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In general, most people "over wash" and "over stimulate" their skin by using hot water, harsh soaps, rough wash cloths and buff puffs. With normal or sensitive skin, these items can cause broken capillaries and redden skin. With oily/breakout skin, they can over stimulate the sebaceous oil glands and actually cause MORE oil production and breakouts. And, with dry, photo-damaged skin, these things can dry out the skin even further. Could you be one of these people? If so, the following are some basic common sense rules for taking better care of your skin.

AM SKIN CARE REGIMEN:
First, above all else, never use soap. It not only strips the skin of its natural moisture factor leaving it dry and flaky, but also destroys the acid mantle, a skin barrier that protects from the infiltration of bacteria and infection. Remember, using soap can be equated to using a scouring cleanser. Instead, use a mild facial wash with tepid water. Gently wash your face with your fingers using a circular motion. For oily/acne prone skin, try a salicylic wash, for blackheads, try a glycolic acid based wash. And for normal, dry or photo-damaged skins, try a milky cleanser. Rinse thoroughly. Glide a dampened soft pad over the skin to check for any leftover impurities or residue. Blot dry with a soft fluffy towel. Avoid rubbing or pulling on the face. This cleansing process should be done once in the morning and once again before bedtime.
Next, while the pores are still open, apply vital serums or Vitamin E, so that they are able to penetrate down to the dermis layer to effect the collagen and elastin production. Let dry. Use an alcohol-free toner to re-establish PH balance and to close the pores.

Now you are ready to seal and protect with a moisturizer. Make sure it has sunblock protection. Oily skin moisturizers should be in gel or lotion form. Creams are far too rich for oily skin and can actually create more problems, but are great for normal, sensitive, dry or photo-damaged skins.

PM SKIN CARE REGIMEN:
Save your skin from the ravages of the world with a "salon style" at-home mask. After cleansing, sit with your face over a bowl of hot water to open the pores. Next, apply appropriate mask. For oily skin, choose a clarifying clay mask which draws up impurities and oils. A rutin azulen (Rutin (Vitamin P) is used to increase the resistance of the capillaries and to decrease the permeability of the cell-border areas making this cleanser very effective in the cosmetic treatment of Rosacea, highly active skin prone to redness and sensitive skin. Azulen is an exceptional substance for healing and inflammation.) mask will help soothe and calm sensitive skin, while an AHA, antioxidant, or hydrating mask will benefit normal dry or photo-damaged skins.

Masks should be applied three times weekly. However, if skin is extremely oily, then a clarifying clay mask can be applied every night. All masks should be left on for 10-15 minutes and removed with a warm soft fluffy wash cloth. Use an alcohol free toner to close the pores.

Last but not least, let a night renewal cream with a glycolic alpha or beta hydroxy or retinol exfoliate work for you all night while you sleep. Make sure that it is in a light lotion form for oily skins, and a rich creamy formulation for normal, dry or photo-damaged skin. It will gently exfoliate the skin while encouraging cellular turnover for a more radiant appearance. You'll love waking up to your face.

If you follow these basic skin care tips, your skin will thank you for doing so!
 
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