Natural skin care uses topical creams and lotions made of ingredients available in nature.
Skin care sits at the interface of what is commonly thought of as personal care products, some of which are, and dermatology, traditionally a medical discipline in which medical doctors diagnose and treat skin diseases; there is some overlap with each of these topics.
The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act defines cosmetics as products intended to cleanse or beautify (for instance, shampoos and lipstick). A separate category exists for medications, which are intended to diagnose, cure, mitigate, treat, or prevent disease, or to affect the structure or function of the body (for instance, sunscreens and acne creams), although some products, such as moisturizing sunscreens and anti-dandruff shampoos, are regulated within both categories.
Skin care differs from dermatology, as traditionally practiced, by its additional but less medical scope and by its inclusion of non-physician professionals, such as estheticians and wound care nursing staff. Skin care includes modifications of individual behavior and of environmental and working conditions. Nevertheless, dermatology has co-opted some aspects of skin care, particularly in the U.S., and to a significantly lesser extent elsewhere, such as the U.K.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, between 40 and 50 million Americans suffer from acne each year. While many associate acne with adolescence, acne can occur at any age. Causes of acne can include heredity/genetics, hormones, menstruation, food, and emotional stress.
There are a few ways to help reduce the effects of acne. Use a gentle exfoliating product, such as a scrub that contains sea salt or jojoba beads instead of one that uses sharp seeds, granules, or husks. Some anti-acne creams contain drying agents such as benzoyl peroxide, which can help ease acne in certain cases — particularly among teenagers. However, many adults can’t tolerate the intense drying effects and might experience cracked skin and red blemishes the longer they use the product.