Eczema is a skin condition where the skin becomes itchy, dry, red and cracked. It is not only uncomfortable, but also causes unsightly marks and scars.

To give you a better understanding of what eczema is about, below are some common symptoms of eczema:

1. Skin may appear cracked and dry
2. Some may experience itchiness and if scratched, the skin will be raw
3. Inflamed areas may also develop blisters or have pus
4. There may be small and raised bumps
5. Skin at the affected area may also be thickened

If you have eczema, you should also have noticed that the following may worsen your skin condition: 

1. Hot showers
2. Stress
3. Sweating
4. Dry air
5. Certain fabrics such as wool
6. Dust
7. Sand
8. Smoking
9. Hormonal levels

What is the treatment for eczema:

1. Avoid scratching:
As simple as this may sound, scratching is really a natural response and often done unknowingly. It is important to pay special attention to this, and avoid aggravating your skin any further and make the symptoms worse. Scratching also increases the risk of skin infections and inflammation, and we certainly do not want that to happen.

2. Keep your skin hydrated:
People with eczema have very dry skin, which also results in the itching and cracking, making it very uncomfortable to deal with. To help with the skin condition, we recommend keeping your skin hydrated at all times.

To keep your skin protected and hydrated, you can consider trying Porcelain’s Soothe, Aloe Recovery Gel. This light, ultra soothing gel heals & hydrates your skin and eases irritation. It is specially formulated with pure aloe extracts to soothe skin and shield it from environmental aggressors. It is also able to pamper and calm stressed skin, and helps to improve your skin’s moisture balance and promote your skin’s natural resilience.

3. Prevent skin inflammation & irritation:
The reason why your skin is bumpy, red and cracked is that it is highly irritated and inflamed, and you should get eczema treatment products that can help you alleviate the problem.

Porcelain’s Pure, Botanical Soothing Gel has anti-inflammatory and healing properties to calm irritated skin, it is also highly effective in treating eczema and other skin irritations. Using it daily on affected areas can allow you to observe better results.

4. Keep your skin clear off other aggressors
Things like dust, sand and sweat are highly likely to worsen your eczema problem. We’re not saying that you should not exercise or go near the beach or sea, but it’d be great if you could minimise your skin encounters with these aggressors and keep your skin clean and fresh!

5. Look for soap substitutes & bath oils:
Normal soap is alkaline and can further dry out your skin. Soap and detergent based shampoos should also be avoided. We would also recommend slathering on some bath oils after your bath, to help lock in moisture and treat dry skin.

Before we go on to tell you how to minimize your pore size, let us first answer the question of many – ‘Why do I have such large pores?!’

#1 People with oily skin tend to have large pores

When you have oily skin, it tends to produce excess sebum.  This results in more oil and dirt collected in your skin, making the pore swell and looking larger than usual.

This does not mean that people with normal and dry skin will not have to deal with the problem of large pores. Though people with normal or dry skin tend to have smaller pores than those with combination or oily skin, they are still susceptible to open or large pore problems.

#2 Your pore size tends to increase with age

As you get older, you skin starts to lose its elasticity, which can cause your pores to look bigger. The effects of environmental aggressors such as sun damage, also typically accumulates with age. Simply put, the older you get, the more likely you’ve been exposed to the sun for longer hours, which causes your skin to thicken and pore size to increase.

#3 Genetic predisposition

You may have large pores due to your genetic predisposition. As with many other things – height, intelligence, body size, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that your pore size could well be attributed to your genetic predisposition. It simply means if one or both of your parents have large pores, it’s likely that you might have gotten it from them.

#4 Hormonal changes

Women may observe larger pores due to menstruation, pregnancy or menopause. Larger pores are usually more noticeable around their nose and cheeks, and this condition may come and go as hormonal levels fluctuate, but as women age, the difficulty of reducing the pore size increases.

Enough said about the problems.

Here’s bringing to you our recommended solutions:

#1 Exfoliation

Without exfoliating your skin, the dirt and dead skin cells are likely to accumulate and cause you to have larger pores. During puberty, pores often enlarge to handle the increased oil output from sebaceous glands. Most enlarged pores appear at nose, chin, and forehead (the T-zone area) so you might want to concentrate your exfoliation on these affected areas.

Porcelain’s Revive – Natural Skin Refiner can help with that…

Pore Size - Exfoliate with Porcelain's Natural Skin Refiner

Credit: Wear Oh Where

The Revive – Natural Skin Refiner is a gentle and non-abrasive exfoliator that is suitable for all skin types. It gets rid of dull skin, improving skin radiance and texture. This is specially formulated with natural enzymes to dissolve dead skin cells and stimulate cell renewal.

#2 Use a Pore Strip

Pore strips can come in quite handy in reducing your pore size. All you need to do is let it sit on your skin for around 10 to 15 minutes and peel it off once it dries up. Those who have tried it before might have observed tiny looking hairs stuck onto your strip. Here’s the good news – they are actually not hairs, they are the sebum and dead skin cells that were clogging your pores and contributing to the appearance of large and open pores. I’d highly recommend you to splash some cold water onto your face to close up the pores.

#3 Tone your skin

Using a toner is effective when it comes to minimizing your pores.  It may seem like a redundant step for many, but the functions of toners go far and wide, and one of which includes toning your skin, which helps to reduce your pore size.

Similarly from the Revive line, Porcelain’s Revive – Glycolic Toner contains AHAs and BHAs. Enriched with a unique blend of alpha-hydroxy acids and Vitamins C & E, it clarifies sluggish complexions and protects it against free radicals that cause signs of ageing. Infused with sea salt, witch-hazel, aloe vera and Sodium Hyaluronate, this toner also helps soothe inflammation, hydrates, and accelerate collagen and elastin production. Pore Size - Tone with Porcelain's Glycolic Toner to brighten and refine skin

#4 Pore- Refining Treatments

1. Porcelain’s Cryotherapy Intensive

Like our Cryotherapy™ treatment but better. Bringing your skin’s temperature to a new low of -15 degrees Celcius, this treatment also features a Low-Frequency CryoProbe for improved toning, firming and lifting results. Your skin absorbs products better and faster with Iontophoresis, while deeper Cryostamp depths help work wonders for pore and scars reduction and brightening.

2. Porcelain’s 3Deep™ RF Fractional Skin Resurfacing*

If your large pores are a result of aging skin, you might want to consider a treatment like FSR. It is a breakthrough technology certified by the FDA, which enables simultaneous micro-ablation of the epidermis with volumetric dermal regeneration to affect aging skin and atrophic acne scars, achieving the effects of pore refining, and skin firming & lifting. This technology combines RF with FSR to achieve amazing clinical results.

Have you seen the back of your skin care product? If you have, I am sure the hard-to-understand ingredients stated often confuse you. It is important for you to know which ingredients you should look out for, and which you should avoid. Know what goes into your product to keep your skin healthy!

 

A:

Alcohol (SD Alcohol)

Alcohol enables other ingredients to penetrate into your skin. In toners and acne products, it can help dissolve oil and temporarily tighten pores. However, it breaks down skin barrier at the same time, destroying the very substances that keep your skin healthy.

Allatoin

Allatoin is a natural chemical compound that is found in botanical extracts. Chemically synthesized allatoin is identical to natural ones, so it is considered safe. It is known for its natural soothing and anti-irritant properties that increase the water content. It also smoothes skin by increasing cell turnover.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA)

AHA is an organic skin care ingredient from milk, fruit and sugar cane. It is best for normal to dry skin. It works only at the surface of the skin, loosening the molecular bonds and easing the removal of dead skin cells. It also helps to bind moisture and aid production of collagen and elastin, moisturizing, smoothening and brightening your skin.

However, it can cause sun sensitivity and skin irritation. The most common types of AHA are glycolic acid, lactic acid, citric acid, malic acid, mandelic acid, salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid.

Alpha Lipoic Acid

Alpho Lipoic Acid is the perfect anti-aging agent. It is an antioxidant that can prevent and repair damage by neutralizing free radicals. It is soluble in both water and oil that it reaches all body parts effectively. It diminishes fine lines and is capable of preserving other powerful antioxidants such as Vitamin C and E.

Amino Acid

It is important in building the structure of the skin. It is responsible for proteins that make up collagen and elastin and contains skin-firming properties. It also helps in the penetration of your skincare products.

Avobenzone

This is a common sunscreen ingredient that offers protection against UVA rays. It absorbs UVA rays and converts them to less damaging infrared heat reducing photo-damage. However, it does not protect us from UVB rays.

 

B:

Benzoyl Peroxide

Benzoyl Peroxide is an effective acne medicine! It takes off the layer of dead skin cells and clears your pores. In addition, it also kills bacteria that trigger breakouts on your skin. However, it can cause irritation to your skin, so it is best to start from low concentration.

Bisabolol

Bisobolol is a thick oily liquid from chamomile plant. It is an anti-inflammatory extract that helps alleviate skin discomfort. It enhances absorption and reduces skin dehydration and damage. It also increases skin penetration, especially of skin antioxidants.

 

C:

Caffeine / Coffeeberry

Caffeine not only has the function to keep us awake, it is also beneficial to our skin. It reduces the appearance of cellulite and puffy eyes. It is also a powerful antioxidant, has anti-inflammatory properties and helps regulate oil glands.

Ceramides

Naturally occurring in skin’s oil, these fats act as ‘glue’ of the epidermis cells to reinforce the skin’s protective barrier. These barriers can reduce infections and holds moisture preventing wrinkles. Research has proven that people with eczema and sensitive skin have a lower level of ceramides. Many of the moisturizers off counters contain ceramides.

Coenzyme Q10 (Ubiquinone)

I’m sure you have seen supplement pills with coenzyme Q10 advertised as the best anti-aging pills. Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10 in abbreviated form) is a vitamin-like, fat-soluble substance in charge of cell protection. It prevents the appearance of wrinkles, repairs sun damage and boosts collagen production, acting as a powerful antioxidant.

Collagen

Most of you would know collagen deals with skin elasticity, boosting a youthful look. It comprises 80% of skin and keeps skin firm and strong. Collagen, like CoQ10, breaks down over time.

 

D:

Dimethicone

This silicone based polymer works as a safe anti-foaming agent, skin protectant, and skin and hair conditioner. It is easily spreadable and creates a subtle gloss that feels smooth and silky to touch when applied. Besides these functions, it fills fine lines, giving even texture and tone. Lastly, it forms a membrane that keeps water from evaporating.

 

E:

Elastin

A protein named elastin is always mentioned when it comes to anti-ageing. Along with collagen, elastin supports the epidermis. It keeps skin flexible but tight and smooth. Hence, if the elastin breaks down, your skin cannot be supported and thus becomes saggy and wrinkly. It is vulnerable to sun damage, so always apply sunscreen!

Emollient

It is usually used as a synonym for moisturizer. Emollient keeps skin hydrated by restraining water evaporation. It also softens your skin by delivering moisture by itself!

Emulsifier

Emulsifiers refer to ingredients that create a stable mixture of different elements. They are used to bind non-mixing ingredients such as water and oil.

 

F:

Ferulic Acid

Ferulic Acid is one of the few powerful antioxidants from plants. It is often used with Vitamin C and E to facilitate stabilized combination and boost their functions. This is not all! It is a fabulous ingredient that maximizes photoprotective capacity for dry to normal skin.

Feverfew

Feverfew, a plant related to sunflower, has a huge soothing effect. Since one of constituents, parthenolides, may irritate or sensitize the skin, it has to be purified when used in cosmetics. Thanks to its calming effect, it reduces inflammation, minimizes redness by sunburn, and protects against free radicals making it suitable for treating acne, rosacea and irritated skin. However, it is not recommended for pregnant or nursing women and children under 2 years old.

Fragrance

Fragrance often indicates synthetic chemical compounds used to generate delightful scents, but it is also the number one factor that triggers allergic reactions. Don’t be fooled by their pleasant scent!

 

These are common ingredients that go into your daily skin care products. Check the ingredients before you buy the product and you will be able to select the most suitable ones for your skin!

Yes, we know differentiating skin care products can be quite a hair-pulling experience, and we often end up asking ourselves ‘what does what again?’

Differentiating Skin Care Products

Credit: Guan Min

With the increasing amount and ranges of beauty products, each proclaiming to solve a specific skin problem and suitable for different skin types, choosing the right skin care product can become a huge hassle.

What’s more, now your product comes in different textures and forms! Take moisturizer for example. Most of us know it’s important to use a moisturizer to keep our skin hydrated, but how many of us know what’s the difference between an emulsion, a lotion or a cream/gel-based moisturizer.

To make it as easily digestible as possible, we’ve created a simple guide to teach you the difference between the commonly mixed up skin care products…

1. Sunblock vs. Sunscreen  

A sunblock usually has a thicker consistency that is able to stay longer on the skin. It contains physical blocks like titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. When you apply sunblock, the rays are deflected before it penetrates your skin.

Sunscreen, on the other hand, absorbs the UV rays to prevent your skin from taking them in. It contains chemicals like avobenzone, oxybenzone etc, which can cause skin irritation or allergic reactions if you have sensitive skin.

Rule of thumb: Choose a sunblock or sunscreen that offers both UVA and UVB protection!  Use a sunblock instead of sunscreen if you have sensitive skin.

2. Serum vs. Essence

Serums are basically a lighter form of essence. You might have noticed that they are usually more pricey than your regular moisturizer. This is because they contain a high concentration of ingredients, designed to target specific skin problems, and also help in the absorption of your moisturizer. Essence, on the other hand, contains essential ingredients that feed your skin nutrients. Essentially, serums are usually lighter and more concentrated than essences.

3. Emulsion vs. Lotion

Emulsions and lotions are lighter forms of creams, so they’re generally more suitable for people with sensitive skin.

The difference between emulsions and lotions is simple – lotion is thicker than emulsion. So if you have ultra thin and sensitive skin, it is best that you use an emulsion, which is less likely to irritate your skin or clog your pores.

4. Cream vs. Gel Based Moisturizer

Gel- vs. cream-based moisturizers: What's the difference?

Credit: Ian Dooley

Gel-based moisturizers tend to be the thinnest and easiest to penetrate quickly into your skin. As a gel-based moisturizer is not as rich as a cream-based moisturizer, it is less likely to clog your pores. Cream-based moisturizers, being the richest of all, is most suitable for dry or ultra dry skin.

For our Singaporean readers:

Based on our experience, Singapore’s climate causes you to have oily skin that appears dry on the surface. This means that a cream based moisturizer is likely to be too rich for your skin. Avoid cream-based moisturizers, as it is likely to clog your pores!

 


UPDATED 27 MAR 2019:

Curious to find out what your skin is like, and how exactly to care for it?
For a limited time only, enjoy a Skin Discovery analysis at $65 and receive a complimentary 3-piece customisable travel set (worth $99).*

What’s inside the Travel Set?
1x Cleanser,  Toner, Gel, and Travel Pouch


* $65 is redeemable for credits to offset the cost of any ala carte treatment. Terms & conditions apply.

 


Take care of that ring on it,

 

 

 

 


 

READ MORE STORIES HERE:

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Is A Mid-Day Cleanse Bad for My Skin? 

Layering Hydration the Right Way | #SkinHacks

Rescue & Restore: 4 Steps to Restore Glow to Post-Holiday Skin | #GetYourGlowOn

 

 

Skin Care Myth No. 1: Expensive skin care products work best

This is absolutely not true. In fact, there are many mass market products that are better than expensive ones. This does not mean that expensive products are not as effective. It’s just that you might be able to get something similar at a cheaper price. So do not let the price affect your evaluation of the product. Rather, try to understand your product by researching on the ingredients and find out what it does for your skin.

Various Cosmetics

Skin Care Myth No. 2: It’s better to pop your pimple and remove the pus

Even though it feels really good to pop your pimple and remove the pus, improper handling of it will lead to further inflammation and might lead to scarring. In a worse case, further inflammation might spread under your skin and cause another pimple to pop up within the next few days, close to the first one. Hence, you should bear in mind not to squeeze or pop you own pimple. Rather, you should turn to your professional skincare provider to do it for you. They are equipped with the right skills and equipments such that it will not leave unsightly scars.

Skin Care Myth No. 3: You don’t need sunscreen on a cloudy day

Even on a cloudy day, UV radiation from the sun reaches the earth’s surface. Hence, it is important that you apply sunscreen daily, whether rain or shine.  Invest in a good sunscreen which has SPF 15 or above and protects your skin against UVA and UVB rays. This way, you will be able to prevent your skin from aging and having pigmentation or uneven skin tone.

Skin Care Myth No. 4 : Hypoallergenic products will work well for any skin type

What causes allergies for one person may not necessarily have the same effect for another person, so the term “hypoallergenic” is rather ambiguous. Instead, to ensure your skin stays clear from allergies, observe which products lead you to have breakouts or skin rashes and remove these products from your skin care regime. Ultimately, taking care of your skin is about choosing the right products and having a good skin-care regimen which you follow diligently. Only then, will you be able to achieve the desired effect.

Skin Care Myth No. 5: Scrubbing your face will keep your skin healthy and free from acne

Many people feel that scrubbing your skin makes it cleaner as it has undergone exfoliation, making it feel smoother. But in actual fact, you’re taking off some of the protective oils and barriers, which may lead to a more sensitive and irritated skin. Hence, when your skin is already feeling inflamed, you should avoid scrubbing it too often. Instead, use a gentle cleanser followed by a moisturizer or sunscreen. Remember, do not scrub your face more than once or twice or week. Anything done in excess will not do your skin good.

Now that you know about the skincare myths and the truth behind them, you can make an informed decision about how to care for your skin. You are now a step closer to achieving clearer, smoother and more youthful skin!