Archive for August, 2010

How to Find Makeup for Sensitive Skin


For years I have have been plagued with sensitive skin and have found it extremely difficult to find a good makeup for sensitive skin that doesn’t cause a reaction over time.  Many products claim to be safe for sensitive and acne prone skin, but I still either break out or end up with some itchy rash.  I’ve finally figured out how to pick the best ones and how to test them carefully.  Even so, you may find that trial and error is the only way to go.

When testing out new products on your skin, make sure that you do a patch test first.  Put a small amount in a sensitive but unobtrusive spot, usually behind you ear or on your neck.  Leave it for 24 hours to see if you react.  If you don’t have a reaction, try a small amount on your face for several days.  For me, I don’t know if a makeup or other product is truly safe for my skin until I have used it for at least a week.  This is why I always ask salespeople in cosmetic stores for a large enough sample to last a week.  If they won’t do that, or if it’s just not possible, make sure that you can return it if you have a reaction.  Many online stores have a good return policy and some companies sell trial kits that are perfect for testing out a new line.

The Eraser 4-in-1 Natural ConcealerSome of the best makeup for sensitive skin are those that contain few chemicals or that are all natural or organic.  My favorite lines right now are Tarte and Korres.  Since it is summer as I write this, I have been using a combination of the Tarte Eraser liquid concealer and some of their powder foundation.  Korres powder foundation is a little more moisturizing if you have drier skin.  I also like the cleansing products by Boscia and Fresh, which are very gentle on the skin.  I have never found a drugstore brand, unfortunately, that doesn’t make my skin itchy. I’ll stick with the Tarte Cosmetics Smooth Operator SPF 20 Foundationfor now and see how it goes.

For those who prefer mineral makeup, make sure you use one that doesn’t have bismuth oxychloride.  My favorite is by Bare Minerals, but you have to buy their Matte foundation.  The regular one did have bismuth oxychloride in it the last time I checked, but the matte one is fantastic and doesn’t have the tell-tale sign of the ingredients that irritate your skin – namely a shimmer.  Products with mica in them will also cause itchiness, and many blushes contain this ingredient.

Sunscreen is another culprit of itchiness, rashes or breakouts in sensitive skin.  I can’t use anything with chemicals in it so I stick to mineral sunscreen.  I found one by Elta MD, EltaMD UV Clear SPF 46, which is specifically for sensitive and acne prone skin.   Neutrogena now makes one that is all mineral and is good for sensitive skin.  The problem I had was that it felt a little too greasy and made me break out.  The only real solution?  Stay out of the sun.  I know that you are supposed to wear sunscreen even if you are not in the sun, but with ultra sensitive skin you are best staying out of the sun anyway.

Use a little trial and error, you will be able to find a good makeup for sensitive skin that provides excellent coverage and a natural look.  One other product line that I’m about to try is Afterglow Cosmetics.  They are supposed to be particularly good for sensitive skin.  If anyone has tried them yet, let me know!  I’m going to order them right now.

Meanwhile, go easy on your skin and use as little makeup as possible and as few ingredients as possible.  You’ll look better for it.

– Sharyn

Afterglow Cosmetics, Inc

Makeup for Rosacea: How to Cover Rosacea

woman with rosaceaPeople with rosacea often confuse it with acne due the redness associated with it.  Any blemishes you have may be more related to your rosacea than acne.  While there are a number of treatments for rosacea, your dermatologist can give you a topical treatment to help heal or control it. In this article, I will focus primarily on how to use makeup for rosacea in order to conceal it.

As with normal acne, you need to use a concealer to neutralize the redness associated with your rosacea.  Green is the most common color used, though some people will react better to a yellowish concealer.  Skin that is more fair may look too greenish when a green concealer is used.   If you have to use a lot of foundation over the green concealer, it defeats the purpose and you will have to layer on too much makeup.  Use a yellow concealer in this case and experiment with the amount needed.

As with acne, many people prefer using mineral makeup for covering rosacea.  The fact that mineral makeup has fewer ingredients and chemicals  means that there are less things to irritate your skin.  Use a greenish or yellowish powder first and then your foundation powder afterwards.

I have also found that a tattoo concealer, like Kat Von D Tattoo Concealer, can help cover very small areas of rosacea or acne scars.  Just be careful not to use too much since it is very creamy. 
Cover FX
makes a heavier concealer and foundation that you can match precisely to your skin tone and set with powder.  It lasts a long time and is more waterproof than other foundations.

Try to use products that have as few chemicals as possible to prevent irritation to your skin and aggravation of your rosacea.  In addition, use very gentle makeup removers at the end of the day.  I like Boscia’s Makeup Breakup Cleansing Oil, or the Soy Cleanser by Fresh.  After cleansing, apply your rosacea treatment, or just a very gentle moisturizer.  Be careful of using any acne treatments in the areas where you have rosacea since they can just make it worse.

If you havent’ done so already, go to a dermatologist to get your rosacea diagnosed properly.  He or she will be able to tell you whether it is rosacea or acne and will give you the correct treatment to try.  Unfortunately, rosacea can actually be harder to treat, and to conceal, than acne.  Most people grow out of acne eventually, whereas rosacea can be a lifelong condition.

Below are a two great products for skin with rosacea from DERMAdoctor.  I’ve used the Calm, Cool and Corrected myself and it does an amazing job of calming any redness.  Check them out and just make sure you test anything on a small patch of skin first.

I have also heard that Afterglow Cosmetics are fantastic for sensitive skin.

Any suggestions for other rosacea makeup?  What has worked best for you?  Let me know by commenting below.

– Sharyn

PS – Here’s a link to a green mineral makeup concealer by Beau Monde.  It got 4 stars at Amazon and is one of the only green mineral powder concealers I’ve been able to find.  I haven’t tried it, but it meets all the criteria.

Teen Girls Acne

The following is an article by a guest author from Acne Home.

Acne breakouts in the teen years can be a very depressing situation. As teenagers, about 85% of girls have to fight acne. Some of them get rid of it, but most have to face it for many years or even their whole life. Studies show that acne in teen girls is not as severe as in teen boys, but it can be more depressing and frustrating for girls.

Teen acne can cause psychological problems, such as an inferiority complex. Why are girls more depressed with this situation then their male counterparts? It’s because girls are more conscious about their looks than males. That’s why girls often avoid social contact when they have acne, which brings even more depression.

Causes of Teen Girls’ Acne:

There are many different causes of teen girls’ acne. The most common cause of any teen acne is hormones. Girls produce two fundamental hormones, i.e. estrogen and progesterone. The body produces these hormones normally, but their levels sometimes go higher than normal, which leads to an overstimulation of the sebaceous glands. Excessive sebum is produced due to these stimulated sebaceous glands.  The excess sebum combined with dead skin cells clog hair follicles which restrict efficient discharge of sebum.

Some other causes:

There are some other causes of teen acne as well, such as:

●       Lack of sufficient nutrients

●       Weak immune system

●       Drug reactions

●       Make up

Certain vitamins and minerals are very important to maintain hormones. For example, zinc helps to control the menstrual cycle and to maintain it.  It is important to take zinc in an appropriate amount. Some drugs may contribute to acne also.  If you notice breakouts after any medication, stop taking it and consult your doctor immediately.

Causes of hormonal imbalance in girls:

Teen girls often experience severe break outs before and after their menstrual cycle. This is due to increased hormone activity, especially before the menstrual cycle.  As you know, excess production of these hormones stimulates the sebaceous glands.  Therefore, these monthly periods cause the highest imbalance in hormonal levels.

Natural herbs and teenage girls’ acne:

There are many treatments available to treat girls’ acne depending on their skin type and severity. However, synthetic medications can have side effects and most of the girls are aware of it. For this reason, many girls prefer herbal products to treat acne. Herbal products are safe as well as very effective for all kinds of acne. There are many herbal products available to treat acne, including herbal lotions containing nutritional ingredients like vitamins and minerals.

Conclusion:

Acne is the most common skin disorder in teen years for both boys and girls. Boys are more susceptible compared to girls, but girls often suffer more depression as a result of it. The main causes of teen acne in girls are imbalanced hormones, weak immune system, and lack of a balanced diet. In addition, regular or irregular menstrual cycles and puberty cause overproduction of hormones which stimulate the sebaceous glands. Finally, zinc is an important dietary substance which helps maintain the menstrual cycle and balance hormone production.

About the author:

Helen has been an expert in skin health writing specifically on the subject of acne. Her work has been published on various websites and magazines and provides insightful advice for skin disease, home remedies for acne sufferers. For more articles on acne and its causes please visit http://www.acnehome.com/

NOTE: The views and opinions in this article are those of our guest author from Acne Home, Helen, and do not necessarily represent those of Makeup for Acne.

Vitamins for Acne: Cure or Scam?

Fish oil for acne

There are numerous testimonials by people that claim vitamins for acne were the ultimate and final cure for their acne.  Do not believe a word of it.  I don’t know where these testimonials originate, but there is no evidence that vitamins can cure acne.  However, certain vitamins can help your body fight off acne as well as other conditions. It is all part of your general health and taking care of your body.

Some of the vitamins and minerals that can strengthen your body’s defences and help alleviate your acne include:

  • Vitamin B complex
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin C
  • Chromium
  • Zinc

Different B vitamins taken together can help alleviate stress, which weakens the immune system and can be a contributing factor in acne for some people. Vitamin A strengthens protective tissue and reduces sebum production, especially as a topical treatment in the form of retinol or isotretinoin.  Both Vitamins E and C are antioxidants that help fight free radicals and strengthen your immune system.  Chromium, in the form of chromium picolinate, can help reduce infections.  Finally, zinc aids in the healing of tissue and can help inflammatory acne, although it can upset the stomach.

Rather than taking a multivitamin, it is always ideal to consume your vitamins in the form of real food.  These include fresh fruits and vegetables in a wide range of colors – yellow, orange, green, and red.  You can go by the guideline that the more variety of natural color in a fruit and vegetable the greater range of vitamins you’re getting.  Lean meats and whole grains provide other vitamins and minerals, while healthy oils (like avocado and olive oil) legumes and nuts provide even more.  A balanced diet along with regular exercise will provide everything you need to keep you healthy and help you fight off acne.

In reality, most people are unable to take in enough vitamins and minerals through diet alone.  In this case, a good multivitamin is essential.  There are some multivitamins on the market that claim to be especially beneficial for acne.  Those are a good option, but just remember that they won’t cure you overnight, even though some of them swear they will.  Your best cure is to combine your topical acne treatment with a healthy diet, plenty of water, and exercise.

– Sharyn

P.S. Some people have foods they are sensitive or allergic to that can trigger acne breakouts.  Be aware of what you are sensitive to so you can avoid them.  However, there is no food that specifically causes acne.  After all, does everyone who eats pizza or chocolate have acne?

The following is a product sold at Amazon that combines vitamins with a topical cream.  It got a 4 start rating by users, although I haven’t tried it myself.