In this article, however, we look at some statements made by an author (whom I will not name) of a skin care book and review how valid these are. Skin care secrets are not secrets at all. Most of the time skin care is simple common sense. Unfortunately common sense is not very common...
Authors statement - Skin care secret #1: You can clean your skin, but you can't "deep-clean" it.
Comment: Anyone reading our article on natural facial clays knows the author of the above statement is not a 'deep-thinker'. Clays draw toxins and other waste materials lodged in the pores of the skin out and are more effective than any water-soluble cleansers. The properties of Green Clay for example are very powerful in drawing toxins, micro-organisms and even bacteria into the clay for easy removal. This is why Green Clay products are often used to treat skin conditions such as acne.
Author's statement - Skin care secret #2: Dry skin doesn't wrinkle any more or less than oily skin.
Comment: Dehydration can reduce the water content of the skin from 70.6 to 65.85% (1). Therefore, it stands to reason that as the water is taken from skin cell, they tend to become flaccid and result in wrinkles. Using moisturisers that hold moisture in the skin rather than allowing the moisture to be lost, is definitely sensible and recommended by most dermatologists. In addition, good quality, natural moisturising creams not only help to keep moisture in the skin, but also provide vital nourishment in the form of plant nutrients for the skin to utilise.
Furthermore, dehydration is associated with changes in the appearance of the skin. In mild dehydration the skin may appear flushed, dry and loose, with a loss of elasticity (2,3). Obviously, loose skin is more likely to appear wrinkled than firm, well hydrated skin.
As I've stated in many of my articles, drinking 2-3 litres of water every day is paramount and indeed no moisturiser in the world can substitute for drinking water. In addition, dry skin tends to become irritated and easily inflamed potentially leading to eczema or dermatitis. Using a moisturiser will help to reduce the irritation and itching caused by dry skin and may prevent the complication of developing more sever skin conditions.
Author's statement - Skin care secret #3: A great number of skin-care problems are caused by the skin-care products used to prevent them.
Comment: Absolutely true. Many commercially available skin care products contain an extraordinary amount of chemicals in them. Many of these are deemed hazardous to our health. I've written an article that lists 10 commonly used chemicals in expensive brands of skin care products, all of which science has shown to be potentially harmful to our health. Read Toxic Ingredients in Skin Care Products if you wish to have a look at these ingredients.
Author's statement - Skin care secret #4:Getting a tan is foolish. If you are exposed to the sun, even for as little as 10 to 20 minutes a day, which includes walking to your car or talking to a neighbor outdoors, that cumulative exposure over the years will wrinkle your skin.
Comment: Rubbish. Your skin needs a small amount of exposure to be able to synthesise Vit. D. In addition, your skin is well armed to handle some limited exposure to the sun unless you are suffering from albumism.
Obviously nobody should spend hours in full sun, especially in summer, without covering their body using some sun protection and keeping well hydrated. However, if you expose your body's skin to sunlight before 10:00 am or after 4:00pm (during Summer) the intensity of the radiation is much less than during the mid-day hours. If you keep your skin exposure to under 15 minutes during this time, you are not likley to get burned and your skin will have a chance to make that vitamin D you need for you.
So there you have it. The secret to good skin care is simple common sense prevailing over marketing hype, and when combined with a little knowledge you can quickly determine what is right and what it hype.
(1) W Bianca. Effects of water deprivation on the water content of cattle skin. Int J Biometeorol 1968;12:153-157
(2) Principles of Human Nutrition. Ed M Eastwood. Chapter 8: Water, electrolytes, minerals and trace elements. London: Chapman & Hall 1997
(3) Kleiner SM. Water: An essential but overlooked nutrient. J Am Diet Assoc 1999;99;201-7
Danny Siegenthaler is a doctor of traditional Chinese medicine and together with his wife Susan, a medical herbalist and Aromatherapist, they have created Natural Skin Care Products by Wildcrafted Herbal Products to share their 40 years of combined expertise with you.