Tuesday, July 5, 2016

What You Should Know About Lipsticks

Lipstick is known to contain lead. In fact, the FDA reported that numerous inquires have been received from consumers in regard to the amount of lead present in lipstick.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration(OSHA), epidemiological and experimental studies indicate that chronic exposure to lead may result in impaired kidney function, brain damage, anemia,high blood pressure, neurological issues, and more.

However, the FDA has done several research to provide consumers with an answer to these health issue concerns. One of such research conducted was an expanded survey of lipsticks, covering a wide variety of shades, prices, and manufacturers. Four hundred lipsticks available on the U.S. market in the spring of 2010 were tested for total lead content.

The FDA's studies have found the lead found in lipsticks is far below the level that would call for safety concerns when lipstick is used as intended.

However, understandably, some people are still concerned about the possibly build up of lead overtime, especially if lipstick is used frequently throughout the course of the day.

For those lipstick users who are still concerned about the safety of lipstick, one solution may be the use of one of these brands of natural lipstick that are currently available on the market.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

How to Keep Healthier Looking Nails

  Six Nail Care Tips for Healthier Nails
1.Do not rip or bite a hangnail. It's safer to clip it with a clean, sanitized nail trimmer.
2.Do not cut or push back cuticles, as they act as barriers against infection.
3.Clean and sanitize all nail grooming tools before use.
4.Each time you wash your hands, carefully scrub the underside of nails with soap and water (or a nail brush).
5.You should keep nails short by trimming them regularly.
6.Cut your nails straight across and rounded slightly in the center. This keeps nails strong.

1.CDC - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
2.ADA - American Academy of Dermatology

Friday, January 23, 2015

The Best Anti-aging Products

According to BBC Research reports, the market for anti-aging products and services has grown into a global industry valued at an estimated $261.9 billion in 2013, up from $162 billion, just five years ago.

The evidence is clear, today, millions of people have been constantly searching for the “fountain of youth” or in other words, the best ant-aging product available on the market to quickly reverse the signs of premature aging or to mask all the visible signs of the natural aging process.

No wonder these three 2013 leading anti-aging brands(Lansinoh, Nivea Good-Bye Cellulite, and Private Label), for example, were able to experience sales of 8.6 mil, 8.4 mil, and 3mil respectively, according to Statistica.com.

Based on my recent research, here are the three most popular anti-aging methods people have been trying:
1.Collagen injections
2.Anti-aging creams
3.Injectable fillers

The question here however is, which of these methods have proven to produce any significant result?

1.Collagen Injections
Collagen, the most abundant protein in the animal kingdom, gives strength, flexibility, and shape to skin, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and bones. Our skin contains multiple layers. Just below the outer layer (epidermis) is the second layer, called the dermis.

Within this layer there are blood vessels, nerves and hair follicles, but it's mostly made up of collagen. Collagen is a main support structure in our skin with its network of fibers that provides a framework for the growth of cells and blood vessels.

Some physicians are now using collagen injections to fill in scars, dents, and wrinkles left by acne, accidents, or aging. However, it should be noted that collagen injections are not always successful, and in fact, can cause serious problems. Based on finding, local and/or systemic reactions may occur in some of individuals. However, most of these reactions, appear in the first 3 days and clear spontaneously.

For the above reason, before initiating a program of collagen injections, an intradermal test is mandatory. Patients who are tested positive are usually instructed to avoid collagen injections.

Systemic Reactions Include :
  • Nausea
  • Cutaneous eruptions
  • Arthralgias
  • Headache
 Local Reactions Generally Are the Following:
  • Erythema
  • Edema
  • Induration or uticaria
Some of the Known Contraindications Are:
Collagen injections are contraindicated in patients with a history of Autoimmune diseases, such as:
  • Lupus erythematosus
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Periarteritis nodosa
  • Hashimoto's thyroiditis
  • Scleroderma
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Dermatomyostitis
  • Anaphylaxis or allergy to lidocine
Collagen Injections Are Also Contraindicated in the Following:
  • Pregnant women
  • Patients less than 18 years of age
  • Individual with a positive intradermal test
An estimated $261.9 billion in 2013, up from $162 billion, just five years ago.

2.Injectable Fillers
The use of fillers is sometimes called “liquid facelifts” because of the potential facelift-like results they produce. Fillers are non-surgical ways to rejuvenate your face, but are not considered a replacement for a facelift. 

Injectable fillers are natural or man-made substances that doctors may use to erase creases, wrinkles, and other facial lines. Natural collagens fillers derived either from human skin or animals, including cows (bovine) or pigs (porcine).

Although injectable fillers are believed to produce wonderful results, bear in mind, these results are only temporary. Just like the natural collagen they replace, they too will eventually break down over a period of time. As a result, replenishment treatments are usually required.

3.Anti-Aging Cream

Based on finding, there are two main groups of agents that can be used as anti-aging cream components, the antioxidants and the cell regulators. The antioxidants, such as vitamins, polyphenols and flavonoids, allegedly reduce collagen degradation(damaging, ruining or degrading)by reducing the concentration of folate receptors (FR) in the tissues.

Retinols, Peptides & Growth Factors
It’s believed that the cell regulators, such as retinols, peptides and growth factors (GF), have direct effects on collagen metabolism(chemical changes or transformation) and influence collagen production.

Vitamins C, B3, and E are believed to be the most important antioxidants because they are able to penetrate the skin through their small molecular weight. Several research have proven that the combination of vitamins C and E offer a higher antioxidative protection than vitamin C or E alone.

Of the three main anti-aging methods, collagen injections appears to work the best, but is certainly not recommended for everyone. With fillers, although they allegedly work well, the result is usually temporary. In regard to anti-aging cream, the information provided above sounds very logical, hence there’s no reason to doubt the possibility of these antioxidants and cell regulators having the ability to preserve and influence the production of collagen.

However, one of the main pieces of information missing here, is the percentage or portion of each vitamin, polyphenols, flavonoids, retinols, peptides or growth factors an anti-aging cream should contain, in order for it to significantly influence collagen production.

1)International Journal of Dermatology
2)Market Watch
5)PubMed.gov- US National Library of Medicine, National Institute of Health Dermatoendocrinol. Skin anti-aging strategies
6)American Society of Plastic Surgeon

Friday, January 16, 2015

How to Keep Your Nails Strong and Healthy

There are several serious nail problems you may develop after receiving a manicure. For this reason it’s very important that you take all the necessary precautions each time you visit the nail salon.

Overly Vigorous and Repeated Manicuring 
The pattern of the spots seen in this nail above for example, are typical of overly vigorous and repeated manicuring. Trauma to the nails is often accompanied by white spots(leukonychia) that grow out slowly with the nail. Notice how the curves in this nail, resemble the curve of the cuticle and proximal nail fold.

 Nail Infections 
Several years ago a friend of mine shared with me that she had developed a nail fungus after receiving a manicure at this nail salon she had been for the first time. As a result, she had to be taking lamisil -- prescribed by her doctor. She said she was very concerned about taking this particular drug, due to all the possible adverse effects, such as liver damage and more.

Salon Hygiene
I have also read one case where a Dallas salon owner was fined for cleansiness after 4 customers contracted bacterial infections.

Suggestions to Minimize Your Chance of Nail Infections 
You should be very observant when you visit a nail salon for the first time. It's critical that you examine the salon to make sure it’s clean and all the instruments employees use are new or properly sterilized, according to OSHA or your state's guidelines. These are just a few of the health safety guidlines implemented by the State of Georgia cosmotology board, for example:

1.Hand washing should be performed before and between providing services to each client.

2.Anantibacterial soap should be used to sanitize the hands and the exposed portions of arms before providing services and after smoking, drinking, eating, and using restrooms.

3.Soiled and dirty tools and implements should not be used again until properly cleaned and disinfected according to the procedures stated in this rule.

4.All multi-use tools, implements, and equipment that come in contact with a client must be cleaned of all visible debris after each use and disinfected by complete saturation or immersion for at least 10 minutes in an EPA registered, hospital grade disinfectant according to the manufacturer’s directions.

5.Single use items or any items that cannot be disinfected should be discarded after being used one time, such as emery boards, nail files, sleeves and sanders for electric files, orangewood/birchwood sticks, wooden applicator sticks, etc.

If you notice, none of the above hand hygiene, sterilization, and cleansing of tools are performed at the nail salon of your choice, you shouldn't continue visiting this salon to have your nail care done.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

How to Get Bigger Butt

Rarely do we find people with a flawless body. No question about this, there are many of us who do not feel completely satisfied with the overall appearance of our body. In fact, many people continue to spend a substantial amount of money on their hair, butt, breast, and face in particular, in an effort to transform their current appearance. In regard to the butt for example, once it was the ladies who were more conscious or concerned about the size or shape of their butt, but nowadays, it's now a concern of both sexes.

If you are one of those individuals currently not satisfied with the size or shape of your butt, hopefully, after reading this article, you may fully understand why your butt looks or shapes this particular way, and the different surgical and non-surgical steps that you can take to enhance its appearance.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

How to Get Rid of Keloid on Ear Piercing

Keloid formation has been hypothesized to be the result of an abnormal or prolonged wound healing process, with persistent proliferation and extracellular matrix production of fibroblasts that should otherwise discontinue in normal wound healing.

Despite the high prevalence of keloids in the general population, they are still known to be one of the more challenging dermatologic conditions to manage.  They are considered more than a cosmetic nuisance, and can present a significant psychosocial burden for the individuals who have unfortunately ended up with one or more of those scars.

Keloids occur most commonly on the chest, shoulders, upper back, back of the neck and earlobes.  Based on statistics, for unknown reasons, keloids appear to occur more frequently among Blacks, Hispanics and Asians, and less commonly in Caucasians.

While keloids that develop on some areas of the body of a woman for example, can be masked with clothing, those appearing on the back of the neck and especially on the earlobes, are very difficult to conceal. As a result, many women have to go around daily with these noticeable, and sometimes very ugly scars. Not only can this mar the physical beauty of  these women, it can also affects them psychologically, in particular their self-images, and have a negative impact on their overall quality of life.

Presently, in treating keloids in general, although multiple treatment modalities exist, no single treatment has proven widely effective. In fact, recurrence following any form of single treatment is generally the norm. Thus, combination therapy is likely the optimal strategy.

Keloids Management
Intra-lesional corticosteroid injections --- which help soften and reduce symptoms of pruritus and tenderness--- are believed to be by far the most common treatment option available at present, simply because they reduce inflammation and prevent the formation of abnormal collagen. With this approach, Triamcinolone acetonide, the most commonly used steroid, is injected directly into the keloid. However, because results are temporary; follow-up treatments are usually required. Multiple injections at regular monthly intervals are generally required for larger keloids.

The complications of intralesional steroid use include, skin atrophy, hypo-or hyperpigmentation, and the development of telangiectasias. Because patients typically require multiple needle sticks, especially for larger lesions, some authors suggest pre-treatment with topical lidocaine or the addition of lidocaine in the syringe to help get rid of injection-associated pain. Another negative finding is that Intralesional steroid injection may be impractical for very large or multiple keloids, since the pain of injection may be considerable. There is also additional concern, due to large doses of corticosteroids.

Surgical Excision

Some experts believe surgical excision may be gratifying, providing an immediate cosmetic correction, but the problem here  however, is that surgical resection of keloids is contraindicated, due to the high rate of occurrence (meaning that the keloids reappear after surgery). In fact, the excision often leads to a longer scar and the potential for a larger keloid in event of recurrence. As a result, it’s rarely used alone. Surgery is often combined with other treatment modalities.

This involves applying extremely low-temperature cryogens, such as liquid nitrogen, to the skin. It’s believed to work by altering collagen synthesis and promoting normal wound healing. This method allegedly works best on smaller keloids, but is limited by considerable pain and sometimes prolonged healing after treatment. Because several treatments are often needed, the risk for hypopigmentation in darker-skinned patients is also a significant drawback.

Radiotherapy is frequently used in combination with surgery. However, its use is controversial, due to reports that it is linked to the development of cancer.  Nonetheless, most experts argue that the associated risk is extremely low. Due to the uncertainty of the risk, some author recommend limiting its use to those who have failed previous excisional treatments, and to patients, age 21 or older.

Silicone Gel Sheeting
Based on finding, this treatment course which can last up to 4 months, involves the application of flexible adhesive sheets to a wound to increase the temperature as well as water and oxygen concentrations in the wound --- factors that allegedly promote healing. These sheets that are applied directly to the affected area, are believed to be most successful when worn for 12 to 24 hours.

Laser treatment

Based on finding, the most promising laser treatment results allegedly come from the use of the 585nm pulsed dye laser (PDL). Use of the pulsed dye laser in combination with intralesional steroid injection may also help soften the lesions and enhance the integration of steroid, according to experts. Also, it has been said that the use of the laser as a monotherapy or in conjunction with intralesional triamcinolone injection has shown some promising results with a large percentage of patients remaining keloid-free at follow-up.

Other Treatments with Variable Success Rates
  • Bloodying
  • Retinoids
  • Calcium channel blockers
  • Mitomycin C and interferon-a 2b
  • Imiquimod - a topical cream that’s believed to stimulate the body’s immune system. It’s frequently used as an adjunct to prevent recurrence after a surgical removal of  keloid scars.

For now, it appears as if the greatest weapon against keloids is not only combination therapy, but also the closing of wounds with minimal tension, and patients education. Because patients with a previous keloid or a family history of keloids are at increased risk for developing abnormal scars, these individuals should be counseled against body piercing(such as ear piercing) and should avoid elective cosmetic procedures with a risk for scarring.

1.Dermatology Online Journal 13(30), Keloids:Pathiophysiology and management
2.Journal of Investigative Dermatology

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Shoes Stores for Women with Large Feet -- Shipping and Return Policy

Below is a list of shoes stores that carry shoes for women with large feet. Some of these stores offer one of the following:  free shipping, free shipping promotions or charge a shipping fee for item(s)purchased. Because the return policy differs across stores, I have also included this.

Zippos -- Shipping and Return Policy
Zappos.com offers free shipping on all domestic orders placed on their website, with no minimum order sizes or special exceptions. When you order from their website, they say you can expect to receive your order within 2 business days.

If you are not 100% satisfied with your purchase, you can return your order (without having to pay for domestic return shipping) to the warehouse for a full refund. However, all items you’re returning must be unworn, in the state you received them, and in the original packaging. Just go through their self-service return process (via My Account) to print out a free return label - your domestic shipping costs are prepaid.

Stuart Weiztman -- Shipping and Return Policy

From time to time, they run free shipping promotions. If you would like them to notify you via email, simply sign up.

If you need to return an item purchased during a free shipping promotion, Weiztman will not refund the outbound shipping costs (since it was shipped to you at no cost) and you will be charged a return shipping fee.

Nordstorm -- Shipping and Return Policy

Nordstorm will ship almost anything on their site to anywhere in the United States -- even Alaska and Hawaii -- for free. No minimums are required. There is also no shipping fee for returned merchandise.

Pipeline -- Shipping and Return Policy
Pipeline provides a standard shipping. However, if you want your merchandise to be delivered sooner, they will make sure your order gets to you on time. Pipeline ships from their central warehouse in Compton, California. Their carriers include FedEx, United Parcel Service and the United States Postal Service.

All purchases are non-refundable. However, they allow one exchange per order. If you are not 100% satisfied with their product, you can email them within 10 days of receipt and they will exchange it for something else free of charge. Although it’s your responsibility to cover shipping cost on all items returned, they will pay for shipping the exchange product back to you.

 All returned merchandised must be in original condition (unwashed, unworn) and must be received within 30 days of original order.  Pipeline will not accept returns or exchanges after the 30 day period. All sale items are non-refundable and non-returnable. If they made a mistake with your order, they will reimburse you for the cost of shipping the product back to them and the cost of shipping you a replacement.

NET-A-Porter -- Shipping and Return
From time to time, Net-A-Porter runs free shipping promotions. If you would like them to notify you by email, simply sign up to fashion news. Please note that free shipping promotions will be applied to your order on the payment page.

If you would like to return or exchange  any merchandise, just make sure you request a Returns Merchandise Authorization (RMA) number and send your item(s) back within 28 days of receiving your order.
How to Get A RMA
First, you will have to sign into your account. Next, under My Orders, select the order number of the items you would like to return. Click on the CREATE A RETURN/EXCHANGE button and choose the reason you want to return your merchandise.

If an item is faulty, please provide details as to the reason why. If for example you'd like to exchange an item simply because it’s the wrong fit, choose the replacement size. If you would like to request a refund, select how you would like to be credited, and make sure this matches the original payment method used. The final step is for you to check the box to agree with their Return Policy. You will then receive an email containing your RMA number. Please note, store credit is valid for one year from date of issue.

Dillard - Shipping and Return Policy

ORDER AMOUNT     STANDARD      EXPEDITED             NEXT  DAY                     
Up to $149.99                $8.50                   $18.50                   $28.50
$150.00 and Up             $11.95                  $21.95                   $31.95

All merchandise may be mailed back to them, or returned to any Dillard's location with all original tags left attached. However, you will be responsible for the shipping fees. Their  recommendation is that you insure the package and ship it via a traceable method. They also offer a Fed Ex return label you can print from your computer and attach to the return package.  In regard to personalized and clearance items marked down 65% or more, these cannot be returned. Please note that there will be no refunds on shipping and handling charges.

Long Tall Sally - Shipping and Return Policy

MERCHANDISE                                    STANDARD               EXPRESS
FOOTWEAR ONLY ORDERS                  $14.95                        $20

You can now have your order delivered to one of their U.S. stores for free, ready for collection in 4-10 days. To take advantage of this option, just enter the checkout process as normal. A shipping charge may show up on the basket page, however, you should overlook this. Just select a store where you would like your item(s) to be delivered, from the store drop-down (instead of entering a shipping address), and the shipping charge to be adjusted to zero.