For some reason, sebum became public enemy number one in the fight for clearer skin. It is just as absurd as saying that tears should be blamed for smudged mascara! The only way to keep skin clean, they insist, is to completely stop the production of sebum. Sometimes your skin may feel tight and scaly. Instead of letting skin readjust itself by producing more sebum, we cover it with a synthetic, oily film that physically blocks water loss.
On top of this film, we may put an additional layer of waxes, petrochemicals, talc, and dyes in the form of makeup. To remove this airtight layer cake, we treat our skin with ionic surfactants and detergents that destroy the natural moisturizing factor, leaving the skin more vulnerable than before. Squeaky-clean is good for kitchen sinks, but not for human skin! While sebum locks moisture in skin, the natural moisturizing factor NMF keeps skin hydrated.
NMF is a mixture of water, free amino acids, lactic acid, and urea, as well as sodium, potassium, chloride, phosphate, calcium, and magnesium salts that keep the skin moist and supple by attracting and holding water. To help preserve water, skin cells contain fats and fatty acids, which trap water molecules and provide a waterproof barrier that prevents transepidermal water loss TEWL. TEWL is the constant movement of water through the epidermis.
What a joke! We find ourselves discussing the roots of this contention that, as of this date I have not yet heard being discussed, as well as what kind of relevance this contention has had not only on the last 2, years, but also more importantly on today. When it comes to skin care, we tend to be reactive rather than proactive. Skin can absorb up to 60 percent of substances applied to its surface. We are also read more Spaghetti! Download Naked City: places of Urban Fantasy existing history something primary.
Water evaporates through the epidermis to the surrounding atmosphere. Environmental factors such as humidity, temperature, season, and the moisture content of the skin can all affect TEWL. Our skin gets drier as we get older because it loses some of its intercellular lipids after age forty.
These moisturizers should become oilier, but not necessarily heavier, as our skin ages. Essential fatty acids can greatly help skin retain moisture, and since they are natural, our skin accepts them more happily, which means less irritation. Skin Eats, Too! Advocates of synthetic skin care insist that our skin is virtually watertight. Many say skin can be scrubbed, steamed, and washed, and nothing penetrates it deep enough to cause any damage. In fact, beauty is skin deep. Human skin is a powerful absorption organ that seems to be constantly hungry for anything that touches its surface.
Oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon dioxide, as well as toxic pollutants, enter our skin via three doors: sweat ducts, hair follicles and sebaceous glands, or directly across the stratum corneum. This ability of skin to absorb chemical substances so they can be spread throughout the body is widely used in medicine. Transdermal delivery drugs for motion sickness, cardiovascular disease, chronic pain, smoking cessation, and birth control are already widely used.
According to new estimates, our skin can absorb up to 60 percent of substances applied to its surface. Unfortunately, along with water, vitamins, minerals, and oxygen, skin soaks up potentially carcinogenic ingredients that increase our risk of having cancer at some point in our lives—as if breathing polluted air and eating chemicals was not enough!
To perform their magic, many cosmetic products need to push active ingredients deeper beyond the stratum corneum, the uppermost layer of skin comprised of dead skin cells. Traditionally, it was thought that hydrophilic water bonding, or dissolvable in water rather than oil chemicals do not penetrate deep into skin, while lipophilic chemicals oils or oil-in-water emulsions diffuse deeper inside the dermis.
Today, scientists know that the process is much more complicated. Various substances can penetrate the skin using different vehicles, sometimes as simple as water. This is when penetration enhancers, also called sorption promoters or accelerants, come into play.
Most common penetration enhancers include alcohols ethanol , glycols propylene glycol , and surfactants. Liposomes, biomolecular spheres that encapsulate various chemicals from drugs to active components of cosmetic products, also serve as penetration enhancers. The most common liposome is phosphatidylcholine from soybean or egg yolk, sometimes with added cholesterol. Some penetration enhancers, such as transferomes, which are made of surfactants and ethanol, are able to deliver up to percent of the drug applied topically! The greater its alcohol content, the deeper the solution is able to penetrate.
Many essential oils have been reported to be gentle yet effective penetration enhancers. It ends up in blood vessels and lymph ducts located in the epidermis and dermis layers. Skin cells get their nutrients and excrete toxins thanks to an endless circulation of blood and lymph. Lymph, a colorless fluid made of plasma, performs a vitally important drainage function since it provides white blood cells that produce antibodies to fight infection.
As chemicals are absorbed, they enter the bloodstream and travel with lymph across the body, to be eventually filtered out by the liver and flushed away by the kidneys. However, some substances remain inside the body, adding to the systemic load that can accumulate for decades. Most skin care products on themarket contain hundreds of synthetic additives whose safety is based on animal, not human, studies.
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Granted, humans are unlikely to encounter such doses. But many of us are loyal to cosmetic products. As a result,we are exposed to small doses of the same toxic chemicals for decades. No one can tell how daily applications of SPF50 sunscreen may impact our health ten years from now—apart from pale skin and possibly a lower risk of skin cancer—simply because these sunscreens have been introduced quite recently, and clinical studies do not cover long periods of time.
Chemical industry insiders say that only small amounts of potentially toxic ingredients are used in cosmetics, from 1 to 10 percent, or just a few micrograms. Medical researchers today are concerned about the long-term, snowballing effect of small doses of questionable chemicals that people absorb from products used consistently over long periods of time. That is 2ml of DEA per ml bottle of shampoo.
With daily shampooing, you end up using nearly an ounce of pure, industrial-strength DEA in a year. Now imagine that you pour a glass of this transparent, gooey substance over your head and start massaging it vigorously into your skin. Then you wash it off with a stream of hot water so this goo spreads over your freshly scrubbed, warm, and unprotected body. Does it make you feel healthy or more beautiful? Skin can absorb up to 60 percent of substances applied to its surface. Part of the problem is that no laboratory has ever found a human volunteer to participate in a study that would involve voluntarily rubbing your head with undiluted diethanolamine—whether derived from coconut or petroleum.
Only rats can handle this tough job. A recent study by a team of researchers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill found that fetuses of pregnant mice that were exposed to DEA showed slower cell growth and increased cell death in parts of the brain responsible for memory. Simply put, they were smaller and less smart. This happened because DEA has a similar structure to choline, a molecule that is needed in large quantities for normal brain development Niculescu et al. When potential cancer-causing poisonous chemicals are absorbed by the skin and carried with the blood all over the body, the offending chemical can interact with other chemicals in our system.
Sometimes these reactions produce substances that provoke cells to evolve in the wrong way, resulting in cancer. Diethanolamine can combine with amines present in cosmetic formulations to form nitrosamines, among them N-nitrosodiethanolamine, which is known to be highly carcinogenic. In the best-case scenario, they may worsen existing acne or cause an allergic reaction that resembles acne.
If you do not understand that toxic chemicals in cosmetics make us sick and age prematurely, you will remain a victim of the chemical industry, and it is not good for your skin or the health of the planet. For example, the skin will be exposed to more retinoic acid from a potent prescription-only cream than from an over-the-counter lotion that contains the same ingredient.
How long will it remain on the skin? Our skin will soak up more paraben preservatives from a moisturizer that remains on the skin for hours than from a cleanser that is quickly washed off, but if you rub the cleanser vigorously, the absorption rate will increase. How much water does it contain?
It was once thought that oil-based skin care products penetrate the skin more readily than those that contain water. Today, we know that well-hydrated skin absorbs chemicals at a much higher rate. Besides, hydration can be increased by paraffin, oils, and waxes. Paraffin, oils, and waxes as components of skin creams, ointments, and water-in-oil emulsions— basically anything that prevents transepidermal water loss—can improve the amount of chemicals soaked up by skin.
Water acts as an excellent natural penetration enhancer. How healthy is the skin? Undamaged, strong skin can shield us from many toxic substances and germs, but even a slight scratch or cut becomes a welcome sign for anything we do not want inside our bodies.
Even something as innocuous as the removal of outer layers of skin with a facial scrub or a peeling mask can dramatically increase dermal absorption. Inflamed, swollen acne pimples absorb more benzoyl peroxide than the healthy skin just a millimeter away.
Where do we apply the product? Skin on different areas of the body varies in thickness. For example, facial skin will absorb ingredients twenty times faster than the thicker skin on the palms of the hands.