By Maryse IsmaSpecial to CSMS MagazineWhy peeling off your skin? Not surprisingly, the mere thought of using any kind of acid on the skin is frightening to many people. But since the early 1990s, dermatologists and researchers have used alphahydroxy acids (AHAs)-naturally found in many fruits—quite safely and effectively to help slow the process of skin aging and to restore a more youthful appearance. In other procedures, known as peels, a solution of mild topical acid is applied to the skin, which in turn reddens and abrades the skin’s top layers. The use of these peels has branched out from the face to the neck, chest, arms, and legs—anywhere that discoloration and wrinkles have taken hold. Dermatologists also say that the peels can remove precancerous spots on the skin, a helpful preventive measure. Nonprescription forms of AHAs are found in many cosmetic creams, though their effectiveness in these formulations is not documented. Using the essential oilsThroughout the cosmetics industry, you’ll hear the praise for the power of citrus fruit compounds to help skin healthy and young looking. One warning demands attention: When some women and men use citrus peel essential oils—such as grapefruit, mandarin and tangerine—on their face in the sun, the pigment of their skin may be altered or “stained” by the combined oil and sun exposure. In some instances, the discoloration can be irreversible, according to dermatologists. They suggest, in short, avoiding the citrus peel oils altogether in summer, when heading out-of-doors. Temporary RemoverIf you do not care to experiment with permanent fixes for age spots, stretch marks and other skin imperfections, but want a quick fix for a day at the beach, there are solutions. And, say some dermatologists, there is no need to buy the heavy—duty cover—ups that requires a prescriptions is to buy a concealer from a cosmetics company such as Clinque. Try Advanced Concealer or City BlockNote: Both are waterproof, a big must for sun-savvy frolicking in the water.Also see Fruits lovers: stick to blueberries and apricot
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