3 Reasons to Return To Using Dry Soap

Dry soap is the traditional shower soap. It comes in bar form and helps dissolve dirt on your skin's surface, allowing you to rinse it away. Still, people have migrated toward liquid soaps in recent years. Is that the best choice?

Reasons To Choose Dry Soap Over Liquid Soap

There are many reasons to choose a body wash or liquid soap for your shower time. For example, liquid soaps are often better for dry skin or gentler for sensitive skin types and conditions. However, despite the advantages of liquid soaps over dry soaps in specific situations, dry soap or bar soap, as it is more commonly referred to, also has benefits over liquid varieties.

1. Bar Soap Is Better for the Environment

Bar soaps create less waste than liquid soaps in production and distribution. Manufacturers typically package bar soap in an eco-friendly, recyclable container. Other than the box, there is no additional waste.

Not only do liquid soaps come in plastic containers, which are worse for the environment, but the soaps may also contain harmful ingredients. Some body washes use microbeads, which have a negative impact on the environment. The problem is so significant that some governments ban the ingredients completely.

2. Bar Soap Contains Fewer Ingredients and Allergens

While some bar soaps can contain many ingredients, most will have fewer than liquid soaps. Liquid options often require preservatives to make them shelf stable, but bar soaps do not, meaning they are usually paraben-free. Also, it is easier for manufacturers to make dry soaps with herbal or all-natural ingredients, meaning soaps can be hypoallergenic.

3. Bar Soap Is Antibacterial

Many people fear bar soaps might contain more harmful bacteria than other soaps because they sit out. Despite the concerns, many studies prove that bar soap presents a limited risk of bacterial contamination. However, experts still recommend people not share their dry soap with anyone else, including members of their household.

Focus On Ingredients

Regardless of the soap you choose for bathing, you should review the ingredients. While all soaps must adhere to regulatory guidelines, there are some ingredients that are OK for soap-making that you might still want to avoid. Also, there are ingredients you want to see on the label of whatever soap you buy.

Good Ingredients

There are several ingredients a quality soap should contain. Glycerin, a plant-based cleanser, helps moisturize your skin by sealing moisture into the skin barrier; it accomplishes this without stripping away natural oils.

Exfoliants are also necessary because they help remove dead skin cells and debris. Some quality exfoliants include oatmeal, black walnut shells, ground apricot pits, etc.

Finally, moisturizing oils are crucial to dry soap production. The most popular oils include coconut oil and sweet almond oil. Coconut butter and shea butter are also excellent moisturizing options.

Bad Ingredients

Avoid soaps with powerful antibacterial agents in them. The FDA banned Triclosan in 2016 because of adverse effects. However, if you buy imported soaps, they may still contain the antibacterial agent.

Soaps may also contain parabens and allergens. Parabens may contribute to specific health conditions. If a soap contains a "fragrance" or "perfume," be leery, especially if you have allergies.

Ultimately, the soap you use is a personal choice. However, dry soap, or bar soap, is an eco-friendly option.

5 Ways To Quickly Reduce the Appearance of Cellulite

Cellulite is as natural as gray hairs, crow’s feet and underarm “batwings.” And, like these three undeniable indicators of age, cellulite is less than welcome. If you are among the 85% of women who seem to develop just a bit more cellulite with each passing birthday, and if you’re tired of feeling a sense of dread every time you check out your bum, stomach or thighs in the mirror, rest assured in the knowledge that cellulite does not have to be forever. With a few easy tricks, you can reduce the appearance of cellulite and go out into the world with confidence once again.

1.    Drink Your Daily 8 Cups

Dehydration can cause even the most taut areas of your body to appear wrinkled and saggy, so it makes sense that, when dehydrated, areas of cellulite appear more pronounced. By starting each day with just half a liter of water and consuming up to three liters per day, you can drastically reduce the appearance of dimpled skin. Rumor has it that if you add two to three lemons to your first glass of water, or by swallowing a teaspoon of apple cider first thing in the morning, you can kickstart the benefits.

2.    Massage the Cellulite Away

Cellulite is often the result of fluid buildup in the lymph nodes in the areas around the dimpled skin. By massaging on and around the areas of cellulite, you can encourage lymphatic draining and, in the process, reduce the appearance of cellulite. Massage can also help stretch the skin and make it appear firmer.

3.    Maintain a Healthy Diet

Despite popular belief, weight and cellulite are not directly related. However, low metabolism and cellulite are. By eating a healthy diet that is rich in leafy greens, whole grains, fibrous foods and other nutritious substances — and by avoiding salt, sugary beverages and processed foods — you can speed up your metabolism and reduce the severity of dimpled skin.

As a bonus, a healthy diet can help you reduce your body fat and achieve and maintain a healthy weight. Though, as already stated, there is not a direct correlation between weight and cellulite, increased muscle tone can diminish the bumpy appearance of fat cells and make your skin look firm and smooth.

4.    Use a Homemade Coffee Scrub

Coffee contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. As such, research suggests that, when applied topically, it can help reduce low-grade inflammation and improve blood flow, two outcomes that can help diminish the appearance of cellulite. If you’re a coffee drinker, set aside your used grounds each morning in a jar or a plastic bag. The next time you shower, use a loofa, washcloth or old toothbrush, and massage the coffee grounds into the problem areas. Let them soak in and really get to work while you wash your face, lather your hair, etc. Then, rinse off as normal.

Another homemade scrub that has promise as a quick cellulite treatment is the coffee, raw honey and cucumber juice mixture. Mix these three ingredients until you form a thick paste, then apply to the problem areas a few minutes before you hop in the shower.

5.    Use Self-Tanner

Though not a permanent fix, tanning lotion can help hide fine lines, wrinkles and cellulite. If you’re only concerned about cellulite when you wear certain outfits, use self-tanners to blur its appearance for the day.

Cellulite is completely natural, but that doesn’t mean it’s always welcome. Whether you want to hide it for a day or get rid of it completely, give the above five tricks a try.

Lactic Acid: Definition and Advantages for Skin Care

With skincare, people are always in search of the next best thing. Consumers want dynamic and exciting new products to make them feel and look younger, the fountain of youth in a cream or shiny canister.

What many people do not realize is that the most effective skin care treatments and regimens have changed little in decades. One of the most effective cosmetic ingredients is lactic acid, and it has been helping to beautify skin since ancient Egyptian milk baths.

Defining Lactic Acid

An alpha hydroxy acid, lactic acid, contributes to the effectiveness of many over-the-counter skin care products and prescription and professional treatments. AHA is an effective tool in the removal of dead skin cells and the elimination or reduction of many skin imperfections, including:

  • Fine lines
  • Wrinkles
  • Dark spots

Lactic acid occurs naturally in dairy products, and it is the compound that gives soured milk and yogurt its tang. While many people still indulge in traditional milk baths, the lactic acid found in most skin care products today is synthetic.

Advantages of Lactic Acid for the Skin

Lactic acid is vital to the exfoliation process. The AHA dissolves the bond between healthy skin cells and dull, old, or dead cells. The compound accelerates cellular turnover while stimulating cell renewal, helping to replace removed cells with healthier ones.

The exfoliation process helps brighten a person's complexion while producing a softer and smoother appearance. When people use lactic acid-based products regularly, they can experience fundamental changes without the harsh effects of other hydroxy acids.

Other AHAs can provide similar benefits to lactic acid, but they can also dehydrate the skin. However, lactic acid contains glycolic and mandelic acid, which help maintain and improve the skin's natural moisture factor. Other benefits of lactic acid include:

  • Reduced signs of aging
  • Reduction of sunspots
  • Reduced bumpiness

Potential Side Effects

While lactic acid sounds like the perfect skincare ingredient, it does come with some side effects. For example, users might experience sun sensitivity or mild skin irritation. When using products containing lactic acid, you want to watch for:

  • Dryness
  • Peeling
  • Swelling
  • Itchiness
  • Redness
  • Burning

Some users will experience mild redness, itching, and burning sensations after the initial use but do not experience them on later uses. If the adverse symptoms are moderate or severe, wash the product off immediately.

Dermatologists also recommend that people using lactic acid products use it in combination with sunscreen. You should use SPF 30 or better to protect against sunburn and damage. It is also essential to use sun protection on cloudy days. Failing to use an appropriate sunscreen can eliminate the benefits of lactic acid.

Should You Use Lactic Acid Products?

Whether you choose products containing lactic acid is up to you. Lactic acid is among the least volatile of all AHAs, but the ingredient will not work for all skin types. Before using any new skincare products, talk to your dermatologist or primary care physician.

Lactic acid is one of the oldest known skincare ingredients, but it is also one of the most effective. There is no need to reinvent the wheel of skincare products constantly. Sometimes, the tried-and-true ingredients are all you need.

The 20 Worst Skincare Ingredients for Oily Skin

Knowing which skincare products to select isn't easy when you have oily skin. Here are five of the worst skincare ingredients for people with oily skin, plus what to choose instead.

1. Alcohol

Many cleansing products use different types of alcohol. When your skin feels oily, you may think that the solution is to strip away the oil with an alcohol-based toner. In reality, alcohol can make your skin produce more oil, not less.

It’s easy to confuse oil and moisture. They’re not the same thing. Alcohol-based cleansers mainly remove water from your skin, leaving it feeling fresh, but only for a moment. Afterward, pores shift oil production into high gear to compensate for the moisture removed.

A better solution is to choose a natural cleanser that gets rid of oil, makeup and dirt, not your skin’s moisture. Toners with aloe vera, salicylic acid, rose water, chamomile, witch hazel or alpha-hydroxy acid are excellent for people who are prone to acne.

Alcohols to avoid in skin products: SD alcohol 40, denatured alcohol, isopropyl alcohol, benzyl alcohol and ethanol.

2. Petroleum Jelly (Petrolatum)

Petroleum jelly gives moisturizers and creams a thicker, more luxurious feel. Unfortunately, for people with oily skin, these heavy skincare products can cause many problems:

  • Clogging pores
  • Trapping extra oil
  • Contributing to acne breakouts
  • Not allowing the skin to breathe properly

Other occlusives to avoid: Paraffin, beeswax and mineral oil.

3. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil contains numerous vitamins and antioxidants that are healthy for the skin. Plus, who can resist that tropical smell when you’re pampering yourself?

If you have oily skin, though, heavier oils such as coconut oil tend to clog pores quickly. Avoid using it on your arms or face. Applying a little to elbows or hands may be OK during winter weather, though.

Lightweight oils are a better choice. They can hydrate your skin and add softness without overdoing it. Grapeseed oil, sunflower seed oil, hemp seed oil, sweet almond oil and rosehip oil are all good choices.

Heavy oils to avoid: Argan, avocado, camellia, soybean, flaxseed and hazelnut oil, plus cocoa butter and shea butter.

4. Lanolin

Many women love moisturizers and hand creams that contain lanolin. It leaves skin feeling exceptionally soft. The downside is that, like petroleum jelly, it can clog pores and cause acne. People who have sensitive skin may want to avoid it as well because of the possibility of allergic reactions.

5. Silicon

Skincare experts are divided about ingredients such as dimethicone. On the one hand, this oil substitute can give lotions a silky texture and help smooth your skin. On the other hand, silicon forms a protective layer that can trap oil. With this ingredient, you may want to test it out and see the results for yourself.

Common Oily Skin Mistakes To Avoid

To look your best, avoid these common mistakes:

  • Being too rough: Oily skin isn’t invulnerable to damage. You still need to use sunscreen, avoid irritating chemicals and take off your makeup at night.
  • Over-exfoliating: Some exfoliation for getting rid of dead skin and oil is good. Doing it too often hurts your skin and triggers heavier oil production later.
  • Not hydrating: Oily skin still needs moisturizing. Just choose lightweight lotions instead of heavy creams.

There’s nothing wrong with having an oily skin type. With a little cleaning and care, you can rock a healthy glow that wows friends, coworkers and romantic interests.

The SPF Debate: Protecting Your Skin Against Blue Light

Research suggests blue light emitted from smartphones and computer screens can damage the skin. It is crazy to think that checking social media or writing a term paper could harm you, but it can.

It seems like every day there is something else that leads people to distrust technology. Still, despite the hoopla, research suggests blue light is not as scary as some make it out to be. Yet, it is still advised that you take necessary precautions to limit your exposure to blue light.

The Dangers of Blue Light 

Like the sun, blue light emits high-energy visible light, but it is not as dangerous. Long-term and unprotected exposure to the sun can cause DNA damage and cancer. You will not fight the same threats sitting in front of your computer screen.

Still, while smartphone or laptop use isn't life-threatening, it is harmful. The HEV light can generate reactive oxygen species — compounds that damage the cellular structure. The compounds hinder collagen production, affecting elasticity in the skin. Long-term exposure to blue light can lead to wrinkling and pigment changes in the skin.

The good news, no current research points to blue light causing skin cancer. Still, the pervasive light can cause harm, including:

  • Collagen breakdown 
  • Hyperpigmentation 
  • Premature aging 
  • Inflammation 
  • Redness 
  • Swelling or Edema 
  • Oxidative stress

Additionally, blue light affects sleep-wake cycles. Sleep interruptions can interfere with hormone production, causing skin problems. Still, more research is necessary to determine the full extent of blue light risks.

The Benefits of Blue Light

Despite the proposed risks of blue light, it does have its benefits. Medical researchers now use controlled blue light to reduce the chances of skin cancer. Controlled blue light can have positive effects. It can boost your energy levels, decrease inflammation, and reduce bacteria.

Uncontrolled blue light is where risks live. Light therapy maintains wavelengths of 415 nanometers — the proven wavelength for benefits. Sitting in front of a screen is not the same as therapeutic light, so you can't claim phone time as therapy (darn).

Protection From Blue Light 

Protection against blue light is essential. Thankfully, you do not have to spend a lot of money to protect against the HEV light. Many computers and portable devices have blue light filtration options. Additionally, you can find several apps to protect your skin and eyes. Physical products, such as blue light glasses and screen protectors, are also available.

Still, for complete skin protection, dermatologists recommend using a blue-light-blocking sunscreen. You may want to find an SPF product with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide because each is reflective. It is also possible to find newer products with beneficial antioxidants and vitamins.

People might discount the need for sunscreen indoors, but indoor environments are changing. The addition of electronic HEV-producing devices demands extra protection and concern. While indoor blue light is not as intense as environmental wavelengths, it can still harm the skin.

Researchers continue to learn new things about blue light every day. Still, what seems to become clearer is the need for added protection. While you may not be ready for indoor SPF, at least consider downloading an app.

4 Key Skin Benefits of Dietary Vitamin C

If you're like me, you see vitamin C all over the ingredient lists of your favorite skin care products. If this nutrient can give you such an incredible glow through topical application, can consuming foods rich in vitamin C give the skin a similar boost? I reviewed the research to give you the scoop on whether a diet emphasizing citrus and other sources of C can revitalize your complexion.

Skin Benefits of Consuming Vitamin C

These are some of the key benefits of getting enough vitamin C in the foods you eat as well as in your skin care routine.

Supports Collagen Synthesis

Science shows that vitamin C supports skin health by synthesizing collagen, a natural substance that gives us a plump, supple, youthful appearance. This protein makes up most of our connective tissue and appears in muscle and tendon fibers. Collagen naturally decreases as we age, so boosting the body's production can smooth the appearance of fine lines and help blemishes heal more quickly. It's also a critical component of wound healing. When you add extra C to your diet, you may notice that your skin feels firmer and smoother than usual.

Reduces the Appearance of Wrinkles

Speaking of fine lines, studies suggest that oral vitamin C may also have a positive effect on the depth and appearance of facial wrinkles. In research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, people who had higher vitamin C intake and lower intake of carbs and fatty foods showed fewer signs of aging. The study authors noted improvement in age-related wrinkles, dryness and thinning.

Provides UV Protection

As an antioxidant, Vitamin C helps the body fight off the damaging effects of UV rays on the skin. Consuming this vitamin can also help sunscreen work more effectively, boosting its ability to shield your complexion from these disease-causing free radicals. Vitamin C can actually neutralize toxins and environmental pollutants such as cigarette smoke and remove these harmful substances from your body, shielding your skin from damage and reducing the risk of cancer.

Decreases Hyperpigmentation

Are you distressed by dark spots and patches on the skin? These areas of hyperpigmentation, typically caused by sun damage, can become more pronounced as we age. Research published in the journal Nutrients found that vitamin C can prevent melanin production, which can in turn prevent the appearance of these so-called age spots.

How to Get Enough Vitamin C

Most adults should get at least 1,000 mg of vitamin C per day, with a recommended maximum intake of 2,000 mg daily. Some people need more vitamin C to stay healthy, including individuals who have a limited diet, have chronic health conditions, or smoke or receive exposure to secondhand smoke. You can find this nutrient in a wide variety of fruits and veggies, including oranges, grapefruits, spinach, broccoli and strawberries. You can also take over-the-counter vitamin C supplements.

Although we need more research about exactly how this nutrient can reduce the impact of aging on the skin, we do know getting enough C correlates with a clear, healthy complexion. For best results, most experts emphasize the importance of combining a diet rich in vitamin C with topical application.

In rare cases, people who don't get enough vitamin C develop a deficiency called scurvy that causes fragile skin and slow-healing wounds, along with exhaustion, joint swelling and anemia. Lack of vitamin C can also cause uncomfortable skin problems such as atopic dermatititis, characterized by an itchy rash. Talk to your health care provider if you experience unexplained skin symptoms or have difficulty consuming enough dietary vitamin C. 

This Is Why Your Moisturizer Stopped Working

Most women and men in the U.S. (75%) have problems with dry skin during winter. When you're trying so hard to protect your skin, why can it sometimes seem like moisturizer isn’t doing anything?

4 Signs Your Moisturizer Isn’t Working

Hydration is an essential part of skincare. These four red flags mean your moisturizer isn't working correctly.

Rough or Dry Skin

Healthy, hydrated skin should be three S's: soft, smooth and supple. If your hands feel closer to sandpaper than silk, it’s a sign your skin needs TLC urgently! Rough, dry or cracked skin has been stripped of its natural protective oils, and your moisturizing routine isn’t helping.

Peeling

Sunburns aren’t the only reason your skin can peel. Peeling means the epidermis — the top layer of skin — has been damaged. Dryness or irritation from harsh ingredients can be responsible. Hand sanitizer can cause both.

Bumps or Acne Breakouts

For some people, moisturizers cause a different problem: clogged pores. Hydrating your skin is still important, but it’s better to choose a lighter product with “oil-free” on the label. Honey, lactic acid and glycerin are great ingredients for avoiding breakouts.

Burning Sensation or Rashes

Moisturizers should never make your skin burn, tingle or itch. The effect should be completely the opposite — a calming, comfortable sensation you look forward to. If you notice irritation or red spots after applying a beauty product, it usually means you have a mild allergy to one of the ingredients. People with sensitive skin should opt for moisturizers that are non-allergenic and fragrance-free.

6 Reasons Moisturizer Doesn’t Always Work

Why aren’t your skincare products delivering the results they promise? These six reasons may be the cause:

  • Washing needs to go hand-in-hand with moisturizing: Every time you wash, you need to moisturize. Period.
  • Skipping nutrients doesn’t do your skin any favors: Eating too much fast food can leave your body low on essential vitamins for healthy skin.
  • Overdoing heavy creams can make skin dependent on moisturizer: Giving your skin too much of a good thing can make it stop producing natural oils. Don’t apply heavy creams every day.
  • Underestimating cold or dry weather hurts your skin: Applying moisturizer once a day in cold weather is almost the same as doing nothing. Your skin needs more.
  • Aging lowers your body’s natural hydration: As you age, you need to increase your moisturizing routine. Increase the quantity of skin-healthy vitamins you get as well.
  • Not protecting yourself from UV rays is worse than you think: UV rays can damage your skin even if you don’t get burnt. Put on sunscreen when you’re spending time outdoors.

6 Tips for Supple Skin All Year Long

Boost skin hydration with these six simple steps:

  • Feed your skin: Make sure you're getting sufficient vitamin E, protein and omega-3s in your diet.
  • Be a skin whisperer: Stick with moisturizers and ingredients that work for you, no matter what's trendy.
  • Cleanse and hydrate: Remove dirt, oil and makeup from the skin, and then apply moisturizer.
  • Apply when wet: Using skin lotion when you get out of the shower or while your hands are still wet locks in extra moisture.
  • Massage: Help moisture and nourishing ingredients penetrate better with a gentle massage.
  • Exfoliate more: Get rid of dry, dead skin cells that block lotions from absorbing correctly. Moisturize after exfoliating.

Great skincare ingredients don't have to be expensive. Glycerine, petrolatum and shea butter are among the best for hydration, and they're within reach of most people.

Dry Skin, Eczema or Both?

Eczema is one of the most common skin conditions in the United States, affecting over 31 million Americans. Despite that huge number, many people don't really understand what eczema is — even people who have it.

What Is Eczema?

Eczema is the medical name for skin inflammation. Chronic eczema is a long-term problem that produces itchy, red and dry skin that never seems to go away.

You may be surprised to learn that eczema doesn’t refer to a single disorder. It’s a group of skin conditions that can have different triggers:

  • Atopic dermatitis: This kind of eczema produces patches of inflamed, dry skin and red, itchy rashes. Some people have trouble sleeping at night because of the constant itching and pain.
  • Contact dermatitis: This condition causes a burning sensation and small blisters. It means your skin is experiencing a negative reaction to some chemical, fabric or metal. The rash that appears when you touch poison ivy is a type of contact dermatitis.
  • Seborrheic dermatitis: This type of eczema is connected to the oil-producing glands in your skin and scalp. It causes scaly, dry skin that flakes off. Dandruff is a symptom of seborrheic dermatitis.
  • Dyshidrotic eczema: This variety of eczema produces itchy, fluid-filled blisters on the fingers, palms and soles of the feet. These blisters can last up to a month before disappearing.

Is Eczema the Same Thing as Dry Skin?

Not really. Dry skin is one of the main symptoms but not the only one. Itching is another sign of eczema.

Many colds cause a runny nose, but that doesn’t mean that every time you have a runny nose it’s caused by a cold. Similarly, dry skin isn’t always the result of eczema.

What Else Can Cause Dry Skin?

There are many reasons why your skin can dry out:

  • Winter weather: Winter does a double whammy on your skin. Cool outdoor air has less moisture, so it dehydrates exposed skin. Indoor heating dries skin even more, frequently causing cracked lips and raw knuckles.
  • Dry climates: If you live in an area known for dry air, you need to up your moisturizing game for your skin.
  • Certain illnesses and medications: People who have diabetes, kidney problems or thyroid disorders may have to fight again severe dry skin. Some medicines, such as diuretics, can also cause dry skin.
  • Frequent hand washing: Each time you wash your hands, you strip away some of the protective layers that keep your skin hydrated.
  • Aging: As people get older, the body doesn’t produce as much of the hydrating oils that nourish skin and keep it soft and supple.
  • Harsh detergents: If you mainly notice extremely dry hands after washing dishes or doing laundry, one of the detergents you use may be too strong for your skin.
  • Vitamin deficiencies: The body depends on vitamin A, vitamin D, zinc, iron and niacin to produce healthy, hydrated skin. Low vitamin levels can cause dryness problems.

Is your skin naturally more sensitive? People who get dry skin a lot should make sure to moisturize several times a day.

What Is the Treatment for Eczema?

For minor eczema, the best treatment is often prevention. Try to avoid personal triggers, such as stress, strong fragrances, harsh detergents or overwashing.

If dry skin becomes painful or you have large break-outs, make an appointment with a dermatologist. Your doctor can determine the type of eczema you have and provide treatment that focuses on providing relief.

4 International Skin Care Trends Worth Trying

Skin health has and continues to be essential to beauty standards. People with clear and vibrant skin are often admired as beautiful and inundated with questions about getting the natural glow they have.

From milk baths to Korea's modern skincare dominance, women and men continue to search for the products and treatments that will give them the appearance they wish to have. However, while people do not often shy away from spending hundreds on a month's supply of "miracle treatments" or "cures," the solution to healthy skin can usually be found in various societies worldwide.

The best part about healthy skincare is it doesn't typically require a great expense. Sure, you can spend thousands on spa treatments and home therapies, but you can also spend a fraction of that and find things equally beneficial.

1. Rose Water

Ecuador, primarily known for the export of roses, is also home to a homeopathic treatment for removing excess oil on the skin: rose water. Rose water is made from glycerin and rose petals. The glycerin helps lock in moisture, but not before the compound from the petals dry out acne.

While many home skincare remedies take a lot of work to make, rose water is easy. You want to add a half cup of petals to a pot of water. Allow the petals and water to boil. Pour the rose water through a strainer to remove the petals, and then add the glycerin to the water, a fourth of a  cup, mixing thoroughly.

2. Peppermint Scalp Massage

One holistic remedy for skin and hair health is peppermint oil. The peppermint plant is indigenous to Europe, and it has been a popular ingredient in shampoos and conditioners for centuries. 

If you want to treat your scalp and hair to a massage, you will need to mix two to four drops of peppermint oil with a few drops of almond or olive oil. Massage the oil mixture into your hair and scalp for five minutes. According to experts, the oil can help relieve skin irritation and provide necessary moisture to hair follicles.

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3.  Lemon Juice

Used primarily in Asia and Central America to lighten the skin around the elbows and knees, lemon juice is a popular skin care treatment. Because lemon juice has a high concentration of citric acid, it can brighten dark spots on the body.

To use lemon juice, you only need to rub half a lemon over the area you wish to lighten. Additionally, you can apply some lemon juice to a Q-tip and apply it to areas on the face for greater control. Some experts also suggest adding some sugar to the lemon juice to act as an exfoliator.

4. Brown Rice Wash

Used by geishas and as a continued practice in Asian beauty culture, rice is used as an exfoliator and tightener. A favorite brown rice wash recipe comes from Japanese culture, and it includes equal parts brown rice, preferably organic, and water. You want to stir the mixture until a white cloud rises to the top of the bowl. Pour the water into a jar to use as a face wash and drain the rice.

There are many skin care treatments specific to cultures around the world. While many companies might try to repackage treatments as exotic or new, most skincare ingredients have not changed for centuries.

Do you think you will try one of the above skin treatments? Leave a comment below.

Celebrity Skincare Products: Worth the Hype or Not

From Carmen Electra's GoGo Skincare to Pharrell's Humanrace, celebrities are now branching away from makeup and trying to convince you — the consumer — they know a thing or two about skincare. While some stars might understand the science behind healthy skin, there is a sneaking suspicion that most only want to pad their pocketbooks. 

There is nothing wrong with building your brand and starting a business; the problem comes when celebrities attempt to act like they are above the science — Gwyneth Paltrow, anyone? From Goop's nonsensical approach to wellness to Pharrell's claims of microtears, how much any celebrity knows about the formulations or properties of their brands or the efficacy of the products is questionable. 

Before you spend your hard-earned money on celebrity experiments, consider the ingredients, cost, and expertise of the person you purchase from. In most cases, celebrity lines are not worth the price you pay.

Perceived Value Versus Actual Value

Name recognition is the game. Celebrities want to capitalize on their star power while they can, and who can blame them. Unfortunately, in a rush to make money, many stars make significant mistakes in product design — consider Kylie Jenner's unwearable bathing suits.  

While skincare products do undergo some testing and regulation, it is not as much as prescription medications or treatments, meaning there is a loophole for making startling claims with no real evidence. For instance, there is a continuing trend of calling a product all-natural to encourage trust in a product. Unfortunately, even if a product is all-natural, which some are not, it doesn't mean you should use it on your skin. Sand or silica is natural, but it is a mistake to scrub it over your skin.  

When you go to purchase a product, look past the name, endorsements, and fancy marketing. Investigate the ingredients. Learn as much as you can about the science of skincare. 

By understanding the ingredients, you can better understand fair pricing. Most celebrity products are not worth the price tag. In many instances, they charge significantly over average prices for similar products, attempting to price them into the luxury market when they aren't luxury.

Dermatologist Versus Celebrity Opinion

When selecting skin care products, you want to avoid items with an overbearing smell because they often contain artificial colors and ingredients that can irritate the skin. Strong odors often point to chemical additives which can trigger certain skin conditions, like dermatitis, rashes, and other issues.  

A dermatologist is the only person you should trust when it comes to skincare recommendations. These professionals understand the science and medicine and understand when a product is not worth the packaging it's in.

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Loyalty Versus Smart Purchasing Decisions

Many fans love and respect famous people. However, not all celebrities have the same appreciation towards their fans. Integrity and trust are hard things to come by in business, especially when it comes to many celebrity products. Unfortunately, without stricter regulations and an absence of blind loyalty, little can be done.  

The best thing anyone can do is educate themselves. Please do not take a celebrity's word for skincare products, especially when they lack the expertise to have a sound opinion. Talk to your dermatologist or doctor instead.

What do you think about celebrity skincare products? Are they worth the hype? Comment below.