidity and overexposure to those dry winter winds. Although this can be an annoying and unattractive problem, it is generally easy to treat and clears up quickly.

So what are “chapped” lips anyway? Chapped skin is tissue that lacks proper moisture and literally dries out. The dry skin develops fine lines, tiny cracks and can become red or irritated when left untreated. People who have chronic dry lips due to allergies or perhaps frequently lick their lips can develop chapped lips all year round.

Without treatment chapped lips can become uncomfortable or even painful. As the dry tissue begins to develop tiny cracks it can lead to irritation and even infection over time. Remember that any cut that is exposed to bacteria is at risk for infection and the mouth and face is a notorious “hot spot” for germs and bacteria.

Treating the problem is a simple process but does require frequent application throughout the entire day. A simple lip balm is the best remedy for chapped skin because it contains wax or lanolin that will seal in moisture and provide a protective barrier for the skin to heal. This is almost in place of applying a band aid over a paper cut. Sealing in moisture will allow the skin to begin the process of re-hydrating. Since chapped lips can be a chronic problem in winter, it is smart to apply a lip balm before going outside even if you do not have chapped lips. The thick coating will lock out the drier air and keep your lips feeling their best.

Tips to prevent chapping:

During the winter apply lip balm daily to prevent chapping from occurring.
Once chapped lips have formed, apply lip balm frequently throughout the day (especially after eating or any activity where the lip balm might have been diminished or removed)
Avoid “flavored” lips balms if you are prone to licking your lips or when applying lip balm to children. This will not only remove the balm entirely but increase the dryness at the same time.
Cover up your lips when going outside – even if it is only for a few minutes. A simple scarf or ski mask will protect your lips, cheeks and nose from the dry air.

Want more great tips on beating the winter dry skin battle? Check us out online at http://www.bellaninainstitute.com!

You don’t know quite when it happened but one day you see it in the mirror staring back at you: little dimples on the back of your thighs. Sometimes compared to as “cottage cheese” in texture, it can be a woman (or man’s) worst nightmare. Although you’re not alone, as much as 95% of the female population develops cellulite at some point in their lives, it can still be a difficult burden.

There are three layers of fat beneath the surface of your skin. Cellulite occurs in the subcutaneous (top) level of these layers. Within this layer there is a structure of connective tissue called the septae and is composed of compartments that store fat cells. These help to insulate the body and offer structural support for your skin. When cellulite occurs the subcutaneous fat cells are pushed upwards and the septae move downwards and – ta da – the dimple effect.
Many women know that as we age, our skin becomes thinner and more transparent. Although cellulite can occur in girls as young as fourteen, it becomes even more visible as we get older. Cellulite can develop in the thighs, buttocks, neck, stomach and the upper arms. Although men can develop cellulite, it is a much rarer occurrence due to a different structure in the subcutaneous layer of the skin.
Cellulite is not simply a “fat person” problem. It actually can be the result of a variety of factors, some beyond an individual’s control. Believe it or not, some women are genetically prone to develop cellulite, regardless of their weight (although excess weight will be a major factor). Other sources include hormones (when and where it develops); pregnancy, stress, sedentary lifestyle, smoking and obesity are all major contributors to this condition.

What is happening to the body when cellulite develops?

It is actually a five stage process whereby blood circulation and lymphatic drainage activity to the cells is drastically reduced. As the weakened cells that results from this begin to leak blood into surrounding areas, there is also an accumulation of lymphatic fluid. This leads to a pressure on the cells which will begin to swell and push upwards, creating an initial bumpy texture on the skin. As the cells become more deprived of oxygen they begin to thicken, worsening the cottage cheese appearance. Over time, these cells become trapped and have such poor circulation; fat continues to build up in these cells and cannot be removed (even with diet and exercise).

Treatment

While there are is no sure fire “treatment” for cellulite, it is important to remember that it is not a disease. Cellulite occurs in all types of women and all body shapes. It can appear in extremely thin women just as easily as obese women so don’t blame your eating habits for those unsightly bumps.
Over the past decade the market has become flooded with cellulite solutions and although some may be more effective than others, no one product will work miracles on everyone. Creams have become especially popular and utilize a variety of ingredients (including caffeine) to smooth the texture of your skin and reduce the appearance of cellulite. Remember though, cellulite may never truly go away but it is possible to minimize the appearance.
Exercise may not get rid of cellulite but toned muscles will certainly help mask its appearance. Skin lying over taught muscles will have a smoother appearance than skin lying over layers of excessive fat. Target the areas of your body most prone to cellulite to see more effective results.

Don’t give up!

Cellulite may seem like the end of the world and although it may never completely go away, maintaining a regular routine of exercise and daily moisturizing with specially designed creams will help in the long run. As with any skin care plan, patience will be your greatest ally and an important motivator when nothing seems to be changing. Remember, as previously stated, cellulite is not the result of bad behavior – sometimes it just happens and since so many women deal with it every day, you’re in good company. Think positive and don’t let the development of cellulite keep you from feeling confident and beautiful!

No one likes to be judged by their skin but when you suffer from oily skin it can be particularly worrisome because of all the problems that can come with it. Waking up with fresh new blemishes, an unnatural shine to your skin and a greasy feeling are all unfortunate outcomes. Although some people have oily skin naturally, there are steps you can take to minimize the effects and reverse some of the problematic issues (such as blackheads and pimples).
Before looking into how to solve the problem, let’s take a moment to examine the root causes. By understanding what produces oily skin, you can better develop an effective treatment plan. In its simplest definition, oily skin is caused by overactive oil glands in the skin producing too much of your skin’s natural moisturizer, sebum. While it is important to have these natural oils to prevent dryness and cracking, it is important to control the amount of oil present at any given time. It is the build up of natural oils that leads to some of the main complaints people have about their skin.

Now that we have a basis for why this problem is occurring, what is the solution? Just as oil and water don’t mix in a bowl, water will not solve the oily residue problem on your face either. Patience is essential when trying to resolve any skin care issue and when it comes to oily skin, understanding that you may need to develop a permanent skin care regimen to prevent build up is important too. Oily skin issues may never be “fixed” but they can be maintained.
Cleansing your face with products specifically geared to your skin type will be the first and most important step you can take. Not all skin care products are designed to treat oily skin and some cleansers contain fatty acids that may actually make the condition worse so search carefully. Products containing Alpha Hydroxy Acids are designed to gently exfoliate the skin and will help to remove dead skin cells and build up on the face.
The less product containing oils and creams you apply to your face, the better off you will be. Most make ups and lotions contain oils and other ingredients that already clog the pores for someone without oily skin, by adding more oils on a regular basis; you are essentially adding fuel to a fire. If you can avoid it, try to limit your use of cosmetics and oil based products or search for specially formulated brands designated as oil-free.
By removing the excess oil, dirt and grime from your face on a regular basis you are already going to see some of the benefits of your labor. Of course as we stated earlier, the skin does need some oil to remain healthy and hydrated so after any cleansing or exfoliating it is important to follow that with an oil free moisturizer. The last thing you want to do is stimulate your glands to produce more oil to compensate for a lack of hydration in the skin cells.
With any skin care routine it is important to test products carefully and pay attention to your skins reaction. Any redness, itchy or irritation means you should discontinue use immediately and consult with your doctor about a possible allergy. If you have a particularly severe case of oily skin and over the counter remedies have not worked in the past, check with an esthetician or dermatologist regarding professional grade products.
Oily skin doesn’t have to make you self conscious any longer as long as you are patient and willing to take steps to control it before it controls you.

Winter is coming and that means falling snow, holidays, sled rides and…..dry skin. Every winter thousands of people dread the appearance or worsening of their dry skin symptoms and seek new ways to beat this powerful foe. This year, take control of your skin and don’t let itchy and flaky skin put a damper on your winter wonderland.

Dry or itchy skin is a common condition that can occur all year round but peaks during the colder months when there is a drop in the humidity. Normally healthy and hydrated skin becomes dry, cracked and flaky. Mature skin may show increased fine lines and wrinkles due to the lack of moisture. For the most part, dry skin effects the arms, hands, legs and feet but can also occur on the trunk of the body or even the face (chapped lips anyone?).

The most common complaint when suffering from “winter skin” is a persistent itchiness that can be made worse when in contact with fabrics or liquids. Over time excessive cracking can and will lead to thick and rough patches of skin (called lichenification). This thicker skin not only develops lines and wrinkles but is prone to developing painful cracks (fissures) that may result in bleeding and irritated skin. Severe skin conditions can result from bacterial infections that can develop because of these and other conditions such as nummular eczema (red, scaly patches of skin) or dermatitis (inflamed skin).

The potential outcomes of winter skin are enough to take notice and take action before things get out of hand. Always remember that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and that is especially true in health care. Developing a proper skin care routine and faithfully maintaining a schedule will reduce your chances of developing winter skin this season.

Why does winter skin develop in the first place? The cells in the outermost layer of your skin are designed to protect the body and hold in the water to hydrate the interior layers. Loss of this water prevents the outer layer from doing its job and soon the moisture your skin so desperately needs to stay healthy slips away and you are left with dry and unhealthy skin. This can occur from over washing the hands (a frequent problem in the nursing field), exposure to harsh chemicals, changes in humidity and the natural aging process are all frequent culprits. Although some people naturally have “dry skin” and suffer this problem all the time.

Treatment options are available and can be quite effective in preventing or relieving the symptoms of winter skin. Water is not the solution and can frequently worsen the problem, not solve it so step away from the sink! A good moisturizer however is a great way to penetrate the skin and trap moisture in so the skin becomes smooth and supple. Choose a moisturizer specifically designed to target dry skin and use it regularly. If you have more severe symptoms, consult with a doctor and discuss potential treatment options – dry skin can sometimes require pharmaceutical grade products that are not available over the counter. Not all over the counter products to treat itchiness are safe to use on irritated skin so consult with a doctor or pharmacist before use.

Increase the humidity in your home or office if possible. There is no way to change the environment outside but by making strides to limit your exposure to the dry air, the better your skin will feel. Humidifiers are readily available in most local stores and online.

Remember to use sun block, even in the winter. Some sun blocks include a moisturizer along with SPF protection so you would receive double benefits! If you are outside, cover up your skin and limit sun exposure when possible. Just because it’s cold doesn’t mean your skin is not suffering from UV radiation.

Cover up your hands when you go outside and remove wet articles of clothing as soon as possible. The skin on your hands is some of the thinnest skin on your body and cannot bear being constantly exposed during the winter months! Stay warm and protect your skin!

Avoid skin treatments that will exfoliate or strip the skin of essential oils if possible. Remember it is the loss of moisture and natural oils that dried your skin out to begin with, don’t cause further aggravation with harsh chemicals! This can include masques, exfoliants and peels.

Protect your lips when going outside. Use a lip balm to keep the moisture in and banish those unsightly cracks – you will thank yourself. Remember that irritated skin reacts poorly when exposed to different materials and spicy food on sensitive lips can cause more than just a little discomfort.

Learning to control your winter skin is a battle well worth fighting. Just think of all the discomfort you have endured in the past seasons and make a commitment for this year to be different (a great New Year’s resolution!). If you are prone to dry skin, try keeping your regimen going all year round to see maximum benefits. Some treatments may require a few days to work to their full extent so be patient with your skin and allow it the time it needs to heal.