Most of us know the importance of using  sunscreen to protect our skin from ultraviolet rays(UV rays). However, there is often the misconception about sunscreen and sunblock. Although they might be similar in offering protection against the sun, they actually differ in their mechanism of action.

Sunblock

Just like what the name has suggested, sunblock works by physically blocking out the sun’s UV rays.  Hence, sunblock serves as a physical blockers of the sun’s UV rays. The two important active ingredients found in sunblock are Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide.

For Titanium Dioxide, it offers protection for UVB and short UVA rays while Zinc Oxide blocks out both UVA and UVB rays. Generally, in comparison to sunscreen, sunblock is better tolerated by most skin types as the active ingredients used in sunscreen might cause irritation to the skin. However, one major disadvantage of sunblock is that it tends to leave a whitish tint behind when applied to the skin.

Sunscreen

On the other hand, sunscreen works by chemically absorbing the UV rays at the skin’s top layer and converting them into energy before they penetrate further into the skin. Some common chemical UV filters include Aminobenzoic acid derivatives, Benzophenones,  Cinnamates and Salicylates. Find out more here. In addition, sunscreen is able to offer coverage for the full spectrum of UVA rays and UVB rays

Sometimes, chemical ingredients are combined with that of physical blockers to obtain better coverage against UVA and UVB radiation.

With all these information, you are now able to decide whether sunblock or sunscreen is best suited for your skin!

Most of us are familiar with facial acne and its causes. However, acne is not just restricted to our face as it can also appear on the other areas of the body, more commonly on the back and sometimes arms.

Back acne, also known as bacne develops when there is an overproduction of sebum due to sebaceous glands. Sebaceous glands found below the surface of the skin produces sebum through the pores of the skin. Hence, when excess sebum are produced, these pores become clogged which prevent the removal of dead skin cells. This eventually results in acne which can appear in the forms of blackheads, pimples, pustules or even cysts.

In comparison to facial acne, it is usually more challenging to treat acne on the back as the skin is much thicker. Also, with larger sebcaeous glands on the back, more sebum will be produced causing the back to be much oiler as well. This is also why the back tends to develop more severe lesions like nodues and cysts, which is hard to treat and likely to scar

Tips

SHOWER REGULARLY

Make sure to use a body wash which has anti-bacterial properties. Whenever possible, try to shower right after any excessive perspiration. This is because perspiration together with the sebum produced can cause further clogging of the skin pores which tends to aggravate the condition.

EXFOLIATE DAILY

With the skin on the back being much thicker than the skin on the face, it is naturally more difficult to get rid of dead skin cells on the back. Hence, regular exfoliation is necessary to promote the growth of new skin cells on the back.

KEEP YOUR FABRICS CLEAN AT ALL TIMES

Things like towels, pillowcases, bedsheets, clothes  and anything else which might come into contact with your back should be kept clean as bacteria present on these fabrics can cause back acne. Sometimes, back acne can be caused by external irritants like the wearing of  tight fitting clothing or the carrying of back pack. Hence, try to wear natural fabrics like cotton instead of nylon and avoid carrying your belongings in a backpack.

TEA TREE OIL

Tea tree oil contains a constituent called terpinen-4-ol which is responsible for killing bacteria and has been frequently  used topically to acne lesions. Frequent use can help destroy bacterial that causes back acne.

APPLE CIDER VINEGAR

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) is an effective natural bacteria-fighting agent that contains many vital minerals and trace elements that are vital for a healthy body. Find out how to prepare home remedies to treat back acne.

ALOE VERA GEL

Aloe Vera helps reduce the redness and swelling that comes with acne rather than destroy it. Best to apply after cleansing, it is able to soothe skin and heal scarring.

RETIN-A

Retin A is used topically to treat acne and requires a prescription by dermatologist. It is not suitable for women who are pregnant or if you are suffering from eczema.

LED LIGHT

Medical grade blue LED light has been proven effective in reducing acne by killing bacteria. Coupled with red LED light that can reduce inflammation, this combination is a documented therapy for the control of acne.

Having back acne can be frustrating. If you are facing severe back acne problems, do consult a professional Aesthetician for advice. In cases where the acne is caused by hormonal problems, you might have to seek treatments with a dermatologist.

PS: Porcelain offers an effective Back Treatment Solution using products meant for the face on your back. Designed to lighten scars and pigmentation, reduce back acne and other skin problems, Porcelain’s “Get Your Sexy Back” Treatment leaves your back feeling silkier and smoother than ever. Try out the “Get Your Sexy Back” Treatment at 50% discount and get a complimentary product. Limited Time only. Click here for promotion details.

-Pauline Ng

Ever envy the others of their perfect lips? People tend to neglect the care for their lips due to various reasons.. Here are 5 easy ways we have found to be effective in helping you achieve sexier lips in no time.

First, understanding the make up of our lips:

The skin of our lips are much thinner and extremely delicate as it is only made up of three to five cellular layers. With the absence of sweat glands and sebaceous glands in the lip skin, our lips tend to dry out more easily, resulting in chapped lips. Usually, we will try to moisturize our lips by licking them but this only make the lips even drier than before as the evaporation process is now sped up. Here are the 5 steps to sexier lips:

EXFOLIATE

Similiar to your skin care regime, exfoliation is also an essential step in your lip care regime. Regular exfoliation aids in the generation of new and soft lip skin as dead skin on the lips are now removed. For proper exfoliation, use a soft toothbrush and gently scrub your lips to remove any dry flakes. Lastly, use a lip balm to lock in the moisture for your lips.

MOISTURIZE

It is advised that you should apply lip balm to your lips before applying any lipstick to your lips. If possible, try to avoid the use of any flavoured lip balm as it causes more lip licking, making your lips prone to being chapped.

SUN PROTECTION

Excessive exposure to the sun can also result in chapped lips. In this case, remember to use a lip balm which has at least SPF of 15.

AVOID SMOKING

Smoking dries up the lips and reduces the amount of oxygen supplied to your lips. Without a sufficient amount of blood flow to your lip tissues, your lips will look dull and dark.

AVOID CAFFEINE & ALCOHOL

Drinks like coffee and alcohol are diuretics which means they dehydrate your body. Avoid these drinks for better skin and LIPS!

MAINTAIN A HEALTHY DIET

A healthy and well balance diet helps to keep your lips soft and supple. Eat more fresh fruits, vegetables and drink plenty of water to keep your skin hydrated.

 

Lastly, do you know that signs of aging do not only just appear on the face? In fact, our lips are not spared from the aging process. Lip lines tend to develop as we age causing us to look much older than we really are.

To effectively prevent this, start your lip care regime today and you will be one step closer to your ideal lips and a younger look!

The ideal of eternal youth will never fail to drive some of the most expensive skin care and scientific research. At this point, it is still an inevitable process unavoidable by no one. However, there is a glimpse of hope in slowing down the aging process by taking adequate amounts of anti-oxidants. In this entry, let us share with you how antioxidants are able to aid in fighting free radicals – one of the causes of aging.

Free Radicals

They are unstable electrons that are by-products which tend to react quickly with other electrons to gain stability. There are 2 ways they can be formed. First, when the cells in our body uses oxygen, it begins a chemical reaction chain which will result in the formation of Free Radicals. The second way which they are formed is during metabolism and when fighting against any viruses and bacteria present in the body.

Our body is designed to deal with these free radicals. However, when there is an insufficient amount of antioxidants or an excessive amount of free radicals in the body, our cells will be damaged and structure of our DNA changed, resulting in aging.

We have often seen how a piece of sliced apple turns brown within minutes due to oxidation. This is very much the same like the free radicals inside our body. But if this sliced apple is coated with orange juice, an antioxidant food that contains Vitamin C, the sliced apple will be able to prevent oxidation for a much longer time.

Thus, to effectively protect our cells against these free radicals, the intake of antioxidants are especially important. Not only do antioxidants break off these chain reactions, they also act as scavengers to neutralize the effects of the free radicals.

Here, you will find some sources where you can derive 3 great antioxidants!

Vitamin A

  • Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Broccoli
  • Peaches
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Pomegranates
  • Blueberries

Vitamin C

  • Orange
  • Lime
  • Kiwis
  • Strawberries
  • Green leafy vegetables

Vitamin E

  • Nuts
  • Whole grains
  • Vegetable oil

Other antioxidants include food that are rich in phytochemicals. Found in fruits and vegetables, phytochemicals are compounds produced by plants which has antioxidant properties. It is also able to help improve the body’s immune system while reducing the risk of cancers. Some  common types of phytochemicals includes Flavonoids, Lycopene, Lutein and Lignan which can be derived from food like Tea, Soy, Oatmeal, Barley, Broccoli, Watermelon and Rye.

Free radicals are also present in the air as well as the food that we consume. Therefore, it is increasingly important for us to include antioxidants in our daily diet. Not only will it help to fight against aging, it can also greatly reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancer.

Taking food rich in antioxidant goes a long way. Start to include them in your diet if you have not and you will still be able to flaunt your youthful look irregardless of your age!

-valerine