Thursday, August 16, 2012

Skin Smarts Worthy of Noting

There are different forms of what is considered “beautiful” on this planet. Did you know that in Eastern Asia, countries like Japan, China, and the Philippines, the cultures there promote the pursuance of a lighter skin color, encouraging the purchase of bleaching products and discouraging sun exposure as much as possible? Lighter skin color is associated with clean, beautiful skin on the eastern region of our planet. This notion is foreign to us on the western region. Here, the ideal image includes tan, glowing skin and it is this hue that radiates the idea of health and beauty. If your ideal image does include tan, glowing skin, achieve your ideal look through smart means.

What is skin cancer? This is the uninhibited growth of cells due to unrepaired DNA damage to skin cells causing mutations that reproduce quickly and form malignant tumors. Skin cancer does not halt at mutations within skin cells but can spread to nearby tissue or organs. Make sure to keep an eye out for the following formations:

Actinic Keratosis: elevated, rough in texture, and resemble warts. These often appear on areas most often exposed to the sun.

Basal Cell Carcinoma: a persistent, non-healing sore that bleeds, oozes, crusts, heals and then bleeds again. May also come in the form of a shiny bump or nodule that is pearly or translucent in the hue of pink, red white or tan, black or brown.

Melanoma: figures that are asymmetrical, uneven bordered, variation in hues, larger in diameter (e.g. larger than a pencil eraser), and continue to change in size, shape, color, and elevation.

Squamous Cell Carcinoma: scaly red patches, open sores, elevated growths with a central depression that crust or bleed.

Protection is key and options have been integrated into the very products we use daily. Apply sunscreen daily (at least SPF 15), especially on areas that are frequently exposed to sun (e.g. face, hands, neck, shoulders). Many makeup brands have integrated SPF into their formula but nothing beats using actual sunscreen underneath primer or foundation. On days you are running or are enjoying an activity or occasion in the sun, consider accessorizing your outfit with a hat and shades. Even on cloudy days, do not skimp on the SPF.

Now this is not to scare you and make you go into total hiding from the vampire death rays and some of you will barely give this a passing glance and forget this information as soon as you see it. But some of you, and I hope most of you, take this to heart and consider adding an additional 3-5 minutes to your daily skin care regiment and applying some SPF and considering accessories that can add both fashion and protection to your style.

Remember, your other skin care regiment, the cleansers, toners, moisturizers, acne prevention, dark spot remover, wrinkle eraser, makeup, etc, is no use to you without cell healthy skin. Be smart, be aware, be healthy through and through.

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