Skin definitions aren’t just for anatomy class. Understanding what the different terms mean can really help you navigate the skincare product aisle. When you read through the labels, chances are you encounter words that leave you stumped. If that’s the case, how can you be sure you’re choosing the right product for your skin? Check out these important skin definitions and I promise that you’ll have a whole new outlook on taking care of your skin.
Your epidermis is the skin that is exposed to the world and perhaps one of the most important skin definitions there is. It’s the top layer that provides a barrier against the environment and carries all the pigmentation in your skin. This is important to understand if you need products that penetrate deeper than just the surface of your skin.
Your dermis is the underlying layer of skin, which is where your hair follicles, sweat glands and connective tissue reside. Certain skin conditions impact these lower layers of your skin, so it’s a good idea to understand how the dermis is different from the epidermis.
This term applies to any inflammation of the skin. It can occur with a chronic condition, such as eczema, or appear due to contact allergies or a sensitivity to certain ingredients in skincare products. When your doctor or dermatologist tells you that you have dermatitis, you might need special products to treat it. Look for items that claim to treat the condition and you’ll be feeling better in no time.
4. Alpha Lipoic Acid
This is an antioxidant commonly added to skincare products. Alpha lipoic acid helps neutralize free radicals, which can really do a number on your skin. Products that contain this ingredient are good choices for combating the damage caused by environmental toxins, a poor diet and sun exposure. Read through the ingredients list – you want something that contains alpha lipoic acid as an active ingredient, which means it’ll appear toward the top of the list instead of being relegated to the end.
You know what caffeine is when it comes to your morning cup of java, but you might not realize its importance in skincare products. When you see this on a product label it means that caffeine is added as a way to fight dermatitis. So, if you have that problem, it’s a good idea to look for products packed with caffeine. See why it’s important to know the difference? Caffeine also has antioxidant and antiviral properties, which can be highly beneficial for your skin.
6. Zinc Oxide
Zinc oxide differs a bit from straight zinc when it comes to skincare. Zinc oxide is perfect for soothing your skin. It also has astringent properties, so it’s great for red, painful and itchy skin. If you suffer from any of these problems, it’s great to understand how zinc oxide works to counteract it so you can make the right choice when you’re bombarded with all the choices on the skincare aisle at your local drugstore. It’s also an ingredient that blocks the sun’s rays so look for it in sunscreen.
7. Salicylic Acid
If you have acne prone skin, this is a definition you need to know. Salicylic acid is an ingredient used in many anti-acne skin products. It has antimicrobial properties that can help keep breakouts at bay. This is an ingredient you need to see toward the top of the list of active ingredients. It’s typically available in facial skin wash.
Are any of these definitions new to you? Feel free to add yours to my list.