Natural Acne Treatments Vs Leading Pharmaceuticals

December 18, 2009 by admin · Leave a Comment 

In June 2009, the pharmaceutical giant Roche Holding AG, pulled its Accutane acne medicine from the U.S. market after juries awarded at least $33 million in damages to users who blamed the drug for bowel disease.

According to Bloomberg.com, “Roche notified the U.S. Food and Drug Administration today that it was withdrawing Accutane after a “reevaluation” of its product lines showed it faced serious challenges from generic competitors, company officials said in a statement.”

This is just another in a long list of recent health concerns over pharmaceutical skincare treatments and the serious health risks they may pose.

As the natural skincare movement gains popularity, many consumers are discovering their old over the counter acne treatments can have potentially harmful chemicals that would be best to avoid. In response to these concerns, many have made the switch to all-natural acne skincare treatments. While some are convinced that natural remedies can’t be strong enough to fight stubborn acne. If you are convinced a more powerful acne medication is the best option, read on to find out what approach is right for you to become acne free.

Product

Contains Chemicals

Birth
Defects

Depression
Psychosis

Skin
Irritation

Restrictions on Sun Exposure

Gastro-intestine
Disorders

Vivoderm 100% Natural Anti-Acne Mask

NO

NO

NO

NO

NO

NO

Retin-A

YES

NO

NO

YES

YES

NO

Tetracycline

YES

YES

NO

NO

YES

YES

Benzoyl Peroxide

YES

NO

NO

YES

NO

NO

Differin

YES

NO

NO

YES

YES

NO

Skinoren*

YES

NO

NO

YES

YES

NO

Roaccutane

YES

YES

YES

YES

YES

YES

Effective Natural Acne Treatments and Ingredients

There are various home treatments and natural ingredients that have been proven to be effective in treating mild to moderate cases of acne. Some of these may include:

· Massage essential oils into your skin at night such as Tea Tree Oil, Bergamot Oil, Clove Oil, Lavender Oil, and Rosewood Oil. Wash your face clean in the morning with pure soap and water.

· Acne starts within the body, not just at the surface of the skin. Therefore, it is important to drink plenty of water to help detoxify your body and help clear acne.

· You can exfoliate and clear pores with an oatmeal mask once or twice a week. Cook oatmeal and while it is still warm, apply to your face, allow oatmeal to dry and then wash away.

There are many varieties of at home solutions, some of which are effective, and some not. Those with more serious cases of acne however, such as cystic acne, usually turn to stronger over the counter acne treatments.

Over the Counter Acne Treatments

Over the counter acne products tend to be more powerful in fighting acne because each product works differently to target causes of acne. Certain products function by killing Prionibacterium acnes (P.acnes), the bacteria that creates inflammation. Other medications reduce sebum output and renew skin. Other products function by using combinations of these things. Acne medication treatments work in different ways depending on their active ingredient. Here are some common active ingredients that acne products contain.

*Benzoyl Peroxide works to eliminate P. acnes and reduces excess oil and dead skin cells. It is available in different strengths that come in products in certain percentages.

*Salicylic Acid prevents pores from clogging by slowing the process of skin cell shed within hair follicles. It also helps fight whiteheads and blackheads.

*Alcohol and acetone are found in astringents and cleansing washes. They clear your skin of dirt and oil.

These medications might be more powerful in treating acne but they often come with more side effects such as dryness, sensitivity to sun, stinging or irritation, redness or peeling.

There are many natural options that are now available that give you the opportunity to fight acne with powerful results but without the unnatural chemicals that may cause unwanted side effects. The top natural acne treatments have been proven to be as strong as leading pharmaceuticals, yet a perfect compromise between gentle home remedies that don’t show results and powerful but irritating over the counter products.

When it comes to the next generation of acne treatments, the most promising products are natural blends to specific herbal constituents–like Rosemary, Marshmallow, Aloe Vera, Lavender, Fennel, Angelica, and Green Tea – that evade irritating side effects. Vivoderm Laboratories offers a natural acne mask that reduces sebum output, controls inflammation, unclogs pores, and moisturizes skin. It also serves as an acne scar treatment as it regenerates skin affected by redness and scars. Many herbs also contain natural antiseptic properties to attack acne-causing bacteria. This anti-acne treatment removes dead skin cells and repairs blemishes without drying out the skin.

The bottom line is to always be aware of chemicals you expose yourself to and make the choice that is best for you. If chemicals are in any way a concern for you - opt for a natural solution that treats the root causes of acne, not just the symptoms and become acne free – naturally.

Understanding Hormones and Your Skin

December 9, 2009 by admin · Leave a Comment 

“How to achieve beautiful, supple and young-looking skin”. You almost can’t avoid it - splashed on magazine covers, reported in newspapers and marketed on television and radio, the message to improve our skin would appear paramount to how we and others view our looks.
How does our skin age?  Skin aging is influenced by:

* Genetic differences
* Hormonal changes, e.g. estrogen and thyroxin
* Chronic sun exposure
* Wind, pollution

Blame it on hormones

Hormones are mostly to blame for skin changes as we age. Hormones are chemical messengers produced in organs such as the ovaries, adrenal glands, and thyroid glands, and all have an effect on other tissues.

Much of the reason why our skin begins to suffer is primarily due to hormones — and there is a massive industry manufacturing products to try to alleviate the results of these hormonal changes, notably as women reach menopause in their 40s and 50s.

As menopause occurs, estrogen is reduced and while it has a direct effect on thinning bones, it also creates significant changes in the skin. Women find:

* their skin becomes drier with increased wrinkles
* skin becomes more fragile, loses some of its elasticity, and is looser because the production of collagen is reduced
* older skin appears paler as the lack of estrogen reduces the number of blood vessels in the skin
* menopause also causes a reduction in the level of testosterone but not as significant a drop as in estrogen

Hormones and dry skin

Another hormone we have is thyroxin, produced by the thyroid gland, which influences skin appearance. Too much thyroxin shows a warm, smooth, sweaty, flushed skin. Under-activity of thyroxin produces a dry, coarse thickening of skin with reduced ability to sweat.

Hormones affect acne

The oil glands of the skin are in part controlled by the level and activity of the hormone testosterone in the skin. Testosterone is required to produce acne. This outcome can be seen in conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome, which produce some elevation in testosterone, which in turn causes increased facial hair, irregular periods and acne. It has also been found that some birth control pills can block testosterone skin reactors to improve some of the consequences of increasing hormone levels. (See Acne Guide for more acne information)
Thinning hair

Hair will thin after menopause. In some women, genetic factors produce significant thinning. Abnormalities in the level of a thyroid hormone, in addition to the amount of iron stored in the body, can influence the volume of hair.

Estrogen encourages hair to stay in its growing phase (Anagen hair). This is seen in the significant thickening of hair towards the end of pregnancy. After menopause, however, the lower estrogen amount allows the scalp hair to grow towards the falling out stage (Telogen hair).
HRT and skin

Post menopausal women will notice that unlike their scalp, facial hairs increase. This is thought to be because estrogen — which opposes the effect of testosterone — drops relatively more after menopause than testosterone.

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) has been used over the last 20 years to combat the signs of aging. HRT can promote a fuller-looking skin because the skin then becomes thicker with less loss of subcutaneous fat. Thinning and drying of vaginal surfaces is also minimized. This can also be achieved by using topical estrogen. The use of estrogen creams has been shown to maintain the elasticity and fullness of skin after menopause, although at this time it is not used extensively because of concerns about side effects and the variability of absorption into the body.

See your doctor or dermatologist to determine which solutions best suits your experience with aging skin.
By Richard Thomas, MD