By Lorelei Orfeo, Birchbox
Body Issues Solved
There's nothing like spotting stretch marks and cellulite to bring out all our insecurities. But we're not alone. Dermatologists report that these are top concerns. We asked Dr. Jeannette Graf, dermatologist and author of Stop Aging, Start Living, for her advice on how to treat the five most common body concerns.
Sadly, there's not much you can do to prevent cellulite. But Dr. Graf has a few tactics for dealing with it. "It can be diminished by following a Mediterranean diet rich in clean, pure foods, including plenty of dark, leafy fiber-rich greens, fruits and plenty of," she says. She also recommends exercise and deep massage, both of which stimulate lymphatic drainage and help smooth the lumpy appearance of cellulite." Not that we have you tell you twice, but it's important to stick with the massages because the benefits are only good as long as you continue.
These pesky marks usually accompany pregnancy, growth spurts, or weight gain but, like cellulite, they're genetic and can't be prevented. To minimize marks, Dr. Graf recommends keeping skin elastic with lots of moisturizer. We treat ours with Apothederm Stretch Mark Cream, which is full hydrating ingredients, plus collagen-boosting peptides and redness-reducing antioxidants.
Only slightly less embarrassing than regular acne but even more stubborn, body acne-or "bacne" as it is not-so-affectionately known-is a major bummer. Luckily, Dr. Graf says, "treating acne on the body is similar to treating it on the face, using similar active ingredients but different vehicles. Medications in a more astringent base may be better suited for the back." Dr. Graf recommends Glytone Back Acne Spray, which is easy to spray on before getting dressed. We also love Clark's Botanicals Skin Clearing Face and Body Wash, which has exfoliating, purifying salicylic acid.
Skin discoloration can be the result of acne scars, sun damage, or aging. Dr. Graf advises says to look for "products containing lightening agents such as hydroquinone, soy, AHAs and PHAs, as well as antioxidants and lighteners such as kojic acid and vitamin C." Sun protection is also key. We swear by Kiehl's Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution, which uses vitamin C and white birch to fade spots and improve skin tone. Once a week we recharge skin with Eve Lom's Rescue Mask-it decongests dull skin, exfoliates, and reduces redness for a more even visage.
You might not recognize the name of this skin condition, but you probably know it when you see it. It's characterized by rough, bumpy skin, usually on the upper arms. Although not curable, the bumps can be minimized with treatment. Dr. Graf says to look for "keratolytic ingredients such as urea, lactic acid, salicylic acid and glycolic acid." In addition, she says to cut shower time to five minutes at the most, and to keep water temperature lukewarm. Keep skin moisturized with a concentrated product like One Love Organics Skin Savior Waterless Beauty Balm.
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By Lorelei Orfeo, Birchbox