How Effective Are Anti Acne Facial Masks?

February 18, 2011 by Staff Writer · Leave a Comment 

maskcat10-150x150 How Effective Are Anti Acne Facial Masks?There are literally a million anti acne facial masks floating in the supermarkets. In such a situation, an already frustrated acne patient finds it all the more frustrating to go searching for the best acne facial mask in the town. There is as a matter of fact, NO best anti acne facial mask. A mask which is called ‘The best’ by one may be called ‘Downright futile’ by another. So the effectiveness of any facial mask depends on the exact acne problem. Some anti acne facial masks are equipped to handle blackheads, some to tackle pimples, yet others look at whiteheads. So, as you see, there are different facial masks to deal with different problems.

Zinc and Zinc Oxide anti acne facial masks have actually helped a lot many people with blemishes, zits and acne scars. Sulfur being full of antifungal properties helps to stop new scars from forming. People with dry skin however, must avoid using sulfur mask as application of sulfur mask will lead to all the more dryness. Also people with a rather sensitive skin must avoid usage of sulfur on skin in any form. Sulfur, at times is known to cause skin inflammation. Baking soda, likewise, is held to be a key constituent in many acne facial products. Oatmeal is another thing you may give a shot to. Oatmeal anti acne masks are very common. You may experience irritation in and around the eyes while the mask is on. To avoid such irritation, try placing tea bags or cucumber on the eyes. This can be relieving. If you crib about those bad acne scars, here is some help. Nothing can benefit you as much as honey can. Most of you may just laugh about at the thought but this is actually very effective. Do not doubt the power of honey to kill those unwanted blemishes!

Anti-Acne Benefits of Green Tea

April 20, 2010 by admin · Leave a Comment 

What is Tea?


Tea is the common name for the Camellia sinensis plant. It is the agricultural product of the leaves, leaf buds, and internodes (the portion of a plant stem between nodes) of the plant that are prepared and cured by various methods. “Tea” also refers to the aromatic beverage prepared from the cured leaves by combination with hot or boiling water.

Tea is known for its stimulant qualities largely attributed to caffeine. Today, herbal teas are known to have many health benefits, preventing a variety of conditions, from heart disease and cancer, to gum disease, skin aging and weight loss. The major types of tea include black, green, oolong and white, differing by the method of harvesting and processing.

The beneficial properties of tea are attributed to polyphenols. The polyphenols found in tea mainly belong to the subtype called catechins. Polyphenols or catechins are better known as antioxidants that fight free radicals. Free radicals are damaging to skin and body by attacking healthy cells. Green tea has more catechins than black tea; white tea is almost as rich in catechins as green tea but is different in composition and less well studied.

So How Is Green Tea Good For My Skin?

There have been number studies of skin benefits of green tea. One of these studies show protection from skin cancer by demonstrating topical green tea formulations can reduce sun damage.(1) Another fascinating study in 2003 was conducted by Dr. Stephen Hsu of the Medical College of Georgia Department of Oral Biology. His findings determined green tea was able to rejuvenate old skin cells at the end of their life cycle.

A quote from Dr. Hsu’s paper explained, “…we report here for the first time, that at certain concentrations, EGCG or a mixture of the major green tea polyphenols stimulated aged keratinocytes to generate biological energy and to synthesize DNA, possibly for renewed cell division.

Therefore, green tea constituents may be useful topically for promoting skin regeneration, wound healing, or treatment of certain epithelial conditions such as aphthous ulcers, psoriasis, rosacea, and actinic keratoses.” (2) Dr. Hsu went on to comment he was “so surprised” to discover EGCG actually reactivated cells that had migrated toward the surface of the skin to ‘die’.

Green tea appears to manipulate sun damage protection by fighting free radicals and reducing inflammation rather than by blocking UV rays. Therefore, green tea enhances sun protection when used in addition to a sunscreen. To boost sun protection, apply a green tea formula under your sunscreen to elevate the level of sun protection. It is best to combine green tea with zinc oxide-based sunscreens because zinc oxide is chemically inert and should not react with green tea (which some chemical sunscreens might do, especially in sunlight).

Topical green tea is also very beneficial for sensitive skin types by reducing inflammation and irritation in the skin. Wrinkles, skin sag and other signs of aging have been shown to benefit from Green tea. The tea’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory polyphenols slow down signs of premature of aging

Green Tea and Pimples

A green tea and pimples study suggests it to be as good as benzoyl peroxide cream in treating acne conditions with fewer side effects. Scientific research has shown that green tea fights bacteria, inflammation and reduces stress. Perhaps it would be an excellent candidate for treating acne?

In the study, conducted by Dr. Jennifer Gan-Wong from the Memorial Medical Center in the Philippines, 108 participants were divided into two groups. One applied benzoyl peroxide cream and the other green tea extract cream twice daily for 12 weeks. Subjects were examined and photographed each week by dermatologists. The researchers noted the green tea cream seemed to lighten patients’ skin color and improve the overall appearance of their complexion.

The preliminary data suggests that green tea cream causes fewer side effects than benzoyl peroxide. Patients in the green tea group reported fewer cases of dry skin, itching and allergic responses.

Use green tea at home to boost your skins health, appearance and reduce signs of aging by freezing freshly brewed green tea as ice cubes and use them as a toner. Let them start thawing first before applying directly to the face to avoid irritation. You can also drink green tea or take green tea extract in capsules to benefit from the anti oxidant properties. The polyphenols will reach your skin via the bloodstream in sufficient amounts.

Using green tea in your skincare routine has definite proven benefits to slow skin aging, reduce acne and protect your skin from cancer among many others. Just be aware of the products you choose. Like most antioxidants, green tea polyphenols are oxidized and can lose their active constituents when exposed to air.

By Tiffany Oney and Rachelle Dupree


(1) Green Tea Polyphenol Treatment to Human Skin Prevents Formation of Ultraviolet Light B-induced Pyrimidine Dimers in DNA (2000). Santosh K. Katiyar, Anaibelith Perez and Hasan Mukhtar. Clinical Cancer Research Vol. 6, 3864-3869, October 2000.

(2) Green Tea Polyphenols Induce Differentiation and Proliferation in Epidermal Keratinocytes (2003). Stephen Hsu, Wendy B. Bollag, Jill Lewis, Qin Huang,

Baldev Singh, Mohamed Sharawy, Tetsuya Yamamoto, and George Schuster. Journal of Pharmacology And Experimental Therapeutics. First published on March 27, 2003; DOI: 10.1124/jpet.103.049734

Zinc Oxide Skin Care Reduces Acne Breakouts

March 13, 2010 by admin · Leave a Comment 

You may have first seen zinc on a summer day at the beach or your local swimming pool. Lifeguards traditionally use the thick, white cream to cover their nose and cheeks to prevent sunburn. You may have learned then, that it was the strongest sunblock available – it just wasn’t very attractive.

colored zinc sunscreen

colored zinc sunscreen

In the eighties, zinc sun protection got a makeover, with bight neon colors. Applying wacky colors all over your face was fun and it blocked out the sun’s rays. Almost completely, and it stayed on - almost too well.

Today, thankfully, formulations have improved and zinc is no longer the eyesore it once was. It does, however, still protect your skin from sun damage and wrinkles and recent findings have shown zinc offers anti-microbial benefits that also reduce acne and breakouts.

So, what exactly is zinc and how does it work?

Zinc is a natural mineral, minced and refined to a fluffy white powder. Zinc becomes Zinc Oxide after the mineral is oxidized. Oxidation allows the mineral to be slightly changed giving it new properties. Zinc Oxide is used widely in cosmetics and natural skin care products and is quickly replacing the use of Titanium Oxide in sunscreens.

Because zinc is completely natural, it is an excellent ingredient to use in natural skin care products and beauty treatments. Before many of its

zinc oxide prevents acne

beneficial properties were known, Zinc Oxide was initially used in cosmetics as a whitening agent to moisturizing lotions, facial creams and most sunscreens.

Zinc Oxide has been the ingredient of choice for sunscreens, sun protection and cosmetics. Zinc Oxide is categorized as a physical sunscreen, therefore SPF labels are not given to the mineral. SPF or sun protected factor only relates to chemical sunscreens. Chemical sunscreens such as PABA and Oxybenzone absorb the suns rays; where as Zinc Oxide actually blocks the rays. While some chemically-based sun protection products include zinc, they can not claim zinc as their primary component and must be labeled as such.

How does Zinc Actually “block” the Sun’s Rays?

Zinc Oxide works much like a diamond to bend (or refract) light. It is the only known element that can block both UVA (aging rays) and UVB (burning rays). Zinc Oxide has been approved and labeled by the FDA as safe for the skin as sun protection. It is important to note that Zinc Oxide is not an organic compound as it has undergone oxidation. Zinc Oxide should be 20 to 25 percent of ingredient in cosmetic or sunscreen to properly inhibit sun damage to the skin and prevent wrinkles from forming. As we all should know by now, one of the primary causes of aging skin and wrinkles, is the sun.

If blocking sun rays, preventing wrinkles and aging skin weren’t enough, pure zinc has also been found to be very effective in the treatment and care of acne prone skin. Zinc regulates production of oil glands and hormone levels, two main triggers of acne. Zinc also helps absorb Vitamin A which promotes healing and fights bacteria. As with any acne treatment results may vary depending on diet and other environmental factors. It is always important to consult a dermatologist prior to any acne treatment. Zinc is commonly used in ointments for diaper rash, minor scrapes and burns, dry scalp and irritated skin.

nodules1 Zinc Oxide Skin Care Reduces Acne Breakouts

In addition to the benefits on the skin zinc helps maintain many healthy body functions. Zinc plays a role in strengthening the immune system by assisting white blood cell development, protecting the body form infection. Lack of zinc to the body can result in a week immune system. As zinc plays a vital role in the immune system it is imperative to acquire the proper amount of zinc while pregnant. Zinc helps reduce inflammation and infection. Proper amounts of zinc in a diet have shown to contribute to proper growth, strength, and endurance. Zinc is also involved in stimulating many enzymes which play an essential role in metabolism. Zinc has been found to benefit the inside and outside health of our bodies and can be found in many topical creams, like Vivoderm’s zinc repairing cream, as well as in many nutrient rich foods.

According to the American Zinc Association, zinc seals and protects the skin. “Zinc is essential for healthy skin. As a drying agent and astringent, zinc oxide has been used for generations to soothe diaper rash and relieve itching. And zinc is a natural sun screen, protecting chapped lips and skin from the sun’s harmful rays. Zinc sulfate is effective in treating some cases of acne. And in a water-based solution, zinc sulfate helps remedy cold sores. Zinc also improves healing of wounds, like surgical incisions, burns and other skin irritations. Used as an anti-inflammatory, zinc soothes skin and skin tissue. Poison ivy, sunburn, blisters and gum disease are all improved when treated with zinc. It is even a natural insect repellent. And zinc stimulates the transport of Vitamin A from the liver to the skin, helping to protect body tissue from damage.”

So, remember, if you are interested in protecting your skin from the sun, preventing wrinkles and aging skin and reducing your acne breakouts – zinc might just be the all in one treatment for you. Look on the back of cosmetic and food labels to see if you are getting the benefits of zinc in your diet and beauty routine

Treating Acne with Natural Zinc Moisturizers

October 13, 2009 by admin · Leave a Comment 

There has been a lot of press recently about Zinc and Zinc Oxide in skincare and cosmetic products. Zinc can be found in many natural sunscreens ans well as moisturizing lotions and creams.  Zinc - or Micronized zinc oxide -  is produced by high temperature processing of minerals that contain zinc. Some brands contain micronized zinc oxide, combined with an inert ingredient derived from silica. The result is a naturally protective product to protect you from the sun’s damaging UV and UVB rays.

Zinc is a mineral and it is also believed that it has curative properties on a skin where there are acne growths and can reduce the symptoms of acne. Many alternative studies have indicated that this is not the case. So is there a connection between the two?

According to research carried out in recent years, zinc has the same properties of antibiotics such as tetracycline and it can fight the acne bacteria efficiently without the negative effects of antibiotics. Reportedly, zinc also enhances the immunity of the body when ingested as a supplement. So what is zinc and what is the zinc acne connection all about? How does the zinc acne treatment affect the sufferers and what is the best way to use this treatment?

You will find traces of the zinc mineral in various food items such as mushrooms, soybeans, legumes, fish, sunflower seeds, egg yolks, soy lecithin and also in whole grains. Zinc is also present in many herbs such as dandelion, eyebright, cayenne, chamomile, mullein, nettle, milk thistle, alfalfa and in the burdock root. Zinc forms a part of insulin and can be found in the tissues.

There are many useful properties of zinc like providing the person with energy, prohibiting blindness, aiding the process of digestion by being a part of enzymes, supporting the reaction of more than 30 enzymes, strengthening the immunity, regulation of Vitamin E in the blood, helping the body absorb Vitamin A and B, speeding up the process of healing, regulating insulin, and it also fights bacteria. Zinc is also present in estrogen, testosterone and growth hormones.

So how does zinc help a person suffering from acne?  Zinc moisturizers and sunscreens may be a good first step to taking care of your skin from the outside.

The causes of acne are all internal and they are imbalance in the level of hormones and build up toxic materials within the body. The hormones are responsible for producing oils, and the zinc can regulate the oil glands, and so if you can take them correctly (that is in the right quantity, quality and the correct essential fatty acids) you will be able to have some control over the level of hormones and this will ease the symptoms of your acne greatly.

Zinc also helps absorb Vitamin A, and fights the bacteria that causes acne by strengthening the immune system, helps the body heal wounds and contains anti oxidant properties. All these are useful in tackling the secondary causes of acne and will help you greatly reduce the symptoms of acne.

Another ability of zinc for acne is that it can regulate the production of hormones, which is a main reason one acquires acne. However for this to happen, it needs to be taken in the correct quantity and in combination with essential fatty acids. This mineral needs to be properly absorbed within the body and work together with other nutrients for the hormones to be balanced.

While zinc as an acne treatment may be effective, it is very important however to take care and not mix it with some chemical substances, supplements and food items because they will make the zinc less effective.  You should always consult your doctor or research a supplement before taking any internal treatments.

There are some food items, ( inhibitors) like supplements and physical conditions that can prevent zinc from being properly absorbed in the body. This may significantly reduce the impact of zinc on the acne.

One of these inhibitors is Phytic acid.  Usually found in high levels in grains. The acid can reduce the absorption by about 15%.  And thus, those who are suffering from acne need to reduce their grain consumption to one to two servings a day. Grains may lead to mucus and acidity and taking them with zinc for acne can be a challenge.

Another zinc inhibitor is soy protein. If you are using zinc for an acne treatment, you need to eat less soy as it can bind to minerals and lead to less zinc absorption. Then there are other minerals like copper and inorganic iron. They also come in the way of zinc for acne bio-availability. However this issue can be solved easily, unless of course you are suffering from copper toxicity. Try not to take copper more than 2-3 mg a day and also do not take inorganic iron supplements.

Too much of physical exertion may lead to an increased demand by the body for zinc and thus, when you are exercising, you need to also take more zinc for acne treatments.

Following these tips and zinc guidines should have you well on your way to beautiful skin in no time!

End of Summer Skincare for Acne and Dryness

September 9, 2009 by admin · Leave a Comment 

By Van Le | Labor Day can be bittersweet since it offers an always-welcomed three-day weekend, but it also marks the unofficial end of summer. In other words, after one last frolic at the beach, it’s time to put away the swimming suits and flip-flops, and wake the winter coats and boots from their hiatus. The seasonal closet makeover is a no-brainer, but there’s another place that needs attention: your makeup and skincare cabinet. Towards the end of the year, your skin needs protection from cold weather and reduced humidity. Switching to winter-friendly products can keep your skin looking healthy and beautiful.

Hot, humid weather during the summer can cause pores to expand because sebum is more fluid in this environment. As a result, deep cleansers and foamy cleansing products are appropriate, since they are able to reach deep into the pores, eliminating dirt and oil buildups. During the winter, however, cold temperatures can lead to dry and cracked skin. Switch to a mild soap, and your skin will feel smooth and soft as opposed to dry and tight after washing. Products that contain natural moisture such as Aloe vera are also excellent, since they are not harsh on dry, winter skin.

Winter air literally sucks moisture from your skin, so moisturizing is a crucial step in winter skin care. Even more important to moisturizing is choosing the right product. Products containing mineral oil, almond oil, or avocado oil work especially well since they keep the skin hydrated without clogging pores. Flaxseed oil is another beneficial ingredient, since it is not only rich in omega-3 fatty acid, but also has the ability to hydrate the skin from the inside out. Moisturizing right after a warm shower will help seal in the water and prevent dry skin. Also consider using a humidifier in your room or office, since it returns the moisture into the air and help the skin stay hydrated.

Just because it is cold outside does not mean you should toss your sunscreen tube. Even when you can’t feel the heat, the sun is still emitting harmful UVA and UVB rays, so it still important to protect your skin. Apply a moisturizer that contains an SPF of at least 15, or use products containing zinc oxide, which acts as a natural barrier between your skin and the sun. Surprisingly, the sun’s reflective power on snow can be as high as 80%, so it is possible to be sunburned after spending a day on the ski slopes without sun protection. Moreover, don’t forget to help your lips battle harsh winter conditions with plenty of lip balm. Packaging is also important when deciding on a lip balm. Little tins and jars can spread germs since you are using your fingers to apply. Tubes can be a healthier and more convenient option. Remember to keep your skincare products readily available in your purse, car or desk so you can reapply throughout the day.

Winter skin care may differ from summer skin care in the type of products used, but the regimen for healthy skin is the same year round: cleanse, moisturize and protect.

Van Le is a staff writer for the CSU paper the Daily Titan and writing intern for Vivoderm Laboratories in Los Angeles, California. She is currently pursuing a Journalism degree at California State University, Fullerton.

For the latest findings on natural skincare link to

Using Green Tea and Zinc to Heal Acne

August 12, 2009 by admin · 4 Comments 

By Van Le | The popularity of green tea in the skincare industry has skyrocketed over the last decade. It’s more than just a fad, as the benefits of green tea are well documented due to extensive research. Tea was used in ancient times as a natural stimulant, since it contains caffeine. Today, people drink green tea as a natural way to promote overall good health, but it is especially popular in the skincare industry, where it is a key component in the efforts to slow down the signs of aging.

Green tea contains high amounts of polyphenols, which protects the skin from damage caused by free radicals and other harmful toxins. Compared to black and white tea, green tea contains the highest amount of polyphenol, and contains anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anticarcinogenic properties. Its anti-inflammatory nature makes it a versatile herbal ingredient used to fight acne. The antioxidant qualities help prevent premature signs of aging, and the anticarcinogenic characteristics are a major component in the efforts to find a cure for cancer.

The anti-inflammatory properties of green tea make it an effective herbal treatment against symptoms of acne. A 2003 study carried out by Dr. Jennifer Gan-Wong of Memorial Medical Center in the Philippines suggest that green tea cream is just as effective as benzoyl peroxide cream, but does not expose the skin to harsh chemicals and preservatives, according to It also helps detoxify the body and reduces skin inflammation, which decreases the occurrences of outbreaks.

Green tea is also indispensable as an anti-oxidant because it contains high amounts of catechins, a substance that fights against free radicals, which are harmful to cells and tissues. Catechin is especially effective in neutralizing free radicals caused by excessive exposure to UV rays.

Although green tea extracts alone cannot replace the protection provided by sunscreen, it can enhance sunscreen’s effectiveness. Simply add green tea extract to zinc oxide products, such as Vivoderm’s Zinc Cream. Using zinc oxide cream instead of a store-bought sunscreen product is recommended because zinc will not react to the green tea extracts.

Anti-oxidants found in green tea help delay the skin cell aging process and heal stressed skin. Green tea promotes healthy skin by rejuvenating skin cells and reviving the skin growth cycle. The skin is produced in the deepest of three layers, and as it ages, it moves closer to the surface, where it can develop wrinkles and fine lines. An article published in the Natural Food Merchandiser magazine states that research done by Dr. Stephen Hsu, a professor at Medical College of Georgia suggests that green tea can accelerate the skin cell production process.

Whether as an ingredient in your natural skincare products or added to your zinc oxide cream, the health benefits of green tea are plenty.

Van Le is a staff writer for the CSU Daily Titan and writing intern for Vivoderm Laboratories in Los Angeles, California. She is currently pursuing a Journalism degree at California State University, Fullerton.

For the latest findings on natural skincare and facemasks, you can also link to