At 16% of your total body weight, the skin is your largest organ. Over your lifespan you will make numerous visits to your doctor’s office for some sort of skin problem – diaper rash, boils, acne, lacerations, cysts, eczema, rosacea, chronic itching. Brush up on your basic skin care and in turn it will behave and do what it was meant to do. It is your first line of defense. It keeps the daily barrage of germs from infecting you with something nasty. A breakdown or sore is an open door for creepy crawlies to have direct access to your blood. Keep those bad boys away by following these three simple rules for healthy and beautiful skin:
Protect: Always use sunscreen year round on your face, and sun exposed areas during sunny months. Be generous and reapply often. No such thing as a healthy tan. Burns in childhood increase your risk for skin cancer later. I used to be a sun-worshipper. I gave that up along with disco a long time ago.
Cleanse: Use the mildest cleanser possible that will gently remove dirt and oils. You want a clean feeling, not a tight one. Natural oils are good for the skin. To bathe or not to bathe daily…a perspective: The Great Unwashed.
Moisturize Drink lots of water to keep skin hydrated and healthy. Trap beaded water after bathing through use of a moisturizer after a gentle towel dry. Drinking enough water is key to keeping your skin healthy. Hydration=less wrinkles.
What to do for common skin problems:
Acne: Benzoyl Peroxide 2.5% over the counter cream.
Itchy: take a baking soda bath adding enough to make the water cloudy.
Minor burns: wash with a mild soap and cover with a clean dry bandage. If fails to heal in a couple of days or starts to drain, or if elder or infant/small child, see primary care provider.
Stings: remove stinger. Apply baking soda paste for relief.
Dandruff/Seborrhea: Shampoo with tar, zinc pyrithione, selenium sulfide or salicylic acid. Sometimes you need to rotate products. More information on seborrhea.
Eczema or dry skin: lukewarm showers-never hot! Pat skin dry with towel and then immediately apply a quality moisturizer such as Eucerin or Cetaphil. More information on dry skin care.
It all comes down to karma: be good to your skin and it will be good to you.