Everyday Beauty Problems
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Problem Solvers1 of 9
By Alexandra Gekas for WomansDay.com
Whether you've got chapped lips, fine lines or a serious case of razor burn, there are plenty of products out there that claim they can treat your beauty woes. But not all products are created equal. We spoke with experts to find out what ingredients you should look for the next time you hit the drugstore's beauty aisle.
Stretch Marks2 of 9
Whether they’re from pregnancy or other growth spurts, stretch marks are a tough nut to crack. According to Dr. Schultz, the only treatment that has shown any scientifically verified benefit is retinol (a.k.a. retinyl). "This isn't something that works great for stretch marks, but [it] fails least," he says. There is one big caveat to using it, however: Steer clear if you're pregnant.
Razor Burn3 of 9
Of course you want smooth, hair-free legs, but razor burn can defeat the purpose of shaving altogether. Not only is it unsightly—with red skin and bumps—but it itches like crazy. As Dr. Schultz explains in this DermTV.com episode, the most important thing is to shave at the end of your shower, using shaving gel—not soap and water. "And don't use a throw-away razor, use a blade that has two or three parallel blades," he adds.
Brittle Nails4 of 9
While there's no surefire treatment for dry or brittle nails, Dr. Kazin says biotin supplements can help strengthen nails as well as hair. However, she says the best treatment is prevention. "A lot of times people have brittle nails from acrylics, so just make sure you aren’t using acrylics and tips, which can really weaken your nails." ON WOMAN'S DAY: 10 "Bad" Foods That Are Good For You
Chapped Lips5 of 9
Every winter your lips get dry and flaky, which, if you're not careful, can lead to painful chapping. According to Neal Schultz, MD, a New York City–based cosmetic dermatologist and founder of DermTV.com, the key to a good lip balm is its ability to hold in moisture. "The two most important things are petroleum and beeswax," says Dr. Schultz. "And a good rule of thumb is, if it's cold enough to put on a coat, it's cold enough to put on lip balm."
Acne6 of 9
When it comes to over-the-counter acne treatments, Dr. Schultz says there are five key ingredients to look for: salicylic acid, an exfoliant that helps get rid of pimples as well as prevent them; benzoyl peroxide, a topical antibiotic and exfoliant that’s good for inflammatory and non-inflammatory pimples; sulfur, which helps peel and decrease inflammation; resorcinol, a drying astringent; and glycolic acid.
Shiny Face7 of 9
Treating an oily face is similar to treating and preventing fine lines, according to Dr. Kazin. Products with glycolic and salicylic acids will decrease oil production as well as the appearance of oil. For those with combination skin, she recommends “an oil-free moisturizer and then a powder with SPF on your nose.” ON WOMAN'S DAY: 12 Scent-Sational Spring Fragrances
Dry Face8 of 9
In addition to chapped lips, a dry face is another big winter woe. But how you treat it depends a lot on your skin type. "If you're under 50, try really good humectants, like glycerin and urea," Dr. Schultz says. "But probably one of the best ingredients is hyaluronic acid, which is in fillers like Restylane and Juvéderm. The reason they work so well is that once they go into the skin, they absorb water, which is a good moisturizing ingredient as well."
Fine Lines9 of 9
Aging is a part of life, but that doesn't mean you can't try to slow it down a bit! "For fine lines, you want to increase cell turnover, which will help with collagen remodeling," Dr. Kazin says. For that, she recommends products with retinol, glycolic acid and salicylic acid, as well as antioxidants like vitamin C. And add peptides to that list, says Dr. Schultz.
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