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Friday, April 10, 2015

Don't Sweat It! Tips on Sweat & Your Skin From Dr. Patel


Photo courtesy of flickr user Chris Hunkeler
 If you're regularly at the gym in sweaty workout clothes and sneakers, we applaud you. But while burning calories and sweating it out at your favorite hot yoga class is great for your core, it can have negative effects on your skin. When you sweat, your pores open up, releasing moisture and making your skin highly vulnerable to bacteria. You might not realize that your awesome gym routine is what is actually causing your skin to break out, so here are a few tips to help keep the breakouts at bay while you work up a sweat. Here are a few tips from Dr. Purvisha Patel on sweat and your skin.

  1. Don't wear makeup while working out. Although it is tempting to look good while you’re cranking it out on the treadmill, sweat and makeup do not mix well. Most makeup contains ingredients that clog open pores and lead to acne. If you absolutely must have something on your face, go with a loose mineral powder that shields your skin from sweat and is less likely to cause a breakout. 
  2. Wash your face before and after a workout. Rid your skin of any bacteria before and after you workout to cut down on clogged pores. Wash your face gently and avoid heavy scrubbing. Blot your face with a clean towel afterward. 
  3. Wear lightweight material. Choose a lightweight and breathable fabric such as cotton to work out in so your skin has room to breathe. Clingy, synthetic fabrics lock in moisture and can create a breeding ground for bacteria. 
  4. Keep sweat off of your face. Try to keep as much sweat off of your face as possible by wearing a headband or hair wrap. Also, avoid touching your face with your hands. You never know what kind of germs and bacteria are lurking on the gym equipment! 
  5. Cleanse your face daily. Use a cleanser that contains benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. These medications treat acne and come as lotions, gels, soaps and liquids.
  6. Wipe down the equipment. Always wipe down all equipment with a disinfectant wipe or spray before and after use. 
  7. Exfoliate your skin. Gently exfoliate your skin a few times each week with a scrub. Scrubbing your skin too hard or too many times a week can lead to dryness, so keep it gentle. 
  8. Change your workout clothes. As tempting as it may be, do not wear the same workout clothes twice in a row, especially if you sweat heavily. Make sure you wash them and your towels in between workouts.  
  9. Be careful with your towel. Do not just lay your towel anywhere. Avoid putting it on the treadmill screen, gym mats or any other equipment that may contain other people’s sweat.   
  10. Avoid equipment frictionAvoid clothes or equipment that will cause friction, such as a tight helmet. Areas that are extremely tight can retain the moisture and clog pores. If you do need to use a helmet or other restrictive equipment during a workout, make sure to cleanse your forehead well afterward. 
Sweat is natural and is healthy for you, but there are ways to keep it from ruining your skin. We want your skin to feel good and look good. Have any questions about sweat that we didn’t address here? Leave them in the comments, and we’ll try to answer them there. 



Tuesday, March 17, 2015

#SafeForPregnancy Skin Care Tips


Photo courtesy of flickr user Schwangerschaft 



Doctors will always tell you what to eat and how to exercise during pregnancy, but they don’t always provide you with information about the outside of your body. We all know what’s on the inside matters, but it’s always nice to look just as good on the outside. Unfortunately, when you become pregnant, there are a few changes you may have to make to keep your baby safe.

Getting a Glow
Many women have fond summer memories of laying out with their girlfriends at the pool or beach. It’s natural to be proud of your baby bump and for you to have a desire to show it off. But is it safe?

The reality is that laying out or getting a tan is never safe. It always puts you at risk for skin cancer. But when you are pregnant, your body is more likely to being burned, which could lead to hives, heat rash or melasma, which causes dark spots to appear on your face. And that’s an on top of the skin cancer risk.

Does this mean you should never go outside during your pregnancy? No! Enjoying the sunshine is still possible, but it is important that you take care of yourself and your baby first. Since pregnancy makes it easier for your body to dehydrate, it is imperative to bring more than enough water with you. It is also a good idea to set up an umbrella, sit in a cool, shaded area and wear sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. But if you still want a light tan to amplify your pregnancy glow, a sunless tanning lotion is a safe alternative.

Spray tanning is also a safe option because these products simply stain the skin and do not absorb into the bloodstream. Sunless tanners use DHA (dihydroxyacetone) as the active ingredient, which is safe for the skin whether you’re pregnant or not. But, doctors will tell you that you must use protection for your nose, eyes, ears and mouth when getting a spray tan, and they suggest that you wait until after your first trimester.      

Zap the Zits
When you are pregnant, your body is making extra hormones that can take you back in time to your acne-prone teenage years. The primary breakout areas are surrounding the mouth and the chin.

You may hear about oral medication that can aid in preventing or treating the breakouts, but this medicine can be dangerous for the baby. Instead of oral medication, use face soaps that are meant for a person with oily skin. Products that include either erythromycin or azelaic acid can prove to be very effective against the pesky acne and safe for your baby. You can also try Visha Skin Care’s Mommy Brightener, a new product developed by our own Dr. Purvisha Patel that is safe for treating acne and melasma during pregnancy.

Pamper Yourself Carefully
When you are pregnant, there are sure to be some days when you would love to relax and use common aromatherapy oils. But make sure you know what you’re using.  Some of these oils can be harmful to you and your baby during this time. Here are the main oils that you will want to stay away from:
  • Nutmeg - can cause hallucinations
  • Rosemary - can cause your blood pressure to rise
  • Basil - may contribute to abnormal cell growth
  • Jasmine and clary sage - known to trigger early contractions
  • Sage and rose - can cause bleeding in the uterus 
  • Juniper berry - may affect the kidneys
While it’s important to avoid the above ingredients, there is a wide selection of safe oils available to pregnant women, including lavender, citrus, spearmint and eucalyptus. It is good to remember not to mix oils and to use small dosages for short periods of time so you will not experience negative side effects.

You may also notice that the above are often found in foods, too. It is OK for you to eat foods that contain ingredients from the list of discouraged oils because the amount of these herbs in food is generally much lower and much less potent. 

What’s in the Milk?
While you are pregnant and when you are breastfeeding, you are sharing nutrients with your baby. Your body is also not as capable of fighting off infection, and your baby’s immune system is not completely developed, which means it’s important to avoid food-borne illnesses. Easy ways to prevent them are to cook all foods thoroughly and refrigerate them properly, as well as to make sure your hands and cookware are clean before making and serving food.

Seafood is a tricky food to eat during this time because there are many that are good food options as well as many potentially dangerous foods. Seafood provides a good source of omega-3 fats, and they are good for the development of an unborn baby or infant. When choosing seafood, make sure that you do not get one with a high level of mercury. Large fish like king mackerel, shark, swordfish and tilefish are very high in mercury and can cause damage to your child’s developing nervous system. Aside from seafood, it’s important to just have a healthy diet and include all the food groups when applicable. Check with your obstetrician for more information on a recommended diet during pregnancy.  

Have any more questions about your skin during pregnancy? Be sure to leave a comment and we will try to help you find the answers you need. 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Bruising 101

If you’ve ever said a few choice words to your bedpost after a not-so-lovely run-in that left a mark on your thigh, you have contributed to the very high statistic of people who attain bruises from their furniture. Although bruises are not pretty, they are a sign of blood vessels and skin cells recuperating after a bedpost bump-in or even heavy trauma.

What are bruises? 
A bruise, also known as a contusion, is a collection of damaged blood vessels that surface beneath the skin. It can appear red, black, blue, purple or yellow in color. Don’t let these colors alarm you, though. A change in color can be an indication of healing, and as the color changes the bruise should get less sensitive.

What causes bruises? 
Bruises are caused by a multitude of things. Most of the time when you think of a bruise, you think of a child who falls on a playground or an elderly person who has very sensitive skin and develops bruises easily. What you might not know is that athletes, weightlifters, frequent gym users and all you Crossfit addicts out there are more susceptible to bruising because of the microscopic tears that take place in your blood vessels under your skin during rigorous exercise. We’re not saying you should stop the exercise. Just beware that your healthy daily routine may be causing some of that unexplained bruising that develops later on throughout your day.

A vitamin C deficiency can also leave your skin more susceptible to bruising. If you want to prevent the potential bruises, eat a well-balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals. It will do wonders for your skin. 

Should I be concerned about bruises? 
In general, bruising should not be alarming unless you experience:
- Unexplained bruising
- Bruising accompanied by swelling and extreme pain
- Bruising underneath a fingernail or toenail where you may suspect a broken bone
- Bruising caused by a heavy impact that may lead to a hematoma

In these cases, you should contact your doctor for proper medical care. Regardless of what kind of bruise you have, the good news is that most bruises don’t carry the same risk of infection as a cut or a scrape that breaks the skin.

What about black eyes? 
Fun fact about black eyes: most black eyes occur because of an impact that occurs right ABOVE the eye, not below it. The bruise appears below the eye because of gravity, which makes the blood vessels travel to the area just under the eye. This causes discoloration above and below the eye.

Although bruises aren’t pretty and bumping into furniture is not on your weekly to-do list, it is pretty amazing how the human body can heal itself through the bruising process.

Have any questions about bruising that we didn’t address here? Leave them in the comments and we’ll try to answer them there.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Nine Common Winter Skin Conditions and How to Ease Them

Photo Courtesy to Flickr User Chris Buhr
Winter is not easy on your skin. From the dry air outside to the lack of humidity inside, skin can easily get irritated and dehydrated, causing itching and flakiness. Dry skin is a winter condition we’re all familiar with, but do you know all of the conditions that are caused by harsh winter air? Below are common conditions that occur from exposure to cold air and ways that you can ease the pain. 

Acne 
Over-production of oil can lead to clogged pores, dead skin cells and bacteria on the skin, but dry skin can cause acne as well. Acne can happen on any part of the body, but it is most common on the face, neck, chest, back, shoulders and upper arms. Reducing the number of times that you touch your skin, especially your face, can help reduce acne, as well. A dermatologist can also recommend a topical regimen to help rid your skin of acne issues. Gentle cleansers and moisturizers can also help pesky acne that is caused by the cold. 

Eczema 
Eczema causes skin to become itchy, dry and irritated. It’s most common on the elbows, knees, hands and face. The best way to treat the irritated skin is to use a fragrance-free moisturizer and to avoid bathing more than once per day, since eczema is worsened when water settles on your skin. If the breakout is severe, there are steroids that can help relieve symptoms, as well. 

Chapped Lips 
Nothing is worse than cracking, red, chapped lips during the winter months. Chapped lips are one of the biggest issues people complain about during the winter season. Lips have a very thin layer of skin and are the most likely part of your face to dry out due to the dry winter air, wind and low humidity indoors. Splitting and cracking can also occur in severe cases, which is painful, does not heal easily and can act as a breeding ground for infection. One of the most common mistakes people make is licking their lips while out in the cold. This causes severe lip irritation and can making the chapping worse. Lip balm can ease and heal chapped lips by adding moisture and extra hydration. Many lip balms also contain healing medication that can cool and ease lip pain, as well. For more information on chapped lips, read our previous blog post on the topic here

Raynaud’s Disease 
For a person suffering from Raynaud’s disease, when the body gets too cold, the blood vessels spasm and constrict, resulting in a circulation issue. The affected area often becomes extremely pale, and the coloration between the affected skin and the healthy skin is apparent. If the body is exposed to the cold for a long period of time, the affected area can turn a deep purple from the lack of oxygen. When the skin finally warms up, it gets red, swollen and tingly, and it can be very painful. People who suffer from Raynaud’s can manage the symptoms by dressing in layers and wearing protective winter clothing, such as gloves, thick socks and insulated shoes, when they will be outside for long periods of time. 

Windburn 
Is the wind causing you to look like Rudolph? Cold winter wind can cause windburn, a skin irritation that causes dry, red, burning skin. To ease windburn, wear clothing that covers exposed skin when you’ll be outside. Scarves, coats and hats can help reduce the skin’s exposure and keep your skin protected and healthy. 

Winter Itch 
Do your hands and feet feel like sandpaper? Dry skin is not fun to experience. However, it’s nearly unavoidable when you’re forced to stay inside with the heat on during the cold winter months. Heat can dry skin out and make it flaky, irritated and itchy. The cold, outside air is also extremely dry and pulls the moisture out of skin. Using moisturizer and skin healing lotions can replenish your skin’s hydration. 

Psoriasis 
Psoriasis is a condition that is activated when the body’s defenses are alerted and your skin produces too many skin cells, which results in dry, flaky, scaly patches on the skin. The condition starts as a collection of small red bumps, then it progresses to these patches that are commonly found on the scalp, elbows, knees, hands and feet. The condition is incurable, but there are treatments that can calm the symptoms, including hydrocortisone, vitamin D and vitamin A creams, as well as treatments containing coal tar. Stress can exacerbate the condition, as well, so you can also try common relaxation techniques to keep psoriasis under control. 

Cold Uriticaria 
We’ve all heard of sun allergies, but have you heard of an allergy to the cold? Cold uriticaria is also known as cold hives. Large red welts, resulting from an allergy to the cold, appear on the skin. These welts are itchy and uncomfortable and can be as large as an inch in diameter. Some people may receive relief from antihistamine cream, but the most effective way to relieve the pain is by avoiding prolonged exposure to the cold. 

Rosacea 
Rosacea can cause your skin to look like you just ran a marathon, as it causes flushing and reddening of the face. An extremely common condition, rosacea isn’t just a winter issue, but it can flare up in any kind of extreme weather. It mainly affects the face, and it often looks and feels as though the person is blushing. Some people get bumps and pustules or dry eyes and eyelids along with the redness. If you suffer from rosacea, stay away from caffeine, alcohol, spicy food, wine, cheese and yogurt, as they can make rosacea worse. There are antibiotics that can ease rosacea, and skin peels and other treatments may help as well. For more information on rosacea, read our previous blog post on the topic here.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Introducing Visha Skin Care’s Mommy Brightener!


In our last post on Visha Skin Care, we discussed the Advanced Correcting Serum, which is made with IlluminotexTM. But what works for most women may not be safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women! That’s why we created the Mommy Brightener with Illuminotex-TM, which provides many of the benefits of the Advanced Correcting Serum (plus a few just for pregnant or breastfeeding women) without some ingredients that may not be safe during that time.

Every mother knows that pregnancy is not easy on a woman’s body. Your body goes through many changes to accommodate for a growing baby, and your skin is no exception. Skin care is tough on expecting mothers and, often, finding a product that is safe to use while pregnant can be difficult.

The Mommy Brightener is a product that is proven to safely and effectively lighten skin pigmentations and ease lines that have been created by excessive hormones that are present during pregnancy.

This product contains Illuminotex-, a blend of melanin inhibitors, pharmaceutical-grade botanicals and mild exfoliants that help your skin break up excessive pigmentation that gathers beneath the surface. This product lightens and brightens skin, leading to a healthier complexion and giving you that beautiful pregnancy glow.

Mommy Brightener is also extremely easy to use! Use the Mommy Brightener two times a day on your face and neck. Also, use sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher for maximum results. It’s that easy.

Our Mommy Brightener is available at vishaskincare.com or http://shop.vishaskincare.com/product-p/sku-s-01318.htm, or at Advanced Dermatology & Skin Cancer Associates in Germantown, Tennessee, or Olive Branch, Mississippi, or by calling 1-844-VISHA-4-U. You can also visit vishaskincare.com or advanceddermatologymemphis.com/visha-skin-care.html for more information on the Mommy Brightener, as well as other Visha Skin Care products.

If you have questions or concerns about using this product or one of the other Visha Skin Care products, leave a comment, call 1-844-VISHA-4-U or, if you’re in the area, visit Dr. Patel at Advanced Dermatology & Skin Cancer Associates in Germantown, Tennessee, or Olive Branch, Mississippi.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Introducing Visha Skin Care’s Advanced Correcting Serum!

Do you feel like it takes 20 minutes just to complete your skin care regimen in the morning? Do you struggle to find the right products that don’t cause your skin to break out or become dry or irritated? Through her years of private dermatological practice, Dr. Purvisha Patel noticed a gap in affordable, over-the-counter products that were both effective and simple to use. And she addressed it through Visha Skin Care.

Visha Skin Care currently offers two products: Advanced Correcting Serum and Mommy Brightener. In this post, you’ll learn more about the Advanced Correcting Serum, which is a complete correcting product for all skin types. Watch for another post discussing the Mommy Brightener, which is safe and effective for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

In collaboration with chemists from LCE Laboratories, Dr. Patel created the Advanced Correcting Serum, a product that helps skin in all ways without the hassle of multi-step application. Advanced Correcting Serum with IlluminotexTM is a serum created to treat fine lines and wrinkles, as well as uneven skin texture brought on by UV damage, and even to fade dark skin left from scars and other skin damage.

Illuminotex is a patent-pending formula that contains melanin inhibitors, pharmaceutical-grade botanicals and mild exfoliants, which help break up “clumped” pigmentation. This allows your skin to be brighter and to have a more even tone, creating a more beautiful complexion.

The Advanced Correcting Serum is also easy to use! Use two or three pumps of the serum two times daily, spread evenly over your face or other area of concern, and within 10 weeks, you will notice a difference in your skin. We recommend you also use sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher every day with this serum for maximum results and protection.

Advanced Correcting Serum is currently available online at http://shop.vishaskincare.com/product-p/sku-s-01218.htm, by visiting Advanced Dermatology in Memphis, Tennessee, or Olive Branch, Mississippi, or by calling 1-844-VISHA-4-U. You can also visit vishaskincare.com or advanceddermatologymemphis.com/visha-skin-care.html for more information on our Advanced Correcting Serum and other Visha Skin Care products.

Have questions about Advanced Correcting Serum by Visha Skin Care? Leave a comment below, call 1-844-VISHA-4-U or, if you’re in the area, visit Dr. Patel at Advanced Dermatology & Skin Cancer Associates in Germantown, Tennessee, or Olive Branch, Mississippi.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

How to Make Your Makeup Last All Day


Photo Courtesy to Flickr user 
Renata Alves dos Anjos
Your most successful days may have one thing in common: how they began. For many women, the morning ritual of makeup application is a moment of personal peace taken for themselves, not out of vanity, but out of respect for the body and mind. This simple routine can be a time to take a deep breath in, refresh your soul and remind yourself that you are a woman to be reckoned with. You are strong. You are smart. You are capable, and you are beautiful. 

However, if you’re like most women, maintaining this mindset throughout the day can be challenging. It’s 2 p.m.; you’re late for a meeting; there’s a coffee stain on your skirt that’s now six hours old; and to make matters worse, your makeup is practically sliding off of your face thanks sweat and the natural oils in your skin. 

Now to the age-old dilemma: How do you make the morning moment of peace and confidence last all day? Well, there’s no set formula, but keeping your makeup fresh all day is a lovely start. 

Start with a Clean Slate. 
In order to maintain that perfect foundation application you work so hard on in the morning, it’s important to remember that what you do before you apply is more important than what you do during application. First of all, when you care for your skin properly, you’ll feel more confident without makeup. Then, when you do choose to wear it, it will apply more smoothly. 

To begin, always wash your face and apply moisturizer in the morning, and allow no longer than 30 minutes to go by between doing so and applying your makeup. If you have oily skin and moisturizer makes you nervous, don’t worry! Your skin is actually thirsty and is overproducing oil to compensate. By moisturizing after you wash your face, your skin will receive the moisture it needs and therefore slow down oil production. 

Ready, SET, Stay! 
Another key tip in getting your foundation to stay all day, is making sure you have the correct components to help it out. Invest in a quality primer for your skin type, and your makeup will have the correct base to collaborate with your delicate visage. Always set your foundation with a translucent powder to help absorb oil throughout the day, and when you need extra staying power, apply a setting spray to help meld the products together. One more thing - hairspray is not ideal for setting makeup! Read more about what not to put on your face by clicking here. 

Put Your Hands Down. 
Possibly the simplest trick in the book is one of the most important ones. Unless you’re using an oil-blotting sheet or a dab of powder to touch up during the day, keep your fingers off your face. By touching your face, you risk smudging your makeup or transferring bacteria and other body oils to your sensitive skin. 

Have any questions about your skin care routine? Leave them in the comments or schedule an appointment at Advanced Dermatology & Skin Cancer Associates today!