Skin Care Sabotage
Looking in your medicine cabinet, you would think you take good care of your skin. You have every lotion and potion out there and wash your face at least twice a day. Unfortunately, according to skin care expert Rand Rusher, you might actually be doing more harm than good to your face, and sabotaging your skin without even knowing it.
According to Rusher, pillows are not the fluffy, cozy friends you think they are. He says they can actually exacerbate skin problems and irritation, as well as aid in the reduction of skin's elasticity over time. Rusher recommends sleeping on your back to avoid rubbing your skin back and forth over the pillow. Other important reminders at bedtime include removing all makeup and hair care products, and keeping your hair off your face.
Mirrors, particularly magnifying mirrors that blow up every little blemish and pore into disasters of epic proportions may be part of the problem. "We start plucking and pulling and pinching at things that no one can see," says Rusher. "You focus on the wrong things. Next thing, you're having more flare-ups and break-outs." And since your skin's ability to rejuvenate itself lessens as you age, you won't heal as fast either. Rusher suggests leaving the digging and popping to an aesthetician.
People who suffer from acne often find themselves constantly washing their face but Rusher says this might be doing more harm than good. "There are some healthy oils on your face you don't want to wash off," he says. "Twice a day is enough." He also discourages the use of regular soap on your face, explaining that it can dry out your skin. Rusher suggests using a gentle facial cleanser instead.
What does your cell phone have to do with your skin? More than you would think. "We put them everywhere, then pick them up and touch our face," says Rusher. He recommends washing your hands frequently and wiping down your phone with wipes to keep what goes near your face as clean as possible.
In addition to keeping skin clean and healthy, another important element in skin care is limiting your exposure to the sun and harmful UV rays. Susan has been consumed with having a bronze complexion since she was 17. Her tanning habit eventually led her to buy her own tanning bed, which she used up to five days a week. Now that she's turning 40, Susan is starting to worry that her obsession with tanning -- in addition to her smoking habit -- has added years to her face.
"Eighty percent of premature aging is due to sun damage," says Rusher. And the cigarettes are doing just as much damage. "Thirty percent of the blood supply is cut off to the face every time you light up a cigarette."
Using a special Visia machine, Rusher is able to see what Susan will look like in 10 years if she continues smoking and tanning.
Rusher's recommendations to help Susan reverse the damage:
• Stop tanning.
• Use a skin cream with Retinol in it. Retinol helps new cell turnover and ramps up the metabolism of new skin.
• If you're going outdoors, always use sunscreen, preferably one with UVA and UVB, which create both a chemical and physical block and work immediately after application, as opposed to having to wait until it soaks into the skin.
• Quit smoking.
• Drink lots of water. Your skin is the largest organ and is the last one to receive the benefits of the water you put into your body. It needs it the most, and gets the least!
Special thanks to Canfield Imaging.
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