What is an Astringent & Should you use it on your Skin?

Learn everything you need to know about astringents including the difference between astringents and toners, who should consider using astringents, the best products to use and the safety profile of this powerful ingredient.


What in the World is an Astringent?

If you’ve been interested in cosmetics then there’s little chance you have not heard about this special ingredient. 

But what is an astringent?

Do you actually need it for your skin?

What benefits does it provide?

To put it simply an Astringent is actually a classification that defines properties that certain ingredients and chemicals have. 

Any ingredient that is shown to shrink or constrict body tissues is classified as an “astringent”

This effect is particularly useful for certain skin conditions such as advanced aging and even acne. 

But how do these astringents compare to other cosmetic products such as toners?

It turns out that astringents, while very powerful, probably have a more limited use profile when compared to the more versatile toner. 

Both have similar effects on your skin and body but they differ in their strength and sometimes ingredients. 

With these concepts in mind let’s jump in to help you determine which you should be using…

How Astringents Work + Other Benefits

We said above that astringents work by helping to shrink and constrict body tissues. 

This effect extends to your skin as well!

This is one of the main reasons that astringents (and toners) are included in most skin care and beauty regimens. 

Don’t you want your skin to be tighter and smoother?

The answer is of course, but astringents also work in other ways. 

Another benefit to using astringents is that they can help to naturally balance the pH levels of your skin. 

You have to remember that the pH of your skin is naturally slightly acidic which means that it has a pH lower than 7.0 (considered neutral). 

But here’s the issue:

What happens when you put cosmetic products on your skin that are not the same pH as your skin?

What happens when you use skin care products that alter the acid mantle of your skin which is there to protect your skin?

Doing either of these things will result in changing the pH and making it more basic. 

This is a problem especially when you consider that certain ingredients HAVE to be at a certain pH to work!

This is true of Vitamin C serum and it’s true of other ingredients as well. 

And this is where Astringents step in. 

They act to naturally restore pH balance to your skin. 

But that’s not all they do. 

In addition they also help to naturally fight off bacteria and even fungus. 

Remember that your skin is the biggest organ on your body and on it lives a huge ecosystem of bacteria. 

Some bacteria are good, and others are bad. 

But it’s in your best interest to keep these bacterial species in harmony with one another. 

An overgrowth of bad bacteria may lead to skin conditions such as rosacea and acne. 

So using an astringent may naturally help maintain this harmony and keep your skin looking fresh and amazing. 

And lastly, astringents may help to cool down inflammation, reduce the healing time of sores and reduce natural oils in the skin. 

Much of these benefits occur through the astringent itself but also through tannins which exist in many naturally occurring astringents. 

Tannins are naturally occurring products found most commonly in foods that provide many of the benefits listed here.  

Astringent vs Toner

Is an astringent the same thing as a toner and will using a toner provide the same benefits as an astringent?

These are good questions and the answer is not super clear. 

We often use the word toner and astringent synonymously or interchangeably but these two things are not the same

While astringents typically do act as a toner for the skin, not all toners have astringents. 

Confusing? Sort of. 

Astringents are basically much more powerful formulations of toners which contain similar ingredients but at a fraction of the potency. 

Consider the example of witch hazel. 

Witch hazel is both an astringent and a toner, but the main difference has to do with how it is formulated and the concentration of tannins during this process. 

Typical witch hazel toners often contain very little to no tannins due to the distillation process that occurs during formulation. 

Compare this to non distilled witch hazel which contain up to 195% more tannins. 

Because we know that tannins provide many of the benefits to astringents it’s easy to see why astringents are basically much more powerful versions of toners. 

Does that mean one is better than the other?

Not necessarily, but you should definitely consider your situation before you jump out and purchase either. 

Astringents tend to work better for those people who have tougher to treat skin conditions such as acne, persistent rashes, dermatitis and so on. 

Whereas toners may be better for everyday topical application to help KEEP the skin looking good. 

If you are having trouble understanding the difference think of it this way:

Astringents are very powerful and they should be used sparingly (overuse can dry out the skin). 

Toners are not quite as powerful (but still great for the skin) and can be used topically every day (sometimes multiple times per day). 

The type that you use depends on your skin, your sensitivity and what skin problems (if any) you are currently dealing with. 

Using Astringents for Acne

Astringents can also be a powerful tool in the treatment of acne

But they can also be a double edged sword. 

What do I mean?

The positive benefits of using astringents in acne include increased wound healing, bacteria fighting properties and pH balancing effects. 

The bad?

Astringents can also promote dry skin and trigger an increase in oil production and actually promote breakouts. 

When it comes to acne the best approach is to tailor your treatment to your skin, and the same approach should be used when considering astringents. 

You’ll find that almost every 3 step acne system contains a toner which usually contains witch hazel. 

But remember:

Toners are different from Astringents. 

So the best approach to using astringents for acne may be to use astringents only IF you have VERY oily skin. 

And even then make sure that you don’t overdo it with daily application. 

In addition, if you notice a worsening in your breakouts it may be best to switch to a toner. 

If you have “run of the mill” acne then using a daily toner as part of a 3 step system is probably your best bet. 

Examples of Astringent Products

Now that you have an idea of how astringents work we can talk about specific products. 

The two most common astringents included in cosmetic beauty products include witch hazel and glycerin. 

Some of the more “powerful” astringents often include alcohol, cider vinegar and high concentrations of witch hazel with tannins. 

These can be very irritating and rough on the skin, so instead of shooting for these it may be a better option to go with the more gentle (but still powerful) toners. 

These toners have similar properties as astringents but are much more gentle on the skin!

They have also been formulated in such a way to include other nourishing ingredients to help calm irritation and reduce pore size. 

#1. Witch Hazel

Witch hazel is probably the single most common astringent in beauty and cosmetic products. 

Witch hazel is also included in the treatment of other skin diseases such as hemorrhoids and is very common in medical products. 

Witch hazel has been shown to have natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and may be the reason why it is included in so many products

You can see an example of a high quality witch hazel based toner below: 

obagi toner with witch hazelSee more reviews for witch hazel astringents here

#2. Glycerin

Glycerin can often be added to other ingredients to help reduce irritation associated with astringents but still take the place of the “alcohol” component. 

Glycerin has been shown to improve the “hydration status” of the skin, especially when applied topically

Glycerin based products are often combined with other natural plants and substances such as lavender which act to nourish the skin. 

If you’ve used witch hazel before and didn’t get the results you were looking for then you may want to try glycerin based products such as this one: 

elemis balancing toner with glycerinSee more reviews for Glycerin astringent here

Who should use Astringents? 

In most cases you will probably want to stick with a toner over an astringent simply due to how well toners are tolerated. 

If you fall into any of the following categories, however, you can still consider using a powerful astringent: 

  • Those suffering from difficult to treat acne
  • Those with very oily skin (not prone to drying out)
  • Those who have tried toners and didn’t get their desired results

If you don’t fall into any of these categories then you may want to stick to a high quality based toner which are well tolerated among all skin types.

Side Effects from Using Astringents Too Often

The most common side effects of using an astringent too often is usually just dry skin. 

But long term use of powerful astringents can also alter pH levels on the skin, increase your risk of developing breakouts and acne, and potentially alter bacterial concentrations on the skin’s surface. 

You can prevent these negative side effects by reducing how often you use your astringent or simply switch to a toner (which is less powerful). 

Final Thoughts

Before you look into using an astringent make sure you understand that these products are very powerful and typically best used for those who suffer from VERY oily skin or acneic complexions. 

For most other individuals it may be best to stick to the less intense but still powerful version of astringents known as toners. 

The best and most widely used astringent and toning compounds include witch hazel and glycerin. 

Toners can be used daily and often provide superior results for many different skin types. 

Now I want to hear from you:

Are you using an astringent?

Has it worked for you?

Or do you prefer toners instead?

Leave your comments below! 

What is Arbutin? How to use This Skin Lightener

This guide will teach you everything you need to know about the skin lightener Arbutin including how to determine if you should use it, which side effects to look out for, how to use it safely, which products are the best and more.

Let’s jump in: 


What is Arbutin?

So what exactly is Arbutin?

To put it simply it is a special ingredient which naturally helps to reduce and lighten the color of your skin. 

With this special mechanism it is put into the class of products known as skin lighteners. 

But why do people want to “lighten” their skin?

It turns out that as you age your skin starts to develop uneven skin color and uneven skin tone

This largely has to do with the effect of aging on the skin, but the end result is that the face may look blotchy and discolored. 

Skin lighteners provide a cosmetic way to naturally even out the skin tone and bring back youthful looking skin! 

Because of this effect skin lighteners have become incredibly powerful. 

Arbutin makes it into this class of products and may be one of the best and safest in this class (more on that below). 

Arbutin works by inhibiting an enzyme found in melanocytes known as tyrosinase

Melanocytes are the cells in your skin which confer pigment and coloring to your skin. 

The interesting thing about melanocytes is that they work by increasing melanin production which provides tints or color gradients to the skin

So if you can “turn down” the production of melanin in the melanocytes you can effectively lighten certain areas of the skin and reduce the overall pigment (even from what is normal for your body!). 

Arbutin comes in two forms that you need to know about: 

  • Alpha Arbutin – This is the purest and most effective form of arbutin (especially when compared to beta arbutin). It’s a powerful skin lightener and works on all skin types. Alpha arbutin is expensive to manufacture which is why usually only high quality products contain this ingredient. Watch our for cheap products which claim to contain “arbutin” but formulate it in the beta formulation. In addition Alpha arbutin is also more stable than Beta arbutin. 
  • Beta Arbutin – This form of arbutin is often referred to as just “arbutin” so if you don’t see the ingredient list specifying the Alpha component then you can assume it’s probably in the beta formulation. This formulation is cheaper to produce and manufacture and is not as effective as alpha arbutin. Newer skin products contain alpha arbutin while older cosmetic products contain either “beta arbutin” or simply “arbutin”. 

It’s important to understand the basics of cosmetic ingredients and how they work because it should influence which products you want to purchase and buy. 

Often times you may see two different products that are considerably different in price and you may not understand why – much of this has to do with how the products are made and manufactured. 

The more expensive products almost always work better because they contain the right formulations and right concentration of active ingredients

This concept holds true for Arbutin!

Make sure that you purchase products that contain alpha arbutin instead of the other alternatives. 

Arbutin vs Hydroquinone

You’ve probably heard of the powerful skin lightener known as Hydroquinone

But how does it differ from Arbutin and is one better than the other?

When we break down the difference between these skin lighteners we find that Arbutin is actually a derivative of Hydroquinone. 

What this means is that Arbutin works through a similar mechanism as Hydroquinone but is not quite as powerful. 

Hydroquinone is naturally found in several plants such as bearberry, blueberry, cranberry and pear trees. 

Both Hydroquinone and Arbutin act by blocking tyrosinase activity which blocks the production of melanin (this is why they are both skin lighteners). 

Remember if you block the production of melanin then your skin cells are not able produce pigment and their color will fade over time. 

The main difference between hydroquinone and arbutin is that hydroquinone is slightly more powerful. 

The downside to this is that hydroquinone will require a prescription and it may have more potent side effects. 

Because of these variables many physicians and patients opt to use Arbutin over hydroquinone. 

It may be a good idea to consider hydroquinone if you have a very stubborn hyperpigmentation issues or if you’ve failed other skin lightening treatments. 

Otherwise it might be safer to jump in with Arbutin. 

Arbutin vs Kojic Acid

What about Kojic acid? How does Arbutin compare to this skin lightener?

Kojic acid is another skin lightener that is also available over the counter and is often found in many lightening formulas. 

Kojic acid is created as a byproduct in the formation of fermented rice and then concentrated in high amounts and placed into cosmetic products

Kojic acid works by inhibiting the enzyme tyrosinase much like Arbutin. 

But are both products equal in terms of efficacy?

Some studies have pointed to the fact that kojic acid may be a slightly more powerful skin lightener than arbutin when they are compared head to head – especially for treating hyperpigmentation such as Melasma

But this doesn’t necessarily mean that you should use kojic acid over Arbutin.

One of the downsides to using Kojic acid is that it is not quite as stable as Arbutin when it is put into cosmetics. 

This means that kojic acid is more likely to break down and become less effective over time in certain cosmetic products. 

There are two main types of kojic acid found in cosmetic products: 

Kojic acid (this is the one that you want). 

And Kojic acid dipalmitate (this is the version you don’t want). 

Kojic acid dipalmitate is more stable than kojic acid but not nearly as powerful. 

This has lead many manufacturers to include the more stable (and cheaper) version of kojic acid in their products. 

But the problem is that it isn’t as effective as regular kojic acid! 

So even though that Arbutin is not quite as powerful as Kojic acid it is much more stable in cosmetic products. 

If you purchase a high quality kojic acid product this probably isn’t an issue, but if you are on a budget then it’s probably best to go with Arbutin over kojic acid for that stability. 

Is Arbutin Safe?

So we know that Arbutin is definitely effective as a skin lightener but does that mean that you should jump in and start using it?

Before you do the next question you should be asking yourself is this: is it actually safe?

The answer is yes!

Arbutin is actually quite safe, especially when compared to other products such as hydroquinone. 

One of the potential risks of using Arbutin is that it can actually become converted into Hydroquinone under certain alkaline circumstances

Basically if the pH is high enough (meaning there is a basic environment) Arbutin may turn into Hydroquinone. 

The good news is that the surface of your skin is not an alkaline or basic environment so the risk of this happening is quite low!

So yes, Arbutin is safe as long as it doesn’t turn into hydroquinone which shouldn’t be a problem. 

Side Effects & What to Expect 

There is a difference between Arbutin being safe and having side effects, however, which is what I want to touch on next. 

The safety profile has more to do with the products ability to cause harm, while the side effect profile has more to do with how well the product is tolerated. 

Just because Arbutin does not cause damage or harm to the skin doesn’t mean that it will necessarily work for your skin or that you won’t have any side effects. 

The good news is that most people who use Arbutin will not experience any bad or negative side effects. 

Most of the side effects that people experience while using Arbutin will be positive ones such as more radiant lighter skin. 

But some people who use Arbutin may experience redness, irritation and even a rash. 

These side effects are rare but you should still be aware of them. 

Rarely some people will not experience any skin lightening effect and may actually experience some worsening of their hyperpigmentation. 

This may have to do with a rebound reaction of melanin production that can sometimes occur with the use of hydroquinone. 

This is a rare side effect but you should be aware of it before you use arbutin! 

If it is going to work, how long should you expect to wait before you see results? 

Arbutin (like other skin lighteners) tends to work quickly and you should expect to see some skin lightening within the first 4 weeks of use. 

Further lightening may continue for up to several months. 

Another point worth mentioning is that the skin lightening you experience with Arbutin is NOT permanent. 

Once you stop using arbutin your skin may revert back to what it was previously. 

For this reason it may be wise to continue application with high quality ingredients as long as you achieve your desired results. 

With this in mind let’s talk about how you can use Arbutin and what kind of products are best. 

The Best Arbutin Products

Arbutin can be combined with several different types of cosmetic products but perhaps the two most efficient forms include arbutin cream and arbutin serum. 

Arbutin Cream

Arbutin cream is probably best for people who want to even out the entire skin tone of an entire body region. 

For instance:

If you have age spots, sun spots, photo-damage, freckles, etc. that are somewhat blotchy throughout your entire face then a cream may be best to reduce and even out the skin tone and complexion of that region. 

For best results you’ll want to use an arbutin face cream in both the morning and the night for at least 4+ weeks. 

I recommend using a product such as this if you need to target an entire area: 

arbutin lightening creamSee more Obagi nu derm Clear fx reviews here

Arbutin Serum

Another alternative to arbutin cream is arbutin serum. 

While cream may be better for large surface area you can think of serum as being better for targeted treatment or more difficult to treat cases of hyperpigmentation. 

Serum works best for those people who suffer from the deep purple hyperpigmentation associated with acne, for those suffering from melasma, or those who need a more targeted approach. 

If you just have a few areas on your face that worry you then it’s best to use a higher potency arbutin and put the product only on the areas that need it. 

So think about serum as a more targeted approach while the cream is more of a shot-gun approach. 

If you decide to use a serum I recommend a high quality product like this one: 

arbutin lightening serumSee more white lightening serum reviews here


Arbutin is one of many natural and powerful ways that you can reduce and lighten your skin coloring. 

When compared to other alternatives it may be one of the preferred methods for skin lightening even though it’s not quite as powerful as hydroquinone or kojic acid. 

The reason for this has to do with how safe it is to use, how well tolerated it is and how stable arbutin is when formulated to certain products

Remember that it may take up to 4 weeks for the lightening process to kick in so if you plan to use it make sure that you use it for long enough. 

Also, if you decide to use it as part of a regiment to target hyperpigmentation such as melasma you may benefit more from the serum formulation over the cream formulation. 

Now I want to hear from you:

Have you used arbutin before?

Are you currently using it?

Has it worked well for you?

Why or why not?

Leave your comments below! 

The Best Lip Plumper + How to Get Luscious Lips in Minutes

Are your lips dry, dull or chapped?

Maybe they look fine and you want to naturally improve their size? 

Either way this is the post for you…

This guide will walk you through everything you need to know about lip plumpers including how they work, how to use them properly, which ones work the best, what side effects to look out for and other tips and tricks to enhance your lip volume.

Let’s jump in: 


How do Lip Plumpers Work?

I probably don’t need to tell you 

Your lips are a central and very important cosmetic feature on your face because from a scientific standpoint they stand out due to the changes in skin texture and color of the surrounding skin. 

Study after study has shown that the appearance of the lips is a very important factor for determining the aesthetic perception of the female face. 

With this in mind it’s easy to understand why you would want to spend some time trying to improve the cosmetic value of your lips! 

We also know that your lips tend to become more flat and more thin as you age (or as you damage your skin from photo-damage). 

This has lead many people (and even scientists) to start developing products designed to enhance the size and appearance of the lips. 

The end result is a product known as “lip plumpers”. 

These products help to improve the size of the lips, the texture and the softness. 

Basically they make your lips look bigger, more full, more plump and softer. 

But how do these products actually work? 

Because the skin of the lips is different from the surrounding tissues it is much more susceptible to damage – especially from the elements. 

Your lips therefore tend to dry out, become chapped and even lose their color or luster faster than other areas of your face. 

lip plumpers before and after photos

These small and subtle changes can actually be blunted or stopped by using certain ingredients or compounds. 

These compounds help to restore moisture directly to your lips which in turns help them retain their plumpness and color. 

Ingredients which have been shown in clinical studies to have this effect on your lips include niacin, emollients, hyaluronic acid, human growth factors, marine filling spheres and tripeptide growth factors

Basically any product that contains any (or all) of those ingredients WILL help to improve your lip volume. 

Cosmetic Lip Plumpers vs Injectable Lip Plumpers

When we talk about lip plumpers there are basically two categories to discuss. 

The first is the lip plumpers that are topical such as glosses, creams and gels (this article focuses mostly on these types). 

The second type of lip plumpers include the injectables which often contain hyaluronic acid

We won’t focus on the injectables much in this guide simply because they tend to be much more expensive than glosses and gels and they tend to carry with them risks that gels do not have. 

The average cost for lip injections ranges from about $500 to $2,000 per injection and even these injections do not last forever (your body eventually “eats” up the hyaluronic acid). 

In addition because they are injectables they carry with them a small risk of infection

Injectables are very nice, however, for those people who aren’t concerned about money or for those who have a hard time remembering to apply gels/creams and glosses on a daily basis (in order for lip plumpers to work you must be consistent!). 

Another added benefit to the injectables is that they provide almost IMMEDIATE results whereas the plumpers listed here may take several weeks to kick in completely. 

Regardless of which route you choose just make sure that you pick the route that you are most comfortable with. 

I’ve included a list of pros and cons of using lip plumpers and why they are my preferred route: 


  • Cheap (around $20 to $40 per product)
  • Non invasive
  • Well tolerated with few side effects
  • Easy to apply
  • More natural ingredients
  • More choices and options for products
  • No down time or swelling (compared to some injectables)


  • Must apply them daily (sometimes up to 3x per day) to see results
  • Results fade if you stop using the product (also true with other lip plumpers)
  • Some people may react with hives/rashes due to ingredients

The Best Lip Plumper Products

If you’re still ready to jump in then I’ve provided what I consider to be some of the best lip plumpers on the market based on their ingredient list and their reviews. 

Each of the lip plumpers listed below also include scientifically studied results which have been shown to work in most people. 

The key to choosing the right lip plumper is to find one that works for YOUR body and this may take some trial and error – so don’t be afraid to jump into one and give it a try for a few weeks. 

If it doesn’t work then changes are high that one of the others will. 

#1. Jane Iredale Just Kissed Lip Plumper

First on the list of high quality lip plumpers is the Just Kissed lip plumper by Jane Iredale. 

One of the reasons that this plumper is so effective is because it uses a lot of essential oils and natural products found primarily in plants. 

It also contains natural vitamins which help to naturally hydrate and give volume to the lips. 

  • Avocado oil
  • Beeswax
  • Jojoba seed oil
  • Candelilla wax
  • Sunflower seed oil
  • Shea butter
  • Ginger root oil
  • Lemon peel oil
  • Citrus peel oil
  • Camellia sinensis (Green tea) extract
  • Grape seed extract
  • Cranberry fruit extract
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin C
Average rating:

This lip plumper works great with an average rating of 3.9 out of 5 stars. 

This will work in about 70-80% of people. 

The benefit to using this lip plumper is that it does NOT contain as many chemical compounds and inactive ingredients as other lip plumpers. 

It’s also a more natural approach to plumping the lips with many botanical (plant) based ingredients. 

just kissed lip plumperSee more reviews for Just Kissed Lip plumper here

#2. Grande LIPS Hydrating Lip Plumper

Grande lips works through a different mechanism when compared to other products because it contains a special ingredient known as sodium hyaluronate. 

Sodium hyaluronate is a form of hyaluronic acid which is used primarily to help hold moisture and bring hydration back to the skin. 

The sodium hyaluronate form is a special form which is much smaller and is better absorbed into the skin when compared to hyaluronic acid which means that it brings even more moisture to the area. 

In addition this product contains both caffeine and Niacin which help to bring in blood flow and provide a plumpness to the skin

You probably know about Niacin because if you take too much of it by mouth you may end up getting an extreme “flush”. 

So imagine this happening to your lips but in a much smaller scale! 

You’ve probably also experienced the rush you can get when consuming caffeine (both mentally and physically) so you can imagine this benefit on your lips as well. 

The combination of hydration, moisture and blood flow all work together to plump your lips when using this combination. 

  • Hyaluronic acid (In the Sodium hyaluronate which is a smaller version of hyaluronic acid which increases moisture absorption) 
  • Caffeine
  • Niacin (Vitamin B3)
  • Volulip
  • Many other chemical compounds (Octyldodecanol, polybutene, silca dimethyl silylate, pentaerythrityl tetraisostearate, ethylhexyl palmitate, quaternium-90 bentonite, propylene carbonate, butylene glycol, saccharin, phenoxyethanol, hexylene glycol, sodium hyaluronate
Average rating:

Grande Lips has an average rating of 3.0 out of 5 stars. 

This doesn’t mean it doesn’t work or that it’s a bad product, instead it means that it is less likely to work for all people. 

It still works and works well (I’ve used it and it works for me!) but it seems that not everyone gets the same benefit. 

It may take some trial and error to determine which lip plumper works well for you. 

The good news is that lip plumpers (especially when compared to other cosmetic products) tend to be relatively cheap. 

So it may take an investment of $40-50 total to figure out which one works for you. 

One disadvantage to this lip plumper is that it does contain more chemical ingredients when compared to other products. 

If you tend to be very sensitive to chemical ingredients then it may be a better option to start with a more natural product like the one listed above. 

Grande lips hydrating lip plumperSee more reviews for Grande lips here

#3. Jouer Essential Lip Enhancer

Jouer essential lip enhancer is kind of a hybrid between the other two lip plumpers already listed here. 

This product helps to promote lip plumpness with hydrating and natural ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, shea butter and jojoba seed oil but it also contains a special ingredient known as Maxi-lip. 

Maxi-lip is designed to help promote the natural synthesis and creation of GAG’s or glycosaminoglycans. 

These are special compounds which help absorb and hold water. 

So the idea here is that these ingredients help your lips naturally retain water like the other products but in a slightly different way. 

Essential lip enhancer helps your body naturally produce its own Hylauronic acid as opposed to directly providing it. 

  • Maxi-Lip (Natural peptide chain which stimulates collagen and glycosaminoglycan synthesis) 
  • Shea butter
  • Jojoba seed oil
  • Beeswax
  • Castor seed oil
  • Hyaluronic acid
  • Vitamin E
  • Other chemical ingredients (Polybutene, hydrogenated polyisobutene, octyldodoecanol, polyethylene, ethylhexyl palmitate)
Average rating:

Jouer essential lip enhancer has an average rating of 4.1 stars out of 5.0. 

Like the other products listed here it tends to work well, but it really depends on the person. 

One thing worth pointing out is that this is more of a cream/conditioner than a lip gloss when compared to the other products. 

It also may need to be used 3x per day compared to twice per day with the other products. 

When it comes to plumping up your lips you HAVE to be consistent with the application of whichever product you decide to use. 

Jouer essential lip enhancerSee more reviews for Jouer essential lip enhancer here

Symptoms Associated with Lip Plumpers

Should you be concerned about using lip plumpers?

Does improving the size and look of your lips come at a cost?

It may surprise you to know that these products are surprisingly well tolerated!

That means that most people who use them do not experience any negative side effects. 

But, like anything, it really depends on the person. 

There have been some reports in scientific studies of patients presenting with what is known as contact urticaria when using these products.

Urticaria is a hives like reaction that occurs when the body comes into contact with certain chemicals or ingredients. 

The good news is that this reaction is not very common and the treatment is to stop using the product which will cure the problem rapidly. 

The only other negative side effect that you may experience is that you may not see your desired results!

This has less to do with the product and more to do with how you react to it. 

Just realize that as long as you aren’t putting anything INSIDE of your lips or your skin the risk of any negative side effect is very low. 

What are Lip Plumper Devices? 

What about lip plumping devices? How do these compare to lip plumping products?

Lip plumping devices work by applying a suction cup like effect with a sustained pressure (and sometimes a vibratory component) which act to bring blood flow up to the surface of your lips and into the capillaries. 

Your capillaries represent the endpoint between your arteries and veins and that is where your body exchanges oxygen. 

The goal with these devices is to create a “swollen” or “plump” look in your lips that mimics what would occur if you had a bruise (without the discoloration!). 

The idea is that you can control the amount of stimulation to the area without causing any negative reaction or bruising discoloration. 

Most of the time they do work, but the benefits are VERY short lived. 

If you choose this route be prepared to use your lip plumping device somewhat frequently because the results only last a few hours to days. 

These devices may be good to use if you have a special event because they tend to work more quickly than topical products. 

It’s also worth pointing out that topical products do not last forever either, they typically last weeks to months and in order to maintain your results you must continue with the product. 

Other Tips to get Plump Lips

Is there anything else you can do to plump up your lips? 

There are some other tips that you can take advantage of that may help you to improve your results. 

Note though, that these things don’t necessarily plump your lips up by themselves but they can and should be done in addition to using a lip plumper!

The first thing you should do is HYDRATE.

By hydration I mean drinking plenty and plenty of water. 

The “chapped” look that some lips get may be due to dehydration and poor nutrition status!

You can fight this appearance by drinking plenty of water. 

Not only is water healthy for your body it is also amazing for your skin. 

Sometimes just drinking 8 glasses of water each day is enough to clear up the skin and plump it up. 

The second thing you should do is moisturize your lips with something like Vitamin E Oil. 

You’ll notice that some of the lip plumping products above (at least 2 of them) ALSO contain Vitamin E. 

But you can take it one step further by adding in high potency Vitamin E oil that you apply directly to your lips. 

High concentrations of Vitamin E can help to moisturize the skin, reduce inflammation and may protect the skin from aging

Using a Vitamin E oil like this one should do the trick

The last thing you’ll want to do is avoid damaging your lips Avoid excessive sunlight!

Excessive sunlight can damage the skin on your lips and may also create the chapped appearance that everyone wants to avoid. 

If you go out in the sun make sure to use a high quality sun block and make sure to use protection like a large brimmed hat! 

Final Thoughts

Lip plumper products are an easy and effective way to give you plump and soft lips. 

They can be used in combination with other facial products and they are VERY well tolerated. 

These products usually provide results in as little as a few weeks and most people who use them have at least some improvement (up to 80% of people). 

If you aren’t sure where to start then I usually recommend using a more natural and plant based formula which has fewer chemical ingredients. 

But now I want to hear from you:

What is your lip regimen?

Have you tried any of the plumpers on this list?

What has your experience been?

Leave a comment below! 

Everything you Need to Know About Kojic Acid for Your Skin

Are you suffering from dark spots or uneven skin tone and color?

If so then kojic acid may be the solution to your problem. 

Kojic acid is a special ingredient that helps lighten the skin and reduce dark spots (including age spots). 

This guide will teach you everything you need to know about Kojic acid including the benefits, side effects, how to use it and which products are ideal based on your circumstances.

Let’s jump in: 


What is Kojic Acid?

So what exactly is Kojic acid and is it even good for your skin?

Kojic acid is a chemical that is made during the natural fermentation process of rice when making Japanese rice wine. 

This byproduct has some very potent (and beneficial) effects on your skin – namely it helps to reduce the pigment and can actually LIGHTEN the skin. 

This may not sound like a big deal until you realize that one of the #1 complaints among aging women (and men) is the changes to skin color and texture as they age. 

Science and the cosmetic industry actually has pretty good ways to treat wrinkles. 

Therapies such as Vitamin C serum, topical tretinoin, anti-aging serums, botox, dermal fillers and so on can actually help reduce wrinkles. 

But what about evening out the skin tone?

This is actually a big complaint and one of the reasons for the rising popularity among skin lighteners is because they can even out skin tone and reduce hyper-pigmentation. 

So what do I mean when I say hyper-pigmentation?

This is a general word that is meant to describe basically any uneven skin discoloration. 

It could be from inflammatory conditions such as rosacea, it could be from acne, it could be from age spots and so on. 

Basically anything that causes damage, or is completely natural, and results in an uneven color on your skin can be classified as hyper-pigmentation. 

And this is exactly what Kojic acid is supposed to treat and “even” out. 

But does it work?

Actually, yes, it works quite well for most people especially when compared to other skin lighteners (but more on that below). 

One of the major benefits of Kojic acid is that it is easy to purchase (you can get it over the counter) and is relatively SAFE especially when compared to other skin lighteners such as hydroquinone. 

In addition, kojic acid has been shown to be almost as effective as hydroquinone and other skin lighteners but it has the added advantage of not carrying with it the side effects on the skin such as redness or irritation. 

The many Benefits of Kojic Acid

So how does Kojic acid work?

In order to understand how it works you need to understand some basics of how your body creates pigment in the skin. 

Pigment is produced through cells known as melanocytes which sit at the bottom of the upper layer of your skin known as the epidermis. 

When melanocytes get “triggered” they produce melanin which then creates a darkening of your skin. 

When you get a tan your body reacts to protect the skin by producing more melanin and it is this melanin which gives your skin the darker color!

So it follows that the way to reduce skin color and tone is by targeting these melanocytes and that’s exactly what kojic acid does. 

Kojic acid inhibits an enzyme known as tyrosinase which is necessary for the production of melanin in melanocytes

By inhibiting this enzyme your skin will naturally lighten over time as your body and cells create less melanin!

Make sense?

So the main benefit to using kojic acid is to reduce the natural pigment in your skin and lighten your skin. 

Because kojic acid is an ACID it also has some potential benefits when fighting off certain bacterial strains and fungal strains that can take up residence on your skin. 

For this reason kojic acid is sometimes included in products that are designed to treat fungal infections such as Athlete’s foot and other yeast infections. 

The anti-bacterial benefit is also why kojic acid is often included in acne creams/gels. 

Kojic Acid Products

This effect occurs pretty much wherever you have hyper-pigmentation which has lead people to use Kojic acid all over their body and is one of the reasons that kojic acid has been included in many different types of products. 

Kojic acid is often included in various types of products ranging from soaps to serums to gels and creams. 

The main goal when using kojic acid is to find the right type of product based on the results that you want. 

For more isolated and deeper pigments you will want to focus on gels and serums which tend to be more powerful. 

If you are looking to “lighten” up large areas of your body then soap is probably best. 

If you are looking to treat acne then a kojic acid cleansing complex will do better. 

With that in mind let’s talk about the various types of kojic acid products: 

Kojic acid soap

Kojic acid soap is often less powerful than other versions of kojic acid products but it tends to work well to gently lighten larger areas of the skin. 

Many people who have naturally darker colors (Fitzpatrick skin types IV through VI) may find some benefit to using kojic acid to lighten large areas of their skin including more intimate parts of their body. 

Other people find success using kojic acid soap in lightening their underarms and other creases in their body in which they may be self conscious about the coloring. 

Because this soap is less powerful than other versions this may work out well for many people. 

I recommend using a well tested and high quality product such as this if you opt to use the soap form: 

kojic acid skin lightening soapLearn more about using Kojic acid soap here

Kojic acid cleansers

Kojic acid cleansers are best used for those who suffer from acne and need the added benefit that kojic acid provides to reducing both pimples AND the post inflammatory hyper-pigmentation that may follow with this problem. 

Cleansers tend to be less potent than gels and serums but they are also less expensive and work well to even out skin tone, color and complexion. 

Kojic acid gel

Kojic acid gels and serums tend to be better for age spots, melasma and other difficult to treat pigmentation diseases because they are more powerful. 

Because they are more powerful they are often more expensive and the bottles tend to have less when compared to kojic acid cleansers. 

People who do best on kojic acid gel/serums include those who are more interesting in anti-aging, those with age spots or those with melasma. 

You can see my recommended product below: 

kojic acid gel for skin lighteningLearn more about Kojic acid gel here

Side Effects & Is it Safe?

One major concern of many people who try out skin care products is the safety profile of the ingredient. 

And you should be concerned!

You don’t want to put anything on your skin which hasn’t been tested or proven to be effective. 

When it comes to kojic acid this particular ingredient is usually VERY well tolerated. 

That means that most people use it without experiencing any serious or negative side effects. 

The most common side effect when using kojic acid is what is known as contact dermatitis. 

You can think of contact dermatitis as basically a rash in which your body reacts with redness and irritation to certain chemicals or ingredients. 

The treatment for this issue is to discontinue whatever agent is causing the problem and it will fade naturally over time. 

As long as you use kojic acid 1% (and no greater) then you shouldn’t run into many issues. 

Another potential issue worth considering is that the blocking of melanin may actually make your skin more susceptible to sun damage. 

Remember that melanin is created to PROTECT and ABSORB ultraviolet light from the sun!

If you block the production of melanin you are in effect making your skin more sensitive to the sun and even tanning beds. 

So while using Kojic acid make sure you don’t exposure your face (or whatever body part you are using it on) to excessive sunlight. 

This probably isn’t an issue though, because if you are using kojic acid to lighten your skin you are probably naturally avoiding the sun already. 

Using Kojic Acid for Acne: Does it Work?

Can Kojic acid be used to treat acne?

The answer is yes, but probably not how you realize. 

It doesn’t actually treat the acne (pustules and pimples) but it DOES help to reduce what is known as post inflammatory hyper-pigmentation that can occur in those people who struggle with acne

You’ll know what I am talking about if you have acne because even after a pimple is gone you may see a purple or red mark where the pimple was and this mark can stay for MONTHS. 

This is known as post inflammatory hyper-pigmentation and THIS is the part of acne that kojic acid can help treat. 

Remember that hyper-pigmentation is the result of overproduction of melanin and in the case of acne this can be triggered from the acne itself. 

The use of topical kojic acid can help calm down the skin and even out skin tone and color. 

This is one of the reasons that many acne products do contain some kojic acid. 

But note that this is NOT a replacement for a standard 3 step skin care regimen if you have acne. 

You should still continue with regular use a cleanser, toner and moisturizer if you have acne but you can always add a kojic acid cream at the end of this regimen to help with the hyper-pigmentation if you wish as well. 

Kojic acid vs Hydroquinone

Kojic acid is NOT the only skin lightener in town!

In fact the “standard” skin lightener used among physicians and cosmetic dermatologists is a prescription known as hydroquinone. 

It turns out that hydroquinone works in a similar way to Kojic acid (it blocks the production of melanin) but it also takes it one step further by potentially destroying some of your melanocytes. 

This added effect makes hydroquinone a more powerful skin lightener when compared to kojic acid (but probably only slightly). 

More powerful is not necessarily a good thing, though!

One of the main issues with hydroquinone is that, even though it works, the benefits of hydroquinone tend to fade once you stop using it. 

So even if you start to notice a reduction in hyper-pigmentation when using hydroquinone you will have to continue using it indefinitely for the results to stay. 

It’s worth pointing out that kojic acid is NOT a permanent lightener either – but it definitely has a better safety profile when compared to hydroquinone and long term use of kojic acid is less worrisome than long term use of hydroquinone. 

Another potential downside is sometimes discontinuing hydroquinone can cause a rebound hyper-pigmentation and make pigmentation conditions even worse for a short period of time. 

Because of these issues many patients (and doctors) tend to prefer safer over the counter alternatives to hydroquinone. 

Kojic acid vs Arbutin

Arbutin is another (perhaps less well known) skin lightener that would fall into the “natural” category. 

But is Arbutin better than Kojic acid?

In terms of how effective they both are they are probably equal in that category, but what about stability?

Arbutin basically comes in two forms:

  • Alpha arbutin – This formulation of arbutin is stable and more superior when compared to beta arbutin but is often more expensive. 
  • Beta arbutin – This formulation is also stable but is not quite as effective as alpha arbutin. Cheaper and less effective products tend to have this formulation. 

Kojic acid comes in two forms as well:

  • Kojic acid – This formulation works well but it is not very stable and must be protected from things such as light and heat which can inactivate the kojic acid and render it less effective. You’ll know if your kojic acid is less effective by its color – a brown or caramel color may indicate a breakdown in the stability of the compound. 
  • Kojic acid dipalmitate – This form is more stable than regular kojic acid but it is not nearly as effective. I recommend avoiding products which contain this type of kojic acid as it usually indicates a cheaper and less effective alternative to kojic acid. 

Is one necessarily better than the other?

As long as you are purchasing high quality products then it really shouldn’t be an issue. 

But it may be worth considering arbutin if you are worried about stability because it tends to be more stable and less “fragile” to the environment than kojic acid. 

Some arbutin products, while more stable, may be more expensive as well which is another factor to consider. 

But you really can’t go wrong in choosing either if your goal is skin lightening because they both are effective. 

Final Thoughts

Kojic acid is one of many great and natural skin lighteners which can be used directly on the skin with impressive results. 

The type of kojic acid product that you use depends largely on what your main goal is. 

Those who are seeking to treat difficult hyper-pigmentation diseases will probably do better with more powerful and targeted kojic acid such as serums and gels. 

Kojic acid is generally well tolerated and most people who use it experience positive benefits without any negative side effects. 

If you decide to use kojic acid be prepared to use it for several weeks before you start noticing results!

Now I want to hear from you:

Have you used kojic acid before?

Did it work to help lighten your skin?

Why or why not?

Leave your comments below! 

How to Treat Perioral Dermatitis Naturally & Quickly

Perioral dermatitis is an inflammatory skin condition which is incredibly difficult to treat and tends to last for months to years. 

One of the problems with this skin disease is that there aren’t a lot of good therapies out there and many physicians tend to use therapies that may make the condition worse. 

In this guide you will learn how to treat perioral dermatitis naturally and effectively to help you regain your self confidence and your face back:


What is Perioral Dermatitis?

Perioral dermatitis is really just an inflammatory condition of the skin which results in redness, rash and papule like eruptions. 

The term “peri” means next to and the word “oral” means the mouth. 

So if we break apart the word it literally means a skin rash that is around the mouth

Don’t let this fool you, though!

Just because the name says it has to be around the mouth doesn’t mean it always is. 

In fact most cases of perioral dermatitis tend to be around the eyes and nose as well as the mouth

Perioral dermatitis is classified into a larger group of skin disorders known as dermatitis, but it should really be considered its own group because of how different it is. 

pictures of perioral dermatitis

Dermatitis is a waste basket term which is used to describe ANY skin conditions which results in inflammation. 

Because dermatitis is caused by inflammation the treatment is often the use of steroids which act as anti-inflammatory agents on the skin. 

This works out great for regular dermatitis but can actually make perioral dermatitis even worse. 

It is estimated that about 0.5 to 1% of the population will suffer from this skin condition which makes it actually quite common. 

And the majority of those people who develop this condition tend to be young (children) or women!

But despite the fact that it is very common Doctors really don’t understand the disease that well and there aren’t many therapies or treatments. 

In fact, because not many doctors understand the condition they may actually make it worse by prescribing ointments such as steroids which are known to make the disease worse. 

Perioral Dermatitis “Triggers”

So why is perioral dermatitis so difficult to treat?

Part of the reason has to do with the fact that we don’t understand exactly what causes the condition

We do understand that there are some potential things that tend to “trigger” the disease. 

And these are very important because if we understand how the disease state is triggered then we can actively avoid those triggers!

It has also been suggested that perioral dermatitis results from an imbalance in bacterial concentrations or damage to the acid mantle on the surface of your skin. 

As this imbalance occurs your body responds with the inflammatory process known as perioral dermatitis. 

This theory exists because, at least in some individuals, antibiotics and even probiotics have been shown to be effective in treating the disease

With this concept in mind let’s talk about the potential triggers of this disease: 

They key here is to KNOW and understand the triggers of perioral dermatitis. 

If you understand the triggers then you can actively avoid them. 

The reason this is so important is because it’s VERY tempting to use skin products such as steroids because they can temporarily reduce the symptoms of perioral dermatitis but you have to consider that often steroids make the problem worse. 

This often leads to an exacerbation of symptoms on the skin once people stop using topical steroids, but it’s a necessary step!

How to Treat it

#1. STOP putting cosmetics on your face

The #1 most important part of treating perioral dermatitis is to stop using pretty much ANYTHING on your face that isn’t necessary. 

This includes make-up, topical steroids and other cosmetics that you may use. 

Even moisturizers may contain chemicals or other ingredients that can flare up your symptoms. 

I know it’s tempting to want to put something on it, but this is really a condition where less is more. 

The best thing you can do for your face is let it heal naturally and over time (there are some things you can use which we will talk about later). 

#2. Use a GENTLE Cleanser (but nothing else!)

Most skin regimens include multiple products such as cleansers, toners and moisturizers. 

The general advice is to use all of these steps to help your skin and under normal conditions this would be true – but it isn’t for perioral dermatitis. 

When treating this condition make sure you use ONLY a gentle cleanser – and I mean gentle. 

You want your cleanser to have as few inactive ingredients and chemicals as possible. 

You also want to make sure that your cleanser is something that you KNOW you will tolerate, hopefully something you’ve used in the past with success. 

The goal of using a cleanser is to help naturally exfoliate your epidermis but without overdoing it. 

If you aren’t sure what an gentle cleanser looks like or where to get one you can see my recommendation below: 

Learn more about gentle cleansers here

#3. USE Oral Probiotics & Fermented Foods

It is thought that perioral dermatitis is probably triggered by changes to the bacteria concentrations on your skin and probably in your intestines. 

We already know that what happens INSIDE of your body will alter what happens on the outside, so it may be helpful to think about perioral dermatitis in a similar way. 

If you start looking around the internet you will find that some of the most common treatments for perioral dermatitis include natural products such as apple cider vinegar and sometimes the use of antibiotics. 

Why do you think these therapies are helpful?

Some doctors think that antibiotics help to regulate bacterial concentrations on the skin which helps treat the disease.

We also know that apple cider vinegar has potent anti-fungal and anti-bacterial effects – meaning it may act as a “topical antibiotic” for your skin. 

Does this mean you should run out and use antibiotics?

Not necessarily!

A better approach may be to focus on naturally bringing back healthy bacterial levels in your gut and on your skin with the use of probiotics and fermented foods. 

This is a more natural way to regulate your skin as opposed to trying to kill everything off. 

In fact, sometimes antibiotics can make perioral dermatitis WORSE. 

When using probiotics make sure you find a high quality probiotic with at least 100 billion CFU per serving and one that contains both bifidobacteria and lactobacillus species

Using probiotics daily for 3-6 months during your treatment should work well and in some individuals is all they need to fix the problem. 

So what about fermented foods?

You can think about fermented foods as natural sources of probiotics. 

The fermentation process actually creates an abundance of natural yeasts and bacteria that you then eat. 

Fermented foods include products like kefir, kimchi, sauerkraut and natto

Adding even a little bit of fermented foods to your diet can do wonders for your gut health AND for your skin! 

You can see an example of a high quality probiotic here: 

Learn more about high quality probiotics here

#4. CONSIDER using organic and natural products such as Apple Cider Vinegar

If you are tempted to use ANY products at all then it’s best to use organic based products such as apple cider vinegar. 

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) for short is one of the few things that may actually help treat perioral dermatitis. 

ACV probably works by improving bacterial levels on the skin, killing off bad bacteria, by improving your acid mantle and by adding a little bit of exfoliation to your skin. 

One of the potential downsides of using ACV is that it can be a powerful acid that you are placing on your skin. 

Persistent use of ACV may actually cause redness and irritation of the skin and may make perioral dermatitis worse (if used excessively). 

The best way to use ACV is to apply it to a cotton swab and then dab in on your face (try to avoid swirling or rubbing) and only on the areas with dermatitis. 

Do this once per day and see how you tolerate it, if you do okay then you can move to daily application. 

If you start getting more redness and more irritation then back off and don’t use it because it may make your condition worse! 

You’ll want to get an organic version of ACV which includes “the mother” because this tends to have more helpful bacteria. 

I recommend a product like this one:

Learn more about organic ACV with the mother here

#5. CONSIDER using topical probiotics

Another way to treat perioral dermatitis is to use topical probiotic creams and gels. 

You probably are well aware of probiotics that you can consume through pills or powders, but you may not realize that you can also use probiotics by applying them directly to your skin.  

This may sound funny until you realize that your skin is a HUGE organ (in fact the largest on your body) and it has a bacterial ecosystem JUST like your gut. 

Just like taking too many oral antibiotics (meaning by mouth) can damage your gut and cause constipation, yeast infections and so on, using topical antibiotics can do the SAME thing for your skin. 

In fact we’ve discussed previously that one of the triggers of perioral dermatitis may be a change in bacterial skin concentrations and damage to the acid mantle. 

You can fight this process by DIRECTLY applying probiotics right to your skin (which has many health benefits)

In order to do this you need to use specific products, though. 

Don’t think that just using a probiotic powder on your skin will work – it won’t be absorbed into your skin!

It has to be in the right formulation. 

So with this in mind some people may find success using certain creams that contain beneficial probiotics such as lactobacillus species

I recommend using a probiotic like this one: 

Learn more about using topical probiotics

You don’t have to jump into using topical probiotics right away – in fact you might save this as an option for later if the other more basic therapies don’t work. 

#6. CONSIDER using topical/oral antibiotics (only if you don’t see results within 6-12 months)

Another consideration is the use of topical or oral antibiotics. 

Now this is one of the therapies (and only therapies) that your Doctor may try to prescribe to you during treatment. 

Most of the time Doctors will see you and may recommend steroids (make sure you avoid this at all costs!). 

But occasionally some Doctors may recommend either topical or oral antibiotics. 

Antibiotics tend to be hit or miss in terms of how effective they are for certain people. 

Part of this probably has to do with the fact that we really don’t understand what causes perioral dermatitis, so if your issue wasn’t related to bacterial levels then it probably won’t help. 

So how do you know if you should use it?

It’s probably a good idea to seek out a dermatologist if you aren’t seeing results with more natural therapies over 6 months or so. 

#7. AVOID Extra exfoliating procedures

Another thing that you will want to COMPLETELY avoid is the use of any cosmetic procedure which may cause extra damage to your skin. 

Procedures that fit into this category include microdermabrasion, chemical peels, laser therapy and so on. 

The way that these therapies work is by DAMAGING the skin and initiating the healing response which rejuvenates the skin and helps reverse the aging process. 

This is great if your skin is currently healthy but it can make perioral dermatitis WORSE because it falls into the “trauma” category. 

So during the healing stage make sure that you avoid the use of any cosmetic procedure such as these. 

It is probably okay to ease back into these procedures once you have completely healed but make sure to give your skin a long break before you add back powerful treatments. 

#8. COMPLETELY Avoid topical steroids

Part of the problem in treating perioral dermatitis comes from the fact that most physicians aren’t comfortable with treating it (except dermatologists). 

The standard treatment for people who walk into a Doctors office with a rash is for the Doctor to prescribe a steroid. 

This will work about 99% of the time which is why they do it. 

But in the case of perioral dermatitis this is the absolute wrong choice

The use of steroids may temporarily suppress the inflammation but it will ALWAYS come back and it only makes it worse over time. 

For this reason you have to avoid topical steroids 100%. 

If you are using steroids to “block” the rash then you have to stop using them and allow it to “flare” before you can start healing. 

You can expect your dermatitis to flare after you stop using topical steroids for a short period of time and it may seem worse, but this is the only way to heal. 

Persistent and chronic use of topical steroids can actually cause serious problems including atrophy and premature aging of your skin – so this isn’t a long term solution anyway. 

You’ll find that most primary care physicians probably do not know how to treat perioral dermatitis, so you may have to get a referral to a Dermatologist in order to get proper treatment. 

Once you head to a dermatologist they will almost always pull you off of the steroid and maybe put you on antibiotics. 

You can cut out the middle man by simply discontinuing your topical steroids first. 

If you are serious about getting rid of your dermatitis then you HAVE to stop the steroids. 

And realize that in some individuals the use of steroids is enough to TRIGGER this type of dermatitis. 

How long before it goes away?

When treating perioral dermatitis you need to set your expectations up early and part of this has to do with how long you need to undergo treatment and how patient you need to be. 

It’s worth noting that treating perioral dermatitis is like a marathon NOT a sprint. 

This means that you need to have patience and you need to stick to your regimen and trust in the process. 

There really aren’t any quick tricks that you can take advantage of to get rid of your dermatitis in just a few short days. 

Instead you need to be in it for the long game and be ready and willing to wait weeks to months. 

Is it true that some people can “cure” their disease within a few days? 


But this isn’t normal. 

And the length of treatment time probably depends on the cause or trigger in your body. 

So if you’ve been using steroid creams for months then you can’t realistically expect your dermatitis to fade in a matter of a few days. 

When I was treating my perioral dermatitis it took a good 3-4 months for it to heal about 98% and it completely faded by 6 months. 

The first 1-2 months I only saw about a 5-10% improvement and then by 3-4 months there was a HUGE reduction in symptoms. 

Your healing process may follow a similar trend. 

Other tips for treating Perioral Dermatitis

In addition to the therapies and tips listed above you will also want to follow a couple of other guidelines which may help you get on the right track. 

The first is your diet:

Remember that perioral dermatitis may be triggered by things that are going on INSIDE of your body as well as those on the outside. 

Because of this you should take all reasonable steps to improve what you put INTO your body to help the healing process. 

This includes your diet!

During the healing process I recommend that you focus on eating all organic products, PLENTY of fruits and vegetables and cut back on the sugar. 

All of these will help improve your gut function and reduce inflammation in your body. 

The second is water intake:

Next you need to be sure that you are staying adequately hydrated!

Hydration helps improve the quality and texture of your skin and helps you eliminate toxins. 

Remember your body only has 4 ways to eliminate toxins: urination, stool, breath and sweat. 

You want to make sure that you MAXIMIZE all of these! 

Focus on drinking up to 1 gallon per day. 

The third is sun exposure:

Last on the list is sun exposure and this may be another big one. 

During the healing process it’s probably safer to avoid the sun as much as possible to avoid any extra damage to your skin. 

In some diseases (such as psoriasis) sun exposure may be therapeutic, but there isn’t enough information to say whether or not it’s helpful in perioral dermatitis. 

Because of this it’s probably safer to simply avoid direct sunlight for prolonged periods of time to your face. 

If you simply avoid the sun you can then also avoid the use of daily sunscreen which may just irritate your skin as well. 

Should you see a Doctor?

What should you do if nothing else is working? 

When is it time to see a doctor?

In my experience many people are completely able to “cure” themselves simply by following the steps above, but not everyone will be comfortable with this idea. 

If you are one of those people or if you haven’t had any results despite doing the therapies listed above for 6 months straight it may be time to see a dermatologist. 

Try to avoid going to see a family practice doctor though! Chances are high that they won’t know how to treat you and may set you back by giving you steroids or other ineffective facial creams. 

Final Thoughts

Perioral dermatitis is a strange and unique form of dermatitis which primarily affects women and children and can be seriously damaging to self esteem due to how difficult it is to treat. 

The best way to treat perioral dermatitis may simply be to leave your skin alone and let it heal naturally!

For some people, however, you can also use natural and gentle skin based products which act to improve bacterial concentrations on the skin and inside your body. 

Now I want to hear from you:

Are you suffering from perioral dermatitis?

Have you been able to reduce the appearance of your rash?

What has worked for you? What hasn’t?

Leave your comments below! 

Melasma Treatment Guide – Cure Melasma from the Inside & Out

Are you suffering from Melasma? 

Have you tried treating it without any luck?

If you fall into either category then this Melasma treatment guide will help you understand how to treat Melasma from the inside and the outside including therapies designed to help balance your hormones AND promote skin lightening. 


What is Melasma?

So what exactly is Melasma?

Melasma is a skin disorder, in fact it’s the most common skin pigment disorder, which results in hyperpigmentation of certain areas of the skin. 

Hyperpigementation simply means an abnormal darkening of the skin due to stimulation of the pigment producing cells known as Melanocytes. 

The pigmentation in this disorder tends to be symmetrical (meaning that it’s the same on both sides of your body/face) and is often referred to as the mask of pregnancy

Despite Melasma being so common there aren’t a lot of known treatments!

This leaves people who suffer from Melasma often jumping around from product to product trying to figure out what will work for them. 

Luckily there are some therapies that YOU can use to treat Melasma, but in order to understand these therapies you really need to understand what CAUSES Melasma. 

One of the main reasons that conventional therapies tend to fail in treating Melasma is because this particular skin disease is probably more the result of issues that occur INSIDE your body than outside of your body. 

The normal approach to treating skin diseases is to always apply creams, gels and lotions to the outside of the skin hoping that it will fix the problem. 

But what you need to understand is that many problems on your skin indicate a problem INSIDE of your body!

So simply putting on lotions, gels or creams is often not enough to treat the problem because they don’t tackle or treat the underlying cause. 

Make sense?


So let’s talk about the actual causes of Melasma so we can talk about treatment. 

Causes of Melasma

Believe it or not Melasma is not caused by any one single thing. 

In the medical world the cause of Melasma is considered to be multi-factorial

In simple terms this just means that multiple factors align to cause the condition. 

It also means that not every single person who has one of the factors will necessarily get Melasma. 

Any disease that is considered to be multi-factorial is always difficult to treat because it means that there is no one single treatment. 

And in our current world most Doctors are always looking for that one thing to treat or to use. 

So if you’ve been experiencing Melasma and you’ve only been doing one therapy or one treatment then that may be the reason that you haven’t had success. 

Conditions that are multi-factorial often require multiple therapies that target different factors in order to get results!

Melasma is no different!

When you couple that with the fact that most people focus on treating the skin (instead of the inside of the body) you can see why Melasma is so difficult to treat. 

With this concept in mind it’s important that we discuss the “risk factors” for Melasma. 

The way to think about this is that the more risk factors you have the more likely you are to experience Melasma. 

In addition these risk factors can help target your treatment! (which we will discuss below)

Risk factors for developing Melasma include: 

The most common presentation for those who present with Melasma is to start to notice darker skin on the face usually during pregnancy which then persists afterwards. 

In fact it is estimated that up to 50-70% of women will experience some hyperpigmentation during pregnancy!

And we know that some serious hormonal changes occur during pregnancy which probably start the process. 

Then, in those who have the right (or wrong) genetics, Melasma starts to kick in and the skin becomes darker. 

The risk factors listed above tend to trigger an overproduction of certain cells in your skin known as Melanocytes. 

These melanocytes are the ones that are responsible for your skin color. 

These are the same guys that you TRY to stimulate when you get a tan because they are responsible for producing a tan. 

While they may be good if you want a tan, they aren’t necessarily good in this case. 

In Melasma the melanocytes often get hyper sensitive and start over producing melanin or pigment in your skin but only in certain places. 

These places tend to hit your face, eyes, forward and upper lip area – but can also occur elsewhere. 

So just by looking at this situation we know that those suffering from Melasma obviously have some issue with their hormones, in addition to their skin. 

And this idea is what helps us determine how to treat the condition. 

Treating Melasma from the Outside

In order to treat Melasma you need to focus on both the INSIDE of the body and the OUTSIDE of the body. 

We will talk about both but let’s start with the outside first. 

By the outside I am referring to your SKIN itself. 

Most people primarily focus on the skin, and while this is a good starting point, you really should also be focusing on what is happening on the inside and to your hormones. 

Most of the treatments regarding the skin tend to target the melanocytes in an attempt to shut them down or at least slow them down. 

The idea is that if you can slow down melanin production then you can normalize the color of your skin. 

So let’s talk about how you do that: 

#1. Arbutin

The first ingredient that you want to know about is known as Arbutin. 

Arbutin is a natural ingredient found from plants which acts to block the production of melanin by inhibiting an enzyme known as tyrosinase

One of the benefits of using Arbutin is that it is a NATURAL skin lightener and not one that will potentially damage your skin. 

Arbutin can be compared to a prescription known as Hydroquinone (more on that one below) which is a prescription medication. 

One of the problems with Hydroquinone is that it is very strong but often times once you stop taking the medication your skin color returns. 

This problem can be avoided by using Arbutin because it is not quite as strong. 

Arbutin is a must in your Melasma treatment regimen

You can get a naturally occurring Arbutin in some cosmetic products and I generally recommend you use it in combination with other highly active ingredients (including ingredients such as Vitamin C serum). 

My recommended product is iS Clinical Super Serum Advance+ which contains Arbutin, L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and copper tripeptide growth factors

super serum by is clinicalLearn more about Super Serum Advance+ here

You should use Arbutin in combination with at least one other natural face lightening treatment below and in combination with the supplements listed below. 

It may take several months of use before you see complete elimination of your Melasma but you should notice fading within the first month. 

#2. Kojic Acid

Kojic acid is another natural skin lightening agent that can be used topically on the skin to help reduce skin hyperpigmentation. 

Kojic acid is actually created in the fermentation process of rice wine. 

Luckily it has some very important benefits on the skin!

It’s commonly used in the cosmetic industry to help even up skin tone, but it can also be used in Melasma treatment

One of the big problems with Kojic acid is that it isn’t very stable. 

In order for Kojic acid to be effective it must be in a protective carrier which blocks light exposure and limits air exposure. 

When you look for a Kojic acid product make sure that you find one that comes protected from the elements otherwise it may not work well. 

You will notice that cheap versions of Kojic acid may not come adequately prepared which can limit its quality. 

I recommend a brand like this one for best results which contains a combination of Kojic acid and azelaic acids (both of which can help reduce hyperpigmentation): 

kojic acid in PCA skin gelLearn more about Kojic acid here

Kojic acid can be safely combined with other ingredients listed in this guide! 

#3. Vitamin C Serum

Next on the list is something that you should definitely already be using in your skin care regimen!

Vitamin C serum (along with Vitamin A) is probably one of the single best things that you can put on your skin. 

In cosmetic school aestheticians and dermatologists are taught that Vitamin C will help “lighten, brighten and tighten” the skin. 

Lighten refers to Vitamin C’s ability to lighten the skin, brighten refers to its ability to even out skin tone and complexion and tighten refers to its ability to reduce the aging process

The key to using Vitamin C serum is to find a high quality product which protects the vitamin C from light, element exposure and keeps it at the right pH. 

Finding a product which does all of these things can be difficult, but once you find a high quality product you will understand why it’s so effective. 

When treating Melasma I usually recommend a combination of Arbutin + Vitamin C or Kojic Acid + Vitamin C

You don’t necessarily need to use all 3 products, but I would at least combine two together for best results. 

If you aren’t familiar with Vitamin C serum then I recommend you read this post which goes into detail about how to use it

You can find my recommended Vitamin C serum below: 

Using vitamin C serum to treat melasmaLearn more about Vitamin C serum here

#4. Hydroquinone

Hydroquinone is a powerful skin lightener and is the only prescription skin lightener that we are going to talk about today. 

There is no question about it:

Hydroquinone 4% definitely works to lighten the skin, but that’s not really the issue – whether it works or not. 

The problem with hydroquinone is that some people tend to get a rebound hyperpigementation after they stop using it. 

So while it may work very well while you are using it, much of the benefit you get while using it may fade once you stop. 

This is well known in the cosmetic industry and is one of the reasons that Doctors are hesitant to prescribe this medication. 

You can sometimes bypass this problem by using hydroquinone “cycles” where you use hydroquinone for 4-8 weeks, take a 4 week break and repeat this process several times. 

Often in the “down times” people will use Arbutin or the other skin lighteners listed in this guide. 

This process can work and may work well for some, but it usually isn’t necessary as long as you take the other steps listed here. 

If you want to get hydroquinone you will have to get a prescription from your Doctor – usually a cosmetic dermatologist or a plastic surgeon. 

#5. Exfoliation therapies (Microdermabrasion)

In addition to using creams and serums you can also use physical therapies such as microdermabrasion to help treat your Melasma!

These therapies help to accelerate the exfoliation of dead skin cells and may stimulate and regulate melanocytes in the process. 

These exfoliation therapies may not work for everyone, and may not be necessary for each person but they should be considered for some people with tough to treat Melasma. 

Often the addition of microdermabrasion to Vitamin C serum and Arbutin can help improve absorption and increase the effectiveness of these therapies. 

You don’t have to start with this therapy though. 

Instead you can start with the serums and other therapies listed below and then use microdermabrasion if you aren’t seeing the results you want. 

Treating Melasma from the Inside

Now that we’ve talked about treating Melasma from the outside we can start to talk about treating it from the inside. 

And by the inside I mean using certain supplements to help control and regulate the hormones involved in stimulating your melanocytes. 

For instance:

We know that one of the main triggers of Melasma is pregnancy. 

And we all know that during pregnancy hormone levels tend to be at extremely high levels. 

Sometimes these hormone imbalances can stick around after delivery and that may be the reason that Melasma tends to stick around in certain people. 

Even if you fall into this category there are certain supplements that you can use to help balance your hormones. 

#1. DIM (Diindolylmethane)

One of the most effective and powerful supplements you can use is known as DIM or Diindolemethane. 

DIM helps your body to regulate estrogen levels by increasing how your body eliminates or metabolizes this hormone

This ingredient is often found in certain vegetables so it may be possible to get this benefit by consuming lots of broccoli or cabbage as well!

By reducing estrogen in your body it will reduce the amount of stimulation on your melanocytes and therefore help reduce pigmentation. 

This therapy often works very well when used in combination the serums listed above. 

For the most benefit make sure you use 200 to 400mg per day of a high quality DIM complex which includes at least 25% diindolylmethane. 

I recommend a product such as this:

using DIM to treat melasmaLearn more about DIM here

Be prepared to use DIM for at least 3-6 months! 

#2. Indole 3 Carbinol

Indole 3 Carbinol or I3C for short is another product which helps your body break down estrogen and is also found in certain plants

The difference between DIM and I3C is that I3C is a more complete compound and also has anti-inflammatory properties. 

I generally recommend that people with estrogen issues use both I3C and DIM simultaneously for best results. 

There are more clinical studies on I3C than there are DIM, but both tend to be effective. 

Usually one is more effective than the other, depending on the person, but you can prevent using one that doesn’t work by using them both together. 

I also have found that using them together tends to provide even better results and resolution of Melasma. 

Like DIM you will want to use at least 400mg of I3C each day for 3-6 months, I recommend a product such as this which is very high quality: 

using indole 3 carbinol to treat melasmaLearn more about Indole 3 Carbinol here

#3. Zinc Picolinate

Another potential hormone balancing supplement is Zinc bound to picolinic acid. 

Zinc is an essential mineral that is VERY important for your skin, and it’s also important for testosterone metabolism and androgen metabolism. 

Many women who suffer from elevated estrogen also have issues with testosterone or symptoms on the PCOS spectrum.

Using Zinc can really help to metabolize androgens and help your body eliminate any extra testosterone. 

Another benefit to using Zinc is that it may potentially help improve your thyroid function.

Zinc is involved in T4 to T3 conversion and immune function – which makes it a perfect supplement for those suffering from Hashimoto’s or thyroid disease in general. 

Using 30 to 60 mg of Zinc Picolinate may help some women who suffer from melasma. 

I recommend a product like this one: 

how to use zinc to treat melasmaLearn more about Zinc Picolinate here

Zinc probably doesn’t need to be used as first line therapy, but it can be added to your regimen if you know that you have testosterone issues or thyroid issues. 

Other Tips for Treating Melasma

In addition to using these combination therapies you will also want to use a couple of extra tips which will help you. 

Be patient!

The first is that you need to be patient!

Remember that treating Melasma WILL take time. 

Unfortunately it may be true that Melasma may only take a few weeks to start to cause problems, but it usually takes several months to treat. 

Most of the time this takes around 3 to 6 months for most people, assuming you stick to the regimens listed above on a daily basis. 

Some women with persistent Melasma may need to treat for up to 12 months! 

The good news is that you should notice some improvement and lightening of your Melasma over time. 

It typically doesn’t just fade completely within a matter of a few days to weeks, instead the fading process is a gradual and slow fading that occurs over several months. 

Just stick with it and trust the process and you will experience results! 

Avoid sunlight and ultraviolet lighting (Tanning beds included)

The next important tip is to avoid tanning beds and excess ultraviolet light – even from the sun!

Remember that melanocytes are normally supposed to increase melanin and make your skin darker, the problem with Melasma is that this process still occurs and it may make problems WORSE. 

The last thing you want is to stimulate the melanin in the area that you have Melasma and make that skin darker. 

Unfortunately this means that you should avoid allowing sunlight to hit the areas on your body that you have Melasma. 

Sunscreen will definitely help but it will NOT block all of the ultraviolet rays from the sun. 

So if you are serious about treating your Melasma make sure that you avoid the sun completely for those areas that you have hyperpigmentation. 

Using large brim hats and suncreen will definitely help. 

Putting it all together

A complete melasma treatment may look like this:

Vitamin C serum + Arbutin Combination to treat your skin and used in combination with DIM + Indole 3 Carbinol to treat your hormones

Other variations may include Kojic Acid + Vitamin C combined with DIM + I3C + Zinc

Using these therapies for 3-6 months should result in noticeable improvement in your skin!

Now I want to hear from you:

Are you currently struggling with Melasma?

Have you been able to find anything that works?

If not, what have you tried?

Leave your comments below! 

7 Reasons to Get a Spray Tan & 4 Downsides to Consider Before you Do

Are you interested in getting a spray tan but worried if it is safe or effective?

Maybe you’re just wondering which is better – a spray tan, a natural tan or a tan from a tanning bed. 

If so continue reading! 

We are going to discuss the differences between a spray tan and other tanning methods while also discussing the potential benefits and downsides of a spray tan. 


Spray Tan vs Tanning Bed

So what is a spray tan and how does it compare to other tanning methods?

A spray tan is really just the act of spraying a chemical mixture on your skin that temporarily “stains” the skin to a different shade or color

The coloring from the chemical stays on the outer layers of the skin and is removed as the skin sheds. 

The normal shedding cycle for the epidermis is around 40-60 days (depending on if you use tretinoin or not) so therefore spray tans can only last at the most that amount of time. 

Realistically they don’t last quite that long because other factors increase skin shedding such as bathing, exfoliating, cleansers and so on . 

So you can imagine that most spray tans probably last slightly less than that amount of time – in fact, the average length that a spray tan lasts is about 5-10 days

You can compare this method of tanning to other methods of tanning such as a “natural” tan from a tanning bed. 

In a tanning bed your body is being exposed to ultraviolet light from the lightbulbs in the bed. 

This ultraviolet light triggers the production of melanin which is the natural pigment in your skin

In response to this light your body produces more melanin which then confers that characteristic browning of the skin that everyone wants!

By the way, this is the same reaction that occurs when you exposure your skin to natural sun outside of a tanning bed!

The main difference is that we can’t exactly create the same ultraviolet light that the sun produces which is why prolonged exposure to certain types of tanning bed may cause long term skin damage. 

But now that you have an idea of how a spray tan works and why it’s different from other tanning methods we can talk about the specific reasons you may want to get a spray tan. 

7 Reasons to get a Spray Tan

Spray tanning has some potential benefits that are unique to this method of obtaining a tan. 

When determining if you should get a spray tan make sure to evaluate both the positives and the negatives of this particular method. 

Like anything which method you use largely depends on your preferences are your situation!

I personally like to use spray tans for certain special events, but I also prefer to get a natural tan (from natural sunlight) in between to keep up my tan. 

This is just my preference but each person may be different!

Let’s jump in to the benefits of getting a spray tan: 

#1. Fast and Efficient!

The first reason is that getting a spray tan is incredibly fast and efficient. 

You can schedule your time, walk in, and walk out with a tan that is optimized for your skin in less than 30 minutes. 

You can compare this to natural tans from natural light which may take weeks to months to create!

Even a tanning bed with artificial lights will take weeks to obtain the right glow. 

This makes getting a spray tan optimal for people who either don’t want to spend the time to optimize their color or because they have a special event

Spray tans are great if you have a wedding, want to go on vacation or have some other special event in your life. 

You can get a perfect tan in 30 minutes that lasts for several weeks just in time for whatever event you have going on. 

#2. Save your skin

Another huge benefit is that spray tans may actually save your skin. 

You have to remember that the sun (and this includes both artificial light and light from the sun) cause slightly damage to the skin which then stimulates the melanin response

This process actually DAMAGES the skin!

What you may not realize is that this process results in something called photo-damage. 

And photo-damage is the #1 reason for aging skin among ALL people

This process is one of the reasons that you see dermatologists and medical aestheticians basically avoiding the sun at all times. 

They do this to try and save their skin. 

Photo-damage results in a reduction in collagen and elastin both of which are critical to maintaining the integrity and youth of your skin. 

Getting a spray tan can save your skin because you avoid the potential damage of the sun. 

This can be a double-edged sword, however, because some sunlight is important for vitamin D production (which we will discuss below). 

#3. Slimming Effect

Ever wonder why bodybuilders (both women and men) always get spray tans before competitions?

It’s because it highlights lean muscle, tends to hide fat tissue and actually makes you look slimmer! 

You probably intuitively know this, but maybe you didn’t realize it is a potential advantage to getting a spray tan. 

If you plan on going to the beach and need a “base tan” or have some sort of special event like a wedding then it may be in your best interest to look and feel great. 

Yes it is a fake tan, but you can boost your self confidence and help yourself look great and feel great in your own skin. 

This benefit isn’t unique to just spray tans, by the way, but the difference is that you can get this benefit with a spray tan within 30 minutes while it may take weeks to months to get it from other tanning methods. 

#4. Rapid Results

This benefit shouldn’t be overstated:

A spray tan can give you a near instant result in a short period of time. 

Compare the time it takes to get a tan with various different options: 

A spray tan = perfect tan in 30 minutes

A tanning bed = a good/perfect tan in 4-8 weeks

Natural light = a good/perfect tan in 8-12 weeks

The time it takes to get the tan doesn’t mean it’s the best option, but it should certainly be considered if you are in a pinch for time!

Imagine leaving on a vacation in 2 weeks, there’s just no way that you can get a tan in that amount of time with a tanning bed or with natural sunlight. 

#5. Tan all year long

This benefit is not unique to spray tans (you can get it with a tanning bed as well) but it is still beneficial. 

You can pretty much get a perfect tan any time of the year if you choose to get a spray tan. 

During certain months the sun is at an angle which effectively causes ultraviolet lights to bounce off of your skin and reduces the effectiveness of natural light. 

During other months out of the year the sun may be overcast or simply not come out (such as winter). 

This makes getting a tan by natural light really only an option during summer months (depending on where you live). 

If you live in somewhere like Hawaii this isn’t a problem, but if you live anywhere else then it is something to consider!

You can still take advantage of this with a tanning bed as well, but perhaps at the cost of your skin in the process. 

#6. More control over Color

Another advantage to getting a spray tan is that you have more control over the color and shade of your tan. 

Consider how you naturally get a tan using a tanning bed or natural sunlight:

The more tanning bed sessions (or sessions that you lay out) the deeper and deeper the shade and color of your tan gets

This progression of shading on your skin takes time and can be difficult to control. 

For instance:

If you miss a week then it’s like taking 2 steps forward but one step backwards. 

This means that if you want to control the shade using other tanning methods you really need to be consistent and stay on top of your schedule. 

You don’t have to worry about any of this if you are getting a spray tan because you can control the shade and color of the tanning solution BEFORE you even start. 

This means that you can basically “pick” your shade and you end up with the exact color and shade that you want within 30 minutes. 

#7. All Skin Types can Tan

You can also get a spray tan regardless of the type of your skin. 

The way you want to think about your skin type is through the lens of the Fitzpatrick skin scale which is what dermatologists use when considering skin. 

The Fitzpatrick skin scale is a way to determine how your body will respond to sunlight, how effectively you will tan and your risk of developing skin cancer later in life. 

You can see an example of all 6 skin types below: 

fitzpatrick skin scale and tanning ability

Notice skin types I and II on the Fitzpatrick scale. 

If you have these skin types there is VERY little chance that you will ever be able to tan with natural light or through a tanning bed. 

In fact, using these methods may even increase your risk of skin cancer because your body may not be able to respond and protect itself with sufficient melanin production. 

Those who have Fitzpatrick skin types I and II make great candidates for spray tanning because they really don’t have any other options

Other skin types can still get tans but their tans may not be as uniform and may not get exactly to their desired shade with sunlight or tanning beds. 

Your Fitzpatrick scale is therefore very important when you consider getting a spray tan or using other tanning options. 

4 Downsides of Getting a Spray Tan

While there are definitely some serious benefits to getting a spray tan, it’s not necessarily for everyone!

Before you get a spray tan make sure you understand the procedure including the downsides and potential negative aspects. 

#1. Potential Lack of Vitamin D 

The first downside is that by avoiding sunlight and ultraviolet light you risk getting vitamin D deficient. 

Vitamin D is a seriously important vitamin that helps balance your mood, control your immune system and much more. 

Low vitamin D has been linked to developing autoimmune diseases and other diseases states so it’s an important factor to consider. 

I’ve seen the argument that Vitamin D shouldn’t even be considered in getting a spray tan because most people get sufficient Vitamin D from foods sources. 

This is technically true but it actually doesn’t help. 

The Vitamin D that you get from foods is in the form of Vitamin D2 and in order for Vitamin D2 to become active and useful in the body you must activate it to Vitamin D3 through sunlight

So even if you do consume Vitamin D2 in food then you still NEED the ultraviolet light from the sun. 

But it’s also worth considering that you can take Vitamin D3 in supplement form and by mouth, but it’s probably not as good as getting your Vitamin D directly from the sun. 

The bottom line is that if you avoid the sunlight in favor of getting repeated spray tans then you may increase your risk of developing Vitamin D deficiency. 

#2. Potential Stains

Another potential issue is the real risk of staining your clothes while getting a spray tan. 

This isn’t a deal breaker though, especially since you can actively avoid this issue by being cautious – but it is still worth considering. 

Just remember:

The spray tan chemicals are designed to STAIN your skin, so they will stain clothing or other things they come into contact with. 

The reason that the chemicals are shed from your skin is simply because your skin sheds over time, but this obviously doesn’t happen with your clothes. 

So be careful when you get a spray tan to avoid getting it on your clothes or personal items! 

#3. Requires Frequent Visits

Another downside is that while spray tans work absolutely great, they don’t last very long. 

This means that you’ll need to spend both time and time with some regularity if you want to keep up your results. 

Natural spray tans and tans from tanning beds tend to last longer than the tan you get from a spray tan. 

This isn’t a huge deal if you only occasionally get a spray tan, but it can become an issue if you try to keep up your tan exclusively through this method. 

You can count on your spray tan looking really good for about 5 to 10 days, but after that point it will start to fade rapidly from your skin. 

Natural sun tans and tans from tanning beds tend to last weeks to months (though they do fade over time). 

#4. Up Close and Personal

Another factor to consider is that you will be up close and personal with someone in order to get your spray tan. 

This means that you will be in a 1 on 1 setting and exposed in order to get your tan!

Compare this to a tanning bed in which you are alone in the bed by yourself while you get your tan. 

This means that getting a spray tan is not necessarily a “relaxing” experience. 

It probably isn’t an issue if you are outgoing or don’t mind that sort of thing, but if you have a shy or reserved personality make sure to consider it! 

Are Spray Tans Safe? 

Because you are putting chemicals on your skin it’s natural to ask if the procedure is safe. 

The answer is that the vast majority of the time most people won’t experience any bad side effects from getting a spray tan. 

Some people may react to ingredients or chemicals in the spray tan mixture, but these people are those who tend to react to EVERYTHING and are very sensitive to medications, supplements and so on. 

While this is a rare reaction it’s often worth considering. 

Another way to fight this reaction is to simply use organic based ingredients which are less likely to cause any real problems but still provide your body with a nice tan. 

Natural ingredients such as turmeric can stain your skin various colors and may actually be HEALTHY for your skin

I personally recommend that if you do choose to get a spray tan that you stick to organic materials because not only is it healthier but you will reduce your risk of a negative reaction to the ingredients. 

Remember that your skin is the largest organ in your body

Your skin naturally serves as a barrier to prevent unwanted things from entering your bloodstream but the skin can’t keep everything out. 

If you put any chemical or ingredient on your skin just realize that SOME of that product will be absorbed into your bloodstream (though probably not a lot). 

This method of absorption is known as transdermal absorption and it should be considered before you put anything on your skin. 

Tips to Make your Spray Tan more Effective

If you do decide to get a spray tan you can take several steps to help improve the quality and longevity of your results. 

There are some things that your artist may not tell you but that may help your tan last longer. 

These tips are based on the science behind how the tan is applied to your skin and I’ll go into detail on each one below: 

  • Exfoliate BEFORE you get your spray tan – The idea here is to reduce the chance that your body will exfoliate after your tan. Remember that the way the spray tan works is by applying a stain directly to your skin, but also remember that it fades because your skin sheds. If you can reduce the chance that your skin will exfoliate early then it should increase the length of time that the tan lasts. 
  • AFTER your spray tan avoid wiping your skin – The logic here is that the ingredients are just on the superficial or upper layer of your skin. If do a wiping motion to dry off your skin with a towel after your tan you risk increasing exfoliation and also expelling the stain from your skin quicker. You can avoid this by simply patting yourself dry after a shower or a quick pool dip instead of wiping your body clean. 
  • AFTER your spray tan apply lotion daily – After you get your spray tan you will want to make sure that you apply lotion to your skin each day. Remember that you will exfoliate faster with dry skin because it tends to flake off. If you moisturize 

By following these tips you can increase the length of time that your results last. 

In addition to these tips you will also want to consider some more general tips before you get your spray tan: 

  • CONSIDER what you wear (or don’t wear) during your spray tan – You will want to consider what to wear (or not) when you go into get your tan. It’s not uncommon for people to prefer to go naked into their spray tan! Going naked reduces tan lines and gives a perfect even tan throughout the entire skin. If you don’t want to go naked that’s not a problem either, just make sure that you wear an OLD swim suit that you don’t mind getting stained. 
  • PROTECT your nails during the spray tan – Just like your skin your nails and nail beds can get stained by the ingredients of the spray tan. You can avoid this by simply putting a coat of nail polish on your nails before the procedure. Most spray tan locations will wipe off your nails but you can also come in prepared. 
  • PROTECT the palms of your hands and soles of your feet – When you get your spray tan you want to make sure that your tan looks as natural as possible! That means avoid getting a “tan” on places that shouldn’t normally be tanned. This is most obvious on the palms of your hands and the soles of your feet. You can avoid getting “tanned” in these places by placing barrier cream on those locations before the procedure. Most spray tan locations will automatically provide this for you, but just make sure you consider it before going in!

If you follow these tips you will be ready to get your spray tan! 

Back to you

If after reading all of this you decide to get a spray tan you are still in good company! 

In my experience those who do the best with spray tans are those who get them for special events and for situational circumstances. 

When it comes to keeping a nice glow all year round you are probably best off by using natural sunlight (if it’s available to you) and minimizing your time in the sun to prevent long term photo-damage. 

Now I want to hear from you:

Are you thinking about getting a spray tan?

Are you concerned about the ingredients or how it works?

Leave your comments below! 

Eyelashes Falling Out? 7 Reasons Why + Treatment Tips

Are your eyelashes falling out? 

Believe it or not a small amount of lash loss can lead to big changes in your appearance. 

If you are losing your lashes then read this guide which will discuss the major causes of eyelash hair loss and discuss potential treatment options:


Help! My Lashes are Falling out! 

The official name for eyelash hair loss is known as milphosis (if it occurs by itself). 

Another term often used to describe eyelash hair loss is Madarosis which can be used to identify both eyelash and eyebrow hair loss

These terms are not necessarily important because they don’t tell you why you have hair loss – but they are the official terms. 

There are many reasons why your lashes may be falling out and most of them can be identified relatively easily. 

What you need to understand is that eyelash hair loss is usually the RESULT of some other condition that your body is currently dealing with. 

This problem is almost always on the inside (but not always). 

In addition to eyelash hair loss you can also present with eyelash breakage or simply just slow growing lashes. 

These are all conditions that fit under the same umbrella – disordered eyelash growth! 

Like anything there are degrees to which this can occur. 

Some people may experience a complete loss of their eyelashes while others may experience only 50% of lash loss

The goal with addressing your lashes is to find the underlying cause and then treat or prevent that!

eyelash hair loss with broken and missing lashes

Many of the same issues that cause eyebrow hair loss ALSO cause eyelash hair loss. 

This means if you are suffering from one you may be suffering from the other. 

7 Causes of Eyelash Hair Loss

I’ve previously discussed several causes of eyebrow hair loss and many of the same issues that cause eyebrow hair loss ALSO cause eyelash hair loss. 

Generally these conditions tend to go together (but not always). 

If you are also suffering from eyebrow hair loss then I would recommend you read this article as well

#1. Alopecia

Perhaps one of the most important causes of eyelash hair loss is a condition known as alopecia. 

There are different categories of alopecia but the two we will focus on today are alopecia areata and alopecia adnata. 

You are probably familiar with alopecia areata because it is often the cause of isolated patches of hair loss on the head. 

eyelash hair loss due to alopecia

What you may not realize is that alopecia can also cause hair loss of both your eyelashes and eyebrows. 

Alopecia is the result of an autoimmune condition which means that your body is attacking itself and that attack results in hair loss. 

Doctors and scientists aren’t really sure what causes alopecia at this point, but it can sometimes be treated with certain medications. 

Another form of alopecia is known as alopecia adnata.

This is a condition that is used to describe eyelash hair loss but it most often refers to a condition in which your eyelashes are underdeveloped or simply do not grow to their maximum capacity. 

Those with this condition may have SOME eyelashes but they are often smaller or shorter than usual. 

If you have eyelash hair loss you will most likely need to see a Doctor for treatment. 

#2. Hormone Imbalance

Another VERY common reason for eyelash hair loss is hormone imbalance. 

Hormone imbalance can actually refer to several conditions, all of which may impact your lashes. 

The most common hormone imbalances that alter eyelash growth are hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism

Your thyroid helps to regulate the function of your skin, eyelashes, nails, metabolism and so on. 

Pretty much any thyroid condition can result in damaged or broken hair loss – this includes on your head and on your brows/lashes. 

Hyperthyroidism is a condition which results in excessive thyroid hormone production while hypothyroidism is a condition which results in insufficient thyroid hormone production. 

BOTH conditions may cause lash breakage. 

And these conditions are very common. 

Up to 10-20% of people in the United States may suffer from some sort of thyroid disease, so if you have lash problems there’s a good chance your thyroid may be related. 

If you suffer from thyroid problems you will need to treat that issue to grow back your lashes/brows. 

#3. Direct Skin Conditions

Many of the conditions that cause eyelash hair loss have to do with what is happening INSIDE your body and not necessarily on the outside. 

This isn’t true for all conditions, though. 

Some direct skin conditions can also cause eyelash hair loss. 

What do I mean by direct skin conditions?

I mean anything that causes problems to the skin UNDERNEATH your eyelashes.

Skin conditions like psoriasis, dermatitis, skin infections and eye conditions such as blepharitis can all cause disordered eyelash hair growth

The good news about these conditions is that they are often easier to spot. 

It’s easier to identify a problem on your skin than it is a hormone problem in your blood. 

The treatment for these types of problems is usually ointments and creams which can help treat the skin problem and reduce inflammation. 

#4. Trichotillomania

Trichotillomania is an impulse disease that is not quite as common as some of the other diseases mentioned here. 

In trichotillomania patients may inadvertently pull out or break their own hairs. 

These hairs may be those on their head, on their eyebrows and even their own eyelashes. 

This behavior is usually driven by stress or anxiety and can be treated by managing those conditions. 

While most people with trichotillomania may know that they have a problem it can be VERY difficult to stop the behavior – especially if the trigger cannot be identified. 

#5. Trauma

Trauma is a term used to describe a condition which causes damage. 

When you think about trauma the first thing that may come to mind is something like a cut or a bruise. 

And this type of trauma can definitely cause issues with eyelash hair growth. 

Think about a cut or laceration to your eye area that may cause scar tissue. Once there is scar tissue covering the normal hair follicles it is unlikely that any hair will grow in that area. 

So pretty much any damage to the skin over your eyelashes may result in lash loss

But trauma also includes other conditions such as radiation therapy, surgery, intense hot/cold therapies and even eyelid tattooing. 

Any condition which damages the overlying skin may cause hair loss. 

But just because you have trauma doesn’t mean that you will lose your hair. 

Many people do just fine with some minor trauma while others may experience a significant amount of hair loss from the event. 

#6. Inflammation & Infection

Inflammation and infection can also cause lash loss.

Skin infections such as topical fungal infections or viral infections such as shingles or herpes can damage hair follicles and lead to hair loss. 

These type of conditions usually don’t go unnoticed, though!

So it’s good to know if your eyelash loss is due to infection because it is usually quite treatable with certain medications. 

#7. Drugs & Medications

Lastly certain drugs and prescription medications can lead to eyelash hair loss. 

Among this group of medications that can cause hair loss is the commonly prescribed SSRI escitalopram

This a medication used to treat depression and anxiety and it is very commonly prescribed!

While these types of reactions are not very common they are definitely worth considering. 

Especially if you have a case of eyelash hair loss in which every other cause has been ruled out. 

If you fit into this category then you may want to start looking at your prescription drug list to determine if they may be causing some issues. 

Usually you can determine if a medication is causing your lash loss because the hair loss tends to start around the time that you started your medication – so there is a link. 

In some cases, however, the hair loss can be delayed by months. 

How to Grow your Lashes

So what are you supposed to do if you are losing your lashes?

The best approach to treatment is to try and identify what is causing your lashes to fall out and then treat that problem. 

For instance:

It doesn’t matter what you do or what you put on your lashes to help them grow if you are suffering from thyroid disease and you completely neglect that problem. 

But even if you do find the problem and then treat that issue it can still take MONTHS for your lashes to grow back. 

This is where you might find the opportunity to use certain growth serums that can actually help your lashes grow back. 

I’ve included one of my favorites (I use it to help my lashes grow and I don’t have any lash growth issues) below: 

using revitalash to regrow your eyelashesLearn more about RevitaLash here

Lash growth serum can potentially help you grow back your lashes at a faster rate than usual and can even be used to help grow your lashes even if you don’t have any problems. 

Will it work for everyone?

No, not necessarily. 

But it may be worth a try especially if you are self conscious about your lashes. 

In addition to using growth serum I also have some other suggestions which can really help your lashes grow back quickly: 

Don’t pick or tweeze your existing lashes!

While your lashes are growing back it may be tempting to try and tweeze them, especially if some are not quite as long as others. 

Do your best to avoid doing this!

You may stunt the growth phase of your lashes and trick your body into thinking there is more trauma to the hair follicles.

Be patient and let them grow out. 

Only use high quality make-up with very few inactive fillers/dyes

While your lashes are growing back it’s best to avoid putting any excessive or unnecessary chemicals, dyes or fillers on your lashes. 

These type of low quality ingredients can limit eyelash growth and even cause damage to your skin. 

The best thing you can do is buy high quality make-up or use even LESS make-up during this time period. 

I like using organic skin care products which tend not to cause any issues on the skin. 

Make sure you are taking a hair, skin and nails vitamin

Another important way you can boost your results is by taking a high quality hair, skin and nails supplement. 

These supplements provide your body with the necessary building blocks to help hair growth. 

Ingredients like Zinc, biotin and silica can help the growth phase of your lashes. 

I recommend a product like this one

Avoid using fake lashes while they grow back

You will also want to avoid putting on fake lashes while your lashes are growing out. 

Fake lashes may cause trauma to your skin and slow down the growth process, and they also may potentially cause trauma!

Even though it’s tough, try to stick it out and be patient while your lashes grow back. 

Back to you! 

The bottom line?

There are many medical conditions which may result in damage or eyelash hair loss. 

The key is figuring out what the main issue is and focusing your efforts and treatment on that problem. 

Along the way, and as your lashes start to grow back, you might be able to boost the growth phase by using certain serums and by taking certain supplements. 

Now I want to hear from you:

Are you suffering from lash loss?

If so, what do you think is causing the problem?

Have you been able to grow back your lashes?

Leave your comments below! 

Eyebrows Falling Out? Here’s 10 Reasons Why

Are your eyebrows falling out without any real reason?

If so then you need to read this post which outlines the top 10 most common reasons that may cause your eyebrows to fall out.

We will also discuss potential treatment options that you can start with right away: 


Losing your Eyebrows? 

It’s no surprise that people get upset when their eyebrows fall out. 

After all your eyebrows help create the normal shape and figure of your entire face by framing your eyes!

So what actually causes your eyebrows to fall out?

It turns out that this isn’t a straightforward question because many different medical conditions can all contribute. 

The reasons range from infections to nutrient deficiencies to lifestyle issues. 

There is one recurring theme though:

Your eyebrows are incredibly sensitive to changes in your body and the fact that they are falling out can be an early warning sign that something is wrong with some organ system in your body

Your body will sometimes kick out your eyebrows in an attempt to save more vital structures and while this isn’t good for your cosmetic appearance it may be good for your body overall. 

So with that in mind let’s talk about diseases and conditions that may cause your eyebrows to fall out. 

10 Reasons why your Eyebrows may be Falling Out

Remember that there are MANY causes and diseases which may cause your eyebrows to fall out. 

The key to growing back your eyebrows is to find the main issue that you are dealing with and then REVERSE that problem. 

Some of these solutions are easy fixes while others may take time. 

Let’s dive in: 

#1. Stress

Probably one of the most common causes of eyebrow shedding is known as Telogen effluvium. 

Telogen effluvium refers to a condition in which your hair falls out at a faster than normal rate. 

Basically it is falling out faster than your body can grow it. 

This disease state is usually the cause of excessive stress on the body!

This stress can be emotional or physical. 

Conditions that may spark this type of eyebrow loss include divorce, chronic stress at work, physical trauma like a car accident and so on. 

Basically any cause of extreme stress may result in hair loss (eyelash, hair on your head and eyebrow). 

The treatment?

Kick your stress to the curb. 

Eliminating stress in your life may not be easy but it is the only treatment for this type of hair loss. 

You can jump start hair growth by taking certain supplements and using certain creams but you won’t fully realize hair regrowth until you eliminate the stress. 

#2. Dieting

Believe it or not extreme dieting that leads to malnutrition can cause eyebrow hair loss

I’m talking about any diet that results caloric restriction of less than 1,000 calories per day for an extended period of time. 

Diets like the HCG diet are notorious for causing eyebrow hair loss and this has to do with the metabolic changes that occur in your body from prolonged dieting. 

Repeated yo-yo dieting can also cause eyebrow hair loss. 

The problem with hair loss due to this cause is that simply stopping the diet may not be enough to fix the hair growth. 

The reason for this is that the hair loss is usually due to metabolic and hormonal changes that may last for months even after you stop your diet. 

The key to preventing this hair loss is to avoid extreme or crash diets to begin with! 

#3. Not Enough Protein

Another common cause of eyebrow hair loss is insufficient protein consumption

This is usually only an issue in extreme or crash diets that exclude certain food groups. 

Most diets (at least in the United States) contain copious amounts of lean proteins, but some diets may not be rich in certain amino acids such as Leucine. 

You can get these proteins through supplementing with Collagen which often contain these specific amino acids. 

The good news about this cause of hair loss is that you can take supplements to help fight it. 

#4. Too Much Vitamin A (Hypervitaminosis A)

Do you feel like you are over supplementing?

If so make sure you check your supplements for excessive doses of Vitamin A

Vitamin A is one of a few fat soluble vitamins in which you can actually be getting too much of it. 

Other hormones (B vitamins, Vitamin C, and so on) are considered water soluble which means that any excess simply go out in your urine. 

You know this is the case because your urine will often turn bright yellow when you take a lot of vitamins!

This isn’t true of Vitamin A. 

Vitamin A can be stored in your fat cells and slowly released over time long after you stop your supplements. 

And excessive doses of Vitamin A has been shown to cause hair loss. 

The treatment is to stop taking Vitamin A and then wait for your body to slowly eliminate the Vitamin A over time. 

#5. Thyroid Issues

Thyroid issues are an incredibly common cause of both eyebrow and general hair loss!

It is estimated that up to 10% of the population has some sort of thyroid disease and even small changes to thyroid hormone can cause big symptoms in your body. 

Thyroid disease (known as hypothyroidism) usually causes a specific pattern of hair loss and that is the lateral one third of your eyebrow. 

Usually women with eyebrow disease lose the “tail” of their eyebrow but retain the majority of the bulb area. 

The bad news about thyroid disease is that eyebrow hair loss is an EARLY sign of thyroid disease. 

It is often also accompanied by other symptoms such as fatigue, weight gain and other skin issues. 

The key to dealing with this type of eyebrow hair loss is to get diagnosed and get on thyroid hormone replacement treatment. 

You can also take certain supplements which help promote thyroid function in your body like this one

#6. Medications

Medications can also cause eyebrow hair loss

The medications that result in hair loss are not obscure medications either, they are the ones that are commonly prescribed for conditions such as elevated blood pressure and even for common skin conditions. 

Medications that may cause eyebrow hair loss include: 

  • Topical retinoids (those used for anti-aging) – You can avoid this side effect by simply NOT applying your retinoid to your eyebrow!
  • Heparin – Used to thin the blood
  • ACE inhibitors – Used to treat high blood pressure
  • Beta blockers – Used to treat high blood pressure
  • Testosterone hormone replacement therapy – Excessive testosterone can cause hair loss in women!
  • Anti-seizure medications
  • Parkinson’s medications

Obviously you may not be able to get off of your medications but this list can be helpful especially if you are suffering from an unknown cause of eyebrow hair loss. 

Sometimes it may be as easy as simply changing up your medication as well. 

Make sure you discuss any changes or options with your Doctor! 

#7. Trichotillomania

Trichotillomania is an impulse control disorder in which the person with the disease breaks or pulls out the eyebrow hairs. 

Chances are if you have this condition then you already know it! 

But it’s still included here for completeness. 

In my experience some patients with this condition do get microblading while they try to control the impulse disorder, but it can be very difficult. 

Often times if you can somehow stop pulling or breaking your eyebrows then they will grow back fairly rapidly, but stopping this behavior can be difficult. 

#8. Infections (Viral, Bacterial & Fungal)

Another less common cause of eyebrow hair loss is due to infections of the skin. 

The most common of these infections includes topical fungal infections of the skin

Other more rare types of infections include viral (such as herpes) and bacterial (such as leprosy). 

Most of the time people do know they have these conditions and they are often easily diagnosed by visiting the Doctor. 

The treatment is to use anti-fungals, anti-bacterials and anti-viral medications. 

Once the infection is cleared eyebrow hair growth should start again. 

#9. Alopecia Areata (Autoimmune disease)

Alopecia Areata is an autoimmune condition in which your body attacks your own hair follicles which results in hair loss. 

This particular autoimmune disease usually affects more than just the eyebrows with patches of the hair on your head being involved as well. 

If you just have localized eyebrow hair loss, without hair loss on your head, then you probably don’t have Alopecia Areata. 

The problem with this condition is that it can be very difficult to treat with the mainstay of treatment being topical anti-inflammatory medications that sometimes work. 

#10. Acne Rosacea & Psoriasis

The last topic is pretty much any condition which results in direct inflammation of the skin itself!

If your skin is inflamed then that inflammation may damage your hair follicles and result in hair loss. 

The most common cause on the face is Acne Rosacea and Psoriasis. 

The treatment for these conditions include topical medications to reduce inflammation. 

Some patients also find therapeutic relief by using UV light therapy!

Either way you will need to treat the underlying condition in order to grow your eyebrows back.

How to Grow back Your Brows

So what if you aren’t sure what is causing your brows to fall out, what then?

There are some potential therapies and treatments that you can consider if you fall into this condition. 

Also, you may be able to help the regrowth process by taking certain supplements or using certain serums. 

The key here is to be consistent and always be searching for the underlying cause. 

With that in mind I’ve put together some therapies that can help accelerate brow regrowth: 

#1. Eyebrow Regrowth Serum

Eyebrow regrowth serums usually contain prostaglandins which help promote hair growth directly. 

Some of these serums are actually designed for eyelash growth but they have been found to work on the eyebrows as well!

Don’t be surprised if you see that a product is for eyelashes only, make sure to check the reviews and you will see that many people apply them to their eyebrows as well and notice an increase in hair growth. 

The key here is to find high quality serums that contain the right ingredients at the right concentration. 

Avoid cheap products which don’t the right ingredients. 

You can find my recommended products below:

eyebrowth regrowth serumsLearn more about Eyebrow Regrowth Serum herebrowgal eyebrow regrowth productLearn more about Eyebrow Regrowth Serum here

#2. Collagen Supplements

Another way to promote hair regrowth is to use targeted amino acids that are contained in collagen supplements. 

Certain amino acids such as Lysine are required for optimal hair growth and our current diets are such that favor excessive amounts of certain amino acids at the expense of others. 

There are certain amino acids to be found in the dark meats, ligaments, tendons and organ meats of food and for the most part many of these are excluded in favor of leaner meats. 

This may lead to a disparity in amino acid consumption. 

You can fight this by taking collagen supplements such as this one

Lastly you can also consider covering up the eyebrow hair that is lost with procedures such as Microblading or other semi-permanent cosmetic procedures. 

Final Thoughts

Many different conditions can all lead to eyebrow hair loss. 

The key to growing back your brows has to do with finding this underlying cause and then treating that problem. 

Having said that you can accelerate your results by using certain serum and certain supplements. 

Now I want to hear from you:

Are you suffering from eyebrow hair loss?

What do you think is the cause of your hair loss?

What therapies have you tried?

Leave your comments below! 

The Benefits of Copper Peptides for your Skin + The Best Products

Copper for your skin?

How would using a metal or element help your skin?

It sounds crazy but it actually works, and it works well. 

Learn more about how using copper peptides can beneficially impact your skin and reverse the aging process in this post, including which products to use.


Copper and your Skin

Copper makes the list of very important trace elements (or trace metals) that your body needs to survive and thrive. 

You can consider copper in the same category in terms of its importance to your body and skin. 

For instance:

It is well known that zinc deficiency can cause skin disorders, thyroid dysfunction and so on. 

copper peptides in cosmetic products

What is less well known is the importance of copper in certain functions in your body. 

This probably has to do with the fact that most of us are NOT copper deficient (compared to zinc where many people are). 

But like other ingredients and products we can take advantage of the beneficial effects of copper by creating special products, serums and creams which penetrate into the skin and provide certain benefits. 


There is a big difference between using products orally (by mouth) and transdermally (through the skin). 

You can think back to the case of Vitamin C. 

Even though we know that vitamin C is very important for your skin, it doesn’t matter how much vitamin C you take by mouth – none of it actually makes it to the skin. 

For this reason Vitamin C serums are amazing for your skin!

Because you can bypass the oral route and skip straight to the source. 

This analogy is helpful when we consider using copper, because the same logic applies. 

So how does copper help? 

beneficial effects of copper on the skin

As far as your skin is concerned copper is critical to the production of a special ingredient known as collagen. 

You know… that stuff that helps your skin look younger, feel firmer and reduces wrinkles?

The very same stuff that declines with age. 

So how does it work?

Without getting too technical you can think about it like this:

Copper is part of a larger molecule which is known as an enzyme. 

These enzymes initiate and start important reactions in your body, such as the production of collagen/elastin, melanin formation and so on. 

The problem is that these enzymes only work if copper is attached to them. 

So if you have low copper concentrations then the enzymes don’t work as well. 

If the enzymes don’t work as well then elastin and collagen synthesis will be decreased. 

Make sense?

So with this logic we can apply copper directly to the skin to enhance the function of these critical enzymes

The Benefits of Copper Peptides for your Skin

So now that we know how copper works in the skin we can start to talk about the benefits you might get while using it. 

It turns out that because copper is so important that it influences MANY systems in the body. 

We will limit our discussion to the benefits of your skin (but just realize that copper is also important for regulating inflammation and so on). 

The benefits of copper peptides on your skin include: 

Because of these beneficial effects copper has been added to multiple medical devices and even used in post surgical healing!

Relevant to this article is the fact that copper peptides have a beneficial effect on the AGING PROCESS. 

This means that copper can (and should) be used as part of a multiple step skin care regimen designed to target and reverse the aging process. 

Copper is also valuable for those people who may not be able to tolerate high concentration vitamin C serum or don’t have tretinoin available

Studies have shown that copper peptides, when applied to the skin, show a boost to collagen types I, III and V

copper peptides stimulate collagen growth

This may be the reason that copper as an anti-aging effect. 

Furthermore copper is also beneficial because it actually helps to balance out the bacterial/fungal concentrations on your skin and it is considered “biocidal”. 

You know if you’ve suffered from acne before that an imbalance in bacteria on your face can lead to hyperpigmentation, cysts and acne. 

Copper may help to regulate a normal bacterial concentration on the skin. 

Side Effects of Using Copper Peptides

With all of these benefits does using copper peptides come at a cost?

Copper peptides are generally very well tolerated which means that they have few side effects. 

Some people have reported the following symptoms when using copper, however: 

  • Redness (erythema)
  • Irritation
  • Rash
  • Dermatitis

These side effects tend to disappear once you discontinue copper and they tend to be rare. 

In most cases these side effects occur when copper is combined with other powerful ingredients such as Vitamin C serum and Tretinoin. 

The Best Copper Peptide Products & Where to get them

Because copper peptides are relatively new to the cosmetic world they are not necessarily easy to get. 

Really only high quality products will contain enough copper to promote a difference. 

It’s also important to make sure that if you decide to use copper peptides that you get your copper in the right formulation. 

Copper can exist in both the metallic and ionic form and most people are used to thinking about copper in the metallic form. 

But when we are talking about the skin you want your copper to be in the ionic form because if it isn’t then it can’t bind to enzymes and promote the functions we want. 

Ionic formulations of copper do NOT look like the “standard metallic copper” that you are used to and they do not have the classic copper appearance. 

This means when you open your copper containing product you shouldn’t expect it to look copper!

So where can you get the right type of copper peptides in the ionic form?

I’ve provided a list below! 

blue copper 5 peptide cream

The Clue copper contains copper bound to a 5 chain pentad peptide. 

This formulation also contains other anti-oxidants such as Vitamin A and B complex vitamins. 

Learn more about Blue Copper 5 firming cream heresuper serum by is clinical

Combination copper tri-peptide growth factors with 15% L-ascorbic acid. 

Super serum advance + is a great product because it combines vitamin C serum with copper for an even greater effect. 

Watch out for side effects when using this product, however, because Vitamin C and copper make a potent combination. 

As long as you have normal skin (and not sensitive skin) you should be fine, but be weary if you have super sensitive or light skin. 

Learn more about Super Serum Advance+ hereneova creme with copper peptides

The Neova creme contains a copper peptide complex formulated in a moisturizer. 

Make sure to use this at the end of your skin care regimen and after you cleanse/tone your skin. 

Learn more about Neova Creme with Copper peptides here

Who should use Copper Peptides

So should you jump into using copper peptides?

Maybe! But it’s not for everyone. 

The people who stand to benefit the most from using copper peptides usually fall into one or more of the following categories: 

  • Those people who want to prevent the aging process from occuring
  • People who suffer from advanced age spots and wrinkles
  • Those who don’t mind the price tag and want to try it out
  • People who have failed Vitamin C therapy and Tretinoin therapy
  • Aged skin (usually 40+)
  • Those people who do NOT have sensitive skin (Fitz type I and II)

These general guidelines may help to determine if copper will work for your skin type!

Final Thoughts

Copper is another great potential anti-aging tool that can be used to fight the aging process. 

I find the most success when recommending the use of copper peptides in combination with Vitamin C and/or Tretinoin. 

Be careful when using this combination, though, because it can be tough for your skin to handle if you have sensitive skin!

Now I want to hear from you:

Have you tried using Copper peptides before?

Did they help your skin?

Did you tolerate them okay?

Leave your comments below!