Forest for Women: skincare

Burt's Bees Brightening Dark Spot Corrector Review (Updated)

I read about how daisy could heal age spots and acne marks. The conclusion was based on real experiments.


The next thing that came across me was Burt's Bees brightening collection. It was an ad. I was not interested in it all of what was offered. I wanted to see the flower's direct effect. But at the same time, I was little scared. I don't think all natural ingredients can be used just like that. Some need processing. As a result, in the end, I decided to go for Burt's Bees Brightening Dark Spot Corrector. It is organic. I did not see any harm in trying it out on acne marks. Its price is $20.  See the package below for all that this corrector offers. The size of the bottle is highly disappointing, for it does not do justice to the price. Nevertheless, what is inside the bottle is effective in most unusual way. I found this out even without following Burt Bee's recommendations. The package says that for best results, we are to use the entire Brightening collection. Also the corrector is to be applied once in the morning and once at night. I wore mine just at night before going to sleep. I had a reason behind this.
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Cool Olive Oil Tips and Tricks for Skin and More

Olive oil is has a combination of monounsaturated fats, oleic acid and antioxidants. This makes it perfect cooking oil for all those who wish to lower their cholesterol and stay healthy. Once you become a senior citizen, probably, your doctor will recommend you to add it to your every day diet for the same reason. But wait not to see the wonder of olive oil. It can do a lot more than that. To many, olive oil is a blessing in disguise for a reason. Have a look at the amazing tricks and tips that bloomed from it.

1. It is a great pain reliever: Those who have arthritis or bursitis can massage olive oil onto targeted areas for relief. It does not permanently shoo away the pain, but sleep at night should be comfortable. Some say that the massage must be done with warm oil. Experiment at home shows that it does not matter.

2. It can be used as a natural tanner: Whether on the beach or at home, olive oil is known to provide skin with great tan. Studies confirm that that olive plants have natural sun blocking agent. That is the reason why its oil provides tan to the skin without letting it to be harmed by ultraviolet ray. With that being said, experts do not recommend sitting in the sun for hours with olive oil on the skin. They give a time limit of one hour.  At home, there is less to worry about. The method here involves application of paste made from olive oil and coffee to the entire body. A warm shower is followed after 20 minutes. Weekends are the best time for this process. It is also recommended to wear gloves before handling the paste.

3. It can reduce crows feet: The problem of crows feet begins from the age of mainly 30. It can appear prematurely from excessive facial skin movements. Sure anti aging creams can reverse it, but they are not made for young skin. But good news is that regular olive oil massage on the attacked area is a great substitute.

Pouring olive oil from bottle
4. Olive oil can be shaving cream: Believe it or not, olive oil can do the job of shaving cream quite well. It gives a moisturized slippery effect to the hair and that enables a trouble free shave. 

5. Loosening gum stuck to hair: What is the first method that comes to your mind to get rid of the chewing gum stuck to hair? Of course, it is tearing the hair. Don't do this. Instead apply this magical oil to the targeted spot and keep massaging. The gum will soon start to come off. 

 6. It straightens and moisturizes nails: If you hate the dry look of your nails or fed up with their brittle texture, try massaging them with tiny drops of olive oil. This will not only sparkle them, but also will keep them moisturized and strong. 

7. It is a medication against dry, damaged, brittle, discolored hair and dandruff: Olive oil has a love affair with hair. Regularly massaging it to hair and scalp (if possible) with almond oil prevents dandruff and split ends. The oil is also an excellent restorer of original hair color. It is not important to have it warm unless the second priority is comfort for head. To prevent hair from attracting dust, it is good to wash off the oil later with shampoo. By the way, when this treatment can kill lice also.

8. It can be used as a tough paint stain fighting soap: This works perfectly to remove paint from hands and there are two options for it. First one includes rubbing the hands with a combination of sea salt and olive oil. The second option is rubbing the hand with olive oil and then scrapping it all off with a rag.

9. It can enhance the treatment given to lips: Olive oil just by itself can heal chapped lips. In other kinds of treatments, it can work as a binder. This means it prevents any kind of homemade paste from running off the lips. So try adding it to your recipe for trouble free application. Olive oil can also be used in homemade lip gloss. The basic recipe includes two other ingredients which are food coloring and bees wax.

10. It can be used for eye makeup: Using olive oil as a makeup removal is a popular trick. But what if we reverse the role? Even here it wins. Apparently, olive oil can add great shine to dry dead looking eyelashes.

Warnings

  • Never use any of these tips and tricks without first testing.
  • Those who suffer from acne and eczema should not directly use olive oil. Research done by British University of Sheffield Medical School in 2013 shows that this oil can cause redness and eczema.
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10 Beauty Product Secrets That Will Save Your Money

Skin is always changing, leaving us desperate to look for ways to normalize it. We are constantly hunting for new skin care products. Many times, we all have fallen for the promises that every new skin care product makes. We bought them. We tried them. Some showed good result. Others burned our skin. Caring for skin should not be this difficult, but how do we save ourselves from the spell of marketing gimmicks? We are not always told the truth. It will never happen.

No company wants to be bankrupted. So we are left to find out the truth ourselves. Below are some that will blow your mind. There are so many myths out there that we think are true. Many dermatologists throughout the world have finally spoken about them. It would be silly to miss it.

1. Not all skin care products available at drugstores,Walmart and even Macy's are designed to provide permanent results. They may become even more useless if we do not physically try to take precautions. This is true especially for acne fighters. They can minimize the appearance of acne, but will never solve the main problems. Also if because of hormones skin is going through biological changes no cream from outside will help.

2. You heard about anti aging moisturizers. Honest dermatologists believe that just wearing one makes no difference. The only good thing it might do is moisturize the skin.

3. No anti aging cream has ever completely removed wrinkles. They just minimize the appearance.

4. Majority of the time the main reason behind premature aging is the sun. The more it is avoided the better it is for the skin and wallet. However, for a teenager, the problem might be different. Studies show that genes are responsible for wrinkles appearing too early in life.

5. A blend of wrinkles and dark circle under eyes is a genetic factor. No dark circle remover will ever change it.

6. Face wash marketed as blackhead remover does not truly remove blackheads.

7. These days most foundations and mineral makeup products contain anti sun ingredients. The labels may say SPF10, SPF15 and so on. Guess what? Like a real sunscreen cream, these cosmetics do not provide full protection.  In reality, they may stop at SPF5.

8. It is useless to apply Vitamin E oil on the skin to remove tough scars. Not a single study proves that it works. Once again, the oil will only moisturize the skin.

9. Do not fall for the $100 price tag attached to some creams and lotions. The high price does not necessarily make a product  more efficient. Our main concern should be with the ingredients. They must be suitable to the problem skin.What is funny is that it's not the ingredients, but packaging that drives up the price of the product.

10. Being aware of our skin needs can reduce our urge to try out every new cream only to feel scammed later. At least three things are important in this: a. Knowing the skin type b. Its reaction to different ingredients c. Making sure to avoid those that are harmful to it. Internet is our best friend. Use it to learn about the product that interests you. Read reviews of users. Inspect the ingredients before heading to the store to buy the cream.
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How to use Turmeric for Skin Care

Turmeric seems to have no problem in assimilating with all skin types. Moreover, it never hesitates to fight against most common skin problems. That is why, it can be used in almost all mask recipes. Do keep the clay mask away though! Many believe that the best friends of turmeric are lemon juice and honey. We take a look at how their combination should be used.

With lemon juice:
It is claimed that lemon juice along with turmeric relieves hyper pigmentation. To know if it is true, I once made a mask recipe by adding lemon juice to turmeric paste. I applied to my sun damaged area. The result was not good. Lemon juice is naturally acidic. Thus, it gave a slight amount of tingling sensation in my skin. However, next time, when I added water to the mixture the problem departed. As for hyperpigmentation, I did not notice any change in it. But I still believe that continues use of the lemon and turmeric mixture will have some impact over it. Many people actually claim that they have seen good result from it.

With raw honey:
Turmeric mixed in honey and water is quite an effective medication for the weak skin. The truth is that both turmeric and honey have antibacterial properties. Perhaps, that is why, their mixture worked better in reducing the acne I had. Interestingly, the effectiveness of the honey was usually felt right after washing off the mask from my face. The elasticity and PH balance of the skin turned better. Apparently, those who have dry skin will find the friendship of honey and turmeric most suitable.

With other mask recipes:
As mentioned before, turmeric can be added to just about any mask recipes. So do not come to conclusion that you need to always use lemon and honey to get maximum benefit from it. However, keep the amount of turmeric low in your mask recipe in order to avoid the yellow stain. Experiment to find out what goes best with it.

2014 update
Two more experiment reports:
1. I first used fuller's clay at the age of 10. It was given to my parents in shapes of tablets by one of their Burmese friends. It was all exotic to us. We did not know what the clay did. Couple of months ago, I found it again in one exotic store and bought it instantly. I went online to learn about it. Nothing truly made me think it was all that. Yet I used it. There was no real gain from it. Not even the real application made any difference. The skin felt neither dry nor oily. I decided to turmeric to it. It was a bad move. First application left the skin so dry that it almost started feeling intensely itchy. All day, I scratched and made acne. I thought the second application would heal the acne. After all, turmeric in previous experiments proved to be quite an enemy to it. Unfortunately, this time the result was opposite. So I wouldn't recommend anyone to try the two in one mask recipe.

2. I have a tendency to get cold sores in either spring or summer. This time again, I got one. I thought to try turmeric paste over it to see what happened. First day application did not show much effect. But yes, it did feel drier on the sore. So I went ahead with two more applications. On third day, there was noticeable change. The sore started to look grayish.  It was surely a sign that the area of the lip was healing. However, I could still feel the heaviness of the sore. It stayed like this the entire week. I was still able to go to class without the fear of embarrassment. My conclusion is that turmeric does work on cold sore. Yet here is the thing, last year, when the sore appeared, I washed it with antiseptic soap before going to bed. Just like turmeric, it gave me a positive result in 3 days. So in this case, we can use either turmeric or antiseptic soap. 

Warning:
Be careful while buying a pack of turmeric. Read its label before paying for it. I actually found a research report that stated that India’s branded turmeric powder contains unhealthy artificial coloring. So I will say that it is actually best to look for the ingredient in solid form. Just see its picture below. 
One of my Indian friends recommended me to go for it. Unfortunately, it seems that majority of the stores just do not have it. As far as I know, even in Thailand, use of turmeric in cooking is prevalent. So try the Thai stores. Otherwise go for organic power by others.

Browse more info on turmeric:
Experiment reports
Answer to whether it works on wrinkles
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Remedy Against Facial Mask Itch

Facial masks are not much different from creams. When appropriately picked each group can take care of any skin problem we have. Application can still be a bit suffocating. This is true especially in the case of facial masks. Did you ever wear one that gave you heavy punishment in the form of itch? Red rashes accompanying it is traditionally a sign of allergic reaction. Sometimes they occur from a specific ingredient used in the recipe. Subtracting it from a store bought pack is not easy. Hence, discontinuing the use of the mask is the only option.

But what if there is no allergic reaction and true positive result are seen? This is something that probably many of us have experienced. The result makes us reluctant to give up and more willing to put up with the itch. Technically, we can lessen it. Here is how to do it properly:

1. Make the paste using quality mineral water. Try to go for the brand that promises better pH level. Two examples are Crystal Geyser and Volvic. Quality mineral water protects the skin from extreme dryness.

2. Lesser is the key. From experiment and observation, I have noticed that application of a huge dollop of the paste on the face tends to intensify the itch. Lesser amount does the opposite. To be honest, thick layer does not guarantee stronger effectiveness. It only delays the drying process. If you are someone who does not use soap to wash off the mask then you should be fine.

3. Don't just sit with the mask. Get busy in anything that does not require moving. Surfing the next works the best. This will divert your attention from the mask and thus, you will forget about the itch.

4. In the beginning, you will not be able to prevent yourself from feeling the itch. Feel free to give it light scratch. Within a minute or two, you will not have to deal with it anymore. By the way, under thinner mask layer, it is easier.

Which masks are safer to use?
We all are aware of the fact that traditionally facial masks are made from raw products like unprocessed fruits, clay, milk, honey, herbs, and even flowers. In our modern day, we don't have time to gather all the ingredients. Many skin care companies, thus, have come up with the idea to sell ready to apply facial masks in containers. Some of them are quite beneficial. At least the ones that salons use tend to be safer. Same cannot be always told for the ones sold for personal use.

Ready to apply facial masks tend to be double edged swords in the sense that they contain preservatives and other unwanted ingredients that our skin might find difficult to accept. This is true especially for sensitive skin.  That is why, it is best to stick to traditional home made facial masks. Point must still be noted about milk and yogurt. Though helpful for dry skin, they may trigger the itch rather aggressively. When it comes to clay, it is best to go for its powdered version.
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Is No No Pro Hair Removal System a Scam?

How many of you watched the make believe commercial and infomercial of No No Pro Hair Removal System? First glance would make anyone think that finally we have a gadget that gets rid of hair permanently without any pain. That is what their script says anyways.

Not just women, but also men can use it. That would mean no more shaving beard in the morning. The body of the gadget is attractive too. It comes in variety of colors and almost resembles Razor cellphone from Motorola or a traditional USB flash drive. Moreover, multiple magazines and blogs have bowed down on their knees in honor of the gadget. They say it works! Majority of the users have opposite opinion though. Some even have horror stories.

Just like many others, even after having a marketing concentration, I ended up believing every claim made by the commercial. But I take my own preach very seriously. Hence, I decided to research on the gadget before buying it. In this task, no source is better than online stores. Keeping this in mind, I first decided to go to Amazon. They seem to have many different pages for this same gadget. Sometimes only the models vary. Stars remain constant. Yes, on all pages, the gadget has received 2 stars and bad reviews outnumber the good ones.

The users have the same conclusion that it does not work. That sure says it is a scam, but wait, there is more to than the meets the eyes.  There is actually a way to make the gadget work. This is what some customers mention in their video blogs and Amazon reviews. Here are some claims they make:
  • The instructions accompanying the pack have to be followed.
  • Enormous amount of patience is required
  • Application must be continued to see the result. 
  • It is not suitable for everyone
  • Hair has to be certain length to make the gadget work
Disappointed customers mention the following problems:
  • The gadget breaks down
  • Pain
  • Getting scarred skin (if not being careful)
  • Continues smell of burned hair
  • Poor customer service
  • Hair growing thicker after some time
Who to believe now? I would go with the ones saying it does not work. The biggest issue here is the customer service. Some disappointed users say that they never got any help by calling the 8800 number. Meanwhile, satisfied customers cannot stop praising the representatives, but they do not say that the thing removed their hair permanently. Online marketing has changed a lot. Companies can now buy reviews of their products from normal people for as low as $5. To look honest, some will tell the reviewers to mention that their reviews are sponsored. Others could care less. There are sites dedicated to this entire marketing technique. Sometimes the companies just pick a site and give its owner an offer for such a review. It happened on this site too. But I truly hate the idea because I know this would kill the pleasure I get from writing about the anatomy of the products.  

The biggest truth about the product is that it does not permanently remove hair which is contrary to the claim they make in their television ads. This is a sign of scam. But wait, the official site has a different claim. You can see below:


From this and the positive reviews, one final presumption we can make is that the use of the system will only slow down the growth of hair. But what about the review according to which it made hair coarser? Burning is still not a good sign especially if it is on the skin. Once, KDKA news did a segment on this product. One of their users showed the burn.

She laughed it away while praising the product. Apparently, No No maker has a huge marketing budget for which we will probably keep watching the infomercial endlessly on television. Feel free to buy the thing at your own risk. I already burned myself few times with Nair and some other hair removal products. Consequently, I am going to skip it. FAQ section of the official site says sensitive skin might experience acne and bumps if the system is not used correctly. This makes me more concerned
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Shower Gels and Soaps That Prevent Body Acne and Itch

The normal bathing soaps and gels do not suit all skin surfaces. They are harsh for some. The biggest evidence of this can be seen in the form of extreme dryness, rash, itch and body acne. If you are prone to getting any of them after shower, your skin is probably allergic to such normal soaps and gels.

If you don't discontinue using them your skin may catch more complicated infections, compelling you to see your dermatologist. Don't be alarmed. This is not going to mark the end of your affair with soaps and gels. There are many out there designed for sensitive or rash filled skin. Below are some of the best options.

Those who get cold sores will also find these gels and soaps useful. When you see one appearing on your lip wash it with any of them before going to bed. Next day, you will find the cold sore shrinking in size.

For Body Acne

Neutrogena Body Clear Body Wash

If you have acne problem you can go for this Neutrogena Body Clear Body Wash. This is designed mainly to kill and prevent body acne. The ingredients are more aggressive. So do not use it on the face. Also find out if you are allergic to salicylic acid. This is the main acne fighting ingredient that this body wash contains. Some skins cannot tolerate it.

Clean and Clear Boost

Those who are allergic to salicylic acid often find their skin to be more in tune with benzoyl peroxide. Clean and Clear body wash has this ingredient. Its sub name is Boost with mango and papaya. There were two others called Charge and Splash. Clean and Clear has discontinued them. It is recommended to not use this product before going in the sun especially if you are planning on wearing tanktop or anything that keeps your shoulder bare. Benzoyl peroxide tends to make skin more vulnerable to damages coming from sunlight. It is best to use the body wash in the evening.

For Itch

Basis Sensitive Skin bar

What if you get itch and not acne? In this case, Basis Sensitive Skin bar might be the right solution. The results, however, have shown that this soap fights against both itch and acne. In a way, it is one multipurpose medication. Doctors often tell eczema patients to use it.

Dettol

Another great soap is Dettol. It has big name all around the world. Unfortunately, here in US, it is available on in a few specialty stores. This is a bit strange in the sense that its maker’s Veet and Lysol are everywhere. They are part of our American household now. Dettol is promoted as a germ fighting soap, but it does an excellent job of preventing itch. You will definitely find it on Amazon.

Great Dead Soaps

There was a time when doctors used to recommend Dove. It was quite well known for its fight against most body skin problems. However, the newest Dove formula is weak. Hence, it does not prevent the itch. Another one is Olay Unscented soap for sensitive skin. It also won many hearts, yet Olay decided to discontinue it.

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Ivory Refreshing 2 in 1 Hair and Body Wash Review

Ivory makes soaps and body wash. This time they have come up with a new formula that does not just cleans the body, but also does the job of shampoo. Yes, it cleans hair too. That is why; it is called 2 in 1 Hair and Body Wash. But how effective is it? That you will find out from my review of this product.

Fragrance Test
Apparently, it is not just for women, but for all in the family. This means men can use it too. Another feature of the product is that it is free of intense perfume. Do not confuse it with “fragrance free”. The liquid does have a beautiful calm scent. It reminds me of Johnson and Johnson lotions made for babies, but it is even less overwhelming than their fragrance. This is nice, but what disappoints me is that it does not last even an hour on the skin. Strangely, the hair holds it better. I could smell it even after day one of using the product. Sure it smelled light, but it was still there!

Washing Test
When applying the liquid to body it feels just like any other body wash. It has nice light foam and does not irritate the skin. However, washing it off is not easy. The skin stays slippery until tremendous amount of water is used to clean it. I have a feeling that it has connection to ingredients added to the liquid to make it suitable for hair. Traditionally, shampoo works like that on the skin. Do not still consider the liquid to be evil, for it does not dry out the skin after shower. In my case, I have not seen any flakes or white spots.  How is the product on hair? This is where things get interesting. Although it is no specialized Pantene, it does a fine job of cleaning the hair. Like soaps, it does not bring roughness and dullness. Shine is subtle and the hair feels quite soft.

Verdict
I like the convenience factor attached to this Ivory product because I prefer shampooing my hair every other day. I travel a lot for school these days and obviously this means I carry my bathing stuffs in a bag. By habit, for me, longer trip means shampooing my hair twice in a day. I just cannot stand sweat in hair. But the most annoying thing is that when in a hurry, sometimes I forget to put things in my bag. Shampoo turns out to be one of them. In this case, Ivory body and hair Wash is my life saver. I sincerely wish its next formula makes the fragrance last longer. The liquid should also be more washable. All other features are truly praiseworthy.  I would give this product 3.5 out of 5 stars.
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Easy to Follow Beauty Tips from Celebrities

In the glamour world, it is the face that matters most. Celebrities are well aware of it and thus, they do all they can to enhance their outer appearances. Most have no choice but to surrender to surgery. Others are naturally beautiful and want to keep it up that way.

But how they do it does not always make a headline. Not everyone uses the most expensive French cream or gets a lip job. Some of the beauty tips they follow are actually very ordinary. Here we have some of them:

Mariah Carey

In the 90s, she mentioned that after a busy day, she liked to relax her skin with an ice cube wrapped in napkin. Does it truly help? It actually should. Ice cube is said to refresh the skin provided it is not directly applied. Yes, it must be wrapped first with a clean napkin.

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Do You Truly Need Mineral Water Spray?

Few water and skin care brands are now selling mineral water spray for face. According to them, the product soothes and protects the skin. The spray bottle is supposed to act as convenience for travelers. We can put it in the bag and carry it around! But is there anything extraordinary about the water? Is it worth buying? Let’s investigate.

There is less competition in this specific field. Only two or three brands are offering the spray and one is not even from US. Evian brand of mineral water spray is currently the most popular. Its price varies from $17 to $10. Then we have Thermal Spa water from Vichy. According to the label, it contains 15 rare minerals. The product price varies from $14 to $10. Vichy boasts that at least 15 studies have shown that their water is effective on the skin. Is it enough to make the spray more expensive than a bottle of water we buy from Safeway?

Meaning of what they Say
A common claim made by all the brands is that their water is pure and that is what benefits the skin. What helped them understand the quality? Evian and Vichy hint it is the neutral pH. Scientifically, water which has pH- 7 is considered pure. Even a value close to 7 is taken as safer. Decrease from this number means the water is getting acidic. For example, pH 5 is considered 10 times more acidic than the pH value above it which is 6. It goes like this because logarithm is the backbone of its measurement.  Another element married to pH is the measurement of calcium and bicarbonate. pH value 7 proves that they are balanced.

The fascinating fact is that Volvic, Dannon and Crystal Geyser have the same attribute. Sure Volvic is little expensive, but one gallon of Crystal Geyser costs 95 cents or less. According to my test strip, the water has a pH value of 7.6. As for an empty capped mist bottle, its available everywhere and that is also below $3. So now we know that before we had to ULTA for Evian, we should experiment with the mineral water we normally drink. The brands mentioned here are safer in this case.

Benefits
Whether it’s from Evian or Volvic, good quality mineral water does make a huge difference on the skin. Some benefits are mentioned below:

Cures skin disorder: Here and there, some people actually mentioned how the ordinary mineral water helped their acne prone skin to heal. It is also common for dermatologists to instruct eczema patients to wash their infected area with it.
Balanced elasticity: Good quality mineral water helps the skin retain elasticity.
Lasting makeup: Face washed with mineral water holds makeup longer.
Glossy hair: Hair treated with chemical tends to lose shine and silk texture. Both can be regained by washing it in mineral water.
Hydrated skin: One research concludes that drinking bottled water results in better hydrated skin. However, the long-term effect is unknown.  Fruits are still considered superior than water for skin care.

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How Sleep Improves and Destroys the Health of the Skin

What is beauty sleep? It is that one sleep that helps us look rejuvenated and tension free. Even doctors say it benefits skin.

But doing it just once is not enough. A research program sponsored by Estee Lauder has confirmed that inadequate amount of sleep does ruin the health of skin in many different ways through internal biological factors. It is emphasized in the research report because several other factors such as smoking, drinking, taking painkillers and sun exposure have also been linked to poor skin texture. Staying away from them while sleeping less does no good to the skin. But what can less sleep really do? Let’s see what they found out from the research:

Wrinkles at Young age: The worst effect is visible premature wrinkles and skin slackening. Yes, less sleep speeds up the aging process.

Loss of Elasticity: Elasticity has strong connection with aging skin. The loss of it results in wrinkles screaming “your skin is getting old”.

Uneven pigmentation: Usually occurs from sun exposure, uneven pigmentation is more stubborn in women who sleep less. It just does not wish to leave.
Main reason
Just like our body, skin needs to relax. In fact, when we are asleep, our skin repairs itself. The more time is given to it, the better job it does. According got the research, in 72 hours; those who get sufficient sleep get to have 30 percent better repaired skin than those who sleep less.

Perfect hours of Sleep
How do we know how much sleep each one of us need? We always hear that in average we need 7 to 8 hours of sleep every night. But that is true only for adults. Different age groups have different needs for hours of sleep. The table below shows this.


Do not be totally swayed by this. There will be days when we have to overwork. Sometimes due to other reasons, we are forced to get less than even 7 hours of sleep. Think about the night before an exam. Studying forces us to drink coffee to keep the sleep at bay. After all the hassle of exam is over, we finally want to relax our eyes. But in this situation, the whole normal 8 hours of sleep is not enough. According to National Sleep foundation, due to overwork, it is best to have as much sleep as possible. The goal is to give ample time to the body to recover from stress.

Sleep Magic
If you go through any skin care tips I have given in my articles, you will notice that I keep mentioning “do this before going to bed”. The reason behind this is that majority of the time their effectiveness shows up only after sleep. Even facial masks seem to show better results. This correlates with the research conclusions given above. Skin repairs better in sleep. The external healthy creams and skin care recipes simply boost its work. That is why, I recommend everyone to do what some skin conscious older women do and that is, have a customized skin regimen before bedtime.
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How to Make Sugar Scrub with Experiment Report

Sugar contains glycolic acid which is a form of alpha hydroxy acid. You heard about this compound before. Many cosmetics brands boast of having it in their skin care products. The reason behind this is that the compound has the power to remove wrinkles and even cure acne, and hyperpigmentaion. That is why, adding sugar to skin treatment regime can be taken as healthy and beneficial. I did experiment with it in scrub form. In the beginning I did one mistake! I will reveal it here today. We will also learn how to make and apply the scrub.

The Benefits and Warnings
Recently FDA revealed that glycolic acid has a tendency to leave the skin more vulnerable to sunlight. Consequently, it must not be used regularly. When I had no idea about this I went ahead experimenting with the ingredient every single day. The result of this was tiny visible acne which compelled me to assume those who have sensitive skin must not use the product at all. I am not talking just about sugar. Acne can get severe from all kinds of scrubs containing any tiny solid particles including grape seeds. Just think about what happens when you scratch a pimple. Doesn't it increase in size and make the area red? Tiny solid particles we brush against our skin work in that same way. Here instead of using our nails, we are letting them do the job of scratching. That is why, we should not use scrub regularly. I assume using it just once in 7 days is enough. Now here are some actual initial benefits that sugar scrub can give us:
  • Removal of dead skin cell from upper layer 
  • Cleaner skin
  • A little bit of shine
  • Freshness
  • Saves money on expensive exfoliators
I do not think in scrub form sugar can cure wrinkles and all other skin problems mentioned earlier. To eliminate those, we probably need to use it in melted form. I will run an experiment on it and publish the result here later.

How to Make the Scrub
Now let’s find out how to make the scrub. The recipe I have come up with requires only two ingredients.  It can be made any time of the day.  But I would recommend trying it only at night before going to bed. As revealed by FDA, it would be wrong for us to go in the sun after the exfoliation. Also do not simply start applying the scrub all over the face. First perform a test on a small area of your facial skin to see if it reacts negatively to the scrub. If the result turns out to be bad do not use it at all. It is true that sugar acid is quite weak, but our skin tends to be weaker especially when it is going through problems. Review what is written before to know how sugar can work against skin. Back to preparation, the things required to make the scrub are as follows:

Organic granulated cane sugar: It is truly best to stick to organic sugar because it is slightly freer of harsh compounds such as chemical fertilizer and pesticides. Trader’s Joe, Walmart, Amazon and many others sell it.

Your face wash: Yes, this is the only product you will need.

Application Steps

  1. Squeeze the face wash tube to pour a good amount of it on the palm of your hand. 
  2. Next, pour on it one tablespoon of the sugar. 
  3. Now rub it with your other hand. 
  4. Then use both hands to massage your facial skin. Go in circular motion gently. As you start massaging you should get a comforting sensation on your skin. 
  5. Once you start to feel that you have touched up all the areas of your face rinse with warm water and pat dry.
  6. By now your skin should feel clean and soft. To boost this, do not forget to use the toner and moisturizer.
Tip: If you wish you can use sugar as a scrub for your entire body during shower. For that you basically have to mix this sugar to your shower gel and then apply to your body.

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Safe Cosmetics and Personal Care Products Act Needs Your Support

We are all aware that many lipsticks contain lead and that some nail polish recipes have toxic chemicals. What do Nivea sunscreens and some L’Oreal, and Covergirl cosmetics have in common? According to the lab report of Australia’s National Measurement institute, they all carry anatase titanium dioxide.

This mineral does not protect us from sun. Instead it boosts the growth of free radicals, increasing our chances of getting skin cancer.The brands we just heard about are multinational. They do not make and distribute their products just from one country.

Specifically, Nivea has laboratories in many different parts of the world and this does bring level variation in ingredients that go in their creams. But what is in the ones available here in US? Probably, we will never know until an American independent group takes up the job of testing them in the lab.

Our problem lies in the rules of Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  We are truly behind. In the cosmetics and personal care department, we are being “protected” by Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act of 1938! The funniest point is that the meaning of safety is not defined by it. Attempts have been made to amend this act. But each time, the escape matter comes in. The consequence of this is that our safety remains in the hands of the companies selling us the products. United States is capitalistic. This is an excellent arrangement for businesses to bring prosperity to themselves.  But there is always something called greed which compels some to stoop low. Cosmetics and many personal care products are no different from foods. Sure we do not eat them, but they do get absorbed by our skin.  So somehow they are going into our system. What if FDA suddenly comes to know that some of these are toxic? It can punish the makers, but this does not mean it can recall the products from the market. 

How do harmful chemicals make it to the products? It is easy; the industry simply has the power to do it. In fact, they can intentionally use any harmful ingredient and decide not to add it to the label’s ingredient list. It is not important for FDA to know about it because registering the products with it is rather optional for the companies.  Do you see how Food, Drug and Cosmetics act has a number of loopholes? You can close them all by supporting Safe Cosmetics and Personal Care Products Act. This year, it has been reintroduced by Reps JAN Schakowsky and Edward J Markey. If passed into law, this act will:
  • Make it compulsory for all cosmetics companies to register with FDA. Their yearly gross sales will be charged a fee.  Small business, however, will be spared from both registration and fees.
  • Require Health and Human Services to perform tests on samples of cosmetics annually for infectious agents and impurity.
  • Give power to FDA to recall or stop the distribution of products that are toxic and are violating safety, and branding rules.
  • Give more power to all states to create stricter standards
  • Make it obligatory for all cosmetics companies, their packagers and distributors to submit reports of negative health effects of their products to FDA.
  • Compel companies to share more information with salons about any possible risk of using their cosmetics.
  • Require FDA to create detailed portfolio of toxic ingredients that are to be banned. Ingredients that cause cancer and attack fertility will also be the target of the ban.
You can show support for this act by simply asking your representative to co-sponsor it. It will not take you even a minute to do it. Just follow the instructions:
  • Go to this link of Women's Voices for the Earth 
  • Type your zip code in the box given on the page. Then hit enter.
  • Now you will be shown the name of your representative with a box containing a letter for you to send and under it will be form where you enter your name and address. This form will help you stay connected with your representative for more information you want from him.
  • Once you click the send message button your task will be done.
You can stay updated on the status of the bill here: 
H.R. 1385: Safe Cosmetics and Personal Care Products Act of 2013

Update: Just like before, the bill is dead.
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Test Says Yogurt is Not A Friendly Face Mask Ingredient

Experts have always praised the effect of yoghurt on skin. They say it attacks pimples, dark spots, dryness and so forth. I decided to experiment with the thing to see how much truth is there in the hype. I must stretch that my sister warned me against it. She already did her portion of the experiment many years ago. She concluded that the result was nothing but cluster of pimples containing yogurt. They were creamy in color. Doesn’t that sound disgusting? We both have sensitive skin, but I believe hers is different than mine. That gave me enough courage to go head with the experiment. I was not pouring acid on my skin. It was just yogurt.

Experiment Begins
I went for the plain yogurt. I mixed nothing in it. Experts say nothing else is needed anyways. I applied the thing to my clean face like a mask and waited 10 minutes. I did want to keep it longer. But the refreshing smell of the yogurt soon started to turn rotten for my nose. It was like rotten milk. My nose has tremendous hatred towards it. So I hurriedly had to wash it off. After pat drying, I noticed a glow all over the skin. It also felt moisturized. Unfortunately, after a while, it turned overbearing too. I felt as if something kept my face clutched tightly. It was the oiliness. Soon the itches followed. Yet I decided to go to sleep. The next day, I got one pimple under my chin. It was huge. I feared getting more. So I decided t end the experiment.

What exactly went wrong? I still believe that yogurt itself did not cause the pimple. The problem was in the oiliness. I already have a combination skin. My chins and some other facial parts remain oily most of the time. Yogurt is also oily. So when both mixed together, my sensitive skin  could not take any longer. It is also possible that the excess oil ended up attracting dust from all around the room or bed. At one point, this is what summoned the pimple.

I am not going to use yogurt anymore. The test did confirm that it is not for me. Yet I would presume that those who have extreme dry skin might get some benefit from yogurt face mask. Its oil is quite intense if you ask me. That pimple came out too fast. So it would be better to run a test like this before making the ingredient regular for beauty treatment. 
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How to Use Hair Removal Cream Without Getting Rashes

Hair removal creams and lotions are better alternative to razors. They somehow slow down the growth of the hair, letting us take a break of three or four days from the worries of shaving.  Also they prevent the hair from growing thicker like bush! It is not hard to achieve these benefits.

But sometimes the creams can be harsh. Much of it depends on how they are used. Actually, certain precautions and tactics have to be utilized while dealing with such creams.  We will have a discussion of all this here today. In between, we will have many tips too.

Precautions
Hair Removing should be done Under Good light: Always pick a bathroom that has enough light. It will help you see the unwanted hair better.

Remove Hair 8 to 24 hours before Going in the Sun: Skin which has gone through the hair removal process tends to be infused with oil. Thus, it easily darkens under the sun. In some cases, only dark spots form. So it is important that the hair removal cream is used 8 to 24 hours before going out.

Choose a Good Applicator: Most of the time, the hair removal cream comes with a spatula and sponge. According to the makers, they are supposed to ease the application and removal jobs.  Only when using them we come to know that there is not much truth in those claims. In reality, cotton pads make better applicators. So give them a try. For the face, cotton bud is best. The tool does slow down the work. But it is compensated by the final result.

Choose a Good Cream or Lotion: Not all hair removal creams and lotions are same. You definitely need to pick what is effective. Sadly, this calls for many trials. Save the creams’ receipts so you can get refunds just in case they fail to work on your skin. But is there anything best out there? I used Nair, Sally Hansen, Veet and some other unknown brands. Among them, only Veet turned out to be the best for me. I must still say that its previous formula used to make the hair thick. The newest one does not seem to produce that problem.  If you wish to pick something different go for the one that has loosened smooth texture.

Teens and People with Sensitive Skin, be Aware of These Products: Hair removal cream ingredients can be toxic for the young vulnerable skin. On legs, the effect is less. But you really do not want to try it on your face.  I am warning you from my own experience. As a teen, I used the cream on the cheeks. The result of this was rash. The marks from this rash took years to leave my skin. Even in my early 20s I was carrying them. But when the skin matured at age 25, I tested the cream again on the face. This time there was no rash. That is why, I would tell you to wait. It seems that on mature skin, the cream does not react badly.

How to remove the hair effectively?
This is the most important section. Let’s learn how to use the cream. To make the job possible, make sure you have the following:
Small towel
Warm water
Hair removal cream
Applicator (Cotton pads)

The steps:
1. Before you begin, find out from the package of the cream as to what the maker says about how long you can keep the cream on your skin. This is a very important. After a certain time, the cream tends to burn the skin. You don’t want this to happen.

2. With the cotton pad, cover the hair with the cream.

3. Within 2 minutes, the hairs will start to curl up. They almost look zigzag. This is the sign of their loss of strength. If it has not started happening keep the cream a little longer, but never more than the minutes mentioned by the maker. If you feel a burning sensations then ignore the maker’s direction. Remove the cream immediately because it is a sign that it is giving you rash. If possible do not use it again.

4. Make the towel wet. Use warm water.

5. With it now, remove the cream and hair. Be gentle here to avoid scratching or cutting yourself.                

Signs that hair removal cream will not work
Hair shaved before several times is immune to Removal Cream:
Ever wonder why creams don’t work on certain body parts? There is simple reason behind it. Regularly shaved hair tends to become thick. That is the main reason why in some parts of the world, kids go bald many times. Their parents just want them to have strong thick hair in their adult years. Similar fate is embedded in our other body parts. The more we shave our body hair the stronger we make them. They do not lose the strength. As a result, they fail to react to the cream. In this case, waxing is the only answer.

The cream has expired:
How do you know that your hair removal cream has expired? Take a look at its texture. If it looks and feels thick then it means that the cream is not usable. It will not work on hair like before. Usually, it takes 7 to 9 months for the cream to become useless.
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Correct Steps to Use Cleanser, Toner and Moisturizer

These days most brands tell us that the health of facial skin can be best kept well through routine of cleansing, toning and moisturizing. They even sell all the required products in set. But how do you really use them? This is what we will focus on today. We will learn the correct steps that we are to follow while using them. Additionally, we will have a preview of what each of the products does. Many other points and tips will be revealed within it.

Basic
Step1: Take a small portion of the cleansing gel in your palm. Wet it with water to loosen its elastic texture to make it soapy or foamy.

Step2: Apply it on your face.  Massage the gel into your facial skin. Make this massage extra for forehead and t zone. These locations are more prone to holding oil and dirt. That is why, they need more attention.
Clean the forehead and t zone properly

Step3: Wash off the cleanser from your face with normal water. 

Step4: Dry it off. To do this, use a clean towel. Dab it softly. This is a must. You really do not want to just wipe off the water by moving the towel all over your face roughly.  Just let the skin stay free of disturbance.

Step5: Now your face is ready for the toner. To apply the liquid, you will need to first pour it into either a cotton pad or ball. Make the liquid amount small. You do not need to make the cotton fully wet.

Step 6: Wipe off the skin with it. Once again, pay extra attention to the forehead and t zone.

Step 7: Once you feel you have reached all the areas, you can throw away the cotton.

Step 8: Let the face dry out.

Step 9: Last, apply your moisturizer. Massage softly so that you do not excite the skin oil to ooze out.
In the picture from the left: Proactiv 3 Step Acne Treatment System and Neutrogena's
Deep Clean Cream Cleanser, Facial Cleanser, and Invigorating Foaming Scrub (not a set)

What each product does?
  • Cleanser: It needs no introduction. We all know it cleans off all the dirt from the face. However, never think that you can get away buying any cleanser you see on the shelf of the drugstore. Go with what suits your skin.
  • Toner: Technically, toner is supposed to remove any extra dirt or oil remaining after the face has been washed with a cleanser. In a way, it unclogs the pores. But these days, to feed the needs of different skin types, makers have turned them into many other workers. For instance, Nature’s Cure has one containing papaya enzyme. It prepares the skin for acne medication. This specific toner is not suitable for those who have dry skin and are free of pimples. Similarly, certain toners of Lancôme are not for the young skin because their ingredients are very intense. When I was 16 I tried one. The end results were itches followed by breakouts. To be on the safe side, a toner must be understood and tested on the skin before it is included in the cleansing routine. Also never wear it before going in the sun. I am warning you about this from my personal experience. The unclogged pores simply become more defenseless to sun damage. This is true especially for those treated with toners like Nature's Cure. It is actually best to use this product before heading to bed.
  • Moisturizer: These days, it is either a cream or gel! But its work remains the same and that is to keep the facial skin moisturized and smooth. Some people think that it can be replaced by lotion. This is simply a partial misconception. Lotion ingredients are too harsh for facial skin. Damage should be expected. However, a small amount of Olay or Lubriderm lotion can still be effective in repairing a surface too broken and dry from hot summer. 
Also check out:
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Remedies to Remove Foot and Shoe odor

Foot odor is worse than the armpit one. Such a ferocious weapon it is! Shoe odor is no different. Both can ruin the air of an entire bedroom within couple of hours. Think about the embarrassment it might cause for you. If left free it might even drive your family members and friends away from you. That is why, you definitely need to take precaution against it as early as possible. Thanks to grandmas, many old remedies coupled with ideas forming from common sense are still alive for which the task can be taken as not so out of reach. Let’s discuss it all.

Rotate shoes and socks: When shoes and socks are given heavy duty several times, they do not just rip, but also end up with odor. So keep at least two pairs of shoes and wear each every other day. As for socks, make sure you have a good pack of them. You can buy them in bulk from Walmart, Target or Macy’s. Around December, they are usually put on clearance sales. If you take advantage of that you will save a lot of money. Last, always separate the used ones from the crispy clean ones so you can wash them at the end of the week.

Go for shoe freshener: This is a product designed to keep odor away from the feet and shoes. You can try out either Kiwi Select Fresh Force or 10 Seconds Deodorant and Disinfect and. By far, these two are loved by most for their effectiveness and prices.
Use unscented antiperspirant spray or stick: If you are going for the stick remember it must be rubbed between your toes. The spray version must be tried just inside the shoes. Refrain from going for anything like perfume. Mixed in sweat, it can actually create more intense odor.

Wash your shoes with anti odor agent in cold water: This trick will get rid of the odor from the shoes directly. But refrain from using hot water and washing machine as they can severely damage the bindings of your shoes. Instead use hands and leave the pair in the open. Nothing beats air drying. Which anti odor agent is best? Try OdoBan.
Other minor tricks are:
Dusting the inside of the shoes with cornstarch or baking soda: Sister tried both. She thought they helped, but I still had trouble staying next to her once she was home from work.

Leaving the shoes in the fridge: It is believed that cold temperature kills bacteria. Of course it is true. This is the reason why we humans keep our foods in the fridge. Some people tried doing the same with their shoes. The result turned out to be positive. The trick seems to be perfect for summer, but not for winter.

Epsom salt water: The trick is to soak the feet in warm water containing this specific salt for 15 to 20 minutes. It does not just kill odor, but also pain. Many believe that this should be done only two times a week. Go with this advice. But let me state that my mom tried it every day for her foot ache. She did not see anything negative coming out of it.
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What to Use as Emergency Face Wash (My Research)

Imagine a night when you discover that your face wash has run out. Stores are closed or simply they are not near your house.  But you desperately want to wash your face either out of habit or it is just that you like to stay clean and fresh. What can you do in this situation? Obviously, you are thinking that the soap sitting in your bathroom is the solution to your problem. Your thought process is correct. However, to get the best result, you have to go for a specific kind of soap. I will reveal more about it through my experiment report given below.

I was always curious to know whether hand soap could replace face wash. Because of this, I experimented with the substance. The first one I picked had anti bacterial properties. It was called Soft Soap. 
Specifically, that night I had acne. I went ahead using the soap just like a face wash. In the morning, I noticed that the acne somehow shrunk. That was a positive result. I carried on with the experiment up to 4 more days. This time I did not see acne getting bigger or any smaller. The facial skin remained soft.  I told my friend to do this experiment on her face also. Fortunately, she did it and found similar result. But this was not enough for me.

 I then bought a very cheap hand soap containing no anti bacterial properties. It was one of those flowery ones (mine was Cherry Blossom).  I tried it on the face to see what happened. There was no effect of any kind except that it felt oily. In short, it did not wish to be washed off properly. 

Conclusion: When there is no face wash available, it is okay to use anti bacterial hand soap on the face. But do not think it can turn into a long term substitute.  Make an effort to get your face wash as soon as possible for such a thing is made specifically for facial skin. Additionally, i would recommend you to first try out the hand soap on a small area of your face. This will help you see whether your skin is compatible with it.
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Ugly Consequences of Resting Face on the Hand

Do you listen to someone talking while leaving the palm of your hand on your face? Do not be shy to say yes because we all are guilty of doing this. There is no doubt that the position feels comfortable for the head. Bones get to rest after all. But with that comes a price. Resting face on the hand has a few disadvantages which later can turn into something bigger.

Germ on the Face
Hands always remain busy. They touch a lot of things that are not clean at all. So they turn into arena for germs. It is really silly to think that just from one washing they can be kicked. It cannot happen. We cannot stop touching additional things that are full of dust and dirt. In brief, hands somehow remain unclean all the time. Think what that can mean for the facial skin. The logic is simple. Allowing the hands to remain on the face allows the dust and dirt to be transferred to the facial skin.

The ultimate result of this is acne. So if the reason behind why you get acne is still unknown do take a moment to track the movement of your hands.
Creating Wrinkles
Influencing the skin get used to some kind of practice can dramatically change its structure. This is how most skin care products and diet do their work. Apparently, hands can have similar impact both positively and negatively. The positive one can be found from the facial massage. It is soothing and good for what is underneath the skin. As for the negative one, it occurs from prolonged resting of the head on the face. Do you go to sleep with your hand covering your face? If yes then you might become its victim. Facial skin is almost like a fabric. Pressing it too much leaves portions of it with wrinkles. Notice the word “portions”. What this means here is that only spots which are being covered with the hands will see the wrinkles. The most vulnerable ones are laugh lines, forehead and skin between the forehead and nose.
Because of all this, it is best to break the habit of resting the face on the hand. Yes, the short term comfort is pleasurable. But think about the long term problems associated with it. Acne can be easy to eliminate, but wrinkles can stay stuck to skin for many years. They are way too stubborn.
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How to know You are Allergic to Eye Shadows

Drugstores and malls are the hubs for several eye shadow brands. The shades provided by them look tempting. Blame it on our psychology which cannot help getting drawn to a sight full of rainbow tablets.  For some, however, such an attraction can turn fatal. Not all eye shadows are harmless. That is why, it is not always possible to go by the beauty they evoke.  How old they are and what ingredients make them up can totally twist the tale. The end result is infliction of allergy. But how do you know that you too have become its victim?

The eye shadow application leaves you in tears:
This is by far one of the most common symptoms of eye shadow allergy. The preliminary stage involves trouble in keeping the eyes open because of an unusual irritation. It is not like a severe pain, but annoyance.
If you do not get rid of the eye shadow you will find yourself in tears within half an hour. It is hard to stop it from happening. The worst possible thing will happen if you cry. This is going to make the allergy even more intense because the tear water will moisten the eye shadow powder which eventually will start going in your eyes. This is going to welcome redness in them.

Eyelids get itchy and end up with rashes:
This can be taken as more severe than the first one. In this case, the eye shadow already has an allergy causing ingredient. A highly pigmented eye shadow can also turn out to be toxic. When it comes in contact with your eyelids you feel severe itch taking place in them. Just think about the poison ivy and caterpillar powder. On contact, they will leave your skin with itches and rashes.  This is the same thing that your eyelids get from an allergy inflicting eye shadow. Rashes forming from it may evoke burning sensation.

You are already allergic to many things:
You will be more at risk of being sensitive to all kinds of eye shadows if your system already suffers from various allergies coming from beef, fish, grass, perfumes, flowers and so on. Under such circumstances, you basically have to avoid eye makeup completely or go for just hypo allergic cosmetics.  Sometimes the system recovers from such a problem. Once this positive change takes place, it is possible to go back to wearing normal eye makeup. However, anything expired or has a high dose of toxic ingredients will still leave the eyelids vulnerable.

You are using an eye shadow contaminated with conjunctivitis virus:
Conjunctivitis can occur from eye shadow allergies. This is the final probable effect. Apparently, it is quite easy for this virus to spread through all shared cosmetics. So it is best to avoid buying someone’s returned cosmetics including eye shadows kits. Conjunctivitis symptoms include all the symptoms discussed above. They are usually accompanied by blurry pink eyes.  

Eye allergy is not something that can be treated as trivial. Watery and itchy eyes can prevent you from driving properly, for you will not be able to keep them open all the time. It is possible that you will have to blink too much and that can lead you to accidents. 
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