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Blog posts tagged with 'skin care'

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Reduce Sun Exposure by Applying Window Tint

- Thursday, March 2, 2017

Over the past three decades, more people have died from skin cancer than all other types of cancer combined. It is estimated that 9,730 deaths will be attributed to melanoma in 2017 alone. We all know how important it is to protect our skin while outside — whether on a hike or lounging by the pool — but do we know how safe our skin is while traveling in a car? While it is rare to get sunburn through automotive windows, harmful UV rays can still reach those on the inside.

One way to protect your skin while in a car is to apply window film to your vehicle’s windows. Every state has laws to dictate how much tinting is allowed on each window of a car.

The following chart, provided by our friends at Rayno Window Film, makes it easy to understand the state-by-state window tinting laws and regulations, and can assist you with applying window tinting to your car to help reduce sun exposure.

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Three of the Most Common Allergens in Skincare Products

- Thursday, July 21, 2016

SunBuddy Body Lotion Applicator - Three Common Allergens in Skincare Products

Many consumers don't stop to think about the products they use every day. Unfortunately, many consumer products, from make-up to cleaning supplies to plastic food containers, contain substances that can be harmful. Absorbing harmful chemicals through skin contact can be even worse than ingesting them, because when you ingest them, at least you have the enzymes in your digestive system to break them down.

An FDA survey found that up to 25% of people have had a skin reaction to a skincare or beauty product. Allergic or irritated reactions to these products can cause redness, swelling, hives, itching, and other effects. Everyone finds different ingredients to be allergenic for them, but three of the most common are parabens, formaldehyde, and sodium lauryl sulfate.

Virtually every personal care product that contains water will have some type of preservative in it as well. Parabens have been used as a preservative in personal care products since the 1950s. The most common products to contain parabens include lotions, make-up, shaving cream, and hair care products. Unfortunately, parabens can cause allergic reactions for some people. Furthermore, parabens are thought by some to act as endocrine disruptors. What this means is that parabens act like estrogens in the body. This could affect fertility, hormone balance, and risk of breast cancer.

Formaldehyde is a substance found in tiny amounts in humans, plants, and animals. However, in larger amounts, it can be very harmful. The FDA has found that nearly 1 in 5 cosmetic products contains this carcinogen. The Agency for Toxic Substance & Disease Registry has stated that formaldehyde exposure can cause irritation of the eyes, ears, nose, throat, upper respiratory tract, and skin. Even very low concentrations of formaldehyde have been known to cause allergenic symptoms.

Nearly all nail polishes contain notable amounts of formaldehyde, as well as Brazilian blowout treatments. However, product labels do not always list formaldehyde, even if there is formaldehyde in the product. This is because some manufacturers use "formaldehyde releasers". There are chemicals that, when you add them to water, decompose slowly to form formaldehyde molecules. Formaldehyde releasers include DMDM hydantoin, imidazolidinyl urea, diazolidinyl urea, quaternium-15, bronopol, 5-Bromo-5-nitro-1,3-dioxane, and Hydroxymethylglycinate.

Sodium lauryl sulfate is a foaming agent. Therefore, it's found in a majority of commercially available soaps, shampoos, and toothpastes. Although it is effective for creating lather and for cleaning, it's also extremely harsh and irritating. Sodium lauryl sulfate can cause damage to the skin, eyes, and hair.

Using non-irritating, hypoallergenic products can make a world of difference to your skin's health. When your skin isn't irritated or stripped of its natural moisture, it can function properly and have a healthy glow. Consider making a switch to more natural products such as the following:

  • Natural Glycerine - Glycerine acts as a natural humectant, which naturally attracts moisture to your skin. This makes your skin hydrated and soft without the need of other beauty products.
     
  • Vitamin E - Having many anti-oxidant properties, Vitamin E works great to help reduce skin inflammation and irritation.
     
  • Menthol - If you have puffiness under your eyes, try using menthol to reduce puffiness and agitation.

 

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The Most Common Skincare Mistakes

- Thursday, November 12, 2015

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - The Most Common Skincare Mistakes

Most beauty fans will have a skincare routine they adhere to in order to keep their complexion looking radiant, but a few common mistakes could mean you're inadvertently making your skin prone to breakouts. From exfoliating too much to forgetting to remove make-up before a workout, here are the eight most common skincare mistakes.

Not Removing Make-up Before Hitting the Gym

If you're exercising with a full face of make-up, you risk clogging the pores up with your products, especially as you wipe away sweat with your hands and fingers. Even if make-up is 'non-clogging', it can become irritating to the skin when mixed with the salt of sweat and eventually cause breakouts. Use make-up removing wipes for a quick solution before you hit the treadmill.

Waiting Too Long to Tone and Moisturize after Cleansing

If you leave your skin bare for more than 60 seconds after cleansing, you risk dehydrating your complexion as the air sucks the moisture. Try and immediately use an alcohol-free toner and moisturizer, and leave your toner still slightly damp on the skin to keep it protected.

Exfoliating Too Much

While there's no doubt that exfoliation can do wonders for a flawless complexion, too much can have an adverse effect. If you over-exfoliate you actually end up removing your skin's protective barrier, exposing it to the sun damage and bacteria. Try to exfoliate a maximum of two or three times a week.

Forgetting to Remove Make-up before Bed

It's often hailed as the golden rule of skincare, and for a reason. The products begin to clog your pore and oil glands, making them appear larger – plus this can also lead to inflammation. Make sure to wash your face before bed each night to keep your skin looking radiant and healthy.

Only Wearing SPF Products in Summer

UV rays are present all year round and as they travel through glass, you expose your skin even when you're driving in your car or sitting inside near a window. These damaging rays can damage the skin and cause wrinkles, so it's best to wear SPF products every day to protect yourself.

Having Very Hot Showers

Hot water can strip your skin of essential moistures and natural, healthy oils. Instead turn your heat setting to warm so you can avoid damaging your skin.

Not Washing your Pillowcases Regularly Enough

If you go to bed wearing face creams, with wet hair, or with product in your hair, this rubs onto the pillowcase and is then transferred back into your skin as you sleep for the eight following hours, clogging up your pores with bacteria. Change your pillow case at least once a week and wash them in hot water.

Not Treating Blemishes Properly

If you're prone to acne and breakouts, one of the biggest don'ts is to pick at the spots, as you break down the follicle wall and allow bacteria to spread. If you over-wash your face in a bid to cleanse the skin, you also risk removing the oils prompting your skin to produce more oil to compensate, which can actually make the breakout worse.

Source: HelloMagazine

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10 Skin Care Tips Dermatologists Do Themselves

- Monday, June 22, 2015

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - 10 Dermatologist Skin Care Tips

Here's advice from the pros on how to protect and maintain healthy skin.

Pour on the Protection

To ensure she layers on enough sunscreen ("the best way to keep skin youthful"), Garland, TX-based dermatologist Lisa Garner, MD, president of the Women's Dermatologic Society, fills the hollow of her palm (about ½ teaspoon) with a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher to coat her face, neck, and ears. "I usually have to apply two coats to finish what I've squeezed out, but that's how I make sure I'm covered."

Eat a Skin-Saving Breakfast

The first meal of the day for New York City derm Doris Day, MD, includes almonds. "They contain essential fatty acids, which help put the brakes on inflammation that accelerates fine lines, sagging, and blotchiness." Not feeling like a nut? Salmon, tuna, and halibut are good lunch/dinner sources.

Zen Your Skin

If anyone has stress, it's doctors. High levels of tension can spike hormone production that leads to breakouts or aggravates conditions like psoriasis. "Controlling stress keeps your skin calm—but that's easier said than done," says Annie Chiu, MD, a derm in LA. Taking a 10-minute time-out to apply a face mask and relax on her bed works for Chiu. Another trick: Ban the 'Berry. "I turn off my cell phone after 8 at night. Every little bit helps!" she says.

Develop a Bedside Manner

"I often find it difficult to stick to my anti-aging regimen at bedtime," says Francesca Fusco, MD, an NYC derm. To avoid missing her evening routine, she stores these products in a pretty skincare case she keeps on her nightstand. "So if I've forgotten—or was just too tired to apply products at the sink—I can do it easily while in bed." Her must-haves: Renova (an Rx retinoid), EpiCeram (an ultrahydrating Rx moisturizer), SCO lip balm, Earth to Skin Care Cracked Heel Renewal, Creative Nail Design Solar oil (to soften cuticles), and Listerine White Strips.

Wear Your Veggies

Frozen peas help soothe itchy, irritated eyes for Jeanine Downie, MD, a derm in Montclair, NJ. "Once I get home from work, I remove my skincare and put a bag of frozen peas on my lids for about 5 minutes." The cold helps reduce swelling and pigmentation, a side effect of repeated irritation from her eczema. Unlike inflexible ice packs, a bag of peas easily conforms to the shape of the eyes for a faster effect.

Strike a Pose

Most derms will bend over back-ward for great skin. Hema Sundaram, MD, a Washington, DC-area dermatologist, bends forward. Yoga moves "like Child's Pose, Downward-Facing Dog, and Sun Salutations improve circulation—the boost of oxygen is what gives skin that lovely yoga glow." Another reason to take to the mat: New research finds regular yoga practice may reduce the inflammation and stress that speed skin aging.

Skip Sodium

Diet soda is a vice that Audrey Kunin, MD, a Kansas City, MO, dermatologist, just can't quit—she downs up to six cans a day. When she realized that all the sodium in soda (anywhere from 25 to 50 mg per can) made her eyes and jawline puffy, she switched to a brand that doesn't punish her skin: sodium-free Diet Rite soda. "It satisfies my cravings and my skin looks much better."

Cut Back on the Sweet Stuff

The breakdown of sugars, called glycation, damages the collagen that keeps skin smooth and firm. To prevent this natural process from careening out of control, Naila Malik, MD, a derm in Southlake, TX, sticks to low-glycemic carbs like whole grains; they're naturally low in sugar, and the body processes them slowly to limit the loss of collagen.

Pump Iron to Plump Skin

"I am religious about strength-training, and I always tell patients to do it more as they get older," says Patricia Farris, MD, a dermatologist in Metairie, LA. The payoff: firmer skin from the neck down, the result of having better, more supportive muscle tone. "It's like adding volume to the face with fillers, except on your body," says Farris.

Tea Up

In her teens, Amy Wechsler, MD, an NYC derm, started drinking green and black tea for the taste. Now she drinks three to five cups a day to safeguard her skin. Research suggests that both types of tea contain protective compounds—like EGCG and theaflavins—that help prevent skin cancers and the breakdown of collagen, the cause of wrinkles.

Source: Prevention.com

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5 Sun Safety Tips

- Sunday, March 1, 2015

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - 5 Sun Safety Tips

Insect repellants affect sunscreen SPF

Insect Repellants reduce sunscreen’s SPF by up to 1/3. When using a combination, use a sunscreen with a higher SPF.

Sunburns increase your skin cancer risk

Over exposure to the sun’s harmful rays can result in sunburns which increase your risk of developing skin cancer. Therefore, check your local UV Index which provides important information to help you plan your outdoor activities in ways that prevent overexposure to the sun. The UV Index forecast is issued each afternoon by the National Weather Service and EPA.

Sun's UV rays are strongest between 10am and 4pm

Seek the shade whenever possible! The sun’s UV rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. so remember the shadow rule when in the sun: If your shadow is short it’s time to abort and seek the shade.

Choose the right sunglasses

Don’t be deceived by color or cost of Sunglasses! The ability to block UV light is not dependent on the darkness of the lens or the price tag. While both plastic and glass lenses absorb some UV light, UV absorption is improved by adding certain chemicals to the lens material during manufacturing or by applying special lens coatings. Always choose sunglasses that are labeled as blocking 99-100% of UV rays. Some manufacturers’ labels will say “UV absorption up to 400nm.” This is the same thing as 100% UV absorption.

Protect your skin all year long

Sunburn doesn’t only happen during the summer! Water, snow and sand reflect the damaging rays of the sun, which can increase your chance of sunburn. Protect yourself year round by using sunscreen with protection from both UVA and UVB rays, and an SPF of 15 or greater. Wear protective clothing, such as long-sleeved shirts, pants, a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen on the exposed areas of your skin whenever possible

Source:

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In the Know: Sun Safe on the Slopes

- Thursday, February 5, 2015

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - Sun Safe on the Slopes

Skin care and sun safety is as important in winter as it is in summer.  You can still get a sunburn on an overcast day because 80% of the sun's UV rays can pass through the clouds. UV rays are invisible and UVB rays are the primary cause of sun burning, premature aging of the skin, and the development of skin cancer.

If you are planning on hitting the slopes for some skiing or snowboarding, it is even more important to cover up and wear sunscreen because snow acts like a mirror and bounces UV rays up towards your face.

Did you know:

  • Snow reflects up to 80% of the sun's UV rays towards your face - that's 150% more exposure to harmful UV rays than if you were at the beach.
     
  • Altitude increases your risk - for every 1000 feet above sea level, there's 7% less ozone to protect you from the sun's UV rays. For example, at 10,000 feet, you are 70% more exposed to UV rays than you are at sea level.
     
  • Wear sunscreen with at least 30 SPF and zinc oxide. Reapply generously every 2 hours.
     
  • Protect your skin by covering up - wear long sleeves, a hat, and UV reflective goggles.
     
  • A white T-shirt has an SPF of about 7, but once it gets wet, SPF drops down to about 3, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation.

Source: University of Utah Health Care

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Tips for Healthier Skin and Hair This Winter - Part 2

- Wednesday, December 31, 2014

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - Tips For Healthier Skin and Hair This Winter - Part 2

Hopefully, the tips in Part 1 has helped your skin and hair remain healthy during this chilly and dry winter.  Here are some more tips to help you through the winter and into the new year!

Static-y Hair

A dried-out scalp produces fewer oils, which can make hair full of static. Don't skimp on conditioner, and simulate natural scalp oils by combing a bit of vitamin E oil through the hair before bed to replenish moisture. Need a quick fix? Run a bit of lotion through strands or run an unscented dryer sheet (really) over the hair before heading out the door.

During the winter, stick to cotton hats (which conduct much less static electricity than acrylic and wool).

Chapped Lips

Keeping a tube of lip balm in an easily accessible pocket is a good first step, but winter winds can take chapped lips to a whole new level. If lips are flaky, take a clean toothbrush and very gently exfoliate the skin to remove excess skin. Slather on beeswax or a lip balm with lanolin (a natural oily wax extracted from sheep's wool!) and keep reapplying throughout the day.

For seriously dry lips, apply honey or Vaseline to the lips for 15 minutes and then remove with a cotton swab dipped in hot water.

Brittle Nails

Dry air saps the moisture right out of nails and leaves them delicate and susceptible to breaks and tears.  Consider adding biotin-rich foods (also called Vitamin B7) to your diet - this essential vitamin helps the body process amino acids and produce fatty acids. Vegetables (including carrots and Swiss chard) and protein sources including nuts and fish are good ways to pack in enough of the vitamin. 

Scaly Elbows

The skin over high-pressure joints like elbows, knees, and heels is thicker to cushion the essential bones underneath. It's great to have some extra padding, but ashy, scaly elbows are uncomfortable and unattractive. The key to keeping elbows (and other rough spots) soft is to exfoliate once or twice per week and moisturize every day. 

Dry Face / Windburn

First thing's first: During winter, avoid any face products with alcohol, and switch to a milder face wash and a thicker moisturizer.  Another good option? Whole grains and aromatic veggies contain selenium, a compound that gives skin the elasticity to make silly faces. Snack on quinoa, brown rice, onions, or garlic when skin gets tight and dry.

Protect sensitive skin by layering on thick face cream with a high SPF - the only thing worse than windburn is winter sunburn. When heading into the great outdoors, dress for the weather with a hat, scarf, and gloves to avoid windburn and prolonged exposure to cold air.

Source: Greatist.com

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Tips for Healthier Skin and Hair This Winter - Part 1

- Tuesday, December 9, 2014

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - Tips For Healthier Skin and Hair This Winter - Part 1

It’s wintertime and the livin’ ain’t easy—for our hair, skin, and nails, that is. Whipping winds, dry air, and chilly temperatures can really do a number on soft skin and hair. Cold air outside and central heat indoors can strip moisture from strands and pores, making hair rough and skin itchy and dry.

Skin isn’t only the barrier between the environment and our insides—it’s a living organ that’s responsible for keeping the body cool, protecting it against germs and “invaders,” and many other metabolic processes. It’s important to keep these tissues in good condition and working well all year long so they can do their jobs and keep us healthy and safe. Cracked, flaky, irritated, or inflamed skin is normal during winter, though it’s not exactly fun.

Dry Skin

A 20-minute long, boiling-hot shower might feel great on a cold day, but stick to warm or lukewarm water for 10 minutes or less. Long exposure to hot water can strip moisture from hair and skin. Slathering on lotion within three minutes of stepping out of the bath or shower is most effective for trapping in moisture.  

Load up on vitamin C-rich produce like citrus fruit and dark leafy greens. Vitamin C can help boost the body’s production of collagen, a protein that maintains skin and other connective tissues. And don't forget to drink plenty of water.  

Dry Hands

To prevent hands from drying out, apply moisturizer after hand washing and at least several times throughout the day. Keep a bottle of lotion by each sink in your home and in your desk at work. If hands are very dry, use cream instead of lotion because the former has a higher oil-to-water ratio.

Wearing rubber gloves while washing dishes can prevent hands from getting dried out due to excess contact with hot water, too. 

Irritated, Dry Eyes

Wind and dry air are not a good combination for sensitive eyes. Sporting sunnies on a sub-zero day might look weird, but the lenses can protect eyes from glare and wind. Keep a bottle of non-medicated saline tears or eye drops on hand and use it to refresh eye moisture when needed.

Avoid eye drops like Visine, which causes blood vessels in the eye to contract, giving the illusion you 'got the red out.' Instead, use a lubricant such as Systane Eye Drops or Blink Tears.

Red Nose

When outdoors in cold weather, the blood vessels cut off circulation to the nose. After coming indoors the blood vessels dilate quickly, causing a rush of blood (and bright-red color). To bring the nose back to a normal hue, apply a warm—but not hot—compress to the skin for several minutes after coming indoors. Sometimes a winter cold and the tissues that come with it can make the nose raw and chapped, too.

When the sniffles hit, use extra-soft tissues and blot the nose; don’t rub it. Apply a thin layer of moisturizing ointment or lotion to the sensitive area throughout the day.

Rough, Cracked Feet

Scrub calluses with a pumice stone in the shower once per week to slough off rough, dead skin. Moisturize feet, especially the heels, every day with thick cream—lotions containing lactic acid are especially effective—and wear cotton socks to bed. 

It may look nerdy, but sporting socks while snoozing can help creams absorb. Warmer feet means sweatier feet (ick), and moisturizers are most effective when applied to warm, damp skin.

Itchy Dry Scalp

Take cooler, quicker showers to reduce the scalp’s exposure to drying hot water. Think about switching to a dandruff or dry scalp specific shampoo. Before hopping in the shower, massage the scalp with Vitamin E, olive, or coconut oil. These oils replenish natural scalp oilsand can moisturize dry hair, too

Source: Greatist.com

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Startling Video Shows Effects of the Sun on Your Skin

- Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Photographer Thomas Leveritt is hoping his video will help shed light on the importance of sunscreen and it seems to be having an effect.

The video shows how skin appears when viewed under ultraviolet lights. The difference is like night and day. People of diverse races are seen approaching the camera and then standing to be viewed. Many of them gasp to see the appearance of their skin under the UV light, which shows the appearance of the skin beyond what can be seen by the naked eye.

Also compelling is what happens when people apply sunscreen to their faces. The portion of skin that’s covered by the lotion appears under the UV as solid black streaks. Levitt says this shows that sunscreen can indeed block UV rays.

Here are some skin cancer prevention tips that doctors swear by.

Use Sunscreen Correctly

“Choose a sunscreen labeled SPF 30 or more, and includes the words Broad Spectrum and Water Resistant. Re-apply every two hours or after you swim or sweat. Apply sunscreen liberally. It takes approximately 1 ounce (a shot glass) to cover an adult.”

— Timothy Wang, MD, dermatologist for the Melanoma Program at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center

Know What Works and When

“You should wear sunscreen even when driving in the car as window glass only blocks UVB light, not UVA. And UVA light is also associated with skin cancer and as well as skin thinning. The sunscreen in makeup can’t be relied on, as it is typically lower in SPF than claimed by the manufacturer and wears off easily.“

— Bruce E. Katz, M.D. Clinical Professor and Director of the Cosmetic Surgery & Laser Clinic. Mt. Sinai School of Medicine

Monitor Your Skin

 “Be aware of your skin and regularly look for any changes, including new skin spots or moles, or changes in the size, shape or color of existing spots or moles. Take any concerns to your doctor for an evaluation. Have your skin examined annually by a dermatologist to check for signs of skin cancer.”

— Mary K. Tripp, Ph.D., M.P.H., The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Instructor of Behavioral Science

Source: ABC News, Good Morning America

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Five Healthy Skin Habits

- Sunday, July 27, 2014

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - 5 Healthy Skin Care Habits

It's important to remember that for your healthiest, most vibrant skin, you must nurture it from the inside out. Here are 5 habits you can follow to help your skin be more radiant.

1. Protect your skin from the sun

Too much sun can make your skin age faster, cause sunburn and even lead to cancer. Wear sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher, although SPF 30 is highly recommended. Also, wear a hat that covers the face and clothing made of cotton that covers the skin completely.

2. Maintain a proper diet and stay properly hydrated

Eat lots of fruits, vegetables, and beans.  Many healthy foods have antioxidants, which boost skin, hair, and nail growth. Some research suggests that a diet rich in vitamin C and low in unhealthy fats and processed or refined carbohydrates might promote younger looking skin.  

Make water your first choice of drink. The old adage of 8 glasses a day is no longer true. The basic equation for determining the minimum of water your body needs a day is by dividing your body weight in half. So, if you weigh 150 pounds, you would need 75 ounces of water per day. If you are outdoors a great deal, exercise, or doing any other strenuous activity, you'll need to intake more water.

3. Don't smoke

Smoking takes away oxygen and nutrients from the skin.  It can cause and worsen loose, sagging skin, wrinkles and age spots. Smoking also damages collagen and elastin — the fibers that give your skin its strength and elasticity.

4. Get the beauty of sleep

Your skin replenishes itself while you sleep. When you don't get enough sleep, your body releases more of the stress hormone cortisol. In excess amounts, cortisol can break down skin collagen, the protein that keeps skin smooth and elastic. Get 7-9 hours of sleep each night.

5. Exercise

Exercise increases blood flow, oxygen, and nutrients to the skin. Aim to be physically active 30 minutes a day for most days of the week. Take a nice long walk walk or light jog after dinner. Remember to stay hydrated.

Researchers at the McMaster University in Ontario found that after age 40, the men and women who exercised frequently had markedly thinner, healthier stratum corneums and thicker dermis layers in their skin. Their skin was much closer in composition to that of the 20- and 30-year-olds than to that of others of their age, even if they were past age 65.

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New Mobile App Detects Skin Cancer

- Saturday, January 11, 2014

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - Skin Cancer Mobile App

The School of Medical Science and Technology at IIT, Kharagpur has developed a smartphone application, called ‘ClipOCam-Derma', to help physicians speed up skin cancer diagnosis. Lead by research scholar Debdoot Sheet, this innovation has recently won the ‘GE Edison Challenge 2013’ in Bangalore.

"Being a portable and affordable solution, it can be used by trained health care workers to reach out to elderly and patients in mobility restricted areas for health care delivery," Sheet said.

How It Works

Along with the mobile app, a clip-on device is illuminates the patient’s skin using a colorful flash while the smartphone’s camera captures a sequence of images. The images are then uploaded to the ‘DRICTION’ cloud computational imaging service.

The images are then processed to provide consolidated diagnostic information to skilled physicians to assess potential risks. The mobile application will assist in fast and high-precision screening of skin lesions and abnormalities such as cancers, melanoma, ulcers, psoriasis, and lypoma.

"This in effect will facilitate high-throughput screening of patients at resource constrained or remotely located healthcare centers lacking even minimal access to expert physicians, but witnessing an exponential rise in deaths related to complex skin abnormalities," Sheet said.

Accuracy and Availability

‘ClipOCam-Derma' will be launched after regulatory approvals and Sheet said tests have found it to be 99% accurate.

Note that this mobile app is only available to hospitals and trained physicians. Although there are ‘so-called’ skin cancer diagnosis mobile apps available for iPhone and Android for under $5, the accuracy of those apps is questionable.

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Hugh Jackman Treated for Skin Cancer

- Thursday, December 5, 2013

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - Hugh Jackman Treated for Skin Cancer

Australian-born 45-year-old actor Hugh Jackman, famously known for his role as Wolverine in the X-Men film series, was treated for skin cancer on his nose. You can see a band-aid on Jackman's nose in the photo above.

Jackman tweeted, "I had a basil cell carcinoma. Please don't be foolish like me. Get yourself checked. And USE sunscreen!!!"

Men more likely to die from skin cancer

The latest research from Cancer Center UK found that men are 70% more likely to die from skin cancer than women. Now fine after having surgery to remove the cancer spot, Jackman’s early detection could have saved his life.

New York City Dermatologist Ellen Marmur says that left untreated, his trouble spot could have been a much bigger deal. "The biggest misconception is that basal cell cancers are benign. It can metastasize--in fact, I've removed ears, lips, and halves of noses from this kind of cancer."

Warning signs

Marmur says it usually looks like a small pimple on the face that doesn't go away. "A classic sign is if the same spot bleeds every time you shave... Basal cell pops up most often on eyelids, nose, lips, and ears, and melanoma often shows up on men's backs and hands."

As always, follow these simple steps to keep skin cancer free:

  • Wear sunscreen with a SPF of at least 30 everyday. Use the SunBuddy® - Back Lotion Applicator to apply sunscreen to your back and to hard to reach areas of your body.
  • Check for skin every month for suspicious irregular shaped moles.  Keep track of ones that seem to grow.
  • Wear hats and sunglasses.  Your eyes need protection from UV rays too.
  • Seem a dermatologist once a year.

Photo credit: Daniel Zuchnik/WireImage

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In The Know: Winter Skin Tips

- Tuesday, November 12, 2013

SunBuddy - Back Lotion Applicator Dry Skin Tips

As winter approaches, our skin is prone to reaching peak dryness. Cold temperatures combined with dry indoor heat and dehydrating long, hot showers zaps the moisture out of our skin quicker than normal.

“We try getting in a hot, steamy shower to get a little moisture, and don't realize that the water itself actually takes water out of us by osmosis," explains Dr. Jessica Krant, a board-certified dermatologist and Assistant Clinical Professor of Dermatology at SUNY Downstate Medical Center. "Not only that, the heat and water strip our natural moisturizing oils out of our skin. Then we get out of the shower, and that last bit of dampness evaporating away dries us out even more."

Here are some tips to protect and keep our skin healthy during the dry winter months.

Take Shorter Showers

Hot, long showers strip our skin of its natural moisturizing oils, so it is best to take shorter showers (5-10 minutes) with a warm water temperature. After you get out of the shower, gently pat your skin dry. Rubbing your skin with a towel robs your skin of moisture and precious oils.

Moisturizer: Choose Cream Over Lotion

Choose a moisturizer cream that is thick and fragrance-free instead of watery lotion. A proper moisturizer will lock and seal in moisture, providing protection for our skin to heal.

It is best to apply moisturizer within 3 minutes of getting out of the shower.  Use the SunBuddy - Back Lotion Applicator  to apply moisturizer to those hard-to-reach areas of your back.

Stay Hydrated

Windy, cold weather and overheated houses zap moisture from our skin, so drinking more water than you want to will help replenish the water you are losing.

Not to mention, our skin is our body’s biggest organ, so keeping it properly hydrated will give you a radiant, healthy, and younger looking complexion.

Skip the Perfume / Colonge

The chemicals in your perfume may irritate your dry, sensitive skin. Also, the alcohol content will strip oils from your skin, drying it out.

Apply Lip Balm and Hand Cream Often

Don’t forget that our lips need protection too and are prone to premature aging and skin cancer! Using lip balm with a SPF of at least 30 will keep them soft and supple.

Don’t skimp on washing your hands, as it is important to remove harmful bacteria and viruses. Use hand cream after each wash to retain much-needed moisture and to reduce skin cracks.

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Sunscreen Protects ‘Superhero’ Gene That Prevents Skin Cancer

- Thursday, October 10, 2013

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - Sunscreen Shields Supergene

p53 Gene

In addition to preventing three types of skin cancer, Queensland researchers have discovered that sunscreen shields a ‘superhero’ p53 gene that repairs UV damaged skin.

Scientists performed the world’s first molecular level human study of the impact of sunscreen confirmed that sunscreen provides 100 percent protection against all three forms of skin cancer – basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and malignant melanoma. Skin biopsies also confirmed that sunscreen shields the p53 gene, also known as the tumor suppressor gene.

The p53 gene is responsible for proteins that can either repair damaged cells or cause damaged cells to die. However, exposure to UV can mutate the p53 gene, thus rendering it from functioning properly.

“As soon as our skin becomes sun damaged, the p53 gene goes to work repairing that damage and thereby preventing skin cancer occurring,” said lead researcher Dr. Elke Hacker, from Queensland University of Technology’s AusSun Research Lab. “But over time if skin is burnt regularly the p53 gene mutates and can no longer do the job it was intended for – it no longer repairs sun damaged skin and without this protection skin cancers are far more likely to occur.”

The Study

Fifty-seven people who participated in the study underwent a series of skin biopsies to examine molecular changes to the skin before and after UV exposure. First, the researchers took small skin biopsies of each participant’s unexposed skin. Then, a mild does of UV light was exposed to two skin spots on each participant, but sunscreen was applied only to one spot. After 24 hours, another set of skin biopsies were taken.

“After 24 hours, we took another set of biopsies and compared the skin samples,” Hacker said. “What we found was that, after 24 hours, where the sunscreen had been applied there were no DNA changes to the skin and no impact on the p53 gene.”

Hacker concludes that the study could be used to help develop post-sun exposure treatments that can repair sun-damaged skin, such as super sunscreens.

As always, remember to wear sunscreen and reapply every two hours. 

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Don’t Forget to Protect Your Lips From The Sun

- Monday, September 23, 2013

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - Protect Your Lips

Keeping your lips healthy is important year-round. We often take our lips for granted even though they play a crucial role in our speech and for identifying different types of food.

Lip cancer is a malignant tumor, or neoplasm, that originates in the surface layer cells in the upper or lower lip. Nine out of ten cases of lip cancer are diagnosed in people over age 45. As the cells in our lips get older, they lose some of its ability to repair itself. This breakdown in the repair system combined with damaging UV rays from sunlight allows for the uncontrolled growth of cells.

If a part of the lip is affected by cancer and must be removed by surgery, there will be significant changes to one’s eating ability and speech function. Men are at a greater risk for lip cancer than women, sometimes two to three times more likely. Also, fair-skinned people are more likely to develop lip cancer than those with dark skin.

Here are some tips for keeping your lips healthy, soft, and sun safe.

Use Lip Balm to Moisturize and Protect

Since your lips are exposed to the sun every day, they are highly susceptible to disfiguring and to developing skin cancer. Use lip balm or lipstick with a SPF 15 or higher. Keep in mind that your lower lip receives the most direct sunlight.

Reapply

Much like sunscreen use recommendations, remember to reapply lip protection every two hours. Reapply more often if you have been eating or drinking.

Hydrate

Unlike the rest of your skin, lips do not contain oil glands and therefore tend to dry out and become chapped easily. Drink lots of water to hydrate your lips and avoiding licking them, which actually saps moisture.

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Omega-3 Potential Cure for Skin Cancer?

- Monday, August 12, 2013

Past studies have shown that taking Omega-3 fatty acids, or commonly known as fish oil, have numerous health benefits such as preventing cardiovascular disease, reducing cholesterol, improving mental health by combating depression and ADHD, reducing plaque buildup and blood blots and arteries, and preventing skin acne and wrinkles. As if these benefits weren't already impressive enough, we may soon add preventing oral and skin cancers to that list.

New evidence has recently been published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition by a research team from The University of Manchester in the United Kingdom demonstrating how taking omega-3 supplements may help to protect against skin cancer.

Researchers found that taking a regular dose of omega-3 fatty acids boosted skin immunity to the sun by lowering immunosuppression or sunlight-induced suppression of the immune system. Thus, our bodies are able to fight skin cancer and infection more effectively.

Researchers analyzed the effects of omega-3 fatty acids on a group of 79 healthy volunteers. The volunteers took a daily four-gram dose of omega-3 and then were exposed to either 8, 15, or 30 minutes of summer midday sun from a special light machine. This supplemented group was then compared to a second placebo group.

Immunosuppression was 50 percent in lower in the participants who took the omega-3 supplement and were exposed to 8 and 15 minutes of sun compared to placebo taking participants.

"This study adds to the evidence that omega-3 is a potential nutrient to protect against skin cancer... they suggest that a continuous low level of chemoprevention from taking omega-3 could reduce the risk of skin cancer over an individual's lifetime."
– Dr. Lesley Rhodes, lead study author

Another group of UK researches from Queen Mary, University of London, grew lab cultures of several different skin lines – malignant oral and skin cancers, pre-malignant cells, and normal skin and oral cells. When researchers carried out in vitro tests by adding fatty acids into the cell cultures, results showed that omega-3 fatty acids induced cell death in malignant and pre-malignant cells while not affecting normal cells.

"We found that the omega-3 fatty acid selectively inhibited the growth of the malignant and pre-malignant cells at doses which did not affect the normal cells."
– Prof. Kenneth Parkinson

Unfortunately, our bodies cannot synthesize omega-3 and most of us don’t get enough of it in our diets. So, it's a good idea to take a supplement. Nutrition experts recommend a daily intake of 1,200 to 2,400 mg (combined DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids).

Here are some foods that contain high levels of omega-3

  • Salmon
  • Walnuts
  • Ground flax seeds
  • Sardines
  • Beef (from grass-fed cows)
  • Soybeans
  • Halibut
  • Scallops
  • Shrimp
  • Tofu

We hope to hear more on this topic soon!

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In The Know: Remedies For Treating Sunburn

- Monday, July 29, 2013

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - Treat Sunburn

Sunburns can be tricky to avoid. After a long day in the sun, you can still end up with painful, lobster red sunburn despite your best efforts to protect your skin with sunscreen.

Most of the time, sunburns are mild first-degree burns on your outer layer of skin that turn red. With second-degree sunburns, the more severe type, your skin is red, painful and blistering. Fortunately, these two types of sunburns can be treated at home but if you are experiencing more serious problems, seek professional medical help.

Typically, sunburn symptoms continue to worsen during the first 24 to 36 hours after the sunburn. There are times where your sunburn does not show up until hours after you’ve gone back indoors or left the beach.

After 3 to 5 days, sunburns will begin to go away. However, it may take 3 to 6 months for your skin to fully repair and return to normal.

Here are some natural remedies for treating sunburns:

Cold Compress

Your skin is inflamed after being sunburnt. Soak a towel or t-shirt in either cold water from the faucet or iced water and slip it on or lay it over the burn. Repeat every few minutes and apply several times a day for a total of 10 to 15 minutes each time. Cold compresses will cool down your inflamed skin and help reduce the swelling. Besides just cold water, you can use common kitchen foods too. Believe it or not, oatmeal is very effective. Wrap dry oatmeal in a cloth and run water through it. Discard the oatmeal and cold compress in the liquid. Also, cold compressing with a combination of 1 cup of fat-free milk with 4 cups of iced water works too.

Avoid Soap

Avoid soapy water and bubble baths. Soap will strip out moisture from your skin and further dry and irritate your burned skin. If you must use soap, use a mild brand and rinse if off very well. If you are really hurting and wish to take a bath, try an oatmeal bath or baking soda bath. Aveeno Soothing Bath Treatment is made from oatmeal. Alternatively, you can grid a cup of oatmeal and sprinkle it into a tub of cool water. Swish the bath water around until it becomes milky. Soak yourself for at least 20 minutes and gently pat yourself dry with a soft towel. If you don’t have oatmeal, sprinkly baking soda into your cool bath, soak for 20 minutes, and then let the solution dry on your skin. Baking soda is nontoxic and will soothe your pain.

Do Not Pop Your Blisters

If you get a blister, you have a more severe case of sunburn. Although very tempting, it is best not to pop your blister. A blister is a bubble under the skin that is usually filled with fluid and form to protect the skin. Popping a blister can lead to an infection and even more irritation and pain.

Moisturize

Your skin loses much moisture from a sunburn and becomes very dry. Thus, it is crucial to aid in the repair process by frequently applying moisturizing cream or lotion. Be sure to not apply so much that your skin cannot breathe. Also apply aloe vera, a natural soothing, anti-inflammatory gel that has been used for thousand of years to treat wounds and burns. For added relief, cool your lotion of aloe vera in the refrigerator before applying to your skin. Hydrate Your skin and body has lost a lot of essential fluids and you may now have a fever or headache. Often times, these are signs of dehydration. Drink plenty of water and eat fruit to combat dehydration. Watermelon, honeydew, and cantaloupe

Take It Easy

Stay indoors, avoid the sun, and give your skin time to repair. Wise up and be more sensitive about your sun exposure and protect yourself with sunscreen, hats, and clothing.

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In The Know: Avoid Products that Contain Vitamin A

- Tuesday, July 9, 2013

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - Vitamin A

Although the FDA says there isn’t enough evidence to suggest products containing Vitamin A or its derivatives are harmful, Canadian health authorities and groups such as the EWG (Environmental Working Group) are concerned that the additives increase sun sensitivity. In particular, they have proposed sunscreens containing retinyl palmitate, a Vitamin A derivative, to carry a warning saying they can increase the possibility of sunburn for up to a week.

Furthermore, Canadian health authorities go on to say to “please limit sun exposure while using this product and for a week afterwards.”The sunscreen industry adds Vitamin A to beach and sport sunscreens, daily face sunscreens, and SPF-rate makeup products and lip balms. Vitamin A is an anti-oxidant that is believed to slow skin aging and studies of Vitamin A’s carcinogenic properties raised the possibility that is may speed the growth of tumors on the skin when exposed to sunlight.

Despite evidence that Vitamin A can trigger carcinogenic activity, the FDA has delay taking action on restricting retinly palmitate in sunscreens in favor of ordering additional studies. Thus, regulatory action may be postponed indefinitely.

Be safer than sorry - take EWG’s advice and “avoid sunscreen and skin products with retinyl palmitate until the industry can prove it is safe for sun-exposed skin.”

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Happy First Day of Summer 2013

- Friday, June 21, 2013

SunBuddy Back Lotion Applicator - First Day of Summer 2013

June 21, 2013 marks the first official day of summer and this year’s summer solstice, the longest day of the year in the northern hemisphere. The summer solstice marks the point of the year where the northern hemisphere is tilted most towards the sun, thus giving us longer days. For example, according to timeanddate.com, there will be over 14 hours and 25 minutes of sunlight in Los Angeles today.

With longer days and warmer weather, it’s a great time to go outside and take advantage of all the extra sunlight. But don’t forget that sun exposure adds up day after day, and it happens every time you are in the sun. According to the UCLA Skin Research Department, 78% of all sun damage occurred in a lifetime is from incidental exposure from everyday activities.

This means you are putting your skin at risk every time you walk to your car, wait outside for the bus, walk your dog, etc. So be sure to generously apply SPF 30+ sunscreen at least 20 minutes before heading out, wear a hat, and wear sunglasses with 100% UV protection to protect not just your eyes, but your sensitive eyelids too.

Tags: Skin Care, Tips
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In The Know: The Dos and Don’ts of Skin Care

- Monday, June 3, 2013

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Skin Care Dos and Don'ts

Do: Wash your face and moisturize at bedtime
The skin on your face is one of the dirtiest parts on your body from being unintentionally touched all day long. Washing your face every will get rid of dirt and free radicals that can clog pores. Moisturizing will aid in skin repair and healing that occurs while you sleep.

Don’t: Use bar soap to wash your face
The binders in bar soap have a high pH balance, making it too drying for most skin types. Thus, bar soap immediately strips your skin of all its water, instantly creating dead skin cell buildup. In general, bar soap should never touch the skin from the neck down. Instead, look for mild, sulfate free, low foaming gel cleansers. Avoid high foaming cleansers.


Do: Exfoliate your skin
Exfoliating both your face and body weekly helps get rid of the dead top layers of skin that give us a dull complexion. Also, moisturizers will better penetrate your skin since the dead, flaky layer is scrubbed away. Some say the best time to exfoliate is in the morning, after your skin has repaired itself overnight. Here are some great tools for exfoliation: Facial scrub – gentle salt or sugar based one that leaves your skin feeling ‘dewy’. Avoid alcohol based ones. Basic washcloth – put a dab of cleanser on a damp washcloth and massage your skin in a circular motion. For 30 seconds. Rise off with lukewarm water. Retinoids – removes the top layer of dead skin cells while generation collagen, the skin’s structural fiber. Most skincare experts consider retinoids to be a miracle skin saver. However, retinoids are not recommended for women who are pregnant or who are breastfeeding.

Don’t: Overcleanse your skin
When you overcleanse your skin, you strip out the essential oils and water that keep skin healthy and balanced. If your skin feels taut and tight after cleansing, then it is a sign that your skin is crying out for moisture and that you are using a cleanser that is too harsh for your skin. Some effects of overcleansing are: Rashes – dry, red, flakey, irritated skin that may accelerate aging Adult acne – due to overactive oil glands triggered by a panic response


Do: Wear sunscreen
The number one cause of wrinkles is sun damage, so wear sunscreen with at least a SPF of 30. One trick is to purchase moisturizer with sunscreen for the day and one without sunscreen for the night. The ingredients in sunscreen are not mean to be used 24/7 and can aggravate your skin. Also, there is no cure for melanoma skin cancer, only prevention by wearing sunscreen.

Don’t: Skip wearing sunscreen on cloudy and winter days The sun emits two types of ultraviolet rays – UVA and UVB. UVB rays, which cause your skin to get tan or sunburn, are less strong in the winter than in the summer. However, UVA rays, which cause premature skin again and skin cancer, are equally strong from summer to winter. Even on a cloudy day, you are still getting UV damage if you do not wear sunscreen.


Do: Moisturize your skin
Your skin needs water to keep skin cells hydrated and healthy. Lack of water will cause skin cells to die prematurely, resulting in dead skin cell build up and clogged pores

Don’t: Substitute drinking water for using a skin moisturizer
Although drinking plenty of water has multiple benefits for your body such as increasing brain function, maintaining energy levels, and aids in weight loss and digestion, it is the least efficient and effective way to hydrate your skin.

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Skin Cancer On the Rise Infographic

- Monday, May 20, 2013

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Skin Cancer Infographic

Infographic courtesy of NorthWestPharmacy.com | Buy Health Care Safely

Skin Cancer is the most common form of cancer. Of cancers in the United States, a staggering 50% are skin cancer. The sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage unprotected skin in as little as 15 minutes. Yet it can take up to 12 hours for your skin to show the full effect of sun exposure. Be smart. Be educated. Protect your skin.

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In The Know: Natural Remedies to Reduce Sun Spots

- Wednesday, April 10, 2013

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Reduce Sun Spots

Sun spots, also known as sun freckles, age spots, liver spots or solar lentigines, are caused by prolonged exposure to ultraviolet light from either the sun or a tanning bed rather than by aging. Sun spots can develop from not using sunscreen regularly or from not taking other measures to protect the skin, such as wearing a hat or long sleeves. Although sun spots are not cancerous, you may be more at risk for skin cancer. Even so, most people don’t want sun spots on their skin.

Sun spots is a common condition of hyperpigmentation in which patches of skin become darker in color than the surrounding skin. When you skin is exposed to ultraviolet radiation, your skin naturally produces a brown pigment called melanin that makes your skin tan to help absorb the radiation in a safer way. However, overexposure to the sun without sunscreen can cause excess melanin deposits to form in the skin, leaving behind freckle-like spots that can become darker or more pronounced as your skin becomes exposed to the sun.

Although there are fade creams and laser treatments that will reduce or remove sun spots, they tend to be expensive and may contain bleach.

Sunscreen
The easiest and most obvious way to prevent sun spots is to apply sunscreen of at least SPF 30 daily to your face, arms and shoulders before going outdoors. Sunscreen will also prevent any existing sun spots you have from growing larger and larger. Remember that the sun’s ultraviolet rays are the strongest between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Aloe Vera
This transparent gel has been used for thousands of years to treat wounds and burns. Although there is no scientific consensus yet, there is a lot of anecdotal evidence supporting the effectiveness of aloe vera in reducing sun spots. Plus, aloe vera is natural, non-toxic when used externally, will not harm the skin, and is cheap to purchase. Apply aloe to your sun spots twice a day and watch them gradually fade away.

Vitamin C and E
High levels of Vitamin C is a natural skin brightener, but you skin will be more sensitive to sunlight, so be sure to wear sunscreen. Vitamin E oil gives your skin moisture and antioxidants it needs for healing. When applied to sun spots, Vitamin E encourages your skin cells to regenerate. As an added bonus, Vitamin E oil smooths your skin and removes imperfections.

Lemon Juice
Apply lemon juice directly to your sun spots, wait 15 minutes, and then rinse your skin. Lemon juice is safe and effective in lightening your skin. The sun spots should fade or disappear within a few weeks

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In The Know: Black Henna Tattoos May Leave Permanent Scars

- Saturday, March 30, 2013

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Temporary Tattoo

Spring break is here and many young adults show off cool body art by getting henna tattoos. Henna tattoos are realistic-looking and temporary, lasting from a few days to several weeks before fading away. Risk free and fun, right? Well, a new warning from the FDA states that certain temporary tattoos can cause permanent damage. In this case, the warning is for “black henna” tattoos.

Unlike permanent tattoos where ink is injected under the skin, henna tattoos are drawn or stenciled onto the skin’s surface. Traditional henna is reddish-brown and is derived from a flowering plant that is native to Asia and Africa. Traditional henna has been used for skin decoration for centuries and is not part of the warning.

The FDA warning has to do with “black henna” tattoos that contain para-phenylenediamine (PPD). PPD is commonly used for hair dye, smells like bleach or ammonia, and is not approved for direct application to the skin. If the temporary tattoo artist is using ink that is jet-black and stains quickly, then it is most likely PPD based.

Direct application of PPD to the skin can have horrible side effects. The FDA has received reports of redness, blisters filled with fluid, loss of pigmentation, and permanent scarring. The reactions may be immediate or may not appear for a few days or weeks after exposure. One particular report from a mother, who also happens to be a nurse, states that her daughter’s skin looked “the way of a burn victim, all blistered and raw.”

Protect your skin and if you are thinking about getting temporarily body art, be sure that the artist is not using “black henna.” Be on the lookout for jet-black ink, as it may be PPD based. When in doubt, don’t take the risk or you may be left with a permanent scar.

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In The Know: Skin Types and Sun Exposure Risks

- Monday, January 28, 2013

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Skin Types

Know your skin type to beeter protect it from the sun.  Match your skin to the color that best resembles your own.

  • Type 1: Always burns and is extremely sun sensitive
     
  • Type 2: Always burns easily, tans mimimally, and is very sun sensitive

  • In Summary: You are at the greatest risk of developing skin cancer.  Be aware of any changes to your skin (moles).

  •  
  • Type 3: Sometimes burns, tans to light brown, and is minimally sun sensitive

  • Type 4: Burns mimimally, tans to moderate brown, and is mimimally sun sensitive
     
  • Type 5: Rarely burns, tans well, and is not sun sensitive

  • In Summary:  Even though your skin can tan, it is still vulnerable to skin cancer.  

  •  
    Type 6: Never burns, deeply pigmented, and is not sun sensitive 

  • In Summary: Your skin offers more protection against UV radiation than the other skin types. Skin cancer is relatively rare. Be most protective of your eyes by wearing sunglasses or a hat.
     
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In The Know: Sunscreens Explained

- Monday, December 24, 2012

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Sunscreens Explained

With a plethora of sunscreen lotions available on the market, it can be difficult to choose which one is right for you. Each sunscreen makes claims that are purely for marketing purposes, so by knowing the basics below, you’ll be able to decipher the facts from the fluff.
 

What is Sunscreen?

Sunscreen helps prevent the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) radiation rays, particularly UVA and UVB, from reaching and damaging the skin. UVB rays are the chief cause of redness and sunburns and damage the top layers of the skin.

UVA rays penetrate deeply into the skin and are responsible for prematurely aging skin by causing it to wrinkle and to become leather-like. UVA is the dominant tanning ray and accelerates the development of skin cancer, especially by intensifying the carcinogen effects of UVB rays. UVA rays account for 95% of the UV radiation that reaches the earth’s surface and is the type of ray tanning booths emit, but with a dose 12 times more powerful than the sun.
 

What is SPF?

SPF, or Sun Protection Factor, is a measure of a sunscreen’s ability to prevent UVB rays, not UVA rays, from damaging the skin. In simple terms, SPF prevents you from getting ‘burned.’ However, reddening” is caused to UVB rays alone, so plenty of UVA damage can be done even if you do not get a sunburn. A number denotes SPF, and the most common ones are 15, 30, and 50.

The higher the SPF, the more UVB rays are blocked.

  • SPF 15 – Filters 93% of all incoming UVB rays
  • SPF 30 – Filters 97%
  • SPF 50 – Filters 98%

Notice that no sunscreen can block 100% of UVB rays. Although SPF 15 provides excellent protection, it may be best to use 30 or 50 if you have sensitive skin or for good measure. The extra couple of percentages may not seem significant, but do make a difference if your skin is exposed to the sun for hours and hours.

The SPF number is also a theoretical factor of how long the sunscreen can prevent reddening. For example, if it takes 10 minutes for your unprotected skin to start turning red, then using a SPF 15 sunscreen prevents reddening 15 times longer, or about 2.5 hours.

Regardless of the SPF used, sunscreen should be thoroughly reapplied to your skin every two hours and more frequently if you swim or excessively sweat.
 

What is Multi-Spectrum or Broad Spectrum Protection?

These labels indicated that some UVA protection is provided, but there is no consensus on how much protection is provided. Although it is best to use a broad spectrum sunscreen that offers both UVA and UVB protection, keep in mind that these labels are purely for marketing effect.
 

Sunscreen and Skin Protection Guidelines

  • Seek shaded between the hours of 10am to 4pm
  • Apply 1 ounce, or a shot glass full, of sunscreen to your entire body 20 minutes before going outside. Reapply every 2 hours or immediately after getting out of the water or if you excessively sweat
  • Keep newborns out of the sun. Sunscreen should be used on babies over the age of 6 months
  • Cover up exposed skin, wear a hat, UV-blocking sunglasses, and do not burn. Skin cancer is more likely to develop if you have burned.
  • Examine your skin monthly and professionally by your physician yearly

 

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How to Prevent Dry Skin During the Winter

- Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Keeping your skin healthy during the winter can be as challenging as it is in the summer. Even though most of our skin is constantly covered during the cold winter months, little do we realize how many nutrients, moisture, and natural oils are being zapped out of our skin. As our hands and skin become dry, itchy, and cracked, we realize how difficult it can be to treat these winter skin symptoms. If untreated, dry skin my lead to dermatitis, which causes swelling and infection.

Here are some tips to help prevent and treat dry skin:

  • Drink at least 8 glasses (8oz) of pure water each day to keep your body and skin properly hydrated. If you are active, drink more. Limit the intake of caffeinated and alcoholic drinks. These drinks act as a diuretic, causing you to produce more urine and make more bathroom trips.
     
  • Use moisturizing creams and lotions that do not contain alcohol or fragrances.
     
  • Avoid moisture-robbing harsh soaps. Instead, use a mild, fragrance-free soap that is better for sensitive skin.
     
  • Take shorter showers with lukewarm water. The hotter and longer the shower, the more you dry out your skin.
     
  • Moisturize after showering and washing your hands.
     
  • Don’t forget about your lips and apply lip balm.  Also, wear gloves and a scarf to protect your hands and face when going out.
     
  • New studies have shown that omega-3 fish oil pills may soothe dry skin after several weeks of daily intake. Omega 3 fish oil is a highly beneficial health supplement that you want to consider taking daily anyway.
     
  • Install a humidifier in your home to keep air constantly moist.
     
  • Use the SunBuddy Lotion Applicator to apply moisturizer to your back and to hard to reach areas.
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Vitamin D: To D or not to D

- Monday, December 3, 2012

Regular exposure to sunlight allows our skin cells to use UVB rays to synthesize vitamin D, a steroid vitamin that is important for a maintaining a strong immune system. Other benefits include:

  • Helps prevent prostate, colon, breast, and other cancers and bone diseases (osteoporosis)
  • Provides calcium balance in the body that prevents arthritis and osteomalacia
  • Helps reduce stress and depression
  • Makes skin soft, strong, and smooth and improves muscle strength
  • Helps reduce respiratory infections and severity of asthma symptoms
  • Helps reduce the risk of developing multiple sclerosis

However, with modern lifestyles that include more time indoors and scientists warning about the dangers of sun exposure and skin cancer, it is no surprise that most people are vitamin D deficient. Keep in mind that our skin makes vitamin D only when directly exposed to the sun, and skin exposed to sunshine indoors through a window will not produce vitamin D. Other factors such as cloudy days, smog, sunscreens, and having dark skin tone may reduce your body’s vitamin D synthesis.

Advocates of unprotected sun exposure promote 5-10 minutes of UV exposure from the sun 2-3 times a week so that the body can regularly synthesize vitamin D. However, dermatologists and skin cancer groups have strongly argued against unprotected sun exposure, since too much will damage skin cells, accelerate aging, and increase the risk of skin cancer.

So if unprotected sun exposure is too dangerous but yet our bodies need adequate amounts of vitamin D for good health, what is one to do?

Luckily, adequate amounts of vitamin D can be obtained from vitamin D fortified foods and dietary supplements, thus averting the need of dangerous UV exposure. Not many foods contain vitamin D, but the follow do:

  • Fish/Salmon
  • Cod liver Oil
  • Milk
  • Eggs
  • Fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Vitamin D fortified orange juice

Although vitamin D obtained from supplements are not as effective as naturally synthesized vitamin D by our body, it is a much safer and noncarcinogenic alternative to lying unprotected in the sun.

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Reasons Why You Need the SunBuddy Lotion Applicator

- Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Hard to Reach

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Hard to Reach

Use the SunBuddy Lotion Applicator to easily apply lotion to your back and to hard to reach areas of the body. Say goodbye to making awkward requests.

Safe Sun Exposure

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Safe Sun Exposure

The sun's UV rays are stronger than ever and skin cancer is on the rise. Use the SunBuddy Lotion Applicator to apply sunscreen and protect your skin from getting burned.

Dry Skin

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Dry Skin

Use the SunBuddy Lotion Applicator to apply moisturizer to your flaky back during the dry winter months.

 

Limited Mobility

SunBuddy Lotion Applicator - Limited Mobility

Use the SunBuddy Lotion Applicator to regain your independence and apply lotions and creams to your body yourself.

 

Tags: Skin Care, Tips
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Have a Tattoo, Rash, or Dry Skin? The SunBuddy Lotion Applicator Has Your Back

- Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The SunBuddy Lotion Applicator is not just for sunscreen. Use it to apply medication creams, body lotions, aloe vera, massage creams, soothing creams, tanning bed lotions, sunless tanners, tattoo creams, unwanted hair removal creams, and more. The SunBuddy’s removeable, replaceable, soft cosmetic pads are the most hygienic on the market. You can designate pads for certain lotions rather than use one pad for everything, as our competitors with fixed hard foam pads insist.

The compactness and discreteness of the SunBuddy Lotion Applicator make it the perfect bathroom accessory. Have a rash of your back that you cannot reach or is too embarrassing to ask your significant other or family member for help? Then use the SunBuddy Lotion Applicator to apply your medication cream.

Did you just get a new back piece tattoo and need help applying healing ointment to it every several hours? Then use the SunBuddy Lotion Applicator at your own convenience. Remember to thoroughly wash the pads after each use and to replace the pads as often to promote a quick healing process. Or maybe you just need help applying moisturizer to your back during the dry winter months. Whatever the situation is, SunBuddy has your back.

Be sure to always have extra SunBuddy replacement pads for all your needs. You can order a 3 pack replacement package here.

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Are Sunless Tanning Lotions and Sprays a Safe Alternative?

- Thursday, November 8, 2012

The sun’s UV rays are stronger than ever and with awareness that tanning beds are not a safer alternative, many sun enthusiasts have turned to sunless tanning products.  Sunless tanning lotions and sprays work by staining the outermost layer of the skin, promising consumers that year round ‘golden brown glow’ without the harmful effects of UV radiation rays.   

Sunless tanning lotions and sprays have come a long way.  Just a few years ago, sunless tanners were heavily criticized for leaving an unnatural, pumpkin orange tan. 

Despite skin cancer warnings, suntans are still glorified in the US and polls show that having a light brown tan is still regarded as fashionable and attractive.  But is there really such a thing as a 'safe tan'?

The active ingredient in sunless tanning lotions and sprays is a FDA approved chemical called dihydroxyacetone, or DHA.   The sugars in DHA react with the proteins in the outermost layer of the skin to produce a golden brown hue that lasts until it sheds off.  Although there are no studies that looked at the long-term health effects of DHA, dermatologists have initially concluded that there is no reason to expect any danger.  Also, the FDA has only received a few reports of allergic rashes from using sunless tanner lotion products. 

The important thing to keep in mind is that DHA is FDA approved for external use.  Recently toxicologists and lung experts have been weighing in on the potential dangers of inhaling tanning agents from sunless tanning sprays.  Therefore, the FDA has not approved the use of DHA in tanning booths as an all-over spray.   Using a protective eye cover and a nose plug is highly recommended to prevent the chemicals in the mist from entering the body.  

In conclusion, sunless tanning lotion is safer to use than sunless tanning sprays.  If you do opt for the spray, be sure to cover your eyes, nose and lips to avoid inhalation and ingestion.    

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Banana Boat Recalls Aerosol Sunscreen Over Fire Risk

- Friday, October 19, 2012

Energizer Holdings, the maker of Banana Boat sunscreen, is recalling some half-million bottles of spray-on lotion after reports that a handful of people have caught on fire after applying the product and coming in contact with an open flame.

Twenty three varieties of the UltraMist Banana Boat sunscreen line will be pulled off shelves due to supposed faulty value that is over applying the product.  As a result, the sunscreen is taking longer to dry and is more susceptible to catch on fire near open flames.  

In the past year, there have been 4 reported burn cases from using spray-on sunscreen in the United States. In May, Brett Sigworth of Stow, MA suffered second-degree burns on his ear, chest, and back after stepping in front of a barbecue grill shorty after applying aerosol spray-on sunscreen.  In September, Mary Shoulders of Chesapeake, VA suffered from third-degree burns on her arm after it caught of fire after applying spray-on sunscreen and returning to welding.

If you are near a barbecue, sparks, or even cigarettes, play it safe and stick to lotion-based sunscreen.

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