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Why are You Looking at My Hands

Did you know that your hands are more likely to tell your age than your face? Well, it's true, unfortunately. Your hands often begin to show signs of damage years before your face. That skin is thinner and has less fatty cushion (plumpness) than the face, so it's more susceptible to damage and dehydration. If you think about your mother or your grandmother, the veins on the backs of their hands probably looked more prominent with bulged tendons and numerous brown spots. Because today's plastic surgeons cannot change the way hands are showing age, you can give your hands the careful attention they deserve with age-defying results. Here are five reasons your hands may be looking older than you feel: 1.

Exposure to sun, wind, and temperature extremes causes extrinsic aging - whether it's your face or your hands. These factors increase dryness, sometimes to the degree that cracks form on the sides of fingertips. 2.

Too much sun is hard on hands because they often receive more intense and direct radiation than the face. Even in a car or near a window, hands are often exposed to sunshine. While some sun is good, constant overexposure causes it to grow thin, lose elasticity and increases the appearance of irregular pigmentation. Even if you apply sunscreen to the backs of your hands, it's likely to be rinsed off when washing hands. 3. It's also common to lose Vitamin C and other skin nutrients from our most "used and abused" skin on the body.

Since our hands are being washed numerous times during the day, they're being stripped not only by water, but also by synthetic soaps and cleansers in commonly used inexpensive hand and dish-washing products. It's also important to avoid toxic anti-bacterial hand washes with alcohol and Triclosan. The Centers of Disease Control (CDC) states that these products don't work any better than regular hand washes or plain soap and water.

Medical professionals are seeing regular use of these chemicals causing sores on hands that don't heal because the immune system barrier has been compromised. 4. Hands are usually the driest skin on the body. Yet, there's a bottle of hand and body lotion in almost every bathroom in America, right? Well, that lotion may not be doing the job - in fact, it may actually be dehydrating your skin. A recent study tested 50 of the most frequently purchased moisturizers - from inexpensive to costly - all of which contained various emulsifiers (ingredients that hold the oil and water together).

The study found that ALL the moisturizers left skin more dehydrated within 2 hours than before application. Why? Because the emulsifiers didn't know to stop working when applied to the skin, so they bound up the oil and water around and inside each cell. Because the cell wall actually becomes weaker and weaker with each application of emulsified lotion, the moisture in the cells leaks (or weeps) out. 5. It's also possible that toxic ingredients in everyday products could be causing your hands to age. The following Red Flag ingredients should be avoided at all cost in ANY of your products: a.

Alcohol, Isopropyl (SD-40 b. Benzoyl Peroxide c. DEA (Diethanolamine), MEA (Monoethanolamine), & TEA d. (Triethanolamine) e. Dioxin f.

DMDM Hydantoin & Urea (Imidazolidinyl) g. FD&C Color Pigments h. Fragrances i. Parabens j. PEG (Polyethylene glycol) k.

Phthalates l. Propylene Glycol (PG) and Butylene Glycol m. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES) n. Triclosan o. Sunscreen ingredients like benzophenone, avebenzone, methyoxycinnamates, paba So . what to do to keep our hands from giving away our age? A number of physical changes in the skin's structure can be corrected.

For example, using a moisturizing sunscreen applied to the backs of hands after each washing can prevent sun damage. You can avoid being one of the 90% over the age of 60 with brown spots on their hands. And you can prevent an even bigger issue of the brown spots darkening and changing in appearance indicating the presence of skin cancer.

Inspecting your hands and caring for the health of your skin - on your hands and your entire body - is really important. Today, most people are aware of nutrition, green living and healthy lifestyles. Incorporating care for our hands shouldn't be difficult. Sometimes it's the crepe-y skin or dark spots that remind us.

After all, you probably buy special age-defying products for your face and eyes; you may even have facials, massages and other specialty treatments. Why not give the same attention to your hands? When you use a scrub or cleanser on your face, also apply it to the backs of your hands. When you apply a mud or silt masque, remember to include your hands. Doing dishes, washing hands, and using household cleaning products are easier on the hands when you use vegetable-based cleansers made to be mild without compromising effectiveness. This will mean avoiding typical products sold in the grocery store. They may be cheap because of the industrial grade, synthetic detergents; but they usually contain toxic ingredients - not good for your hands, your health, a fetus in the womb, or your family.

If you avoid using detergents that strip essential moisture, you'll immediately notice healthier, prettier looking hands. What other measures can you take to retain younger-looking hands? Start with a regular routine of moisturizing your hands throughout the day - especially with a non-emulsified lotion or cream. This could increase moisture by 40% and make a dramatic difference by reducing the dry, scaly appearance. With this increased hydration, you'll see the skin on your hands become plumper - automatically firming up some of the looser skin. Be extra considerate of your hands by using anti-aging facial products like serums, masques and exfoliators.

Products high in vitamins, minerals and extra nutrition will support the youthful appearance. Always make sure that the products you are using are free from toxins, hormone disruptors, carcinogens, and any other known harmful substance. In other words, be sure to READ the labels on every product. Find products that are certified natural and/or organic by a third party like EcoCert or ToxicFree®. Use safe sunscreens that protect without harming your skin. Leave bottles near your kitchen and bathroom sinks for easy application.

A small sample pot can always be kept in your pocket or purse, left near the dog's walking leash, with your running shoes. or wherever you need to be reminded. I encourage you to use anti-aging treatments on your hands, as well as your face.

They are designed to mitigate existing damage and give the many layers of your skin precious anti-aging nutrients. Many anti-aging products assist the skin's inner resistance and fortification against further damage. Add products to your daily routine that make your hands feel and look better. All of these steps are easy to implement in your daily routine.and you'll be delighted when strangers guessing your age mistake you for someone much younger because your hands 'look your age' . or younger!.

Linda Chae is President & Chief Formulator for Chae Organics, Inc. and a pioneer in 'go natural' skin care for consumers. Her commitment to clean, safe toxic free products requires organic ingredients backed by scientific research. As a consumer advocate, protecting human beings from dangers in skin care products became personal when she became a cancer survivor herself. To order her products, visit

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