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Friday, December 14, 2012

The Tricky Label Interpretation

When purchasing new cosmetic or skin care products, the lingo on the label can be a tricky thing to understand. Products often promise a variety of outcomes, which may include reducing puffiness or diminishing fine lines. However, it’s important to note that these results rely heavily on the ingredients.  In this blog post, I’ll offer a few tips for decoding the language on these products. But if you read nothing else in this post, remember that the ingredients listed first on a label have the highest concentration in any product.

Face wash
Regardless of age, gender or skin type, everyone should wash his or her face daily. These common ingredients may help you decide which is best for you. 

Alpha Hydroxyl Acid
This ingredient helps to gently wash away dead skin cells, reveal new skin and give your face a healthy look.

Glycolic Acid
This important ingredient reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Some research has also found that it can be beneficial for those wanting to reduce the appearance of age spots.

Salicylic Acid
This common face wash ingredient is best for acne-prone skin because it dissolves dirt and oil that builds up in the pores and causes acne. But remember to use it only once a day. Overuse will remove natural oils from the skin and worsen acne flare-ups.

Usually found in anti-aging face washes, these power beads help exfoliate the skin to get rid of the dead skin cells, helping to boost collagen production and prevent fine lines and wrinkles.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)
I typically recommend avoiding any face wash containing these ingredients. These detergents will strip the skin of its natural lipids — which contain fatty acids, phytosterols and vitamin E that are essential for healthy skin and avoiding signs of aging like wrinkling.

Eye Cream
Eye cream is very common among women looking for something that will support anti-aging, skin health and other minor factors. Check out these ingredients before you buy your next bottle!

Eye creams that promise to reduce puffiness usually have caffeine or an ingredient that decrease puffiness and dark circles by reducing inflammation. But be mindful of eye creams that contain acid. The acid causes inflammation so that the wrinkle looks less noticeable, but it will not make the skin look younger and may cause long-term damage.  

Try using eye cream with a moisturizer. Most will have retinol as a main ingredient. Retinol has been shown in some studies to help build collagen, the skin's natural plumper.

Buying the best makeup for your skin type can be overwhelming if you do not know what it all means.

Tinted moisturizer
Tinted moisturizers are great and often work for everyone. Tinted moisturizer hydrates, hides imperfections and evens out the complexion, but that’s about it. If you need a flawless finish, keep looking because this isn’t it.

Matte makeup is great for skin types that tend to be oily because it provides a dry, powdery finish. Often the labels won’t say “matte makeup” but rather, "pore-less" and "shine-free.” Matte makeup is not good for those with dry skin or people looking for anti-aging qualities – the powder tends to settle in and make those wrinkles more visible!

As always, if I missed anything, leave your questions in the comments and I’ll answer them there! 

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