Hand sanitizers under review by FDA

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hand sanitizer - 2The FDA announced they are reviewing the active ingredients in hand sanitizers and wipes.  They are doing this to verify the safety and efficacy of the ingredients.  Product manufacturers have been contacted and asked to supply the FDA with a list of their active ingredients.  Of course, manufacturers have one year to submit their information and review.

The reason for the review is to determine the frequency and long-term use as well as the absorption rate of the active ingredients.  The ingredients in question are: alcohol (ethanol or ethyl alcohol), isopropyl alcohol and benzalkonium chloride.  The FDA want to see if the levels which are showing up in blood and urine are higher than anticipated.  They are also reviewing how effective the active ingredients are in reducing bacteria on the skin.

It would be interesting to see their findings because these ingredients are in other products that an individual may be using.  I hope they take this into consideration when they perform their tests.

To read more on this topic, click on the following link:

Utroske, D. (2016). Cosmetic Design, “FDA announces investigation of active ingredients in hand sanitizers and wipes”. Retrieved July 13, 2016, from: http://www.cosmeticsdesign.com/Regulation-Safety/FDA-announces-investigation-of-active-ingredients-in-hand-sanitizers-and-wipes?nocount

Alcohol can rob your skin of vitality

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alcoholic beverageHave you awaken from a hangover and you went “YIKES” when you saw yourself in the mirror?  Alcohol not only plays havoc with your skin but also takes a toll on the body.  Consuming alcohol dehydrates the body by acting as a diuretic.  It makes you go to the bathroom more by forcing water from the body and also prevents the body from re-absorbing fluids.  Mixed drinks contain large amounts of salt and sugar which contributes to bloating and puffy eyes.

Studies have shown there is no correlation between consuming alcohol and the body’s inability to metabolize and absorb glucose or having lower levels of electrolytes.  An article in Scientific American explains the following happens in the body: After a person starts consuming an alcoholic drink, the liver begins its work using an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH).  ADH metabolizes the ethanol in alcoholic drinks into acetaldehyde, which is reported to be 10 to 30 times more toxic than the alcohol itself”.

The flushing, sweating, vomiting and nausea one experiences from a hangover is an even bigger concern because consuming alcohol could elevate the risk of skin cancer.  The intake of 12.8 grams of alcohol could increase the risk of skin cancer up to 22%.  Alcohol dilates blood vessels in the skin which causes blood to rush to the skin and is a trigger for Rosacea flare up.  Alcohol consumption also depletes the levels of Vitamin A in the body.  Vitamin A is an antioxidant that helps with cellular turnover and fights free radicals.

If you want to enjoy a drink out with friends, after dinner or at the beach, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Drink plenty of water before consuming alcoholic beverages.  Green tea also works wonders because they help to prohibit the metabolism of alcohol.  You can also drink Sprite or 7-Up before going out because they contain taurine which might help to minimize a hangover.
  • To revive your skin the day after, gently exfoliate the skin to remove dead surface cells that can make your skin look dull and apply a hydrating moisturizer.
  • You may come in dragging after drinking all evening, but sleep on elevated pillows to drain excess fluid and reduce puffiness to the face. Cleanse the face with lukewarm water.  Hot water will cause more redness and deplete the skin of moisture.  If you get a chance, place tea bags over the eyes.  The tannins and caffeine from tea helps to constrict blood vessels, reduce swelling and draws water away from eye tissue.
  • If you do drink, vodka is better than dark liquors or red wine which contains resveratrol.
  • Eat while you consume alcohol because it will help slow the release of sugar.
  • Alternate drinking water with alcohol to lessen the effect of a hangover and it will help keep the body hydrated.

To read more on this topic, click on the following link:

Grabenhofer, R. (2016). Skin, Inc., “Hungover skin causes and cures”. Retrieved July 11, 2016, from: http://www.skininc.com/skinscience/physiology/Hungover-Skin-Causes-and-Cures-382685041.html

Can dermal fillers be reversed?

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dermal fillerDid you get a dermal filler and felt you got too much and now don’t like it?  Can it be removed or reduced?  Before getting any kind of cosmetic procedure, it is important to know your options, dermal fillers are no exception.  You want to go into the procedure with realistic expectations.

Some dermal fillers can be reversed and others are permanent.  When discussing the procedure with your physician, ask about the ingredient components of the filler.  This will determine whether the procedure can be reversed.  Fillers that contain hyaluronic acid are reversible.  Hyaluronic acid is a sugar naturally found in the skin and around joints.  Dermal fillers with hyaluronic acid are manufactured in gel form which is injected into the skin.  It acts like a sponge, absorbs water and expands.  Fillers with hyaluronic acid are Belotero, Juvederm Ultra, Juvederm Ultra Plus, Restylane, Perlane and Juvederm Voluma XC.  Vitrase is the enzyme that can be injected into the site to immediately reverse any negative effects.

Dermal fillers which contain poly L-lactic acid or are calcium-based are more permanent.  They are not life-long permanent, but cannot be immediately reversed.  Those products include Sculptra (poly L-lactic acid) and Radiesse (calcium-based).

Radiesse is a gel which is injected deep into the dermal tissue and is great for areas where there has been a significant loss of volume.  The product can last for a year or more, but there is no counteracting antidote.  Sculptra is a synthetic lactic acid gel.  The results of Sculptra reveal its effects over time, is not fully permanent and follow-up sessions may be necessary.  The effects can be absorbed and last about six months.  Lactic acid is naturally found in the body, but this is a synthetic product that does not have an effect-reversing antidote.

To read more on this topic, click on the following link:

Cavallaro, G. (2016). Charlotte’s Book, “Are dermal fillers reversible?” Retrieved July 11, 2016, from: http://www.charlottesbook.com/dermal-fillers-reversible/

FDA links mercury poisoning to imported skin care and anti-aging products

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skin-light-mama-africa-natural-whitening-creamThe FDA has released an updated consumer report on skin care and anti-aging products imported or for global travelers who ship product to the U.S. for personal use or to resell.  They announced a direct link to mercury poisoning with these products.  There were no specific skin care lines or brand names mentioned in the release.  The FDA did say, however, “The products are usually marketed as skin lighteners and anti-aging treatments that remove age spots, freckles, blemishes or wrinkles as well as acne treatments for adolescents”.  The products are being sold illegally in the U.S. and mostly found in shops that cater to the Latino, Asian, African or Middle Eastern communities.

Even though some of these products are marketed as cosmetics, they may be unapproved drugs.  Ingredients to be on the lookout for are: mercurous chloride, calomel, mercuric or mercurio.  These ingredients can pass the placental barrier and cause harm to the fetus or infant.  Be overly cautious of product labels that are missing or not in English.  Products manufactured in the countries listed above are not a part of the International Nomenclature of Ingredients (INCI).  Countries who are members of INCI use the same chemical terms for all ingredients used in products so they are recognized worldwide.  Also beware of products you purchase via apps, Craig’s List or eBay.

To read more in this topic, click on the following link:

Utroske, D. (2016). Cosmetic Design USA, “FDA links imported skin care and anti-aging products to mercury poisoning”. Retrieved August 1, 2016, from: http://www.cosmeticsdesign.com/Product-Categories/Skin-Care/FDA-links-imported-skin-care-and-anti-aging-products-to-mercury-poisoning/?utm_source=newsletter_product&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=01-Aug-2016&c=KyHiBf2DbZgqCEnmSCEpk1RZETne1Mox&p2=

L’Oreal acquires IT Cosmetics

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IT CosmeticsAnother small cosmetic company has been acquired by one of the cosmetic industry giants.  If you are a fan of IT Cosmetics, it is being acquired by L’Oréal for a whopping $1.2 billion!

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the product, IT Cosmetics is a cover, concealing makeup line.  The cosmetic line has over 300 products across many skin tones.  IT Cosmetics also has skin care product, brushes and other accessories.  IT has been marketed on QVC and is also sold in stores such as ULTA and Sephora.  Partnering with L’Oréal will help to expand the cosmetic line to more stores and globally.

To read more on this topic, click on the following link:

Utroske, D. (2016). Cosmetic Design USA, “L’Oréal will acquire IT Cosmetics”. Retrieved July 28, 2016, from: http://www.cosmeticsdesign.com/Business-Financial/L-Oreal-will-acquire-skincare-makeup-company-IT-Cosmetics-for-1.2-bn/?utm_source=newsletter_daily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=25-Jul-2016&c=9sHOSUTBWSjQI1h2cIS%2FsIKdlk6zyVzN&p2=

Faith-based Cosmetics

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Photo Courtesy of Family Christian

Photo Courtesy of Family Christian

Family Christian which sells Christian-based merchandise and formerly known as Family Bookstores Company, is now in the cosmetics business.  The cosmetics the stores will carry are for young girls, teens and tweens.  The products will be sold under the names Cupcakes and Jesus and marketed as body-positive and esteem building products.

The products will include Bible verses and other inspirational quotes.  The product lines will include: bubble bath, body lotion, lip balm, lip balm pods, conventional lip balm, nail polish, hand sanitizer and more.  The Jesus and Cupcakes items will be priced under $30.

To read more on this topic, click on the following link:

Utroske, D. (2016). Cosmetics Design USA, “Religious retailer launches Cupcakes and Jesus cosmetics for teens and tweens”. Retrieved July 18, 2016, from: http://www.cosmeticsdesign.com/Brand-Innovation/Religious-retailer-launches-Cupcakes-and-Jesus-cosmetics-for-teens-and-tweens/?utm_source=newsletter_daily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=18-Jul-2016&c=9sHOSUTBWSgPxZK7GXjilRRwy1tJtu8X&p2=

Furniture polish manufacturer purchases body care products

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Scotts Liquid GoldWhy a picture of furniture polish?  Scott’s product manufacturer announced this week they have acquired three consumer hair care brands from Ultimark Products for $9.1 million.  Scott’s is the manufacturer of Scott’s Liquid Gold furniture polish.  The product lines they purchased are Prell shampoo, Denorex and Zincon (which are both dandruff shampoos).

Scott’s is adding these three products to their existing line of health and beauty products.  They already own and market Alpha skin care (anti-aging, cleansers, skin care and body care products), Neoteric Diabetic skin care lotion, 7th Heaven facial masques and Batiste dry shampoo.

Do you ever wonder who really owns the products you purchase?  It is worth it do some research, you would be surprised.

To read more on this topic, click on the following link:

Utroske, D. (2016). Cosmetics Design, “Prell, Denorex and Zincon bought by Scott’s Liquid Gold”. Retrieved July 13, 2016, from: http://www.cosmeticsdesign.com/Business-Financial/Shampoo-brands-Prell-Denorex-Zincon-bought-by-Scott-s-Liquid-Gold/?utm_source=newsletter_daily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=12-Jul-2016&c=9sHOSUTBWSgEG6xUhYuLIEkvTrZsdO4P&p2=

Eyebrow Transplants

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eyebrowsIf you are looking for another way to have fabulous brows, then eyebrow transplanting may be an option for you.  This procedure is similar to transplanting of hair plugs for baldness.

For hair replacement for baldness, hair plugs are taken from areas of the scalp.  In eyebrow transplanting, hair follicles are taken from other areas of the body.  There is minimal downtime and there may be bruising and crusting of skin for about three days.  One physician describes the procedure as similar to tattooing.  There was no discussion as to any downsides, how long the transplants will last or what happens if the follicles do not respond.

There has been an increase of 140% in one year of women seeking this treatment.  The cost is a mere $7,500 (less if fewer follicles are needed).  Is this a fad?  Only time will tell, but doctors are grinning all the way to the bank for as long as the fad will last.

To read more on this topic, click on the following link:

Monaé, A. (2016). Madame Noire, “Eyebrow Transplants – Would you try it?” Retrieved July 4, 2016, from: http://madamenoire.com/703065/eyebrow-transplants/

Bacterial Cause for Rosacea

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Scientists may be closer to finding a definitive cause for rosacea.  Studies at the National University of Ireland have concluded rosacea may be caused by a bacterium that lives in mites which reside in the skin (Bacterial Cause Found for Skin Condition Rosacea, 2012).  This mite species is Demodex folliculorum and it is naturally found in human skin on the face.  It is believed individuals who suffer from rosacea may have a higher than normal number of mites in their skin.

Rosacea is a common dermatological condition that causes reddening and inflammation of the skin mostly around the cheeks, nose and chin.  In severe cases, skin lesions may form and lead to disfigurement (Bacterial Cause Found for Skin Condition Rosacea, 2012).  There are four stages of rosacea, the last being rosacea of the eye.  Rosacea affects about 3% of the population and is usually found in fair-skinned individuals.  This is not to say that darker skinned individuals do not have rosacea, it is not as noticeable.  Those of mixed ethnicity may be more prone to having rosacea.

The bacterium released from the Demodex mite is sensitive to antibiotics used to treat rosacea.  So guess what!  Pharmaceutical companies are developing more types of products and pharmaceuticals to treat this skin disorder.

To read the entire article, click on the following link:

Bacterial Cause Found for Skin Condition Rosacea. (2012, August 28). Retrieved August 31, 2012, from ScienceDaily: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120829195121.htm

Companies on the bandwagon to disclose product ingredients

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reading product label

SC Johnson is one of many companies that are on the bandwagon to become transparent about the ingredients in their products. SC Johnson is the maker of Glade products (room sprays, scented oil refills and wax melts refills).

When you look at their product labels, it is like reading a chemistry book. In an effort to be transparent, SC Johnson wants consumers to understand what the fragrance ingredients are (chemical and natural). They even have a link on their website so you can see the list of ingredients, but if you don’t have a background in product formulation, chemistry or aromatherapy, you still don’t know what those terms mean.

One thing I found very confusing in the article was that they described their Glade Fresh Citrus Blossom collection as having ingredients that are “crafted from 100 percent disclosed fragrance components, contains “nature-inspired’ ingredients”, and most are “nature-identical”.  Excuse me, but is that double talk? How can a fragrance be nature-identical? Either it is from nature or it isn’t. Nature-identical to me brings up images of fragrances that are restructured and created in a laboratory (that’s not natural to me). Well, so much for transparency!

To read more of this topic, click on the following links:

Urbanowicz, N. (2016). Perfumer & Flavorist, “SC Johnson line discloses a ‘full ingredient list’. Retrieved February 26, 2016, from: http://www.perfumerflavorist.com/fragrance/regulatory/SC-Johnson-Discloses-Full-Ingredient-List–369121541.html?utm_source=newsletter-html&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=PF+E-Newsletter+02-18-2016

What’s Inside? (2016). SC Johnson, http://www.whatsinsidescjohnson.com/us/en