Beauty Myths Debunked

Whether we hear it from our mother or friend, read it in a magazine, or hear about it on the television, there are common beauty “myths” that we believe to be true. Some of these beauty folklores are just that, myths, and others actually are true.

Here are a few of the common ideas broken down:

Myth: Chocolate causes acne

Truth: Chocolate itself does not directly cause acne. Some individuals may have a sensitivity to chocolate, which in turn could cause breakouts. One of its biggest ingredients – sugar – can cause acne, however. Too much sugar can lead to a dull complexion, pimples, and oiliness, but it is not just chocolate that contains sugar. To improve the complexion overall, avoid consuming too much sugar on a daily basis, and incorporate more water and fruits and vegetables into a diet.

Myth: Using the phone causes acne

Truth: Using a phone can cause acne! This “myth” is actually factual. The phone is one item that carries exorbitant amounts of dirt, germs and bacteria, that when put up to our face can block pores and cause acne. If a phone is shared at work, make sure to wipe it down with an anti-bacterial wipe at least once a day

If a cell phone is the primary method of communication, make sure the case is washed once a day (if it can be washed) or wiped down with an anti-bacterial wipe. Also, wash your hands after touching the phone! Dirt and bacteria can transfer from the phone to hands and can lead to breakouts.

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Myth: Drinking 8 glasses of water a day will keep skin hydrated

Truth: While a nutritionist may say drinking eight glasses of water a day is the key to staying hydrated, much more must be done to keep the skin soft and hydrated. Consuming water keeps us hydrated internally, which helps the skin to appear more radiant, but moisturization of the skin is what keeps it hydrated and plump.

Make sure to moisturize day and night, and incorporate a serum into the beauty routine in the morning that will help retain moisture, such as Soy Face Serum by Fresh, $42.

Myth: The side of the face a person sleeps on will have more wrinkles

Truth: This “myth” is actually true. Sleeping on one side every day puts stress and pressure on the skin which can lead to development of wrinkles. However, it is not as if that side of the face will look 20 years older and have deep lines.

There are many more factors that cause aging and wrinkles such as genetics and environmental aggressors. If sleeping is of concern, try sleeping on your back and angle the pillow, which will let fluid drain so skin is radiant and not puffy in the morning, giving a more youthful appearance.

Myth: Shampoo and conditioner must be changed every few months

Truth: This is definitely a myth! Hair does not become tolerant to shampoos and conditioners, so a new brand or formula is not necessary every so often! If hair is starting to become lackluster or the products don’t seem to be working anymore, try one of two things: first, try a clarifying shampoo once a week. This will remove any excess buildup from oils, hairsprays, and conditioners, and will leave hair refreshed and volumized. Second, let hair relax! Go a few days au natural; no blow-dryers, straightening irons, or curling irons. Trying both of these will make a huge difference!

The Truth About Toothpaste

Not all toothpaste is created equal.  While most of us have probably deduced this from our experiences with toothpaste advertisement and the different appeasements used to persuade consumers to buy a certain brand of toothpaste, we are truly only acknowledging different combinations of words.  In order to maintain the best practices of oral hygiene it is important that we understand as much as we can about what makes our mouths healthy and how to properly defend our teeth.  Thus, we must learn what our teeth need and which toothpaste aspects can provide that.

What toothpaste do you use?

It is important to take note of your toothpaste that you are currently using.  You can use this as a baseline towards what improvements should be made.  Consider how long you’ve been using it, how often you use it, and what improvements it has made on your smile.  Does your toothpaste taste very flavorful or bland?  Is it very gritty or smooth? Does it come in paste or gel form?  Is it a solid color or multi colored?  While you may think all of these aspects of your toothpaste are strictly for show, they actually say a lot about your toothpaste.

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As we grow up it is common that our parents decide which toothpaste we use.  I starts with learning about brushing from your parents medicine cabinet and testing out their toothpaste.  Most likely as children, our mouths are sensitive to the toothpaste our parents use.  This is because our teeth are still delicate and developing.  As a result, most parents will purchase a kid’s toothpaste that pediatric dental professionals recommend.  Then, as you grow older, you will begin to experiment with different flavors and agents to help get the best smile.  Older teens and young adults will often times pick their toothpaste based on price.  While financial independency has it’s qualms, it is important to consider your teeth’s health in the long run.

What is best in a toothpaste?

Toothpaste comes in all different colors and textures.  While they may seem to be minute, these little factors can be the big difference between healthy teeth and while smile or weakened enamel and sore gums.  First thing to check for in toothpaste is it’s abrasiveness.  While some people find it slightly uncomfortable, those who unlike it the most are the bacteria and germs who are directly affected by the grit.  When you brush with a more ‘sandy’ and gritty toothpaste it will work as a form of micro-tool to grind off and clean the bad bacteria and stuck food particles from your teeth.  This is the best way to scrape the gunk off your teeth and keep them healthy and your enamel growing.

Another aspect to look for in your toothpaste is the presence of fluoride.  Fluoride is one of the most recent and effective chemical advancements in the development of oral hygiene products because it promotes the regrowth and strengthening of enamel.  Many toothpastes cover up the lack of fluoride through strong use of seemingly ‘clean’ flavors like mint or cinnamon.

However, while these pastes may taste good they are not doing your teeth as many favors as fluoride could.  It’s chemical reaction to the natural acid that dying enamel creates will benefit your teeth during the times when you haven’t brushed in a day or so.  It is also important to look for detergents, such as baking soda, involved in the composition of your toothpaste.  This will help with the dislodgement of food particles and debris that fall between teeth and in crevices of enamel.

Although looking for the best toothpaste may seem like a formula of adding different components together, there are some cases where toothpaste can be used incorrectly.  For instance, many people experience severe gum rashes and sore teeth after using some toothpastes.  This can be caused by a number of things, such as allergies or weakness in enamel.  If one’s enamel is naturally thin and weak, then extra-abrasive agents will break through them and make the teeth tender and sore.

Another very common issue is a degenerative allergy of the foaming agent in toothpastes.  Since many toothpaste includes some form of foaming agent in order to best dispense and activate it’s chemical components, special toothpastes are made for those who cannot use foaming agents at the fear of gum irritation.

Unfortunately, many of these toothpastes without foaming agents also lack any type of complementary flavor and can often end up tasting like clumps of sand and soap in your mouth. Commonly overlooked is the use of too much toothpaste.  There is a definite limit to the proper amount of toothpaste to be used per brushing event.

When you brush your teeth, dentists recommend that you use no more than a pea sized drop however maybe a slightly larger drag of paste can be used if you have exceptionally large teeth.  This is important because too much toothpaste use in one sitting, time after time, can cause an unhealthy intake of fluoride.  This is commonly known as Dental Fluorosis and can be harmful to people’s stomachs, especially young children.

Proper oral hygiene is pertinent for a great smile, fresh breath, and health teeth and gums.  Since dentists recommend flossing and a correct brushing routine, make sure you take the time to research and discover the best toothpaste for you.  Sometimes the cheapest or most colorful product isn’t always the best for you.  Remember; what you goes on your brush now can have a big effect with what comes off of it later.