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15 Pinterest beauty hacks that are bad for you Episode 97

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15 Pinterest beauty hacks that are bad for your skin66231929_152630af42_o

  1. DIY Fruit masks
  2. Using cooking oils as moisturizers
  3. DIY salt scrubs
  4. Burning face mask
  5. Strengthen nails by soaking in lemon juice
  6. Aspirin, toothpaste, baking soda for acne
  7. Petrolatum grows lashes
  8. Apple Cider Vinegar as toner
  9. DIY dry shampoo
  10. Bleach your armpits with lemon juice
  11. Use deodorant to prevent face sweat
  12. Plastic tape eyeliner stencil
  13. Vaseline lip balm
  14. Heat eyelash curler with blow dryer
  15. At home pore strips

Does moisturized skin give you more wrinkles?

I always think it’s interesting when we find a scientific study that gives results that are counterintuitive. For example here’s a study that seems to enjoy suggest that moisturizing skin may lead to deeper wrinkles. This was published in the Journal of Clinical Anatomy and it looked at the difference between wrinkles on the forehead versus those around the outer edge of the eye.

They studied about 100 cadavers (?) and found that the wrinkles around the eye on average were deeper than those on the forehead. Actually I find that a little confusing because if you’re talking about the furrow lines and your forehead does seem deeper to me but I guess they’re talking about minor wrinkles, I don’t know.

Anyway, the Cosmetic Design article concluded that “the presence of oil-secreting glands and a thinner inner layer of skin, or dermis, may let the skin deform more easily and might be a cause for the development of wrinkles.”

So they hypothesize that all that extra oil on thin skin makes it softer and more plasticized and therefore more prone to forming wrinkles. If that’s true then wouldn’t applying moisturizer around your eye also cause more wrinkles? It seems like they’re not taking into consideration other factors that contribute to wrinkle formation like the collapse of collagen and elastin fibers.

But when you read the actual study, it says this:

“…the findings of this study suggest that sebaceous gland density is one of the multiple factors that prevent wrinkle deepening, and that is why wrinkles are deeper in skin on the lateral canthus than on the forehead,”

It seems like the study is saying the opposite! But nonetheless it makes me wonder if you could formulate a more effective anti-wrinkle eye cream by reducing some of those moisturizing plasticizing ingredients and increasing ingredients which are thought to boost collagen like some peptides.

Would you clean your face with living bacteria?

Would you spray living bacteria on your face to make it cleaner? Well the makers of Mother Dirt hope consumers will. They’ve just launched a new line of cleansers that contain live Ammonia-Oxidizing Bacteria. It is supposed to be a skin biome-friendly cleaner that cleans your skin and hair without harming the beneficial bacteria on your skin.

They claim that you need to protect your biome by first restoring the beneficial bacteria and second by using only products that are compatible with that skin biome. The centerpiece product of the line is the AO+ Mist which is the live bacteria you spray on yourself.

They say the shampoo and cleanser have been formulated, tested and screened for compatibility with the skin biome. I wonder what that means. It sounds like marketing speak to me.

Another interesting approach is that they claim to not use preservatives so the products have an expiration date printed on them. That’s a little unnerving. But they claim that preservatives negatively impact the skin biome (which is probably true).

I don’t know. This sounds pretty gimmicky to me but we’ll see if people are ready to embrace their bacteria and start bathing in it. I know my wife isn’t.

Does your face get redder when you ovulate?

I am super excited about this next story because it may solve a long-standing mystery on the Beauty Brains program which is how Perry is able to detect when a woman is ovulating. That’s one of his superpowers that we’ve talked about the show before.

There have been previous studies that showed that men find women’s faces more attractive when they are fertile. But new research just discovered something that we never knew before. That women’s faces get slightly more red when they are ovulating. But here’s the catch that increase in redness is not perceivable by the human eye I assume they measured it instrumentally. It’s below the threshold of our visual acuity apparently.

So my thought is that his superpower is to be able to see into that part of the red spectrum better than other people so when he sees an increase in redness he somehow subconsciously realizes what’s going on with the woman.
I don’t want to over analyze this but I think it’s important to understand how this power works because if he ever uses it to become a super villain this might suggest a way that we could defeat him. It’s kind of like how Batman keeps a small supply of Kryptonite around in case he ever has to take down Superman.

So if you ladies in the audience are ovulating and you’re going to be around Perry Romanowski and you don’t want him to know what I would suggest wearing a foundation with a little bit of a yellow color which will mask the redness.

If skin regenerates why do we still get scars?

I was reading through a discussion board about skin, that’s what I do in my spare time, and saw an interesting question about scars. This commenter wanted to know why do scars stay visible for so long? If skin is constantly regenerating, why don’t they just heal up?

To understand why this happens it’s helpful to know how the skin works. Pretty much everything on the outer layer of your body (your skin) is dead. It’s just dried out skin cells. This level is called the epidermis and the outer most layer of the epidermis is the Statum Corneum. These layers are dead. But below that is the dermis and this is where living skin tissue resides. Here are skin cells and stem cells that continually divide and grow. As they grow they push out cells towards the epidermis where the cells will dry up and eventually fall off your body, either down the drain or under your pillow. This cycle just continues.

Now, when you get a scar that come from an injury that goes all the way into the dermis. The body trie to quickly heal the hole by producing unidirectional collagen to just fill it in. That is what a scar is. A scar is not like your regular skin. But now you have a cover where the new skin cells can’t go through so the scar remains for a long time. Scars can go away over time and some of the ones you got when you were a kid are probably much smaller than they were, but some never go away.

I know this because the scar on my face when I cut my nose off with a chain saw is still there. It ruined my chances of becoming a model. I really should have sued that chain saw company don’t you think?

Do vitamins cause acne?

Let me ask you something: What is the one type of ingredient that we have found everybody loves to have in their cosmetic products? Whenever we would test the concept for a new product idea if you said this product had this type of ingredient in it people would always increase their chances of purchase intent.

That’s right vitamins. In shampoos, conditioners, skin moisturizer’s people want vitamins and those products right? Even in acne products vitamins are a good idea right? Wrong! According to this study vitamin B12 may actually cause you to have more acne. Here’s how that works.

According to this paper, “Vitamin B12 modulates the transcriptome of the skin microbiota in acne pathogenesis.” apparently vitamin B12 alters the way certain genes behave in facial bacteria. I wasn’t able to access the complete paper so I can’t give you the exact mechanism. I assume it has something to do with the genes of the P. acne bacteria. Apparently this work was done with vitamin supplements not topical skin creams. There are numerous skin lotions that contain B12.

Ref: Huiying Li et al. Vitamin B12 modulates the transcriptome of the skin microbiota in acne pathogenesis. Science Translational Medicine, June 2015 DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aab2009

Can foods make hair stronger?

I read this story about whether certain foods can help make your skin and hair stronger and I was just appalled by the things I was reading. The thing that was most troubling was that they were being said by a doctor who was the director of cosmetic and clinical research.

This doctor said for example that eating whey protein will boost your hair keratin growth. But not any more than any other protein. The body doesn’t know where the protein came from and when it gets in your stomach it is broken down into component amino acids. The type of protein really doesn’t matter. Then there is the suggestion to eat red meat.

 Image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/aphrodite/66231929

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • B August 25, 2015, 6:08 am

    Why is apple cider vinegar bad for your skin? You seemed to have skipped over that point? Is it bad even if you dilute it 50/50 with water?

    • Eileen August 28, 2015, 9:47 am

      If you click on the title “15 Pinterest beauty hacks that are bad for your skin” it will take you to the page where a very brief explanation is given as to why these items are not the best thing to use on your skin. Specifically, vinegar lowers the pH level of the skin to below normal which makes it vulnerable to irritation. Perhaps the Brains can give a more complete answer.

  • Grace August 25, 2015, 1:57 pm

    You guys rock. As always. Especially the parts you put in to see if we’re reading. Scar from cutting of your nose with a chainsaw, indeed!

    • Randy Schueller August 25, 2015, 2:33 pm

      It’s sad but true Grace. I’ll try to get Perry to tell the story in a future episode.

  • Jill August 25, 2015, 7:31 pm

    So, I’m confused about the foods making hair stronger bit. You present it with skepticism so I’m guessing you don’t agree with the doctor who wrote whatever you were reading. Should we assume, then, that food (of any kind) can not and does not make hair stronger?

    • Randy Schueller August 26, 2015, 8:24 am

      The studies we’ve seen show that eating certain foods to make your hair stronger only works if you’re malnourished. If you’re eating a reasonably balanced diet eating extra nutrients doesn’t do much.

  • Andra August 26, 2015, 12:49 am

    Okay, there are a few “hacks” that are very obviously a bad idea, but … why the fruit masks? All fruit masks or only a few? Does cooking oil also mean olive oil? Doesn’t aspirin help with inflammation? Isn’t the DIY dry shampoo usually talcum, and if so, why is it bad for the skin? I’d be so very grateful for some details! 🙂

    • Randy Schueller August 26, 2015, 9:03 am

      I think the issue with fruit masks were the irritants in citrus fruits.

      Cooking oil would include olive oil.

      Aspirin doesnt convert to the active form very well on skin. (It needs to be digested.)

      Talc is not bad for skin it’s just hard to smear it evenly through your hair.

  • Ann August 26, 2015, 8:43 am

    Vaseline not good as lip balm? Black folks have been using it that way since forever. In fact they now sell mini sizes in the black male grooming section of most sores. The eternal battle against ashiness is real yalł. Also, many of us still use it for elbows, heels and slicking down that lil fuzzy “baby hair” around the hairline of the forehead and temples. Oh man, are we gonna die?!

    • stellaglo August 28, 2015, 5:10 am

      if vaseline (petrolatum) is bad for your skin and lips, why is it listed in a multitude of products made for just that?

    • amy September 16, 2015, 1:45 pm

      honestly, I find these listicles to be dubious. I love the beauty brains, but I hate it when they link to these since they are full of information that have little to no backup references.

    • Jessica October 12, 2015, 10:17 am

      The article says not to use Vaseline as lip balm and suggests the use of Aquaphor instead. Do they not know that the main ingredient in Aquaphor is petrolatum? Vaseline is petrolatum. Also petrolatum doesn’t clog pores anyways. Credibility is completely lost here.

  • Ann August 26, 2015, 8:50 am

    I read a paper recently that claimed some type of silicone supplement helped strengthen and thicken hair in women partitipants.


    Not sure how it works but thought you’d find it interesting.

    Getting your email alerts are the highlight of my morning, by the way. Your show goes great with coffee. Keep up the good work.

    • Dolly January 7, 2019, 1:22 pm

      Silicon, not silicone

  • Eileen August 26, 2015, 12:25 pm

    So, there’s more and deeper wrinkling in the eye area than on the forehead–well, duh! Did the researchers take into account variances in facial movement? Since they were working on cadavers, I imagine the answer to that question is no. We all know that repetitive facial movement leads to wrinkling. That’s why things like Botox have become so popular. But even without Botox, many people simply do not move their forehead very much. There are other people; however, who are routinely assuming facial expressions which give the forehead quite a workout. Depending on how little or how much a person moves the forehead would greatly influence the formation of wrinkles in that area. The eye area; however, is constantly being impacted by smiling, narrowing or widening of the eyes, squinting, crying, etc. In short, a person could go all day and never move their forehead, but that would be next to impossible with the eye area. Bottom line: Because of all the repetitive movements that routinely impact the eye area as opposed to those that impact the forehead, most people do, indeed, have deeper wrinkles around the eyes than on the forehead.

    I’m not dis-ing the study because I haven’t read it and so I’m not aware of which of the many variables were taken into account.

  • Andrew August 26, 2015, 3:14 pm

    . . . please tell me that people aren’t really smearing cooking oil on their faces. Just because moisturizing oils have seen a huge surge in popularity doesn’t mean that they’re the same thing as the oil you use to make stir fry!

    I just wanted to give a quick shout to you guys and let you know how much I’ve enjoyed stumbling upon your site. I’m currently in school studying biochemistry in the hopes of being a cosmetic chemist in the future. What you guys are doing is essentially what I want to do: use my knowledge to help others make informed decisions while simultaneously helping to break down some of the ridiculous jibber-jabber brands and “beauty gurus” like to spout. Keep up the great work!

    • Randy Schueller August 26, 2015, 3:53 pm

      Thanks Andrew. And good luck!

    • Julia February 28, 2017, 2:16 pm

      But aren’t there a lot of oils that can be bought as well as cooking oils as in the cosmetic department?

  • Carrie August 28, 2015, 8:02 am

    You skipped over talking about the DIY salt scrubs. I listened specifically to hear what you were going to say about those. Any comments?

    • Maria September 1, 2015, 5:40 am

      I imagine the problem is that they are abrasive and tear up the skin. Salt in a wound feels pretty awful.

  • Eileen August 28, 2015, 10:16 am

    Hi Randy

    This isn’t a comment for publication, but rather a suggestion. As I was reading through the comments, it became obvious that some of your readers did not know that each subtitle such as “15 beauty hacks that are bad for your skin” was actually a link that would take them to the page where they’d get more information. Using a different color is a pretty common way to indicate there is a link, but evidently some people don’t know that 🙁 Perhaps a brief “Click on title to go to article” would help.

  • gina August 31, 2015, 9:11 am

    OK – so Randy would you change anything you’re doing because of that wrinkle study? I’m asking because I’ve been using Vaseline as a moisturizer at night over my whole face…it really helps my skin stay moisturized, it’s gotten so much drier as I get older.

    And speaking of Vaseline – I was under the impression you did not agree that it necessarily causes breakouts…I use it on my lips all the time without issues.

    Just wanted confirmation of your take on Vaseline as a moisturizer in general, I guess.

    Thank you! 🙂

    • Randy Schueller September 1, 2015, 7:39 am

      Hey Gina. I wouldn’t recommend doing anything different based on this study. And, yes, we agree that for most people Vaseline does not cause breakouts.

  • Katie January 16, 2016, 1:45 pm

    I wasn’t sure where to leave the question, but I was curious about your take on hair, skin, and nail vitamins? It’s true that your hair will reflect your inner health, and I feel confident that I stick to a healthy diet. Could still mean I have some other imbalances…but anyway, my hair seems to be shedding a little more lately and it seems fairly stretchy, but looks and feels “healthy” besides from that. I probably need more protein? I was wondering what specific vitamins and nutrients I should be looking for that should help? Any particular hair, skin, and nail vitamins you know of that are to the point?


    • Randy Schueller January 16, 2016, 3:00 pm

      For the most part vitamins do nothing when applied topically to your hair. Panthenol can be an exception in some cases. In terms of taking vitamin supplements Oralee, the data we’ve seen indicates that’s only beneficial if your malnourished for that particular vitamin. In other words don’t waste a lot of money on vitamins for your hair.

  • Marta March 8, 2016, 11:46 am

    Does eating rice make your hair stronger?

  • Kelly May 2, 2016, 3:40 pm

    All my life I’ve gotten itchy burning skin in the spring time. Allergies. Dry skin in winter. Since I was a teenager I’ve had itchy back acne. Nothing has really helped soothe me. Infact some things have only further irritated it. Then I tried Coconut oil straight from the jar. As soon as I rub it on my allergic and dry skin itching stops! The redness soon goes away! On my back it not only soothes it, the acne has lessened! I don’t know how it works but it does! I’ve tried it on my face a few times and I wasn’t wowed but my acne prone skin didn’t brake out. I’ve had other moisturizers cause horrible painful breakouts. I’m not a big “All natural” person but Coconut oil has really helped my skin and I’m not turning back!

  • Julia February 28, 2017, 11:42 am

    I’m slightly doubtful about the cooking oil part. I’ve actually had acne for a very long time regardless on what I used but then started to just wash my face with water and moisturise it with almond oil and my acne stopped. So I’m really curious what you suggest for people that tend to be allergic to a lot of cosmetic ingedients (honestly I’ve tried so many products that then burt on my skin) and don’t want to spend too much money.