Steps To Applying Flawless Foundation

Creating a flawless foundation may appear difficult especially after several attempts that will end up with blotches, patches and caking. When you look at magazines, you will see cover girls with full coverage and flawless foundation—no no caking, streaks, or patches. The truth is, there are tips that you can follow to achieve a flawless foundation application:

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•Wash your face.
It is always important to have a clean face before applying foundation. Using a good facial cleanser, gently cleanse your face. Continue to work on a lather. Remember to wash and not rub. Rinse your face thoroughly with lukewarm water.

•Apply a toner.
Apply a facial toner after washing your face. It removes the excess dirt from your skin. It also removes the residues from your facial cleanser. It not only freshens up your skin but also balances you skin pH after washing. It is best to chill the toner before use to help close your pores.

•Apply moisturizer.
Facial moisturizers help solve issues such as drying, oiliness, and aging of the skin. Most of the moisturizers out in the market contain organic ingredients that help keep the skin healthy-looking. If you have sensitive skin, it is best to choose a moisturizer that has a label saying “non-comedogenic” and “fragrance-free”. For the blemish-prone skin, experts recommend the use of tinted moisturizer. This type helps even out the skin tone and discretely covers the blemishes of the skin. Apply a hefty amount of moisturizer. This is good for the skin since it re-hydrates the face and brings back the lost moisture due to facial cleansing and chemical exposure. Be sure to apply the moisturizer all over the face and the neck. Let it stand for about ten minutes before proceeding to the next step.

•Apply primer.
Apply a primer over your face. This serves as a makeup base for smoother application of make up. Primer can help prolong your makeup application. The advanced formulation of makeup primers helps treat, protect and smooth the skin. It also helps in fighting off the appearance of wrinkles caused by sun exposure and aging. Best buys are those that contain botanical extracts that help diminish redness and blemishes. Some primers also contain sunscreen protection to protect the skin from the harmful UV rays emitted by the sun.

•Choose a foundation.
Select a foundation that is suited to your skin tone. Try on at least three different tones on the back of your hand to determine the best foundation that suits your skin. Apply a small streak from the lower cheek to the upper cheek evenly using a dabbing motion.

•Foundation application.
After choosing the best foundation tone, you can now proceed to coverage. Apply a quarter cent-amount of foundation at the back of your hand. Dip a damp makeup sponge or foundation brush into the foundation. Make sure to keep both sides coated. Apply the makeup in dots over your forehead, cheeks, chin and neck. Blend in an outward motion working toward the hairline and jaw line. Use gentle outward strokes. Finish off by brushing some loose powder over the face and neck.

For a slightly sun-kissed look, apply a hint of bronzer over the cheeks, chin and forehead. Applying your makeup foundation using these methods could help you achieve a flawless look.

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Top 30 Makeup Career Questions

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Pro Artist answers the digging questions on how to get a dream job

Thousands have emailed me over the years asking how to be me–how do you have the time of your life putting makeup on people, and get someone to pay you on the way out the door? I’m sharing with you the top questions they’ve been asking and my answers to help kick-start the dream of being a pro makeup artist.
  1. What is it that a makeup artist actually does?
  2. What kind of education do I need to be a professional makeup artist?
  3. What kind of skills do I need to do makeup on someone?
  4. What kind of daily routine is there for makeup artist?
  5. Where is makeup usually done? Is it in a regular business environment?
  6. Do you work alone or with others?
  7. Is makeup a self-employment job or will someone hire you to work for them?
  8. As a makeup artist, do you have a boss or do you work mostly on your own?
  9. What kind of starting salary will a makeup artist get?
  10. Is income affected by seasons, amount of work, layoffs?
  11. Is salary set or is it negotiated and how hard is it to get what you think you are worth?
  12. Is a makeup career a growth market or is it a job that is declining on opportunities.
  13. How do I search for work as an artist?
  14. How is a makeup career affected by where you live?
  15. What is the most challenging experience you’ve had as a makeup artist?
  16. Do you use one big kit of makeup or do you have several, and what products in general do we need in a makeup artist’s kit?
  17. Is it hard to get started as a fashion makeup artist?
  18. What kind of pace do you need to work at as an artist?
  19. Is it easy to get into film, TV and theater work or do you need connections?
  20. What’s your best advice for a student looking at going out into the makeup world?
  21. What do you find most rewarding about a makeup career?
  22. What is expected in a makeup artist’s portfolio?
  23. Do you have any favorite websites that inspire your makeup styles?
  24. Do you think there is a lot of competition with other artists? And how do you make sure you stand out from them and the competition doesn’t kill you?
  25. Is a makeup career one that suits family life?
  26. What’s your advice in starting out as a makeup artist; how do I promote myself?
  27. What are the drawbacks of a makeup career?
  28. What are the rewards of a makeup career?
  29. Why should I go to makeup school?
  30. Can I make it if I don’t go to makeup school?

 

How To Blend Eye Shadow

Mastering well blended eye shadow seems to be up there with mastering liquid liner for many of you, well those who contact me through social media at least. To get a nice blend does require a little practice as well as a few techniques, and very importantly, the right brushes!

*I would first advise doing your eye makeup before your foundation, this will allow for any fall out from blending eye shadows to be cleaned away easily without you having to re-do your base!

*Next, remember that powder eye shadows will blend much easier over a smooth, dry base. This is achieved by applying a powder base to the lids before applying the colour shadow.
Translucent face powder or a nude coloured eye shadow will work best.
If you want to apply a cream eye shadow or tacky base of some sort first, for the shadow to adhere to (to make it more vibrant or intense), then just apply your base powder down from the brow to where the cream base ends. This will allow you to still have a smooth blend above your crease line.

*Spend as long as you need when blending the eye shadow. Adding a little shadow at a time and blending as you go will make life much easier on yourself. And so as to not compromise the colour intensity of your shadow, only blend around the edges of the shadow shape that you are trying to achieve!

*Having a blending or crease brush is extremely important when working on a seamless blend. A dense & fluffy, dome shaped brush will work best for this. Check out my video & post on my favorite blending brushes HERE
One more thing to remember when it comes to brushes, it that natural haired bristles will blend powder products much better than synthetic fiber brushes.

*The best example of a perfect blended eye shadow is the “Smokey Eye”. Most people seem to think that this means a black or gray coloured eye but it just means any eye shadow colour that is applied to the lids and blended out to almost nothing, as if faded into your skin.

Anyhow, out with your brushes, whatever colours you like, and remember to BLEND, BLEND, and BLEND!!

Tips On Skin Care: Cleansing, Moisturizing and Anti-Aging

To keep your face looking as youthful as possible, you need to proper skin care. Here I show you how to properly cleanse, exfoliate and moisturize your skin while never leaving the house without at least 30 SPF sunscreen. I’ve dubbed this process “The Basic 4-Step Skincare Regimen,” which I outline in this article. I also include organic skincare tips for the growing number of you who are concerned with putting only natural, organic products on your skin.

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How you care for your skin is utterly dependent on the type of skin you have:

oily, normal/combination, dry, sensitive or sun- damaged.

The Basic 4-Step Skincare Regimen

Step 1: Cleansing
You need to find a good cleanser that your skin responds well to, and stick with it: See the best cleansers for your skin type. You can find a good cleanser at the drugstore. There’s no need to spend $40 on a fancy wash. Avoid bar soaps as they tend to dry out the skin. According to Rona Berg, in her book, “Beauty,” a French cosmetics executive once told her, “Soap should only ever touch your skin from the neck down.” I agree. Choose a creamy cleanser if you have dry skin or a clear cleanser if you have oily skin.

For you organic types, you can cleanse skin with milk or yogurt (who knew?).

Be careful not to cleanse too often, you risk over-cleansing skin, see signs you are over cleansing your skin. You really only need to wash your face at night to remove makeup and sunscreen, which can clog pores. If you have dry skin, conorganicsider cold cream like Pond’s, which the French use or make your own organic cold cream using this simple cold cream recipe. Simply apply cream, then wipe off, no water needed (if you have hard water, it can be especially harsh on skin). Most women prefer the water method: Use warm water to loosen dirt and clogged pores. Use a dime-sized bit of cleanser, then rinse with cool or lukewarm water. I personally swear by my Clarisonic Mia, as does pretty much everyone I know who has one.

Make sure to remove eye makeup with a proper makeup remover. The area around the eye is delicate so don’t pull or rub too hard. You can also use olive oil as a natural eye makeup remover. Find out more in Use Olive Oil as an Eye Makeup Remover.

In the morning, a splash of lukewarm water is all you need (I find it’s great for removing excess oils from your nightly moisturizing). Never wash your face with hot or cold water (both can cause broken capillaries).

Step 2: Exfoliate
Exfoliation is the step most people skip in their weekly skincare routine. But trust me, if you start properly exfoliating your skin, you will notice an almost immediate difference. According to Berg, one of the reasons men’s skin looks more youthful than women’s is because men tend to exfoliate daily when they shave.
In my article, How to Exfoliate, I share all my tips and tricks to proper exfoliation. Including why you should throw out the loofah.

There are several exfoliating options that I use weekly.
A facial scrub. You can buy a great scrub or make your own. I prefer sugar scrubs to salt ones, but it’s just a matter of preference. See my list of the best facial scrubs or try out a recipe using brown sugar and coconut oil in Make a Face & Body Scrub With Sugar and Oil.
A washcloth. Put a dab of cleanser and a sprinkle of white refined sugar on a damp washcloth and massage skin in a circular motion. After a quick rinse, any sign of dead skin is erased. If you have dry skin, try extra virgin coconut oil.
Microdermabrasion. You can buy microdermabrasion kits. I have and found quite a few I like. See my list of the best facial scrubs and microdermabrasion kits.
Chemical peels. In the hour it takes to get a chemical peel, you can take a year from your face. Can’t afford the price tag for a monthly peel? Try some over-the-counter peels that work over the course of a month. I prefer MD Skincare’s.
Retinoids. Retinoid (such as Retin-A or the more moisturizing Renova) also work by removing the top layer of dead skin cells while also generating collagen in the skin. “Collagen is the skin’s structural fiber,” dermatologist Dennis Gross said in O Magazine. “As we get older, it breaks down, creating lines and large pores.” Skincare experts disagree on all sorts of things, but most of them consider retinoids to be a miracle skin saver. I’m addicted to Retin-A, which I pick up in Mexico on my yearly jaunts.
Should you use a toner? Some people swear by toners, but many beauty experts do not (I once read a skincare expert claim, “toners are only for copy machines”). Toners are meant to remove all remaining traces of oil, makeup and dirt, but a good cleanser should do this. I firmly believe it’s up to you. If you like the way your skin feels with a toner. Buy it. Use it. Enjoy it.
Step 3: Moisturize
While I know of at least one famous beauty editor who swore skin doesn’t need moisturizer, basically everyone else I’ve read disagrees and is an adamant believer in it. A basic rule of beauty is that if you have dry skin, you should invest in a basic moisturizer. So how much should you moisturize? Your skin will tell you. When your skin is tight, it’s crying out for moisture. Be careful not to over-moisturize — this can clog pores.
See my list of the best moisturizers on the market. For you natural girls, nothing beats a good oil for your skin. You can use extra virgin coconut oil, olive oil, sweet almond oil or jojoba oil. Learn more in Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil as Overall Body Moisturizer.

Are eye creams necessary? Well maybe. Some beauty experts strongly recommend eye creams. Why? The skin around the eye contains no fatty tissue and is therefore very thin and susceptible to wrinkles. Special eye creams are formulated to “thicken” this area. Yet other experts (including the beauty editors of Allure in their new book) claim your daily lotion works around the eyes just as well.

Step 4: Apply Sunscreen
The #1 cause of wrinkles is sun damage, so it’s important to use a sunscreen of at least 30 SPF from your early years on even in winter and on cloudy days. A great trick is to purchase two moisturizers: One for night and one for day that includes UV protection. Don’t use moisturizers with sunscreen at night, the ingredients are not meant to be used 27/7 and can aggravate skin. When choosing a sunscreen, make sure it contains Mexoryl (found in my favorite sunscreen La-Roche Posay) or Helioplex, found in Neutrogena products.

Dry Skin Care Tips and Advice

Dry skin is a common condition that occurs when there is not enough oil or moisture produced by the oil glands. It is characterized by red, rough and sometimes itchy and cracked dry skin. It’s not only a great cause of discomfort but can be embarrassing as well, especially if it appears on the most exposed parts of the body like the face, neck, hands, arms and legs.

It can also show up on your thighs, abdomen, soles and scalp. You can have dry skin at any time but it can get worse during the winters (see below). Without proper dry skin care, it can develop into serious skin conditions.

What Causes Dry Skin?

In most cases, dry skin is genetic. Healthy skin should have a balanced amount of moisture coming from the sweat glands and oil from the sebaceous glands forming over the surface of the skin to prevent moisture loss.

But not everyone has skin that exhibits these perfect qualities. If the oil glands produce a surplus of sebum, the skin becomes oily.

On the other hand, when the skin loses its ability to lock in oil and water which are essential elements that maintain skin’s softness, it results to dry skin.

There are several factors that contribute to this and other reasons for skin dryness.

  1. Environment – whenever there is low humidity, either caused by cold winter weather or artificial heat inside the home or office, moisture from the topmost layer of the skin evaporates, leaving the skin parched. Sunburn caused by too much exposure to ultraviolet radiation, can also leave the skin dry and seriously damaged.
  2. Genetics – same as the tendency of having acne, the possibility of having dry skin lies in the genes of your parents. Unlike others, your sweat glands are incapable of creating enough moisture or your skin doesn’t have the capacity to hold on to water normally.
  3. Aging – when people become older, the skin also matures and the natural oil is lessened. In effect, the skin loses its ability to contain moisture.
  4. Bathing habits – long baths in hot water can strip off the skin’s natural oil and moisture. Using harsh soaps or chemicals found in some skin care products is another reason. Too much scrubbing is also bad for the skin, leaving it dry and irritated.
  5. Unhealthy diets – deficiency of vitamins (such as Vitamin A, D and Potassium) needed in maintaining healthy skin may cause dryness. Excessive drinking of alcoholic and caffeinated beverages may also lead to this.
  6. Other health or skin problems – dry skin can sometimes be the result of certain illnesses such as asthma, thyroid disorder or diabetes. Then again, it can also be the sign of a more serious skin condition such as eczema, psoriasis, athlete’s foot and allergies.

How Should I Care For Dry Skin?

Most of the time, dry skin is caused by outside factors which is why it can be easily taken care of using external skin treatment. Revamping your everyday regimen will help improve and give you smooth and supple skin all over.

There are also a long list of dry skin treatment and home remedies that will help relieve itch and flakiness. To bring you out of your misery and prevent it from bothering you again, here are some simple but helpful skin care tips:

  • Shorten your bath time. Five or ten minutes a day will do while adjusting the water temperature to lukewarm or tepid. The same temperature applies for hand washing. Skip the hot tub and bubble baths. Instead, use gentle, soap-free and creamy cleansers with moisturizers in it, both for the face and body. Avoid the ones that are heavily scented because artificial fragrance can also irritate and dry out your skin.
  • Apply moisturizer often. After taking a bath or shower, pat your skin gently using a towel and leave it damp. Generally, the moisture dries off in 3 to 5 minutes after. So, while your skin is still moist and your pores are open, slather a generous amount of skin moisturizer or lotion to your face and whole body.Note: The best moisturizer for dry skin should have an oily or creamy consistency like shea butter. Olive oil is also one of the most effective natural dry skin remedies because of its moisturizing, anti-bacterial and antioxidant properties that closely resemble the oil produced in the skin. Use it as a natural moisturizer, bath oil or face mask. You can also combine it with other essential oils like lavender, evening primrose oil or Vitamin E for an extended shelf life and added benefits.
  • Use a humidifier in your room. Especially during winter, the air becomes dry and gets even worse with heaters or the heat from the fireplace. At least 30% relative humidity is needed by the skin to stay moisturized. Keep your doors shut to prevent the humidity from escaping.
  • Soothe, not scratch! Dry skin can be so itchy and irritating. Do not give in to the urge of scratching because you can end up with cuts that can easily get infected and prolong the healing process. To relieve itchy skin, apply a cold compress or Hydrocortisone cream over the dry patches. Aloe Vera gel is also an effective dry skin treatment that relieves itching, dryness and inflammation.
  • Watch your diet and water intake. If you are suffering from a vitamin deficiency, better consult your nutritionist for a complete meal plan that will restore your body of the nutrients needed to maintain healthy skin. Skin foods are rich in Vitamin A or Beta Carotene (carrots, spinach, citrus fruits), Potassium (banana, tomatoes, potatoes, squash), Vitamin E (corn, asparagus, sunflower oil, oats) and essential fatty acids such as Omega-3 (in walnuts, flaxseed, salmon). Also, drinking lots of water will keep your skin hydrated from the inside.

If despite trying the above, your skin remains parched or itchy without any signs of a rash or you have developed open wounds and sores because of scratching, go to your doctor immediately for a proper diagnosis. There could be another reason for your condition and this should be addressed as soon as possible with the appropriate skin treatment.

Vitamin C Beauty Benefits

Improves Skin Tone and can Repair Skin Damage

While you’ve likely been focusing on getting all of your  vitamins via your nutrition, the good news is vitamins are also beneficial to  your skin through skin care products! One of the most popular vitamin additions  to skin care products is Vitamin C. This anti aging vitamin has been studied  and confirmed as being an extremely effective addition to skin care routines.  When antioxidant Vitamin C is added to your skin, it helps your skin get rid of  free radicals. Since free radicals can greatly damage your skin, the use of  Vitamin C is vital to your skin health! In addition, Vitamin C can help your  body rev up its production of collagen.

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Beauty Benefits of  Vitamin C

On a beauty note, adding Vitamin C to your skin care routine  can help you look great on many levels. The topical use of Vitamin C  revitalizes your skin, allowing for improvement in the tone and texture! You  will instantly look younger with smooth and silky skin on your face and body. It  works to protect you against UVB rays and can help you combat sun damage,  wrinkles and photodamage. These are some of the most common skin worries of  women today.

Effective Topical  Products with Vitamin C For Skin Care

Cosmetic gurus and their sources are taking note of the  power behind Vitamin C and are adding it and its derivatives to many products  on the market. Derivatives like ascorbyl palmitate and ascorbic acid are  commonly used, because they are less irritating than Vitamin C itself. Those  with sensitive skin can still reap the protection and natural benefits of  Vitamin C, without any irritation.

Beneficial Vitamin C  in Cosmetics

When you start your venture for Vitamin C induced skin care  products, there are a few things to remember. First, remember there are many  claims being made from various companies on their skin care products. To find  the best products with Vitamin C, be sure to look at the color of the product.  Those products with a yellow or brown tint should be avoided. Vitamin C often  turns these colors when exposed to air and thus becomes ineffective in creating  collagen and elastic.

Vitamin C Offers  Cosmetic Benefits

Many women would rather sit through a chemical peel or a  microdermabrasion session for skin care repair and conditioning. However, using  a daily Vitamin C product can help you repair and prep your skin everyday. You  can get products which include Vitamin C derivatives (L-ascorbic acid and  others) for use at home. Therefore, you can continuously reap the benefits of  Vitamin C, without heading to the spa.

Treating Eye Problems

Reduce any puffiness in your eyes. Swelling in the skin on and around your eyes can make them look smaller. Try these steps to reduce puffiness:

  • Get plenty of sleep.
  • Wash your face with cool water.
  • Place cold, used teabags over your eyes. The tannins in the tea act as an astringent, tightening the skin.
  • Reduce your salt intake. Too much salt leads to water retention, which leads to eye puffiness.
  • Exercise to increase circulation, which in turn reduces water retention.

Get rid of dark circle under your eyes. This won’t necessarily make your eyes look bigger, but dark circles will detract from even the biggest, most beautiful eyes.

  • Stay healthy. This means getting plenty of sleep, eating a balanced, healthy diet and minimizing the intake of salt in your diet.

Try applying cold spoons. Before you go to bed, place two spoons in the freezer overnight. Wake up, rub the sleep out of your eyes, and place the two spoons over each of your eyes for about 1 minute. This method helps your eyes to appear bigger and brighter throughout the day. ( Plus, it helps to reduce the appearance of under-eye circles.)

Finished.

How To Hide or Minimize Large Pores

Large facial pores can really pull the spotlight away from your natural beauty. Compounding the problem, these pores are often located right in the middle of the face around the nose, cheeks and chin areas. While pores start out as barely visible, they enlarge over time due to age, skin damage, genetics and excess oil production. There may be nothing you can do to change the size of your pores, but there is plenty you can do to disguise their appearances.

Step 1

Wash your face twice per day with a facial exfoliant that contains salicylic acid. This acid helps dissolve oil and dirt stuck in the pores, thus allowing them to shrink back to their normal size. Massage the exfoliant into the skin using your fingers for at least 30 to 60 seconds before rinsing clean with water.

Step 2

Apply a small amount of oil-free moisturizer onto your face using your fingers, making sure to rub it in thoroughly. Focus on the areas of skin that contain large pores. Don’t apply too much moisturizer.

Step 3

Apply a pea-sized amount of a silicone-based primer to your skin by gently rubbing it evenly over your face. Concentrate on areas with enlarged pores. The primer will fill them in and smooth out your skin’s appearance.

Step 4

Use a makeup brush to pick up some powder-based foundation that matches your skin tone, then pat it onto your face. Gently patting the foundation on prevents the primer from rubbing off, which can occur with liquid foundations.

Step 5

Blot your face with oil-absorbing sheets throughout the day to remove excess oil. If desired, you may instead apply a liquid oil-absorbing product under your makeup; this product is designed to absorb oil all day. Blotting papers and liquid oil absorbers are available at drugstores and makeup counters.

10 Toxic Beauty Ingredients to Avoid

If you thought the FDA does a subpar job in regulating what goes into our food supply, you’ll be equally appalled, if not more, on its regulation of cosmetic and personal-care products. The same way you look at food labels, you should do the same for your beauty products.

There are thousands of chemicals in your products, many of which are being absorbed into your body. These companies have cart blanche to use any ingredient or raw material without government review or approval.

This industry is highly unregulated. There is no pre-product approval before a product hits the market and enters your home. A minuscule approval process exists, but only for color additives and ingredients classified as over-the-counter drugs.

Many of these synthetic chemicals are skin irritants, skin penetrators, endocrine disrupters and are carcinogenic. I can’t go through all of these harmful chemicals, but here are 10 you should highly avoid.

Parabens. Parabens are widely used preservatives that prevent the growth of bacteria, mold and yeast in cosmetic products. Sounds good, right? Not so fast, they do more than that. Parabens possess estrogen-mimicking properties that areassociated with increased risk of breast cancer. These chemicals are absorbed through the skin and have been identified in biopsy samples from breast tumors. They can be found in makeup, body washes, deodorants, shampoos and facial cleansers. You can also find them in food and pharmaceutical products.

Synthetic colors. If you take a look at your product label and notice FD&C or D&C, they represent artificial colors. F — representing food and D&C representing drug and cosmetics. These letters precede a color and number (e.g., D&C Red 27 or FD&C blue 1). These synthetic colors are derived from petroleum or coal tar sources. Synthetic colors are suspected to be a human carcinogen, a skin irritant and are linked to ADHD in children. The European Classification and Labeling considers it a human carcinogen and the European Union has banned it.

Fragrance. This particular category is pretty scary, because what does “fragrance” mean anyway? This term was created to protect a company’s “secret formula.” But as the consumer you could be putting on a concoction that contains tons of chemicals that are hazardous to your health. According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) Skin Deep Database, fragrance mixes have been associated with allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress and potential effects on the reproductive system. It can be found in many products such as perfume, cologne, conditioner, shampoo, body wash and moisturizers.

Phthalates. A group of chemicals used in hundreds of products to increase the flexibility and softness of plastics. The main phthalates in cosmetics and personal care products are dibutyl phthalate in nail polish, diethyl phthalate in perfumes and lotions, and dimethyl phthalate in hair spray. They are known to be endocrine disruptors and have been linked to increased risk of breast cancer, early breast development in girls, and reproductive birth defects in males and females. Unfortunately, it is not disclosed on every product as it’s added to fragrances (remember the “secret formula” not listed), a major loophole in the law. They can be found in deodorants, perfumes/colognes, hair sprays and moisturizers.

Triclosan. Tricolson is widely used antimicrobial chemical that’s a known endocrine disruptor — especially thyroid and reproductive hormones, and a skin irritant. Studiesraise concerns that triclosan contributes to making bacteria antibiotic-resistant. There also wasn’t enough supporting evidence that washing with antibacterial soaps containing triclosan provides any benefit over washing with regular soap and water. Tricolson can be found in toothpastes, antibacterial soaps and deodorants.

Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) / Sodium laureth sulfate (SLES). This surfactant can be found in more than 90 percent of personal care and cleaning products (think foaming products). SLS’s are known to be skin, lung, and eye irritants. A major concern about SLS is its potential to interact and combine with other chemicals to form nitrosamines, a carcinogen. These combinations can lead to a host of other issues like kidney and respiratory damage. They can be found in shampoo, body wash/cleanser, mascara and acne treatment.

Formaldehyde. Formaldehyde and formaldehyde-releasing preservatives (FRP’s) preservatives are used in many cosmetic products to help prevent bacteria growth. This chemical was deemed as a human carcinogen by The International Agency for Research on Carcinogens (IARC) and has been linked to occupational related cancers: nasal and nasopharyngeal. It is known to cause allergic skin reactions and it may also be harmful to the immune system. It can be found in nail polish, body washes, conditioners, shampoos, cleansers, eye shadows, nail polish treatments.

Toluene. A petrochemical derived from petroleum or coal tar sources. You may see it on labels listed as benzene, toluol, phenylmethane, methylbenzene. Toluene is a potent solvent able to dissolve paint and paint thinner. It can affect your respiratory system, cause nausea and irritate your skin. Expecting mothers should avoid exposure to toluene vapors as it may cause developmental damage in the fetus. Toluene has also been linked to immune system toxicity. It can be found in nail polish, nail treatments and hair color/bleaching products.

Propylene glycol. Propylene glycol is a small organic alcohol commonly used as a skin-conditioning agent. It’s classified as a skin irritant and penetrator. It has been associated with causing dermatitis as well as hives in humans — these sensitization effects can be manifested at propylene glycol concentrations as low as 2 percent. It can be found in moisturizers, sunscreen, makeup products, conditioners, shampoo and hair sprays.

Sunscreen chemicals. These chemicals function as a sunscreen agent, to absorb ultraviolet light. These chemicals are endocrine disruptors and are believed to be easily absorbed into the body. They may also cause cellular damage and cancer in the body. Common names are benzophenone, PABA, avobenzone, homosalate and ethoxycinnmate. They can be found in sunscreen products.

It’s impossible to avoid every single synthetic chemical, but you can do your part in limiting the amount of toxins your body is exposed to. Be sure to: eat clean, avoid chemical-laden processed foods, drink plenty of filtered water and look for products that are certified organic if you want to avoid these toxic chemicals.

Educate yourself and do your research before you buy. Think of something you absolutely love, and the time and energy you apply to it. Use the same, when it comes to your health. You have one life to live and one body. If you don’t take care of yourself, you may pay for it later in sickness.

Be sure to check out the EWG’s Skin Deep Database to research toxic chemicals that could be in your cosmetic and personal care products.

I would love to hear from you. Do you check your beauty product labels? Will you commit to limiting your exposure to these toxic chemicals?

Vanessa Cunningham is a New York-based nutrition & lifestyle coach and dynamic speaker. She helps busy working professionals reduce stress, banish unhealthy cravings, lose weight and increase their energy levels. Trained in over 100 dietary theories, Vanessa creates customized plans for all her clients that are fun, sustainable and empower them to meet their goals.  Vanessa Cunningham!

Home Remedies for Teenage Acne

Natural Acne Treatments for Teenagers

One of the most significant problems for adolescents is having to deal with acne, which inevitably appears at this age. The problem becomes more serious because at this stage, kids give great importance to their physical appearance and what others think of them. They see a small pimple on their face as the worst blemish in the world. Moreover, when the problem of acne is severe, it has a very negative impact on their self-esteem.

 

Often parents do not give importance to this issue because they think it is a natural stage of life. The teenager, who has no money nor the means to see a doctor or to buy an acne cream, feels in despair.

Fortunately, there are home remedies that young people can put into practice. These natural remedies are inexpensive and readily available. If you look in the refrigerator or pantry in your kitchen, it’s very likely that you will find the ingredients there.

Some natural remedies to combat acne in adolescents are:

  • Oats mask: Cook the oats and apply as a mask for 15 minutes. Repeat every two weeks.
  • Crush a handful of bay leaves and soak in a cup of water. Let stand for one day. Apply the water with a cotton swab.
  • In a bowl, add equal parts of rose water and lemon juice. Apply the mixture with a cotton swab, leave on for half an hour. Wash your face. Repeat every two weeks.
  • Strawberry mask: Strawberries are high in salicylic acid, the active ingredient in many commercial anti-acne creams. Mash some strawberries and apply as a mask. Leave on for 15 minutes and wash.
  • Apple cider vinegar: Wash your face with neutral soap and dry. Apply apple cider vinegar with a cotton swab.
  • Garlic and milk: Cut garlic into pieces and soak for half an hour in a cup with milk. Remove the pieces and rub the affected area with them.

For severe cases of acne consult a dermatologist.