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30 Skin Care Misconceptions
By: Carol and Rob Trow
Posted: April 29, 2009, from the May 2009 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
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Sun damage continues to occur throughout life, although recent information suggests less than 50% of sun damage happens before a person is 18.2 It is never too late to protect your skin.
The argument that tanning beds and booths do not cause skin mutations that may cause cancerous lesions to develop is patently false. UVA rays found in indoor tanning lead to deeper, more harmful skin damage. You do not have to have a sunburn to create damage to skin cells.
Antioxidants are essential in fighting free radical formation and are important in helping prevent skin damage, but they cannot make wrinkles go away.
If a product sounds too good to be true, you can bet its claims are false. The damage did not happen overnight, and it cannot be magically repaired. Expect at least three skin cycles—a cycle can be between 21–40 days, depending on age—to begin to see measurable results.
Some compounds that contain alcohol can act as emollients, which can decrease the skin’s water loss. Cetyl, benzyl and oleyl alcohol are examples of good alcohols. It is important to know what comes before the OH in chemical compounds.
Yes, sun exposure can hide the appearance of acne for awhile, but will lead to skin damage, pigmentation and drying that signals the skin to produce more oil.
The intake of alcohol can temporarily dilate blood vessels and make skin appear flushed, but in most cases, a large, inflamed, red and bulbous nose is a result of rosacea.
A good night’s sleep is certainly helpful to skin health; however, skin repair is ongoing. Inadequate sleep can cause stress, skin puffiness and can slow the natural development of collagen.
Despite a number of claims to the contrary, most skin care products lose a great deal of their potency within 12 months. It is best to use the entire contents within one year because preservatives do not last forever and ingredients can get contaminated with bacteria, or they can evaporate.
Be careful how you wash your face. Too much scrubbing or too many abrasive products can remove protective oils, create tiny micro tears and contribute to aging, irritated skin. Less is more, and a gentle cleanser and light moisturizer work well for most people.