What’s Wrong With My Skin?

I get interesting questions every week, but recently a question included a great  photo.  A women I’ll call Tracy (she asked that her identity stayed private)  asked me  for a recommendation for dry,  red flaking skin around  her eyes.  She had already tried washing with baby shampoo and applied both vasaline and Gold Bond and nothing seemed to help.  To get the best answer I went to  New York dermatologist, Dr Albert Lefkovits  to take a look.While its not really possible to make an absolute diagnosis  from a  photo, Dr L came back with an impressive comment

The online diagnosis? Not simple dry skin, but   Contact dermatitis,  caused by something Tracy was using in her personal care.  Most likely culprit  was nail polish  or a  shampoo  with ingredients that  her skin found unfriendly.  Tracy did not want … Continue Reading…

Cold Weather Skin

Last week I woke up  with bright red splotches on my cheeks and leathery dry patches under my eyes.   I tried using my usual mixture of  a daily  moisturizer mixed with a dab of anti-inflammatory steroid.  No change.  Thinking it was some kind of allergic reaction I mixed some oatmeal in cool water and dabbed the mixture on  my face.   This usually soothes anything, but this time  my skin seemed  to get worse.

I was on my way to call Dr Marmur when I glanced at the hygrometer ( it measures  humidity)  on my dresser and solved the mystery of my mutant skin.  The humidity in my apatment was a surprising 28%.  The unseasonable snow storm  that whipped through the tri-state area had brought cold windy weather that lowered natural humidity.  For healthy … Continue Reading…

Humidifiers for Winter Dry Skin

These days, cold dry weather and Retin A tends to make my skin  feel dry and looked rough.   When I measured the humidity in my bedroom, I found it was less than 25%.  For easy breathing and soft skin, experts recommend  an indoor humidity of 30-60%– which would explain  my stuffy nose  and dry skin  in the morning.  I began searching for ways to add moisture to my home.  I’ve often read that putting a bowl of water on the radiator will relieve dry air.

To check its effectiveness, I filled up a soup bowl with water  and put out my hygrometer.  The first night was especially cold and I opened up  the radiator full blast.  The water in the bowl soon turned hot and I wondered if … Continue Reading…

Winter Skin Woes

These  weeks  of cold and snowy weather are especially hard on my Retin A -treated  skin.   And its just not the weather outside that’s causing problems.  Apparently  the low humidity in my home   is making things  worse.  The radiators are going full blast 24/7 and as they provide heat, they are  evaporating  the moisture in every room. 

When I learned    that indoor heat was drying out the air, my first instinct was to  buy the biggest, baddest humidifier that I could carry home.  But these devices are not without problems of their own.  Overly humid air  can increase levels of bacteria  and allergens into the air.  The reservoirs of water needs to be emptied and cleaned daily to avoid build-up of mold and minerals– that are then sprayed around  the home. 

To determine if I really … Continue Reading…