- 55 Skin Care Tips and Tricks – Best Anti Aging Secrets – ELLE.com
- Smile Lines: How to Get Rid of Them
- Injectable fillers
- Laser treatments
- Collagen induction therapy
- OTC creams
- Home light treatment
- Essential oils
- Hiding Wrinkles: 8 Concealing Solutions
- Tips for Taking Care of Your Skin
- Sun and Skin
- Cold Sores
- Other Skin Problems
55 Skin Care Tips and Tricks – Best Anti Aging Secrets – ELLE.com
Chaloner WoodsGetty Images
It's a new decade and your skincare resolutions are just beginning. Whether stress from work has given way to aging fears or royal family drama has awakened acne breakouts, we've got you covered.
Your skincare should strengthen under the most stressful of situations. Find out which foods to cut your Trader Joe's runs and why we're embracing tea and shade more than ever before.
Below, the 55 tips for a decade full of healthy skin, lots of sleep, and a vat of SPF.
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Meet Your Moisturizer Soul Mate
The best defense against dry skin? Making friends with a daily moisturizer. Applying lotion right after stepping the shower seals in the moisture that your skin has just absorbed. And since hands are often the first indicators of aging, invest in a heavy moisturizer to keep in your bag, car, and office. Here are a few ELLE.com can't stop talking about.
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Kick The Caffeine
Can't figure out why you have dry skin? Caffeine may be the culprit. Replace the java with H2O, and add fruit slices, orange or lemon, to enhance the flavor. In conclusion, Skincare > Starbucks.
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Stopping the Scroll
Tearing yourself away from the 'gram may seem too high a price to pay. But we promise your skin is paying more. Keep antibacterial wipes handy to swipe your phone clean and help your skin stay clear. Make cleansing your cell—and yourself—of toxins a part of your weekly to-do's.
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Slathering your skin with SPF is a priority, even if you're worried your block will make you break out.
“Sunscreen formulas made with zinc are generally nongreasy and nonirritating, making them especially good for acne, sensitive skin,” says Colleen Shimamoto, educational adviser for DermaQuest Skin Therapy.
“So, opt for physical blocks zinc oxide or titanium oxide, which reflect the sun's UVB and UVA rays.”
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Survive Sans Salt
If your skin feels parched, it might be time to give up your secret pretzel stash. Excess sodium in your diet can suck the moisture skin and leave it dull and dry. Cut back on salty treats and invest in a hydrating facial moisturizer to combat the dehydration. Unfortunately, fresh skin trumps that order of french fries.
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“When you exfoliate, you're evening out the skin's surface by revealing fresh cells underneath,” says Annet King, director of Global Education at the International Dermal Institute and Dermalogica. “Exfoliate regularly to remove the dead, complexion-dulling skin cells that can give you a dull appearance.”
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While you may not apply hair products to your face, the residue can often end up there anyway. Next time you use hairspray, cover your face with a clean towel to protect your skin. Also, use a sweatband when you hit the gym to keep the products from dripping down when you begin to sweat.
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Dance It Out
Your excuse to practice J.Lo's routine from Hustlers or learn a TikTok dance is here. Exercise gives your face a healthy glow by increasing blood flow. And when you sweat, it clears the body of toxins and removes dead skins cells so new ones can grow. Without regular exercise you may see an increase in age spots, so grab your dancing shoes and get to work.
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Keep those sunnies close! Squinting in the sun can contribute to crow's feet, so always sport sunglasses with UV protection. Those with light-colored eyes have heightened light sensitivity, but brown-eyed beauties should shade their peepers, too.
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Kylie Jenner may want the world to “Rise and Shine…” but don't set that alarm just yet. Not getting enough Zzz's can cause stress, which leads to breakouts and a dull complexion. Bottom line: Don't deprive your body and skin of sleep—it uses that time to regenerate and recover from your day-to-day activities.
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Treat Yo Self
“Whether it's a facial, massage, or even a pedicure, be sure to pamper yourself,” says Dr. Howard Murad, founder of Murad Skincare. “Your health and appearance are positively influenced by increasing your emotional and mental well-being. A visit to the spa is a foolproof way to promote stress relief and relaxation.” Doctor's orders!
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Eye on the Prize
The skin around your eyes is the thinnest, so it shows the first signs of aging. Even if you're in your 20s, preventative care now will keep your eyes looking healthy for decades to come. Here's some eye masks to get the self-care started.
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Don't Sweat It
When your body heats up, sweating helps it keep your core temperature down. Unfortunately, this can irritate skin and cause breakouts. To remedy, look for a body wash that lists salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide as an ingredient on the label.
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Flip It & Reverse it
“Sleeping in certain positions may result in sleep lines,” according to The American Academy of Dermatology. After a while, these lines can turn into deep-set wrinkles, so hit the sheets backside-first.
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There are thousands of reasons why smoking is bad for you, but did you know second-hand smoke can also be harmful to your skin? Though you may not be lighting up, being around smokers can cause skin sagging and speed up the wrinkle process.
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Look, But Don't Touch
We know it's tempting to mess with that pimple, but resistance is key. Popping and picking at the skin on your face will push dirt and bacteria deeper into pores, which only results in more breakouts. Put your curiosity to use and opt for an overnight treatment instead.
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Tone It Up
“Toners are a handy product to keep in your arsenal to help balance pH levels in your skin,” says Jennifer Yen, founder of Purlisse Skincare. “Look for ones that are free of irritants alcohol, fragrance, citrus, menthol, color, and other aggressive extracts.” Here, try these to combat oily skin.
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Lotion in Moderation
Laying on the lotion is good for your skin, right? Not quite. “Over moisturizing can cause you to break out, and can even give you milia, the tiny white spots that are formed when dead skin cells get trapped,” says Dr. Debra Jailman, M.D., a New York City dermatologist. So, think twice before you slather.
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“Foods salmon, herring, and trout provide our skin with oils that lubricate cells and reduce inflammation,” says Lisa Drayer, MA, RD, nutritionist and author of The Beauty Diet: Looking Great Has Never Been So Delicious. “They are also heavy in omega-3 fatty acids, which play a key role in keeping our skin smooth.”
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Spill the Tea
They say spilling tea of the gossip variety can feed the soul. Apparently, the herbal kind is also good for you. “Antioxidants have proven to be extremely important as an aging preventative,” says NYC-based cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Howard Sobel. “I recommend looking for products that have a complex of antioxidants, such as green tea, vitamin C, and CoQ10.”
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Go to your bathroom right now. Because we know there's dirty bacteria living on your makeup brushes.
Warning: they could be causing you to break out! “Once a month, dampen just the head of the brush, making sure not to get the barrel or handle wet,” says Klein. “Gently massage a mild baby shampoo into the bristles and rinse with warm water.
Then, lay the brush on a towel with the head hanging over the sink to dry.” Meanwhile, here's where to donate the products you haven't even used.
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“To see increased smoothness, improved skin tone, and fewer wrinkles, exfoliate with a well-formulated alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) or beta hydroxy acid (BHA) product,” says skin-care expert Paula Begoun. “You don't need both—AHAs are generally best for dry, sun-damaged skin while BHAs are best for acne- or blackhead-prone skin.”
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Wake up with soft, hydrated skin while tackling everything from eczema to acne with an ultra-hydrating mask. Instead of washing the formula off, wear it overnight and blot off the excess with a tissue at sun-up. As of 2019, a bowl of pasta is now required as a pre-bedtime ritual.
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Increase your circulation and give your body some extra exfoliation by using a dry brush once a week for bright and smooth skin. Afterwards, apply a creamy lotion to prevent flakes and seal in moisture.
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As much as it pains us to admit, one less serving of alcohol per day can make a noticeable difference in your appearance. Alcohol dehydrates the skin (which causes wrinkles) while inflaming tissue. Combat these effects by watering down wine and liquor with club soda and drinking a glass of water between alcoholic beverages.
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“Witch hazel is a natural skin-tightening astringent and can be used to deflate under-eye bags,” says makeup pro Shalini Vadhera. “Soak two cotton pads in cold witch hazel and apply one to each closed eye for five minutes.” As for the results? You truly do love to see it.
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Although often overlooked, our neck, chest, and hands get plenty of sun exposure. Give these body parts some extra TLC by exfoliating them regularly to reveal fresh, bright skin. Here, some of the superior scrubs to get you started.
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Treat Your Feet
Get smoother tootsies in a flash with a mixture of salt and lotion, or by rubbing them with olive oil. Rinse thoroughly, and push back the cuticles as you towel dry. Here are the deets on how to treat your feet.
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Change your exfoliating practices with the seasons to guarantee that you don't strip the skin of essential oils. “Take it down to a few times a week in the summer, and once a week during winter so you don't dry out your skin,” says Dr. Debra Jailman, M.D., a New York City dermatologist.
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When it comes to your eye cream, it can be multi-purpose. “Eye creams usually have a higher concentration of active ingredients, so use them on the nasal labial folds, the '11' lines between your eyes, and around your lips to deliver more potent anti-aging ingredients to these wrinkle-prone areas,” says Regina Viotto, skin-care specialist at Paul Labrecque.
Smile Lines: How to Get Rid of Them
Smile lines, sometimes called laugh lines, are types of wrinkles that primarily develop around the sides of your mouth. Sometimes smile lines can also occur around your eyes. They are more noticeable when you smile.
As you age, these types of wrinkles may be inevitable. However, you have many options to help get rid of them.
Some of the causes of laugh lines may be prevented with good lifestyle habits as a young adult. For example, you can wear sunscreen every day to prevent wrinkles that are related to sun damage.
Keeping your skin hydrated also goes a long way, whether you already have smile lines or not. Be sure to drink plenty of water every day, and avoid drinking too much caffeine or alcohol —both have diuretic effects.
Wash your face once or twice a day and follow up with a moisturizer tailored to your skin type. Check out these tips that will transform your anti-aging beauty routine.
Exercise and a plant-based diet can also help keep your skin in good health.
If you needed another reason to quit smoking, know that kicking this habit now can help prevent future wrinkles, including smile lines. If you’re having a hard time quitting, these apps may help.
When it comes to smile lines, there are a variety of treatment options available.
Whether you’re looking for surgical options or other cosmetic procedures, it’s best to talk to a dermatologist (skin specialist) or plastic surgeon who’s knowledgeable and experienced in treating wrinkles.
There are also some over-the-counter (OTC) options, though these aren’t as permanent. You may want to discuss the following wrinkle treatment options with your doctor:
Injectable fillers are among the top choices for people looking to get rid of smile lines without undergoing surgery. Many are made from hyaluronic acid and are injected at the crease that goes from your mouth to your nose. The effects are noticeable right away, but you can also have them reversed if you don’t the results. Some common brand names include Juvéderm and Restylane.
The results typically last several months. However, it’s thought that after repeated injections, some scar tissue may be left behind that causes a more permanent filler effect. Other fillers such as Radiesse, which is made of calcium hydroxyapatite, and Sculptra, which is made of poly-L-lactic acid, may offer more permanent results and can be injected deeper in the facial tissues.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, these injectable fillers last about 6 to 12 months at a time. Side effects can occur right after the initial injection and include headaches and allergic- reactions. The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery (ASDS) estimates that each treatment can cost up to $1,000.
Botulinum toxins (Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin) are also injectable fillers, though they work differently. Your dermatologist injects the substance with a small needle into the area of concern. The substances work by weakening the muscles in the given area, which makes lines and wrinkles more relaxed and less noticeable. You can see results within a few days of the initial injection.
Botox injections may be performed by a dermatologist, ophthalmologist, or plastic surgeon. Recovery time is relatively short, and you should be able to resume your normal activities (including exercise) after 24 hours. Some common side effects include headaches and redness or irritation at the injection site.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, Botox injections last approximately three months. To maintain the desired results, you’ll need to see your doctor for additional treatments. The cost depends on how many units your doctor uses, but can be up to hundreds of dollars per treatment. Compare the costs, uses, and side effects of Botox and fillers.
Surgery may be an option if you want more significant results that last longer. A facelift (rhytidectomy) is the most all-inclusive and permanent solution for smile lines. This can address lines around your mouth and your eyes all in one procedure. Your plastic surgeon might recommend eyelid surgery in conjunction with a facelift.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of a facelift in 2016 was $7,048. Aside from being among the most expensive options, facelifts also take the longest to heal, with a total of three months on average.
The greatest risk associated with a facelift is infection. Rare side effects include scarring, pain, and nerve damage.
Laser treatments refer to a type of skin resurfacing technique that removes the top layer of skin cells. The procedure is meant to decrease skin spots and wrinkles by revealing the lower layer of new skin. Swelling and pain are common side effects, but these subside after a few days. Scarring and infection are also possible.
According to the ASDS, recovery time is one to three weeks. You’ll ly need another treatment within a few months, and the cost can range between $1,750 to $2,300 per treatment.
Collagen induction therapy
Collagen induction therapy (also called microneedling or skin needling) aims to increase natural collagen production in your skin.
As you age, your skin loses collagen and therefore loses elasticity, so the thought behind needling is that more collagen can fill in wrinkles, such as smile lines.
For the procedure, your doctor will use a roller with small needles, such as the Eclipse Micropen.
The American Academy of Dermatology says that the results from needling are gradual, with the full results expected within nine months. As your skin heals, you might see some bruising and redness. Most people need three to six treatments total.
OTC creams offer more affordable wrinkle treatment options. Retinol is among one of the more studied ingredients because of its claimed ability to break down the free radicals that can lead to wrinkles.
One study published in the Archives of Dermatology reported significant results in patients with fine lines and wrinkles who used retinol treatments of 0.4 percent.
Participants used retinol lotion three times per week for six months.
Vitamin C, peptides, and hydroxy acids are also used to treat wrinkles. The downside to OTC creams is that they can take months to work, and you won’t get permanent results. Side effects can include redness, rashes, and burning.
Home light treatment
Aside from OTC creams, there are also light kits available on the market that you can use at home for smile lines. One such product is the SpectraLite Eye Care Pro, a device approved by the U.S.
Food and Drug Administration that uses LED lights to increase collagen around the eye area. The product can be used every day for three minutes at a time.
While there are no reported side effects, the efficacy of at-home light kits is questionable.
Essential oils are another potential option in wrinkle treatment. These are made from plants that are touted as offering natural skin benefits.
A 2009 article in BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine discussed the testing of 23 different plants and their potential to help increase collagen, antioxidants, and elasticity in the skin.
Of the 23 plants, the authors noted the most promise in 9 of them:
If you’re interested in using essential oils, be sure to dilute them with a carrier oil, such as olive or almond oil. You will also need to test them on a small part of your skin to make sure you don’t have an allergic reaction.
You can find many of these essential oils already made in OTC skincare products. Look at ingredient labels to see which plants are included. For the best results, you’ll need to keep using the products daily. Smile lines might appear more noticeable again once you stop using the products.
Smile lines are a normal part of the aging process. As you get older, any lines or wrinkles you have can deepen or multiply in number. Still, there are steps you can take to minimize this process.
Treatment options for laugh lines abound. Talk to your doctor about the options that are best for you your specific needs. Surgery is an option, but it’s not always necessary.
You may be able to prevent smile lines from getting worse as you age. Keeping your skin hydrated and taking care of your overall health goes a long way.
Hiding Wrinkles: 8 Concealing Solutions
From the WebMD Archives
Minimize your wrinkles and fine lines with these eight tips:
With age, skin becomes drier, making wrinkles stand out more. Bring that moisture back to fight the fine lines.
Look for a moisturizer with hyaluronic acid, which pulls in water and plumps the skin, says Joshua Zeichner, MD. He is director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at the Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York.
Retinoids spur your skin to make more collagen, which combats wrinkles. You can buy products made with retinol over the counter, or get prescription-strength retinoids through your doctor. Both “have been well-studied for wrinkles, and work,” Zeichner says.
Use them as directed, and be patient. Most products take anywhere from 6 weeks to 3 months to work.
Wear sunscreen, too. Retinoids can make your skin more sensitive to the sun. Wearing sunscreen every day can also help you prevent future wrinkles.
Take it easy. Try only one or two anti-aging products at a time.
Using too many tends to irritate the skin, which can make signs of aging more visible. It's best to start with one product and add another product after a month or so.
Look for ingredients vitamin C or descriptions including “peptide technology” or “growth factor technology.”
After you moisturize, smooth on a primer before you put on your foundation.
“Applying primer as a makeup base is the key to softening wrinkles,” says Jaclyn Peresetsky, a makeup artist and co-owner of Skin Perfect Clinic in Ohio.
Choose one with a silicone base, which fills in uneven skin texture and fine lines.
Heavy matte formulas make your skin look older. A hydrating, sheer foundation is best.
Need more coverage to hide dark spots or blemishes? Lightly tap a concealer on dark spots before applying foundation.
Heavy coverage on fine lines and wrinkles draws attention to them.
A light dusting of loose, mineral powder sets your makeup without settling into fine lines and pores.
“Look for one that contains mica micro-particles, which reflect light to give the skin extraordinary radiance,” Peresetsky says.
Also, swap your powder blush for a cream blush to get a natural, radiant look that won't draw attention to any fine lines on your cheeks.
Highlighting eyes is one of the tricks of the trade that makeup artists use to draw focus away from wrinkles.
Choose matte eye shadow rather than shimmer. “The metallic used in shimmery eye shadows enhances fine lines and draws attention to crepey skin,” Peresetsky says.
Neutral colors work best. Use lighter shades on your lids and soft neutrals in the creases of your eyelids.
Keep the color on your lips, and don't let it bleed into fine lines. Lip pencil, a non-drying lip stain, and sheer gloss should do the trick, Peresetsky says.
Line your lips with a creamy, color-stay lip liner that matches your lip color.
Next, apply a lip stain very lightly using your fingertip. Don't use too much.
Finally, put a little bit of sheer gloss on the center of your lips. This will help your color stay put and keep the spotlight where it belongs: on your beauty.
Joshua Zeichner, MD, director, cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology, Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York.
Jaclyn Peresetsky, makeup artist, aesthetician, and co-owner, Skin Perfect Clinic, Columbus, OH.
American Academy of Dermatology: “Mature skin,” “Dermatologists' tips to reduce the signs of aging.”
© 2013 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.
Tips for Taking Care of Your Skin
Sometimes it may seem your skin is impossible to manage, especially when you wake up and find a huge zit on your nose or a cold sore at the corner of your mouth. The good news is that there are ways to prevent and treat common skin problems — read on for some tips.
A pimple starts when the pores in the skin become clogged with a type of oil called sebum, which normally lubricates the skin and hair.
Acne is common during puberty when hormones go into overdrive, causing the skin to overproduce sebum.
Because many oil-producing glands are on the forehead, nose, and chin, this area — the T-zone — is where a person is most prone to pimples.
Here are some tips to help prevent breakouts and clear them up as fast as possible:
- Wash your face twice a day (no more) with warm water and a mild soap made for people with acne. Gently massage your face with circular motions. Don't scrub. Overwashing and scrubbing can cause skin to become irritated. After cleansing, the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends applying an over-the-counter (no prescription needed) lotion containing benzoyl peroxide.
- Don't pop pimples. It's tempting, but here's why you shouldn't: Popping pimples can push infected material further into the skin, leading to more swelling and redness, and even scarring. If you notice a pimple coming before a big event, the prom, a dermatologist can often treat it for you with less risk of scarring or infection.
- Avoid touching your face with your fingers or leaning your face on objects that collect sebum and skin residue your phone. Touching your face can spread the bacteria that cause pores to become inflamed and irritated. To keep bacteria at bay, wash your hands before applying anything to your face, such as treatment creams or makeup.
- If you wear glasses or sunglasses, make sure you clean them frequently to keep oil from clogging the pores around your eyes and nose.
- If you get acne on your body, try not to wear tight clothes. They don't allow skin to breathe and may cause irritation. Scarves, headbands, and caps can collect dirt and oil, too.
- Remove your makeup before you go to sleep. When buying makeup, make sure you choose brands that say “noncomedogenic” or “nonacnegenic” on the label. Throw away old makeup that smells or looks different from when you first bought it.
- Keep hair clean and your face to prevent additional dirt and oil from clogging your pores.
- Protect your skin from the sun. It may seem a tan masks acne, but it's only temporary. A tan may worsen your acne, not improve it. Tanning also causes damage to skin that will eventually lead to wrinkles and increase your risk of skin cancer.
If you're concerned about acne, talk to a dermatologist. Dermatologists offer a range of treatments that help to prevent and acne scars.
A dermatologist can help you find the treatment method that's best for you and can also give you lots of useful tips for dealing with acne and caring for your skin type.
Some salons and spas have trained skin specialists, called estheticians, who can offer advice and skin care treatments.
Sun and Skin
We all know we need to protect our skin from the sun's harmful rays. Of course, it's impossible to avoid the sun — who wants to hide indoors when it feels so great to get outside? And the sun's not all bad, anyway: Sunlight helps our bodies create vitamin D. So follow these tips when you're outdoors to help manage sun exposure:
- Wear sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15, even if it's cloudy or you don't plan on spending a lot of time outdoors. If you sweat a lot or go swimming, reapply sunscreen every 1½ to 2 hours (even if the bottle says the sunscreen is waterproof).
- Choose a sunscreen that blocks both UVA and UVB rays. Look for the words “broad spectrum protection” or UVA protection in addition to the SPF of 15 or greater. Select a sunscreen that says “nonacnegenic” or “noncomedogenic” on the label to help keep pores clear.
- The sun's rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., so reapply sunscreen frequently and take breaks indoors if you can. If your shadow is longer than you are tall, then it's a safer time to be in the sun (you should still wear sunscreen, though).
- Apply more sunscreen (with higher SPF) when you're around reflective surfaces water, snow, or ice.
- We all know that the sun can damage skin, but did you know it can contribute to eye problems, too? Protect your face and eyes with a hat and sunglasses that provide 100% UV protection.
- Some medications, such as prescription acne medications, can increase your sensitivity to the sun (and to tanning beds). So if you're taking medication, increase your sun protection.
- If you want the glow of a tan, try faking it with self-tanners. Avoid tanning beds. They still contain some of the same harmful UV rays as the sun.
Cold sores usually show up as tender blisters on the lips. They are caused by a type of herpes virus (HSV-1, which most often is not sexually transmitted) so they are contagious from person to person. Once you get this virus it stays in your body, meaning you'll probably get cold sores every now and then throughout your life.
Here are ways you can help prevent cold sores from making an appearance (or reappearance if you've had them in the past):
- Avoid getting cold sores in the first place by not sharing stuff lip balm, toothbrushes, or drinks with other people who might have cold sores. The virus that causes cold sores is transmitted through the nose (in mucus) and the mouth (in saliva).
- People who have the virus know that cold sores can flare up from things too much sun, stress, or being sick. Just one more reason to lather on that suntan lotion, eat well, exercise, and get plenty of sleep!
If you do have a cold sore, here are some tips for keeping yourself comfortable:
- Take acetaminophen or ibuprofen if the cold sores are painful.
- Suck on ice pops or cubes to ease pain and keep cold sores cool.
- Stay away from acidic foods ( oranges, tomatoes, and lemonade) and salty, spicy foods, which can cause irritation.
- Don't pick at cold sores while you're waiting for them to go away. They may bleed or become infected with bacteria or you could spread the virus.
Usually, cold sores go away on their own after a week or two. But if you get them often or they're a problem, talk to your doctor or dermatologist, who may be able to prescribe medication to alleviate symptoms and shorten the amount of time cold sores last.
Eczema is a condition that causes skin to become red, itchy, and dry. If you have eczema, you might notice that you are prone to getting itchy rashes — especially in places where your elbows and knees bend or on your neck and face. The symptoms of eczema can vary from person to person.
Though you can't cure eczema forever, you can take steps to prevent it from flaring:
- Stay away from things harsh detergents, perfumed soaps, and heavily fragranced lotions that tend to irritate the skin and trigger eczema.
- Because hot water dries by quick evaporation and over-washing with soap may dry skin, take short, warm showers and baths. If you're going to have your hands in water for a long time ( when you're washing dishes or your car), try wearing gloves. Detergent can dry and irritate skin.
- Soothe your skin with regular applications of a fragrance-free moisturizer to prevent itching and dryness. Creams generally moisturize a bit better and last longer than lotions for most people. Creams work best if applied when the skin is slightly wet, just after bathing.
- Be careful which fabrics you wear. Cotton is good because it's breathable and soft. (But if you are exercising, some of the newer synthetic materials actually keep you drier and are better for you than cotton.) Try to stay away from materials wool or spandex that may cause irritation or allergic reactions.
- Keep stress in check. Because stress can lead to eczema flares, try activities yoga or walking after a long day to keep your stress levels low.
- If you wear makeup, look for brands that are free of dyes and fragrances that can aggravate eczema.
If you're having trouble managing your eczema, talk to a dermatologist, who can suggest ways to better control it.
Other Skin Problems
Warts are tiny skin infections caused by viruses of the human papilloma virus (HPV) family. There's no way to prevent warts from occurring (other than avoiding contact with people who have them). But if you do get them, don't rub, pick, or scratch them because you can spread the virus and get new warts.
Some over-the-counter medications containing special acids can help get rid of warts, but it's always a good idea to see your doctor before trying one. If you find warts in your genital area, you should see your doctor, who can recommend the best treatment method for that sensitive area.
Another type of wart- viral infection is molluscum contagiosum. (It's not as scary as its name sounds!) warts, it can be transmitted through scratching and sexual contact.
Fine white or purplish lines on the skin called stretch marks are pretty common in most teens. Stretch marks are formed when the tissue under your skin is pulled by rapid growth or stretching, during puberty. Stretch marks usually fade on their own over time. Talk to a dermatologist if you're concerned about them.
Because our skin is the most visible reflection of what's going on in our bodies, people equate healthy skin with beauty. But healthy skin is about more than just good looks; it's essential to our survival. So keep your skin glowing with the right skin care techniques and by eating well and getting lots of exercise.