One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime. While numbers like this make a world without skin cancer seem impossible, it is within our reach. Skin cancer is highly treatable when caught early. The five-year survival rate for people whose melanoma is detected and treated before it spreads to the lymph nodes is 98 percent. Yet, one American dies from melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, almost every hour.
Help BeautyInTheBag spread the word and encourage others to prevent and detect skin cancer.
Here’s how to participate in SPOT Orange on Melanoma Monday® (Monday, May 6):
Wear orange and encourage others to join you.
Share a picture of you and your family, friends, or co-workers wearing orange for skin cancer. Upload a photo to www.SpotSkinCancer.org/SPOTOrange for a chance to be featured on the American Academy of Dermatology’s website, social media, or other materials.
On Facebook: Share your photo on AAD’s Facebook timeline. Tag AAD in any SPOT orange posts (@American Academy of Dermatology).
On Twitter: Mention Melanoma Monday, tweet with your photo (@AADskin), and include the #SPOTorange hashtag.
On Pinterest: Upload your photo as a pin and use the #SPOTorange hashtag in the description.
On Instagram: Upload your photo and use the #SPOTorange hashtag in the caption.
Know your ABCDEs.
Catch melanoma early and your survival chances increase exponentially. A for asymmetry (meaning one half of a mole is different than the other half), B is for border irregularity, C for color (melanomas are uneven in color), and D is for diameter. Melanomas are thicker than non-melanomas. If any of your moles follows the ABCD pattern, see your dermatologist ASAP – www.aad.org, www.asds.net.
Schedule your annual skin cancer check-up with your dermatologist before Memorial Day. (Check here for a list of free screening locations and dates.)
Earth Day is a great time to evaluate your carbon footprint, including how your beauty products impact the environment. Your skin and overall health will benefit from the green choices you make.
“You’ve made the switch to organic fruits and veggies. So if you don’t put toxic chemicals in your mouth, you shouldn’t slather them on your face and body either. My general rule: if you can’t pronounce the ingredients, don’t buy it,” says Madeline Breen, manager for The Nature Conservancy
It’s equally important to choose packaging that is kind to Mother Earth. “You can leave a lighter footprint on our landfills by looking for brands that choose recyclable materials in their packaging,” Breen says.
Luckily, the selection of eco-friendly products just gets better and better each year. Here are a few initiatives to help you support Earth Day 2013.
Watch this amazing and heart-warming video to see Aveda’s Earth Month support of clean water initiatives. And today, Earth Day, the beauty company plans to set the Guinness World Record with the World’s Largest Cut-A-Thon for the most money ever raised for a charity by haircuts during a 24 hour period. The global cut-a-thon will tap Aveda stylists in salons worldwide—from Tokyo to Sydney, Moscow to London, and New York to Los Angeles—who are volunteering their time to offer haircuts in return for a donation to the annual Aveda Earth Month campaign. The idea behind this campaign is to raise $5 million for clean water in April 2013. To find out where you can go and support your local Aveda, click on the Aveda Earth Month Events calendar.
Join the crowd and experience a “Eureka” moment with this anti-ager from Know Your Ingredients, a brand dedicated to “minimally processed” and “whole food” skin products. It contains an oil-soluble form of vitamin C that is easily absorbed and said to boost collagen production 50% better than other vitamin C products. Formulated for daily use, the serum is available in an orange/grapefruit scent or unscented.
An all-new offering, the unscented sunscreen spray from Coola offers SPF 30 protection and a melange of organic inactive ingredients to hydrate and protect your skin. The Farm to Face spray includes cucumber, algae and strawberry extracts, as well as red raspberry seed oil, which is a natural sunscreen protectant and anti-inflammatory ingredient. The spray is also available in Mimosa and Pina Coolada versions.
Alba Botanica Travel Minis ($2.99-$3.29)
Photo Credit: LuckyVitamin.com
For the constant traveler who wants to give some love to the environment, Alba Botanica offers new travel-sized items including towelettes in 10-count travel packs, mini deodorants, shave creams, and body lotions. The Hawaiian 3-in-1 Clean Travel Towelettes are great on the go and give you a fresh clean feeling with pore-refining pineapple and papaya enzymes that remove oil ($2.99). The Very Emollient mini Lavender Sunscreen ($3.95) smells like a field, offers broad spectrum protection, and is formulated with chamomile to soothe skin. It’s also water resistant for 80 minutes. The Tea Tree and Lavender Clear Enzyme Mini Deodorant Sticks ($3.29 each) are chemical and preservative free, as are the Mango Vanilla and Coconut Lime Very Emollient Mini Shaving Cream ($3.29). Mini never felt this good.
Bond No. 9 I Love New York for Earth Day ($175 for 100 ml, $105 for 50 ml)
New York State knows a thing or two about being green (despite what you may think). It’s become a recycling city, and has plenty of community parks. Thanks to several bike paths and public transport options, the city’s gas consumption is surprisingly low. Bond N0. 9 has launched the first I Love New York for Earth Day to commemorate the 42nd anniversary of Earth Day. With notes of tuberose, tangerine, orange flower water, and tropical orchid, as well as lily of the valley and orris, this is a beautifully heady and warm scent with a musk, amber, and sandalwood drydown. The fragrance arrived on counters April 1 and is available at Saks Fifth Avenue and BondNo9.com.
Urban Decay Good Karma Brushes ($20-$39 each)
The idea of vegan, eco-friendly, and cruelty free brushes had us at hello, but Urban Decay is taking this karmic thing one notch higher this Earth Day by giving us Good Karma Brushes each in a magnetic box fashioned out of recycled egg cartons. Not only do these beauties look and feel like eco works of art (you’ll want to snap the lid shut again and again), the super-soft synthetic brush hair—which apparently does not hold on to bacteria the way porous animal hair does—is made from recycled PET bottles. The gunmetal brush handles are eco friendly as well, and made from recycled aluminum. Plus, the Good Karma Brushes come with various names like Multi Tasker and Blending Brush so you can really figure out what they’re for. Pick up an egg carton filled with one classic brush each at Macy’s, ULTA, Beauty.com, and UrbanDecay.com.
I’ve always loved the Jason skin, body, and hair care products because they’re completely free of parabens, phthalates, artificial colors, petrolatum, sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate, and sodium myreth sulfate. It’s a worthy brand to support all year round and for Earth Month the brand has teamed up with actress Kristin Chenoweth to kick off the Earth Day Network’s Canopy Project. For every new LIKE on Jason’s Facebook page from April 1s to APril 30, one tree will be planted via the Canopy Project.
To celebrate Earth Month, Origins created four limited-edition skincare products that are powered by nature. In collaboration with the American Forests’ Global ReLeaf program, a tree will be planted for each limited edition sold between April 21 and April 28. The skincare collection includes: Clear Improvement (an active charcoal mask); Drink Up Intensive (a nourishing and hydrating mask ); Modern Friction (a gentle dermabrasion); Checks and Balances (a frothy face wash).
New from Nourish Organic, a 100% USDA certified organic beauty and personal care brand sold at Whole Foods and Ulta, is Organic Raw Shea Butter, which contains absolutely nothing but organic shea butter. Possibly the best moisturizer on the planet, shea butter eases irritated, dry, and chapped skin, and can be used on the face, body, and even hair. The line, which we absolutely love Nourish Organic because it is pure to its very core, including its fragrances. Now that’s a gift straight from Mother Nature.
Beauty drinks are all the rage in Asia and in Europe, and now they are even popping up here in the US.
Instead of undergoing laser resurfacing to help replenish your body’s natural collagen stores, you can gulp some collagen-enriched beverages. Products include Black Fungus Collagen Drink, Red Collagen Youth Drink, and Glowelle’s line of beauty drinks. Even Coca Cola is getting in on the game with the Beautific Oenobiol brand.
But before you drink to that. Do these products really deliver on their promises? And more importantly, how do they taste?
Many U.S. beauty and nutrition experts say the science is sketchy, and that there are far better ways to improve skin health than doing shots of hyalurionic acid or collagen.
“Current evidence does not show that special products provide any greater benefit than any food or beverage,” says Connie Diekman, RD, the director of University Nutrition at Washington University in St Louis and a past president of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. “When products go through the gastrointestinal tract, they are subject to digestion just like any food so ‘special’ ingredients, vitamins or amino acids are subject to digestion.”
Still, drinking enough fluids to stay hydrated is important for skin health. This means water and other fluids. “Caffeine is acceptable if consumed in moderate amounts,” she says. “As an RD, I’d encourage people to rely on proper nutrition, adequate hydration and activity for a healthy body, including the skin.”
Don’t go drinking your favorite moisturizer or other beauty products, warns Ron M. Shelton, MD, a New York City dermatologist. “It is not a simple matter to replenish the skin by consuming the end product,” he says. “If someone can benefit by more hyaluronic acid in their dermis, consuming it would not deliver this mucopolysaccharide (sugar water with amino acids) to the skin’s dermis.”
Put another way: The molecules would be broken down and reassembled, but not delivered to the area below the wrinkle that Juvederm would fill up, he says. “So drinking a bottle of hyaluronic acid will not give one a result of lifting and filling that the hyaluronic acid injections accomplish.”
Sorry, eating or drinking collagen won’t replace that which is lost in our skin. Yes, eating more protein can help boost your collagen supply, but not if you have sun damage, he says. “The destroyed collagen from ultraviolet A, does not get replaced by dietary protein.”
If you are deficient in vitamin C, your collagen supply is at risk. Vitamin C supplements can help, but when it comes to skin, topical administration of antioxidants may help the agents reach the dermis better than consumption by mouth.
The bottom line about beauty drinks? If you like the taste, there is probably no risk, but if you are expecting that they come from the fountain of youth, you may be setting yourself up for a big disappointment. Instead, see your dermatologist or plastic surgeon to find out what you can do to boost your collagen supply and get rid of fine lines and wrinkles.