Skin Care – Taking Care of the Biggest Organ You've Got

What do you look at every day, weights around 7 pounds, and how it changes over time can determine how you feel about yourself as a person? This extremely powerful seven pound wonder can stretch and fold; wrinkle and bend and still retain its original character. It's self repairing and completely replace itself every 28 or so days and its outgoing condition can literally attract or repel other people.

It's your skin – the single largest organ on your body and the most vulnerable to ravages of time.

As an organ, like the liver, kidneys or the heart, the best way to maintain its continued health is to do preventative care and provide the skin proper nutrition. This is a fundamental concept that is coming into advertising vogue with some mid-level consumer grade products. Most people, simply because it's your skin do not see it in the same way they do internal organs but the secret to great skin is outer nutrition in the same way that inner nutrition is basis for continued well being and together they are the keys to preventive health care. The general skin care market is roughly valued at around $ 30 billion a year (general, teen, sun / lip care and anti-aging) and all of us are customers. So as a good customer you want to make sure how to evaluate what will work to get the best value for yourself.

Outer Nutrition and You Given a $ 30 billion market, 6 billion people and all the variations in climate, diet and pressures, where do you start to find the right products for you? Throw out everything in your bathroom and start over? Outer Nutrition is about supplying the largest organ in your body with the nutrition it craves. Using this concept, always look for products that stress their vitamin and mineral content. Your skin requires and you can get great results by looking for products that are rich in:  

Vitamin A

  • helps regulate skin growth
  • improves skin moisture content
  • helps reverse signs of premature aging

Vitamin C

  • helps your skin produce collagen
  • Promotes firm skin tone
  • supports your skin's immune system

Vitamin E

  • protects skin moisture
  • smoothes skin surface
  • helps reduce inflation

Skin types Skin is amazing Рit not only protects the skeletal and internal tissues but it has evolved into specialized skin types with distinct properties to protect diverse areas of the body. Take a look in the mirror at your face and neck to get a clear picture. The skin around your eyes, lips, cheeks and forehead are all different and require different types of care. Each "type" of skin ages and feels the effects of stress, pollution, etc. differently. The skin on your lips is the same as on your hand and feet, it's not similar to your eyes. This is why one moisturizer or one type of any skin care simply does not work. The classic example is the area from the bottom of the chin through the top of the chest, known as the d̩colletage. For both men and women this area often shows age first. In addition cosmetic surgeons will not touch this region because the skin is so thin. This skin area requires specialized nutritional content.

Skin Zones There are basically three skin zones and they all deal with oil content – Normal, dry and oily. You face is usually patchy and runs in two patterns normal to dry or normal to oily. It also changes based on climate, season and your eating habits. Although eyes are different, your face is typically evaluated from the perspective of the "T" zone. Across your brows and down your nose ridge. Take a look at your skin and select which of the patterns is most prevalent and select your products from there.

Why 3 part systems are the best? When selecting outer nutrition products for the face specifically avoid the all-in-one types and avoid regular soaps for the face. If you want real results, you want a three part system. You may pay a little more but you will be much happier with the results. There are some lower end products in this area, especially designed for the teen market – beware, there is a reason why some things cost less – quality, fillers, etc. happens with any product. A company went from an also ran to the number one product in the multi-billion teen acne market by value of the right spokesperson ($ 250,000 investment) – does not mean it's the best product, just a great payback.

These rules apply regardless of whether you're looking at the general market or the acne market. Think of your skin of a piece of the finest furniture and you are refinishing it – restoring it to its original luster. First, your clean away the top level of dust and impurities – you have to do this to open the wood to deep cleaning. Second, you strip out all the deep or individual particles and this leaves the wood thoroughly clean and open. Third, you apply a level of protection to the new wood surface to build it back up and help keep out new impurities that newly cleansed surface will attract. Your skin is the same formula – cleanser, toner to strip and moisturizer to rebuild. The last is particularly important for guys if they are inclined to think of moisturizers as "girly". If you do not moisturize, pollutants will have access to the deep recesses of your pores because you just opened and cleaned them out. No matter what you age this formula works. If you are dealing with acne – this formula works – do not be misled by commercials, acne is a disease and there is no "cure" but control and minimizing its effects is possible.

Exfoliates Beware exfoliates, less expensive exfoliates will rip your skin because of the particles they embed in their formulas (apricots, etc.). If you follow the three step process and feel the need for greater oil control, use a mild to medium exfoliate in addition to or as a complement to the cleanser. Heavy duty exfoliates should be used only a couple times a week, especially as you age (30s and up). They are designed to strip away excess or dead skin cells before they clog your pores. As you age your skin cells die off and replace them more slowly. In your teens it's about every 28 days and goes up to about 40 days as you age. If you have an acne condition use exfoliates to deep cleanse. Surface acne is the result of fluid build up under the skin which then traps dust, pollutants, skin cells, etc. so the cleaner you keep your pores; the more the surface effects of acne can be controlled.

Anti-Aging Everyone is looking for the Fountain of Youth and with an expanding and aging population business for cosmetic surgeons is on the rise. You've probably seen commercials advertising for you to come in and get a needle and poison to plump out your lips and wrinkles. Vanity is no problem and you should be aware that there are some amazing non-surgical, non-poison ways to assist. Nothing will stop time and gravity but there ways to ease the transition.

Good anti-aging products contain collagen-building and vitamin and mineral Glucosamine complex. These are the substances that you typically have in your skin that diminish over time. As they decrease, the skin loses its elasticity and develops fine lines and wrinkles. These products rehydrate and firm skin tissue and minimize the signs of aging. The clinical studies are very accurate and within a few weeks with consistent use you can see up to 50%% improvement in fine lines and wrinkles and dramatic improvements in skin luminosity, firmness and moisture content.  

There is a real issue with price awareness in this area and cost is very misleading at the higher end because manufacturers are relying on the buyer's vanity. A good medium priced product with solid clinical studies is as effective probably more effective than the product selling for hundreds of dollars. Why? Because technology in this area had advanced so rapidly that the gap between the high end and the low end products has been completely bridged in the last few years. However, low end priced products still deliver low end results.

Inner Nutrition You are what you eat and what you eat effects your all your organs, including your skin. If you are overweight, get it down to a healthy level based on your body shape and maintain a healthy diet with high levels of lean protein with lots of fruits and veggies. Your mom was right.