• Ailish Maher, science journalist

    The lowdown on clay

    6 Mar The lowdown on clay

     

    Sources:

    Applied Clay Science

    Clay, with its rich content in minerals, is making a comeback as a powerful healer and skin beauty treatment. Benefits are backed more by a history of successful use that stretches back to ancient times than by scientific studies. However, one claim that is solidly backed by science is that some clays have powerful antibacterial properties.

     

    Clay has been deployed for medicinal and aesthetic purposes for centuries. It was used in Mesopotamia and Egypt for its antiinflammatory and antiseptic properties and was also reportedly used by Cleopatra to preserve her complexion. Famous physicians such as Hippocrates, Avicenna, Averroes and Paracelsus — and also Sebastian Kneipp, one of the founders of the naturopathic medicine movement — all recommended clay remedies for the skin. Clay was also used to promote the healing of surgical and war wounds. Read More

  • Anna Solana, science journalist

    The skin and the impact of pollution

    It’s something like the layer of dust and dirt that accumulates on cars between washes. Even despite make-up and daily care, pollution particles stick to our skin, dehydrate it, make it less firm and radiant and even cause blemishes. Air pollution is as harmful as smoking for the complexion. But depending on where we live it may be impossible to avoid it. What can we do to protect our skin?

     

    According to a report published by the European Environment Agency (EEA) in 2013, the air we breathe in Europe is far from clean. In fact, the EEA says that over 90% of the inhabitants of European cities are exposed to worrying levels of PM2.5 (particles smaller than 2.5 microns) – largely originating in diesel-vehicle emissions – and excessively high ozone levels. Read More

  • Rosa Taberner, dermatologist

    Atopic skin

    11 Sep Atopic skin

     

    Sources:

    AEDV

    We say that someone’s skin is atopic when it has a tendency to develop atopic dermatitis. It's that simple. Atopic dermatitis is the most common skin disease in children. It not only affects the quality of life of the child, but also of the family. Leaving aside correct diagnosis and treatment by a dermatologist, there is a great deal of controversy about other issues affecting these children, such as skincare, clothing, bathing, etc.

     

    Atopic dermatitis (or atopic eczema) is a very common skin disease, which affects in the western world one out of three babies during the first years of life. The main symptom is itching. While there is no single known cause, clinical manifestations enable the paediatrician or dermatologist to make the correct diagnosis (there is a significant hereditary component). These children are at increased risk of developing asthma, urticaria and allergic rhinitis. The disease is not stable, but evolves in stages marked by flare-ups (typically occurring in winter) and by dormant periods. Read More

  • Susana Andújar, chemist

    Allergens in cosmetic products

    We have known of skin allergic reactions associated with cosmetic products for many years. And each year, hundreds of studies add further information about the safety of ingredients. As a result, new regulations and limitations on use are constantly emerging. Which ingredients are the most allergenic?

     

    Health authorities have published numerous lists of ingredients whose allergenic potential is known. But as well as considering an ingredient’s facility for eliciting an immune reaction, we also need to consider its frequency of contact with the skin and mucous membranes. Both these factors – allergenic potential and application frequency – are the triggers for most cases of undesirable reactions produced by the use of cosmetic products. Read More

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