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Myths and Facts About Psoriasis

1 Mar

Understanding psoriasis may be very helpful in effectively treating the symptoms associated with the condition. There are several myths surrounding psoriasis and separating fact from fiction can be an eye-opening experience and may help those suffering from the condition better cope with psoriasis.

Is it Contagious?

No. Psoriasis is not a contagious disease. The exact cause of psoriasis is not fully understood, although malfunctioning T-cells in the body lead to the buildup of dead skin cells on the surface of the skin. These appear as red patches on the skin with silvery scales over them. Touching these scales or passing bodily fluids does not spread the disease.

Psoriasis Affects Only the Skin

False. This is actually a problem with the immune system, as T-cells that are supposed to only attack bacteria and viruses target healthy cells as well. This leads to the buildup of dead skin cells, as new skin cells move to the surface of the skin too quickly. The result is the scaly appearance of psoriasis.

Psoriasis is Not Curable

This is true. While treatments exist that may help to reduce the symptoms of psoriasis, there is no known cure for the disease.

Psoriasis is Due to Poor Hygiene

False. Psoriasis is due to a problem with the immune system and is not caused by poor hygiene. Weather, stress, obesity and smoking are common triggers of psoriasis, but hygiene has not been linked to the disease. If you have heard other myths that you would like to be confirmed or debunked, talk to a licensed physician or skincare professional. This is the best resource for information about psoriasis and other skin conditions.

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Skin Care and Injectables

30 Aug

Injectables such as collagen and fat can make fine lines or wrinkles disappear and plump up lips, cheeks and chins to give a more youthful appearance. However, these treatments can be dangerous and, even if you have no adverse reaction, may need to be repeated in just a few short weeks.

A better alternative for reducing wrinkles may be an effective dry skin care treatment such as a shielding lotion. Which option should you choose? It largely depends on the cause of the wrinkles – degeneration of the skin’s structure or simple damage from dry skin. The collagen and elastin structure or a reduced fat content caused by extreme weight loss can result in wrinkles, but, as often as not, they are caused by a breakdown in the natural protective coating that prevents moisture loss and dry skin. This in itself can cause wrinkles, but, as the coating breaks down and opens the door to chemicals, pollutants and harsh weather, the wrinkling process is greatly accelerated.

If you spend time in the sun or blustering cold, wear make-up, use soaps, lotions or moisturizers that contain any sort of chemical, or if your skin simply feels dry, chances are your fine lines and wrinkles would benefit from using a shielding lotion. Also, you’re addressing the root of the problem, instead of just getting a quick fix.

A good shielding lotion treats and prevents dry skin by bonding with the outer layer to form a protective layer. This locks in the skin’s natural moisture, protects it against damage from chemicals, sun and harsh weather and allows it to heal. If you decide on collagen injections, you first need to ensure that they are safe for you. Your doctor will usually inject a small amount in a test site and watch it for adverse reactions for three to four weeks.

If there is no redness, swelling, itching or other reaction during that time then you are probably safe. How long it will last is anybody’s guess. Eventually the collagen is metabolized into the rest of the body — it may take weeks or months. If in doubt, try the natural skin care route first. A good dry skin treatment is safer and less expensive than injections, and it may be all you really need.

Author, Gloria MacTaggart

Why is Photo-Rejuvenation So Popular These Days?

23 Aug

Note: Photo-Rejuvenation is also called Photo Light Therapy or Red and Blue Light Therapy.

By Joniann Howell

LED photo rejuvenation is quickly becoming as widespread these days as baby boomers are prevalent. From your small estheticians offices, to day spas, to the latest and greatest med-spas, LED photo-rejuvenation is gaining public awareness as fast as new reality shows are being TiVo-ed in every home across America.

What is LED photorejuvenation? It’s the interaction of light delivered through light emitting diodes that activate the cell receptors causing them to produce collagen and elastin. It’s non-invasive; it’s safe and one of the best natural skin rejuvenation therapies available. It helps to diminish fine lines, wrinkles, age spots, acne and makes the universal “50 going on 30 something malady” a veritable reality for those who partake.

With so many procedures out there why would anyone choose photo rejuvenation? Why not laser? Especially when there are so many laser treatments out there. Everywhere you turn you see laser face this and laser face that, from laser facials, to laser resurfacing, to laser skin treatment, to laser photo facials, to laser, laser, laser, LASER! What is the difference and which one works?

As a matter of fact around the mid-90’s when laser treatments first came out, I myself jumped on the bandwagon. Having been blessed by a genetic line of long-legged, tall, slender bodies, I unfortunately was not blessed when it came to vein free, pigment free or even blemish free skin, but that’s another subject for another time and definitely a subject for LED photo rejuvenation.

Back to laser skin treatment here. I remember when I was quite young and of a somewhat smaller stature, peering at my Grandmother’s legs and wondering what all those little red lines were. It was like someone had taken a thin red crayon and made random little scribbles all over her legs. Never in my adolescent dreams did I imagine my perfectly bronzed, strong, youthful legs would ever look like that, much less in my early 30’s, not to mention all the sunspots on my once perfect hands that suddenly appeared out of nowhere. So, after a bit of research I learned that laser therapy uses light beams, which are pulsed onto the veins to seal them off, causing them to dissolve and make the little red veins disappear.

By the way, LED photo rejuvenation, known only to the avant-garde of scientists at that point, had not yet been borne nor even conceived by the general public. So laser skin treatment… why not. Painless, safe, so they say, and right down the street from my office was the latest and greatest laser treatment clinic. Off I went one sunny afternoon, willing, hopeful and feeling somewhat extraordinary for indulging in this purported fashionable laser treatment. Baring my red scribbled legs and sun-spotted hands… laser treatment here I come!

There is something to be said about being first on the esthetic camouflage march. Unfortunately laser skin treatment at that time was not quite as tried as it may be nowadays, although every dermatologist I talk to nowadays says laser treatment is NOT the way to go for spider veins or sunspots. I still have the mementos today and if you were here I could show you. Little tiny scars on the backs of my hands where the sunspots still are! And the spider veins, well to tell you the truth, not a one disappeared. So LED photo rejuvenation here I come!

Red and Blue Light Therapy is available at Off Whyte Skin Care Studio.

Joniann Howell, the driving force behind LightStim, has thousands of subscribers benefitting from a safe, natural, well-documented technique known as LED Photo Rejuvenation, which promotes the skin’s own natural repair system.For more information please visit

Skin Care Tips

6 Aug

While we can help you take care of your skin and address skin problems, you can do a lot for yourself.
No matter what type of skin you have, keeping it clean goes a long way toward ensuring your skin feels and looks beautiful.

Be careful not to use products with harsh chemicals and too many soaps on the market often work against you. It is better to use gentle soaps and cleansers. There are cleansers especially formulated for various skin types. Ask us to help you figure out what to purchase.

Typically you should use lukewarm temperatures when cleaning your skin. Use clean, cotton cloths when cleansing, but avoid scrubbing or rubbing too hard. That way you can avoid irritating your skin. Use a towel of natural fiber to dry your skin.
Cleansing twice per day is recommended for dry and normal skin. For oily skin or skin with an acne condition, three times per day is best. You can use a toner or astringent to deep cleanse oily skin or skin with acne after your normal cleansing routine. This will help remove oils trapped deeper in your skin.

If you have oily skin, a steaming facial over hot water can help to unclog the pores without stripping your skin of essential oils, as cleansing with hot water itself would.

Of course, there is more you can do than keep your skin clean. Drinking a sufficient amount of water (e.g. 8 glasses per day), and eating the right foods and ensuring your body is getting the vitamins it needs will help you with your skin care goals. And your whole body will benefit as well!

Skin and your diet

6 Aug

Severe diets that skimp on calories and on one or more nutrients are detrimental to your skin, and so are eating habits that include plenty of complexion-spoiling fast food. Heres a rundown of common nutrient deficiencies and how they affect your complexion:

A lack of protein can lead to a dull, dry complexion and poor wound-healing.

A shortage of iron can result in a pale complexion.

A lack of vitamin A can produce dry skin or unexplained breakouts.

A deficiency in vitamin B Complex can result in cracks at the corners of the mouth, unexplained breakouts, impaired wound-healing, and pallor.

A lack of vitamin C can cause poor wound-healing, dullness, and easy bruising.

A shortage of vitamin E can lead to poor wound-healing and dry skin.

A lack of vitamin K can result in weak, broken, or distended facial capillaries.