Your skin is typically the first thing people observe about you. So why not give it the TLC it deserves this year? I’ve teamed up with Carmen McNeil of Timeless Beauty by Carmen to bring you a two part blog series on Skin Care. She and I are taking our time to present to you a simple way to achieve healthy skin in 2013.
What are the Different Skin Types?
For years there were only four different skin types: Normal, Oily, Dry, and Combination. However, Carmen explains an additional skin type that has made its place permanently. “Sensitive skin was considered more a condition. However, due to the environment, sun, stress, and other unhealthy elements it has now been officially recognized as a skin type, rather than a condition.”
How to Properly Recognize Your Skin Type
Some skin types are easier for us to recognize on ourselves than others. For example, oily skin are very shiny and greasy. Drier skin is at times flakier and patchy. However the best way to understand your skin is to have a thorough skin analysis.
“Professionals in the skin care industry are the best resources to determine your skin type and give you a proper skin analysis. You can go to someone at the makeup counter, but he or she can only make suggestions based on what they have seen with customers and their familiarity with product knowledge. An esthetician uses various instruments to analyze the skin that the naked eye is just not able to pick up.”
What is the Difference Between an Esthetician and a Dermatologist?
An esthetician is a licensed skin care professional who can assist you with on going skin treatments. They are required to do skin analysis and provide services best for the pH of skin, and skin type. Estheticians cannot diagnose or treat skin abnormalities or skin diseases. Dermatologist are skin doctors licensed to treat skin conditions, abnormalities, and other diseases. They will be able to provide the proper medication to treat patients.
What are Common Skin Conditions that Should Be Treated by a Dermatologist?
There are various skin conditions out there. However, we will break down the four common chronic skin conditions treated by dermatologists:
Eczema: condition that causes the skin to become red, inflamed, and irritated.
Psoriasis: skin disorder that forms red plaques with silvery scales commonly found on the scalp, elbow, knees, or lower back.
Severe Acne: excessive acne on face, neck and body that is common in teenagers and can be seen in adults.
Rosacea: skin disorder that cause redness on the face around, nose, cheeks, and forehead.
Your Skin Says it All
Your skin is the first line of defense. It has a way to communicating what areas you may need to address internally.
The face chart below generally explains what may be going on internally if you find acne breakouts in specific areas.
Poor nutrition and certain medication are other key causes for skin breakouts. We will discuss more about the effects of food on our skin in Part 2 of this blog series.
Basic Skin Care for ALL Skin Types
In order to have healthy skin you must do the following steps everyday:
3. Hydrate/Moisturize (even for oily skin)
4. Use Sunscreen (The sun is the #1 factor to cause premature aging of the skin, and skin cancer)
In order to know which products to use on your skin, you must be aware of your skin type and have a knowledge the pH of your skin, which is information provided to you by a great skin analysis.
For healthy skin, this basic skin care regimen should be done in the morning when you wake, and again at night before bed.
Test One Item At A Time
If you cannot afford an entire skin care line invest in one product first. For example, if your skin responds well to the cleanser, then look into purchasing a toner. You can build your skin care system slowly. Another advantage as a consumer is asking for samples of the skin care line. Stores like Sephora and Ulta are great with providing one time use samples. Carmen adds, “Any great esthetician will provide you with skin care samples to take home with you.”
When you are trying out new products, it would benefit you to try them out during a time when you have nothing planned or when you are not participating in anything that would cause your skin to respond in certain ways. This suggestion is to prevent you from misreading the effects of the products you are testing. If you are juicing or detoxing, you may want to wait about two weeks to test skin care products.
Make-Up Wipes Are Not the Solution
Yes, we all use them. However, they should not be the main source for effectively cleansing the skin. When purchasing makeup wipes read the ingredients listed on the package to make sure it works for your skin type. Some make-up wipes have alcohol in them, which may dry out your skin. Others have ingredients which may cause your skin to produce more oil. Then you have a few that fall in the middle of the road.
Carmen candidly provides her opinion and recommendation. “Make-up wipes are what I consider a quickie. They are not a good cleansing system. If you are looking for a great way to clean the skin, and provides thorough cleansing, I highly recommend investing in a Clarisonic.”
What About Exfoliating?
Exfoliating assists in the removal of dead skin, and helps with skin cell turnover. Depending on your skin type, there are different ways to exfoliate the skin. Carmen explains, ” You need the right type of exfoliator because the wrong type can aggravate the skin, or break the skin open. So make sure you know your skin type, and choose correctly.” Exfoliating should be done no more than once a week after cleansing and toning the skin.
The Power of Water Consumption
Water is good for your overall health, and does wonders for your skin! Fifty to seventy percent of water in your body is found in healthy skin. Carmen passionately shares her feelings on water consumption: “Drinking water is beneficial for your skin. The effect it has on your skin is similar to the difference between a supple, wet sponge, and a dried out hard sponge. Which one would you prefer?” Drinking water helps with skin cell turnover, removes and eliminates toxins. It also makes extractions easier because the skin is supple and easily release it from our pores. Carmen recommends to drink half of your body weight in ounces per day.
Carmen concludes this post by stating, “If you do these three things everyday you can have healthy looking skin. 1. Drink appropriate amount of water for your body weight everyday. 2. Always wear sunscreen. 3. Never pick your skin!”
Be on the look out for Basic Home Skin Care Treatment in Part 2. Please feel free to comment and ask me or Carmen questions we can answer in the next post!
Guest Contributer and Skin Care Specialist