If you have dry skin, you know that lotions and moisturizers, such as Clear Essence Skin Beautifying Milk and My Natural Beauty Moisturizing Lotion with SPF 15, help. But can certain dietary choices combat dry, itchy, scaly skin? “The most important part of the skin barrier is lipids, including phospholipids, free fatty acids, cholesterol, and ceramides,” says Amy […]
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If you have dry skin, you know that lotions and moisturizers, such as Clear Essence Skin Beautifying Milk and My Natural Beauty Moisturizing Lotion with SPF 15, help. But can certain dietary choices combat dry, itchy, scaly skin?
“The most important part of the skin barrier is lipids, including phospholipids, free fatty acids, cholesterol, and ceramides,” says Amy Newburger, MD, an attending physician in the Dermatology Department at St. Luke’s Roosevelt Medical Center. “Skin without enough fat in it has a protein predominance and is kind of like a mess made just of twigs with no glue between them.” Water easily escapes through a barrier without lipids, allowing skin to become dehydrated.
Polyunsaturated fatty acids are necessary for the production of intercellular lipids — the “glue” between the “twigs” in the stratum corneum, or surface of the skin. They also have an anti-inflammatory effect on irritated skin. Two types of fatty acids that are “essential” — that is, they must be obtained through the diet — are omega-3s, and omega-6s.
Foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids include fatty fish like salmon, herring, mackerel, anchovies, and sardines, as well as flaxseed oil, some types of eggs, and grass-fed beef. Evening primrose oil and borage seed oil, which are high in omega-6s, help hydrate the skin and prevent water from evaporating, says Leslie Baumann, director of the University of Miami Cosmetic Medicine and Research Institute. “If you don’t like fish or are pregnant and can’t eat it, omega-3 supplements are a good option.” Most Americans get enough omega-6s through their diet because they’re contained in corn and safflower oils.
Vitamins and Minerals for Dry Skin
“Vitamin C is necessary for the function of the enzyme that causes collagen to form,” says Dr. Newburger, “and collagen acts as a sponge for moisture.” Clear Essence uses this natural vitamin within its Lemon Plus Vitamin C line. Clear Essence Lemon Plus Vitamin C Smoothing Creme is a thick and velvety cream that can target dry patches and leave a smooth and hydrated complexion.
Newburger adds that copper and zinc are also necessary. Together, vitamin C, zinc, and copper keep collagen denser, which in turn allows for plump, hydrated skin. “Any good multivitamin with trace minerals in it contains zinc and copper,” says Newburger. Zinc has also been found to have anti-inflammatory effects, which is vital for maintaining smooth skin.
Caffeine, Alcohol, and Dry Skin
While consuming caffeine is unlikely to dehydrate you, it does make the blood vessels constrict, which is why it’s used in eye creams (to reduce puffiness). “Long term, this means a reduced amount of blood flow and nutrients though the tissues,” warns Newburger. “And if you don’t have healthy circulation, you won’t have age-appropriate cell turnover.”
In the case of alcohol, Michele Murphy, a registered dietitian at NewYork Presbyterian–Weill Cornell Medical Center, explains that although it’s a diuretic, you’d need to be severely dehydrated to experience any noticeable changes. “The average person having a glass of wine with dinner every night and maintaining adequate fluid intake is unlikely to see any real difference,” she says.
Don’t Overdo It
If you’re already eating a balanced diet with sufficient fats, adding more fats or taking supplements is not necessarily a quick fix for dry skin. “If you’re deficient in fat or certain vitamins, it does have the potential to affect the look or feel of your skin,” says Murphy. “But supplementing beyond what the body needs has not been shown to improve skin.”
Feel that chill in the air? Winter is well on its way. And while many of us look forward to sweater weather with relish, you wouldn’t know it by looking at our skin. Between the icy outdoor air and the desiccating indoor heat, it’s no surprise that the biggest beauty gripe of the season is dry skin. However, what most see as a minor inconvenience could hold serious consequences for your complexion years down the road. In the fight against premature aging, winter hydration is just as important as summer sun protection.
While the cold alone isn’t enough to signal a four-star beauty alarm, the drop in humidity compounded with around-the-clock heating are solid clues that its time to step up your skin care regimen. To keep your home cool in the summer and toasty in the winter, your air conditioner dehumidifies the air to control the climate. While this saves you from constantly bundling up when it’s cold outside, it also throws your skin into a state of panic.
Like a sponge, your skin absorbs moisture from the environment to keep its cells healthy and functioning. It also creates a lipid (fatty) barrier to maintain optimal moisture levels even when the humidity fluctuates, like during the winter. Between this lipid barrier and sebum—natural oils secreted by the sebaceous glands—the skin helps combat trans-epidermal water loss, or TEWL. If these natural defenses are compromised, the skin’s cells can quickly lose vital moisture, dry out and die. Over time, dead cells can build up, creating a dull appearance and blocking topical ingredients from reaching the healthy cells below.
What threatens the skin’s natural defenses? Anything that strips its lipid and sebum barrier leaves skin vulnerable to dehydration. Talc-based cosmetics, common cleanser detergents like sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and topical irritants, like alcohol and benzoyl peroxide, that can cause inflammation all pose a threat to skin’s delicate moisture balance. Chronic barrier abuse can lead to cracked, broken skin, contributing to signs of premature aging. With skin immunity and repair function in jeopardy, lines and wrinkles can easily follow.
Fortunately, you can prevent the type of winter damage that can lead to premature aging with topical ingredients that work with the skin’s barrier to minimize moisture loss. In addition to natural emollients like shea butter, moisture-enhancing ingredients like pilewort extract, liquid crystals and heavy water can work wonders on both seasonal and persistent dry skin.
Pilewort extract comes from the pilewort plant, found throughout the southwestern Europe, Asia and North America. Pilewort extract is used for its soothing, calming and antiseptic properties. Also, it aids in healing and repairing the skin. Combined with other key moisturizers in a formula like Clear Essence Skin Beautifying Milk, this highly prized emollient encourages healthy hydration, especially in skin stripped of its own natural oils. Other important moisturizing ingredients include Glycerine (a light, organic, non-greasy fatty acid used as a lubricant), Dimethicone (an organic silicone used as a skin protector and moisturizer), and Camphor (extracted from the bark 50-year-old trees and used as a cooling and antiseptic agent. Also promotes firming and toning of the skin).
By targeting moisture loss from outside and within, multi-active hydrating products like those in Clear Essence Cosmetics’ clincally correct skin care line can help eliminate winter dryness and prevent the aging effects that build with time. Used in conjunction with a skin care regimen customized to your skin’s needs, corrective hydrators can help you give dry skin the cold shoulder this season and every season.
Feel that chill in the air? Winter is well on its way. And while many of us look forward to sweater weather with relish, you wouldn’t know it by looking at our skin. Between the icy outdoor air and the desiccating indoor heat, it’s no surprise that the biggest beauty gripe of the season is […]
What are your options?
- Use lotions such as the Skin Beautifying Milk Maxi-Tone; it can relieve dryness and flaking. Alternatively, add Clear Essence Skin Beautifying Body Oil to bath water to help seal in moisture. We also have our Specialist Skin Care Body Oil and both can be applied directly to the skin. Look for products in our Anti-Aging Line with alpha hydroxy acids, which gently exfoliate to remove dead skin cells which will allow more water and moisture into healthy skin.
- Avoid antibacterial and deodorant soaps, which can be harsh and drying. Instead, use a gentle cleanser, such as Clear Essence Olive Oil soap or Carrot Oil soap.
- Don’t take extremely hot baths or showers. Do not soak in the tub for more than 10 minutes. Doing so breaks down your skin’s natural protective oils, which keep it soft and smooth.
- Use a humidifier during the winter. Central heating and space heaters can dry out the air in your home.
- Choose natural, breathable fabrics, such as cotton and silk, for your bedding and innermost layer of clothing.
- Drink plenty of water and other liquids to keep skin hydrated from the inside out. Omega-3s (essential fatty acids found in foods such as salmon, walnuts, flaxseed, soybeans and broccoli) can also help keep skin supple.
When should you worry?
See a dermatologist if dryness and itching keep you awake at night, if Clear Essence Skincare lotions aren’t working, if you have open sores or large areas of scaling or peeling skin, or if you develop an infection from scratching. You could have a more serious condition such as eczema, psoriasis or another skin disorder.
Did you know?
- Although everyone’s skin changes with age, a man’s skin tends to stay moist longer. That’s because a woman’s skin becomes much drier after menopause.
- The best time to apply Clear Essence Skin Beautifying Milk is immediately after a shower or bath, when skin is still damp.
- Since dry skin is extra-sensitive, it is important protect it from the sun, especially if it is snowing (snow can reflect as much as 80 percent of the sun’s rays). Apply Skin Beautifying Milk with SPF 15 or My Natural Beauty Skin Tone Moisturizing Body Lotion with SPF 15 every day to your face, neck and ears.
What are your options? Use lotions such as the Skin Beautifying Milk Maxi-Tone; it can relieve dryness and flaking. Alternatively, add Clear Essence Skin Beautifying Body Oil to bath water to help seal in moisture. We also have our Specialist Skin Care Body Oil and both can be applied directly to the skin. Look for […]
As winter begins to creep in, we at Clear Essence Cosmetics USA, Inc. want to make sure that no changes occur in your ethnic skin care regimes, the only change that should occur is the temperature, not your healthy looking skin.
It is easy to think that just because it is cold that you do not need as much lotion as your whole body will be covered from head to toe. This is not true. Actually, as temperatures drop and the sun is no longer a factor, dryness of skin increases daily. Here are some quick tips that will keep your darker complexion skin care consistent.
- Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day to ensure moisture to the skin. Along with that, apply Clear Essence’s My Natural Beauty Moisturizing Body Lotion every morning and evening before going out to keep your skin looking and feeling its best.
- See your local dermatologist to receive a full check-up and diagnostics of your skin type. Knowing the status of your skin before applying any skin care products is extremely important.
- If you are use to taking hot showers, make sure to use a body soap that is made to moisturize your skin 24 hours a day. Clear Essence’s My Natural Beauty Skin Tone Olive Oil Soap will help you fight drying and aging skin.
As winter begins to creep in, we at Clear Essence Cosmetics USA, Inc. want to make sure that no changes occur in your ethnic skin care regimes, the only change that should occur is the temperature, not your healthy looking skin. It is easy to think that just because it is cold that you do […]