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Skincare Tips From A Therapist

How to deal with skin issues from acne to blackheads to pigmentation and eczema.

Blackheads

These are small black bumps that clog up your skin's pores. "Blackheads are plugs of oil and dead skin cells that turn black as the oil interacts with oxygen -- not just because the skin is dirty," says Thomas-Minns.

Expert advice: A good cleansing routine can go a long way towards tackling blackheads. "Cleanse your skin effectively by doing one cleanse to 'remove the day', followed by a second cleanse to clean the skin," she suggests. While tt's tempting to try to squeeze out blackheads, do be careful how you do this. "Gentle extraction can be performed, but only when the skin and your hands are clean, and you may like to steam the skin first for a few minutes to open the follicle and allow the blackhead to pop out with ease." Following up with a dab of tea tree oil or antiseptic gel will help protect against infection.

Eczema

Eczema symptoms include itchy rashes and scaly skin, often found on the inside of the elbows and knees, but can also occur on the face and body. The most common type of eczema is known as atopic eczema which is usually accompanied by other allergic conditions such as asthma and hay fever, explains Thomas-Minns. Eczema are most commonly found in children, although adults can get it, too.

Expert advice: To relieve and prevent itching, keep skin moist with lotions and creams. Look for a product with aloe vera which helps soothe and heal skin, she says, and apply when the skin is damp, such as after bathing, to aid moisture retention. Over-the-counter products, such as hydrocortisone 1% cream, or prescription creams and ointments containing corticosteroids also help reduce inflammation.

Psoriasis

Psoriasis is characterized by red and irritated skin, usually accompanied by silver-white scales.

Expert advice: "Psoriasis can also be soothed by bathing in Dead sea salts and using products that contain Vitamin E and Evening Primrose Oil," Thomas-Minns advises. Also try salicylic acid which helps remove scales.

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