• Fede Montagud, editor

    Manuka honey for wound healing

    31 Oct Manuka honey for wound healing

     

    Sources:

    Scientific American

    New properties are being discovered for honey that enhances the effect of certain antibiotics on the skin. This is probably the reason why humans from different cultures have been using this sweet natural remedy for wound healing preparations for thousands of years.

     

    The manuka shrub grows in New Zealand and Australia. Its nectar is collected by busy bees to produce a monofloral honey that apparently has antibiotic properties against germs commonly found in surgical lesions and wounds. A British study suggests that honey also enhances the action of other antibiotics when administered together. This could help combat the emergence of the resistant bacteria that are causing so many problems in hospitals. Traditional honey-based herbal remedies were no hoax, it seems, but genuinely worked. One New Zealand company focuses exclusively on beekeeping and marketing bee products, including venom, used to reduce facial wrinkles.

  • Anna Solana, science journalist

    Liposomes: transport via the skin

    Liposomes are used in anti-ageing creams, sunscreens, anti-cellulite products, hair treatments and even perfumes.  They are an excellent vehicle for transporting active ingredients directly to the body and releasing them in the right place in the right amount. There is no better transport for drugs and nutritional supplements that benefit the health of our skin.

     

    Although liposomes were described for the first time in 1965 by British haematologist Alec Bangham, the first preparation that contained them did not appear until 1988. That was in Switzerland, when the company Janssen-Cilag developed an anti-mycosis gel (to treat skin fungi).  Liposomes are spherical vesicles whose membrane is composed of a particular type of lipids (fats), called phospholipids, arranged in bilayers. Read More

  • Fede Montagud, editor

    The ‘metallic’ odour is produced by our skin

    28 Oct The ‘metallic’ odour is produced by our skin

     

    Sources:

    Nature

    When we go shopping and touch coins, our hands begin smell of metal. This seems logical, as it was thought that metals have a specific odour. Not true. The metallic smell of our hands comes from certain chemicals in our skin that react with steel or with the copper in coins.

     

    When shopkeepers give us back change, the coins carry their body odour; the coins themselves actually have no smell. When we touch coins, the metals immediately react with our skin to produce a new odour.  The aromatic compounds are aldehydes and ketones, which instantaneously appear when our skin oils react with copper or steel. Other factors, such as our flora or our skin pH, mean that reactions differ between individuals. So, just as everybody has a unique body odour, so also do individuals create subtly distinctive metallic smells when they receive their change in a café.

  • Fede Montagud, editor

    Moisturizer: don’t bother massaging it in

    25 Oct Moisturizer: don’t bother massaging it in

     

    Sources:

    Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology

    How many times have we been told how important it is to gently massage the skin after applying a moisturizer “so that it penetrates better"? Well, now it seems that this is not true. A recently published scientific article debunks this widespread belief.

     

    Spa and beauty sessions typically combine the application of moisturizers with a massage, sometimes so pleasant that one falls asleep. Massage is also a typical recommendation found on the label or leaflet for many creams on the market, as it is claimed that product penetration is much greater with a massage. No one denies the relaxing effects of a massage, but a study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology demonstrates that massage does not add to the moisturizing effect. During three weeks, a group of volunteers applied the same moisturizer to both forearms but massaged only one forearm for one minute. Transepidermal water loss and skin elasticity were both monitored. The conclusion: results are the same with and without the massage.

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