Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

Alternative Skin Care

Alternative Skin Care Alternative Skin Care

Overview

Alternative skin care products are increasing in popularity, due to long-term safety concerns of conventional cosmetics. Traditional lines contain preservatives to help keep products free of bacteria. However, there is no proof that alternative products are better for you than products that contain preservatives.

Skin Care Regimen

A daily skin care regimen reduces dirt and bacteria, balances moisture levels and helps the skin look more youthful. The Mayo Clinic recommends using a mild cleanser as opposed to stronger ones that can dry out the skin. Follow with a moisturizer suited to your skin type. Dry skin requires a heavier moisturizer while oily skin can benefit from a light moisturizer. Such skin care products are available on the market that contain preservatives and perhaps types of alcohol to combat acne.

Purported Benefits

Alternative skin care products are made from organic or natural ingredients. Marketers advertise organic skin care products are a safer alternative, since they are made from plants and herbs. Such products are compared to conventional products, which are deemed as unsafe for your body in the long-run. According to Womenshealth.gov, some preservatives in traditional skin care lines can cause irritation. These preservatives, which include formaldehyde, paraben and phenoxyethanol are not present in organic cosmetics.

Safety

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that organic cosmetics are not necessarily safer than traditional ones. Conventional cosmetics are tested for safety prior to being sold on the market. Although alternative skin care products are required to be safe by the FDA, the origins of some of the ingredients may be questionable and even toxic. Reactions may vary between individuals. For example, you may have an allergy to a plant in an organic product.

Precautions

Certain herbs as well as alpha hydroxy acids in some cosmetics can cause adverse reactions. According to Womenshealth.gov, alternative skin care products may cause redness, rash, itching, burning, swelling, discoloration and blistering of the skin. Before using any type of skin care product, test a small amount on one part of your skin, such as your arm, before applying the product all over your face or body. Discontinue use if you experience side effects.

Bottom Line

Alternative skin care products are derived from plants, but they are not necessarily safer than conventional cosmetics. Read product labels carefully. If you have a known allergy to any particular herb, do not use the product. Adverse reactions to a natural skin care product should be reported to the company or the FDA at (202) 401-9725.

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