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Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Copper Peptide Serum

I started using copper peptide serum when my dermatologist prescribed me this after my first diamond peel / microdermabrasion session.

Skin Aging

A number of skin changes occur as we age. Skin is replaced every three weeks at age 20 but this increases to every nine weeks by age 50, so in return, the rate of skin cell replacement is reduced producing a thinner, more fragile skin.

Damaged proteins, which are the results of scars, oxidative damage, sun damage and cross-linking of skin proteins by sugars, accumulates in the skin.

Skin oil production starts to drop after age 25 and this drop in oil production becomes more serious after age 45. This reduces acne, however, the skin loses its natural moisturizers making the skin dryer and more prone to wrinkles.

Skin Remodeling Copper Peptides

The process that removes proteins and older cells from the skin is called skin remodeling. It removes scars, lesions, and wrinkles and smoothens the skin. If you want a younger skin. skin remodeling should be increased. Copper peptide serum, a water-based lipid free copper peptide, is said to have tissue regenerative properties. It stimulates collagen and elastin formation. As a result, fine lines are diminished and the skin is firmer. It also helps increasing the blood vessel formation and oxygenation within the skin. Copper peptide serum is also a potent antioxidant by stimulating the enzymatic function of superoxide dismutase.
CP serum is very known to speed up skin healing by:
  • stimulating the skin's remodeling and regenerative processes which repair the skin's protective outer barrier
  • increasing new capillary formation
  • increasing the production of collagen and elastin which improve skin elasticity and firmness
  • increasing the water-holding proteoglycans and glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) which hold moisture in the skin.
  • removing damaged proteins such as in scars and sun-damaged marks by activating the metalloproteinases.
According to studies, CP serum is more effective than Retin-A, Vitamin C and Kinerase when it comes to reducting wrinkles, reducing blotchiness of the skin, firming the skin and in the development of new collagen.

My dermatologist instructed me that I should use the CP serum for 5 days after each microdermabrasion session. She told me that CP serum increases skin healing after laser resurfacing and chemical peels.
Copper-peptide serum is actually one of my favorites in my beauty regimen. Personally, I noticed that my skin has become softer and glowing ever since I started using this product. And also, CP serum is safe to use even by those with sensitive skin (since it has a mild ph of 6.0). However, if there is one thing I don't like about CP serum is its smell and its color. But all in all, this product is a must-have for every woman's regimen.

For more information about the mechanism of copper-peptide serum, click here.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Laser Skin Resurfacing

I have these 3 scars (those that resulted from pricking cytic pimples)that I always wanted to be treated. My dermatologist recommended me at first diamond peeling. However, she told me that if I wanted to get better and faster results, we should do the CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing treatment.

Curious, and of course, interested, I asked her how much will it cost, how long is the downtime and what will it do to my skin? Also, I researched about it (since I'll be having the treatment next week).

Since I have only vague knowledge about this treatment, and this is considered a surgical procedure, might as well (if you're interested) click this link for more information.

After my treatment, I will keep you posted on how the procedure went, the post-treatment results and of course about the improvement on my skin. Wish me luck! :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Acne Treatments


How acne develops?


Acne develops when your body produces an excess amount of sebum, which is an oily substance that lubricates your hair and skin. Excess sebum and dead skin cells plug the hair follicles. Bacteria can trigger inflammation and infection resulting in complications of acne.


Acne Treatments


By reducing oil production, speeding up the growth of new skin cells and removing the dead skin cells, or fighting bacterial infection, acne treatments can help lessen the inflammation and the number of acne.

Combination therapies
They target all the causes of acne, which makes the treatment plan more successful.
  • Retinoids and oral antibiotics- They are derived from vitamin A (retinoids) which can be combined with oral antibiotics for better treatment of acne. Retinoids promote cell turnover and prevent the plugging of hair follicle. Oral antibiotics kill bacteria and reduce inflammation.
  • Benzoyl peroxide and topical antibiotics- The efficacy of benzoyl peroxide increases when it is combined with topical antibiotics. Benzoyl peroxide can dry up the oil, kill bacteria and promote sloughing of dead skin cells. Topical antibiotics can kill bacteria on the skin's surface and fight inflammation.

Laser and Light Therapy

Laser treatment is thought to damage the sebaceous glands while light therapy targets Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes), the bacterium that causes acne inflammation. These therapies can also improve skin texture and lessen the appearance of scars.

Types of Laser and Light Therapy:

  • Blue light therapy- P. acnes are destroyed when the skin is exposed to a low-intensity blue light. This painless procedure is usually done through a series of sessions, each lasting about 15 minutes. However, side effects can also be observed and these include pigment changes, swelling in the treated areas and dryness.
  • Pulsed light and heat energy therapy- The mechanism involved in this combined therapy is that it destroys P. acnes and shrinks sebaceous glands, which decreases the oil production. Side effects of this therapy include temporary redness in the treated areas.
  • Diode laser treatment- It can destroy oil (sebaceous) glands in the dermis, the thick middle layer of skin, without harming the outer layer of skin. This treatment may be painful, but the pain can be controlled with analgesics applied to the skin before treatment. Side effects of this laser treatment include temporary redness and swelling of the treated areas.

Cosmetic Procedures

Tradictionally, these cosmetic procedures have been used to lessen the appearance of fine lines, sun damage and minor facial scars. And now, they are found to be most effective when used in combination with other acne treatments.

  • Chemical peels- Glycolic acid or salicylic acid will help remove dead skin cells, unclog pores, remove whiteheads and blackheads, and can generate new skin growth. These chemical peels are often used with acne creams or gels for better penetration of the medication. Depending on strength of the chemical, side effects range from temporary redness, blisters, scaling and crusting to scarring, infection and abnormal skin coloring.
  • Microdermabrasion- In this treatment, crystals are being blown into the skin. These crystals gently abrade or "polish" the skin's surface. Then, a vacuum tube removes the crystals and skin cells. The procedure exfoliates and unclogs pores.
Remember!!!

Acne can't be cured, only controlled. Controlling acne needs patience. Improvements are often seen after 6-8 weeks of treatment and usually, acne might appear worse before it gets better. But if you stick to your treatment regimen, your patience may pay off with clearer skin. Always consult your dermatologist for problems, never self-medicate.



Sunday, October 7, 2007

Kojic acid

What is Kojic Acid?

Kojic acid is produced by several species of fungi, especially Aspergillus oryzae, which has the Japanese common name koji. It is a by-product in the fermentation process of malting rice, for use in the manufacturing of sake, the Japanese rice wine. It was discovered as a natural product derived form a mushroom in Japan in 1989. It has been successfully used to lighten pigment spots and skin discoloration and considered as a kind of popularly specialized inhibitor of tyrosinase which is responsible for the production of melanin (e.g. Kojic acid dalpalmitate).

Kojic Acid for skin care?

Kojic acid can produce excellent effects in even toning the skin, fighting age spots, pregnancy marks, freckles as well as general skin pigmentation disorders of face and body. It is a pure (98%) and natural material. It also is widely used in the field of medicine and food since it can eliminate free radicals and strengthen cell activity.

As compared to hydroquinone (which is also popular for its whitening effects), Kojic acid is much safer. Hydroquinone is a synthetic agent and may cause irritation on the skin (e.g. edema, erythma, etc). On the other hand, Kojic acid is absolutely safe and has a better tyrosinase inhibitory effect.

Kojic acid preparations can be in a form of a soap, astringent, lotion or cream. It has a micropeeling effect which makes skin smoother, whiter-- with a pinkish glow.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Skin Aging

Skin aging has been a popular topic nowadays. We often see new lines of beauty products being released promising the consumers that they will make you look 10 years younger.

How does the aging process occurs? At what age should a person start using anti-aging products?
This section will discuss the process of aging and how to deal with it... gracefully.

Free Radicals

Microaccidents are damages that are caused by free radicals, mutagens and many harmful chemicals. Free radicals are chemicals with an unpaired electron, which are extremely and randomly reactive with whatever cellular structures present, inflicting damage as a result. A free radical is an unstable molecule that steals an electron from a stable molecule in order to satisfy its need for repair. When this free radical destabilizes the stable molecule it creates another free radical in a vicious chain reaction of cellular destruction. A single free radical can cause damage to millions of other molecules in you body, preventing your body from functioning properly. This molecular destruction is continually occurring in your body. Free radicals attack us from many different environmental sources every day. There are many researches demonstrating that free radical damage accumulates with age. People often ask: if free radical damage is one of the key mechanisms of aging then taking antioxidant supplements must have a major impact on longevity. The simple answer is: not all the time. Studies show that supplemental antioxidants generally do not increase maximal lifespan in mammals but were shown to increase average lifespan.

The Culprits

Toxins in the diet and environment wear down the organs. Excess consumption of fat, sugar, caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine; by the ultraviolet rays of the sun; and by the many other physical and emotional stresses to which we subject our bodies all contribute to this wear and tear. Everything we eat, breathe and touch causes some type of oxidation or free radical damage. Particularly abusive is alcohol, tobacco, prescription drugs, smoked and barbecued food, harmful chemicals and additives in the foods we eat, sun bathing and pollutants in the air we breath.

Stress and Aging

Stress response is a biological overdrive mode which helps escape from a tight spot, but at a high cost of wearing down the body. If stress response in emergency is too weak, the organism either dies or suffers additional damage, which manifests itself in diseases and accelerated aging. However, if stress response is excessive or prolonged it becomes a damaging force itself, and also causes disease and accelerated aging. In particular, excessive or prolonged stress response increases levels of free radicals, accelerates breakdown of proteins in many organs (including the skin), suppress the immune system, promotes the burnout of neurons and so forth.

Lack of proper sleep is also one of the culprits of aging.

Anti-aging

A number of researchers believe that aging can be slowed and even reversed. Anti-Aging refers to the delaying or lessening the effects of aging. There are a lot of nutritional supplements needed to combat early signs of aging. Click here http://www.drlam.com/book/chapter3.cfm for more info.

When is the best time to take anti-aging supplements?

Based on research, after the age of 28, the major source of aging is the production of free radicals. According to experts, it is best to use anti-aging supplements even if you're still in your early 20's.