Skin Care Glossary

Acetyl Mandelic Acid
An AHA derivative that helps to increase nail cell retention and increase nail strength. Used in acne formulations to exfoliate skin.

Acne
Acne and blemishes can occur on the face, back and chest. Your skin fits this condition if you have excess oil and shine a few hours after washing, regular acne breakouts monthly or in response to stress, or if you have at least one acne pimple and / or bothersome blackheads and whiteheads on a regular basis. Cleansers and toners need to be carefully selected so as not to irritate or dry the skin which may stimulate over production of sebum by the sebaceous glands. Use of oil-free moisturizers is suggested to keep skin hydrated without clogging pores. Topical acne treatments can be used to clear acne pimples, blackheads and whiteheads and to help prevent new acne pimples from forming. If you have deep acne cysts or regularly have more than 10 pimples at one time, then you should see a dermatologist for additional anti-acne therapy. For product recommendations, visit our Oily/Acne-Prone category.

Acne Prone
If you have excess oil and shine a few hours after washing, and are prone to acne breakouts monthly or in response to stress, your skin is considered acne-prone. Cleansers and toners need to be carefully selected so as not to irritate or dry the skin which may stimulate over production of sebum by the sebaceous glands. Light, oil-free moisturizers should be used to keep skin hydrated without being oily. Use acne treatment products to clear acne pimples, blackheads and whiteheads and to help prevent new pimples from forming. For product recommendations, visit our Oily/Acne-Prone category.

Adjunctive to Retinoid Therapy
Many people use physician prescribed medications and cosmetic procedures to correct their more serious skin care problems. Prescription retinoids (Retin-A, Renova, Avage, Ziana, Differin, and Tazorac) are regularly used to treat acne and photoaging. Cosmetic procedures including microdermabrasion, laser and superficial chemical peels (lunchtime peels) are increasingly being used to provide softer, smoother, firmer skin to fight photoaging, and clinically to help reverse acne scarring and pigmentation irregularities. In order to maximize benefits to any professional cosmetic program, a safe and effective skin care regimen should be used at home. Our studies show that PHAs are compatible and useful in combination with retinoids. Furthermore, many skin care professionals recommend using AHAs / PHAs at home between cosmetic procedures to enhance the effects of cosmetic procedures. For product recommendations, visit our Pre-Procedural and Post-Procedural categories.

Age Spots

Your skin is 'hyperpigmented' or 'uneven' if you have areas of discoloration on your face, chest, shoulders or hands from years of sun exposure. Also known as sun spots, age spots and liver spots, these areas of hyperpigmentation are visible signs of photoaging. Skin may also become discolored after pregnancy or as a result of using oral contraceptives (birth control pills); this condition is called 'melasma or chloasma'. Many cases of melasma and hyperpigmentation will improve over time with regular use of a topical skin lightener and exfoliator. Some cases of hyperpigmentation occur deeper in the skin and require a dermatologist to provide additional therapy. All pigmentation problems require sun avoidance and or strict sunscreen use to maintain benefits of treatment. For product recommendations, visit our Lightening/Brightening category.

Alpha Hydroxyacids (AHAs)

Alpha Hydroxyacids (AHAs) are weak organic acids found naturally in foods and include Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid, Mandelic Acid and Citric Acid, to name a few. AHAs quickly penetrate the skin, and in some cases can produce temporary stinging and burning. In individuals who are sensitive to this, it is recommended to start slowly and gradually increase concentration of AHAs as the skin can tolerate. Topical formulations incorporating AHAs are frequently used or prescribed by dermatologists for anti-aging and other conditions and are also present in a wide range of cosmetic products.

AHAs exfoliate surface cells and encourage cell renewal. Studies with AHAs have also reported important dermal (deep layer) benefits including increased collagen synthesis, improved elastic fiber quality and an increase in water-binding glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). Collectively, these effects result in more even pigmentation, smoother, firmer skin, and a diminished appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and other outward signs of photoaging.

In addition to these proven anti-aging benefits, AHAs are often used adjunctively with therapeutic regimens designed to treat acne, pigmentation, melasma, dry skin and other skin conditions.

Amphoteric Complexes

This advanced formulation technology helps make NeoStrata and Exuviance AHA products more gentle. Amphoteric complexes are produced when amphoteric amino acids, such as arginine, interact with alpha or poly hydroxyacids. The result is better compatibility with skin and reduced stinging and irritation.

Antioxidants

Antioxidants protect the skin against free radicals, highly energized molecules that harm cellular DNA and cause signs of photoaging and even skin cancer. Antioxidants capture free radicals and neutralize their excess energy, protecting skin from their harmful effects and preserving youth and skin health. Antioxidants are ingredients added to prevent or retard the spoilage of products due to a reaction with oxygen. Includes reducing agents and free radical scavengers.1 For product recommendations, visit our Antioxidants category.

Apple Stem Sell Extract

Uttwiler Spätlauber is a variety of a Swiss Apple which yields stem cells rich in phytonutrients and proteins. Apple stem cell extract, derived from apple stem cells, helps combat the aging process of skin cells, preserving the youthful look and vitality of skin. For product/s with this ingredient, visit Exuviance Toning Neck Cream.

Ascorbic Acid / Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that is proven to stimulate the synthesis of collagen, an essential protein that helps skin firmness and decreases as you age. Vitamin C can help reduce skin damage by scavenging free radicals and help keep skin protected from environmental damage. For product/s with this ingredient, visit Exuviance Vitamin C+ Antiaging Booster.

Atopic Dermatitis

These clinically sensitive skin conditions 'over' respond to normal environmental and social factors. Atopic skin is extremely sensitive to any topical products, including normal cleansers and moisturizers, and often appears irritated and red. It is often difficult to identify a normal skin care regimen that does not irritate atopic skin, especially one that contains anti-aging ingredients. Rosacea is an inflammatory condition that some researchers believe is caused or worsened by a microorganism on the skin, which makes the nose and surrounding areas appear very red and inflamed, and often shiny and broken out. Those prone to rosacea may experience a flare after drinking a glass a wine, going outside into cold weather, feeling embarrassed and flushed, drinking hot fluids or eating spicy foods. There are many different situations that cause a flare in rosacea, including using many skincare and cosmetic products. The polyhydroxy acid (PHA) gluconolactone, is compatible with atopic dermatitis and rosacea, and provides the anti-aging benefits expected from an AHA. For more clinical studies information, visit the NeoStrata Case Studies: Compatibility with Rosacea and Atopic Skin and Strengthening of Skin Barrier Functions. For product recommendations, visit our Sensitive/Dry and Rosacea/Redness categories.

Benzilic Acid

Benzilic acid is an alpha hydroxyacid that dissolves in oil that is used to reduce skin oiliness and shine and provide exfoliation and smoothing benefits.

Blemished

Your skin is blemished if you are prone to acne breakouts monthly or in response to stress. Cleansers and toners need to be carefully selected so as not to irritate or dry the skin which may stimulate over production of sebum by the sebaceous glands. Light, oil-free moisturizers should be used to keep skin hydrated without being oily. Acne treatment products should be used to treat acne pimples. Use topical acne treatments to clear acne pimples, blackheads and whiteheads and to help prevent new acne pimples from forming. For product recommendations, visit our Oily/Acne-Prone category.

Blotchy

Your skin is 'uneven' if you have areas of discoloration on your face, chest, shoulders or hands from years of sun exposure. Blotchy skin is a visible sign of photoaging. Skin blotchiness may occur after pregnancy or as a result of using oral contraceptives. Correct skin blotchiness with topical skin brighteners and exfoliators and be sure to avoid the sun and use sunscreen daily. For product recommendations, visit our Uneven Skin Tone category.

Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane / Avobenzone

An organic and chemical sunscreen that absorbs a wide spectrum of UVA rays.

Chapped

Dry skin conditions are usually mildly dry with light flaking and skin tightness. Most dry, chapped skin can be relieved through the use of a good moisturizer with AHAs and PHAs for gentle exfoliation, moisturization and skin conditioning. The more bothersome dry skin conditions on the face require an extra heavy emollient formulation in combination with skin normalizing / conditioning alpha and polyhydroxy acids (AHAs and PHAs). The most severe forms of dry skin including ichthyosis and plaque psoriasis, generally require therapeutic products, and are best treated by a dermatologist. For product recommendations, visit our Sensitive/Dry category.

Chelator

A chelator is functional cosmetic ingredient that traps metals. Antioxidant chelators trap metals that promote oxidation in skin. Lactobionic acid, maltobionic acid and gluconolactone are antioxidant chelators found in NeoStrata and Exuviance products.

Citric Acid

Citric Acid, found naturally in citrus fruits, is a powerful Alpha/Beta Hydroxy Acid that has preventative antioxidant and corrective antiaging effects, helping to minimize the damaging effects of the sun and pollution and reverse signs of photodamage and solar elastosis. Studies have shown citric acid to provide significant anti-aging benefits including building the skin's matrix to plump and firm skin. Citric acid formulations help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and increase skin firmness. Because it has both preventative antioxidant and corrective antiaging effects, it is often used as a booster to target specific skin concerns.

CitraFill™

CitraFill™ is a patented ingredient technology from NeoStrata to help plump and firm skin. Its benefits are two-fold; it can help to stimulate collagen and it can become activated in skin by hydrolyzing to citric acid (an antiaging AHA). Citric acid helps build dermal matrix (filler) components to make lines visibly appear fuller and more youthful. Shop Exuviance Targeted Filler T5.

Combination Skin

Your skin is classified as 'combination' if you experience oiliness and shine in the T-zone (forehead, nose and chin) a few hours after washing, while having normal or dry skin on the cheeks and along the jaw line. Your skin may also be combination if you feel dry, tight and in need of moisturization after washing in the morning, and then progress to an oily or shiny appearance a few hours later. For product recommendations, visit our Normal/Combination category.

Cosmetic Procedures: Laser, Microdermabrasion, and Superficial Chemical Peels

Many people use physician prescribed medications and cosmetic procedures to correct their more serious skin care problems. Prescription retinoids (Retin-A, Renova, Avage, Ziana, Differin, and Tazorac) are regularly used to treat acne and photoaging. Cosmetic procedures including microdermabrasion, laser and superficial chemical peels (lunchtime peels) are increasingly being used to provide softer, smoother, firmer skin to fight photoaging, and clinically to help reverse acne scarring and pigmentation irregularities. In order to maximize benefits to any professional cosmetic program, a safe and effective skin care regimen should be used at home. Our studies show that PHAs are compatible and useful in combination with retinoids. Furthermore, many skin care professionals recommend using AHAs / PHAs at home between cosmetic procedures to enhance the effects of cosmetic procedures. For product recommendations, visit our Pre-Procedural and Post-Procedural categories.

Dermatologist Tested / Allergy Tested

Means the product was tested on people under the direction of a dermatologist to ensure the product is non-irritating and non-allergenic.

Dry

Dry skin conditions range from mildly dry with light flaking and skin tightness to extremely rough hyperkeratotic disorders. Most dry skin can be relieved through the use of a good moisturizer with AHAs and PHAs for gentle exfoliation, moisturization and skin conditioning. The more bothersome dry skin conditions on the face require an extra heavy emollient formulation in combination with skin normalizing / conditioning alpha and polyhydroxy acids (AHAs and PHAs). The most severe forms of dry skin including ichthyosis and plaque psoriasis, generally require therapeutic products, and are best treated by a dermatologist. For product recommendations, visit our Sensitive/Dry category.

Dull

Nearly all of the visible signs of aging are due to accumulated sun exposure. This condition, known as photoaging, causes the appearance of wrinkled, dull and lifeless skin on sun exposed areas of the body. The alpha hydroxyacids, including glycolic acid and the polyhydroxy acids including gluconolactone and lactobionic acid, along with daily sunscreen usage have been shown to help reverse some of the visible signs of photodamage. Repeated use makes the skin texture smooth with a reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. AHAs also improve skin brightness and luminosity, helping to revitalize dull, lifeless skin. AHA products which are combination sunscreen plus moisturizers are recommended for daytime use. More intense corrective therapies are available from dermatologists and plastic surgeons as well as other skin care professionals. These include superficial peels, retinoids, lasers and dermabrasions. For product recommendations, visit our Dull Skin category.

Eczema

These clinically sensitive skin conditions 'over' respond to normal environmental and social factors. Atopic skin is extremely sensitive to any topical products, including normal cleansers and moisturizers, and often appears irritated and red. It is often difficult to identify a normal skin care regimen that does not irritate atopic skin, especially one that contains anti-aging ingredients. Rosacea is an inflammatory condition that some researchers believe is caused or worsened by a microorganism on the skin, which makes the nose and surrounding areas appear very red and inflamed, and often shiny and broken out. Those prone to rosacea may experience a flare after drinking a glass a wine, going outside into cold weather, feeling embarrassed and flushed, drinking hot fluids or eating spicy foods. There are many different situations that cause a flare in rosacea, including using many skincare and cosmetic products. The polyhydroxy acid (PHA) gluconolactone, is compatible with atopic dermatitis and rosacea, and provides the anti-aging benefits expected from an AHA. For more clinical studies information, visit the NeoStrata Case Studies: Compatibility with Rosacea and Atopic Skin and Strengthening of Skin Barrier Functions. For product recommendations, visit our Eczema Prone category.

Emollient

An agent that soothes and softens the skin.2 Emollients function by remaining on the skin surface or stratum corneum to act as lubricants, to reduce flaking, and to improve the skin's appearance. 1 (Similar to humectants and occlusives)

Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate / Octinoxate

An organic and chemical sunscreen that absorbs UVB rays.

Ethylhexyl Salicylate / Octisalate

An organic and chemical sunscreen that absorbs UVB rays.

Free Radicals

Free Radicals are highly energized molecules resulting from the interaction of the molecules with UV light and pollution. The extra energy that the free radical contains is passed onto other skin structures causing damage, such as DNA mutations and cell wall defects.

Glucoheptonolactone

A plant-derived polyhydroxy acid that is hydrating and provides antioxidant chelation effects.

Gluconolactone

Gluconolactone, a Polyhydroxy acid found naturally in the skin, is composed of water-attracting hydroxyl groups to condition and hydrate the skin. It provides full strength antiaging benefits without irritation, even for patients with clinically sensitive skin or rosacea, or those who have had cosmetic procedures. Gluconolactone strengthens skin's barrier function, reducing sensitivity to irritants and skin redness over time. As an antioxidant, Gluconolactone inhibits elastase to preserve healthy tissue and maintain skin's youthful elasticity, resulting in smoother texture and a diminished appearance of lines and wrinkles.

Glycation
Protein glycation is one of many natural aging processes that occurs in skin. Caused by a reaction between a sugar (glucose) and proteins such as collagen, glycation leads to the formation of irreversible and highly-detrimental Advanced Glycation End-products (AGEs). An increase in AGEs results in undesired cross-linking of collagen, ultimately causing wrinkles and a sallow/yellow appearance. Anti-glycation is considered an important antiaging step in the maintenance of healthy, youthful skin. In order to prevent the formation of AGEs, some cosmetic compounds function as antioxidants/chelators. The bionic acids, including lactobionic and maltobionic acids, and the polyhydroxy acid, gluconolactone, have antioxidant and metal chelation properties, and have been shown to reduce glycation, as well to improve the appearance of sallow, photoaged skin. Shop Exuviance Age Less Everyday.

Glycolic Acid

Among the various Alpha Hydroxy Acid products available, those containing Glycolic Acid are the most commonly used. Glycolic Acid is a fruit acid derived from sugar cane and is the smallest molecule of the AHA family. Because it is highly acidic and also highly soluble, it readily absorbs into the skin and exfoliates by enhancing cell turnover, removing the dead, dull surface cells for a fresher appearance. Due to the quick absorbance into the skin, stinging and burning sensations may be experienced by those individuals who are sensitive. Within the dermis, this AHA increases the synthesis of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) and collagen fibers, for skin that appears firmer. Glycolic Acid has proven anti-aging benefits and has also been used to help the appearance of acne, pigmentation, melasma and other skin conditions. It improves the skin's radiance and texture, and helps smooth the skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles for healthier, younger looking skin.

Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs)

Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) are produced by the body to help cushion cells and provide hydration to the skin. The amount of GAGs in the skin declines with age and exposure to sunlight. Hyaluronic acid is the most commonly known GAG in skincare, it is a natural component of the skin's dermis, and it has the unique ability to bind many times its weight in water making it extremely hydrating. By building skin's GAGs, the skin becomes more plump, helping to reduce the appearance of wrinkles from the inside out.

Green Tea Extract

Green Tea Extract contains EGCG, a naturally occurring polyphenol flavonoid with potent antioxidant effects. It is used topically as an antioxidant to help protect the skin against damaging free radicals from sunlight, which cause cellular damage and premature aging. Studies show green tea extract neutralizes free radicals, helps protect skin cells and reduces inflammation. Green tea extract is a great antioxidant to help fight oxidative damage to skin.

Hormonally Reactive

'Sensitive' skin occurs from time to time in a majority of women, and each condition is as individual as the person experiencing it. While each person's condition is unique, the general condition is characterized by heightened sensory responses to chemical, environmental or social triggers. People with sensitive skin are more likely to experience stinging, itching, burning, dryness, redness and breakouts in response to their skin's particular trigger. Many people with sensitive skin experience mild stinging and burning from soaps and cleansers as well as alpha hydroxyacids (AHAs) such as glycolic or lactic acid. The polyhydroxy acid (PHA) gluconolactone provides the benefits of AHAs without the potential for stinging and burning even the most sensitive skin. If your skin sensitivity increases or becomes troublesome, you should visit a dermatologist since it could be a more serious skin condition requiring professional care. For product recommendations, visit our Hormonal/Menopausal category.

Humectant

Ingredients that attract water. They are used to retard the loss of water from a cosmetic product and to provide moisturization to the skin.1

Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic acid is a water-binding glycosaminoglycan (GAG) found throughout the body including in the joints and skin and is a key component of human connective tissue. In skin, it forms a hydrating gel matrix that plumps the skin and supports the collagen and elastic fiber network. Hyaluronic Acid is comprised of glucuronic acid (a polyhydroxy acid) and N-acetyl glucosamine. Topical application of N-acetyl glucosamine has been shown to help increase natural Hyaluronic Acid, which plumps and smoothes the appearance of wrinkles.

Hydroquinone

A skin lightening ingredient approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It lightens skin by helping to reduce the production of melanin / pigment.

Hyperkeratotic

Dry skin conditions range from mildly dry with light flaking and skin tightness to extremely rough hyperkeratotic disorders. Most dry, chapped skin can be relieved through the use of a good moisturizer with AHAs and PHAs for gentle exfoliation, moisturization and skin conditioning. The more bothersome dry skin conditions on the face require an extra heavy emollient formulation in combination with skin normalizing / conditioning alpha and polyhydroxy acids (AHAs and PHAs). The most severe forms of dry skin including ichthyosis and plaque psoriasis, generally require therapeutic products, and are best treated by a dermatologist. For product recommendations, visit our Dry/Scaly category.

Hyperpigmented

Your skin is 'hyperpigmented' if you have areas of discoloration on your face, chest, shoulders or hands from years of sun exposure. Also known as sun spots, age spots and liver spots, these areas of hyperpigmentation are visible signs of photoaging. Skin may also become discolored after pregnancy or as a result of using oral contraceptives; this condition is called 'melasma'. Many cases of melasma and hyperpigmentation will improve over time with regular use of a topical skin lightener and exfoliator. Some cases of hyperpigmentation occur deeper in the skin and require a dermatologist to provide additional therapy. All pigmentation problems require sun avoidance and or strict sunscreen use to maintain benefits of treatment. For product recommendations, visit our Lightening/Brightening category.

Hypoallergenic

Means the product is non-irritating and non-allergenic. This claim is made on the basis of our clinical data supporting non-irritating claims with PHAs and bionic acids, and patch testing of products, which is conducted under the direction of a dermatologist.

Keratosis Pilaris

Keratosis Pilaris (KP) is a skin (follicular) condition that appears as rough bumps around hair follicles (goose-bump like appearance) on the skin of the back and outer side of the upper arms and thighs. KP is typically most developed and noticeable in adolescent females. KP is an extremely common condition that can be cosmetically troubling but is not harmful in a medical sense. The condition is benign, self-limiting, and disappears with increasing age. The bumps result from the improper shedding of scales from the skin in and around the affected hair follicles. Keratosis pilaris tends to be more severe during the winter months or other times of low humidity. It occurs because as the skin renews itself, old skin cells in the affected hair follicles get stuck, forming a scaly plug because the old skin cells are excessively adherent and do not shed easily. Each bump is a horny plug, sometimes red but only rarely itchy. The scale buildup often entraps the hair within the follicle.

Treatment of KP using moisturizing and exfoliating creams and lotions with high strength AHA or urea products may be helpful. They generally need to be applied at least twice daily and work by softening and reducing cell cohesion of the adherent skin scales around the follicle enabling them to be shed more easily. Often the use of an exfoliating washing device such as a poof to apply the cleansers and creams and to exfoliate the skin increases the benefits of these products. In many cases, skin returns to its pretreatment character if treatment is discontinued. Therefore people who are prone to this condition usually benefit from the regular use of these exfoliating moisturizing products as part of their skincare regimen.

If you think you may have keratosis pilaris and are not being helped by exfoliants you can seek the advice of your dermatologist or other physician. For product recommendations, visit our Keratosis Pilaris category.

Lactic Acid

Lactic acid is an alpha hydroxyacid that occurs naturally in milk, and is a component of the skin's natural moisturizing factor (NMF). Similar to glycolic acid, lactic acid is an exfoliant and moisturizer that also provides anti-aging benefits including smoother, softer, more even toned skin with a reduction in the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Kojic Acid

A skin brightening agent that helps skin appear more evenly toned.

Lactobionic Acid

Lactobionic Acid is the latest skin care technology to emerge from the NeoStrata Company. A patented non-irritating "Bionic" Polyhydroxy Acid derived from milk sugar, Lactobionic Acid helps prevent and reverse the appearance of photoaging, including lines and wrinkles, uneven pigmentation, enlarged pores and roughness. A potent antioxidant used to prevent oxidative damage to transplant organs, Lactobionic Acid protects the skin against photoaging by inhibiting the MMP enzymes that degrade the skin's structure and strength. A natural humectant, it binds water to create a moisturizing barrier on skin, providing softness and a velvety smoothness. This ingredient is suitable for all skin types and can be used after procedures.

LCD / Coal Tar

LCD or liquor carbonis distillate is a fraction of coal tar that is used to treat psoriasis -- found in Psorent Psoriasis Topical Solution, an advanced formulation with a cosmetically acceptable scent proven effective in the treatment of mild to moderate psoriasis. For more information, and before and after photos of psoriasis treated with Psorent, visit our Psorent Psoriasis Topical Solution product detail page.

Licorice, bearberry and mulberry root extracts

Botanical brightening agents used in conjunction with other exfoliants and brighteners such as lactic and kojic acids to make skin appear more evenly toned.

Maltobionic Acid

The second bionic technology to emerge from NeoStrata, maltobionic acid is a plant derived polyhydroxy bionic acid that is a potent humectant /moisturizer and antioxidant chelator. Clinical data has shown this ingredient to have significant anti-aging benefits, including visual improvements in skin texture, clarity and roughness, plus self-assessed improvements in skin firmness, elasticity and hydration. This ingredient provides similar anti-aging, conditioning and hydrating benefits to lactobionic acid and is suitable for all skin types.

Matrix Metalloproteinase

MMPs are naturally occurring enzymes that cause degradation of skin structure. Therefore, inhibition of this process may promote more youthful skin. Lactobionic Acid inhibits MMPs through chelation of metals that promote MMPs.

Matrixyl™ Peptides

Matrixyl™ peptides contain palmitoyl oligo and tetra peptides, which are cellular messengers that help stimulate new collagen and act in synergy to restore skin's youthful appearance, reducing the appearance of lines and wrinkles and increasing elasticity.

Mandelic Acid

Mandelic Acid found naturally in almonds, is a lipophilic AHA, so it is readily absorbed by oily skin, making its antiaging properties particularly effective in this skin type. Studies have shown mandelic acid to provide anti-aging benefits similar to other AHA's. Mandelic Acid also has natural antibacterial benefits and reduces oiliness over time without over drying the skin.

Melasma

Your skin is 'hyperpigmented' if you have areas of discoloration on your face, chest, shoulders or hands from years of sun exposure. Also known as sun spots, age spots and liver spots, these areas of hyperpigmentation are visible signs of photoaging. Skin may also become discolored after pregnancy or as a result of using oral contraceptives; this condition is called 'melasma or chloasma'. Many cases of melasma and hyperpigmentation will improve over time with regular use of a topical skin lightener and exfoliator. Some cases of hyperpigmentation occur deeper in the skin and require a dermatologist to provide additional therapy. All pigmentation problems require sun avoidance and or strict sunscreen use to maintain benefits of treatment. For product recommendations, visit our Melasma Prone category.

Mottled

Your skin is 'mottled' or 'uneven' if you have areas of discoloration on your face, chest, shoulders or hands from years of sun exposure. Mottled skin is a visible sign of photoaging that may also occur after pregnancy or as a result of using oral contraceptives. Correct mottled skin with topical skin brighteners and exfoliators and be sure to avoid the sun and use sunscreen daily. For product recommendations, visit our Lightening/Brightening and Uneven Skin Tone categories.

Natural Moisturizing Factor (NMF)

NMF is essential for optimal skin surface (stratum corneum) hydration, barrier function and flexibility. It is a water binding mixture found in the top layers of skin cells and is made up of amino acids, natural sugars and other ingredients. The skin's ability to process filaggrin, which is the source of NMF, decreases with age. This leads to mature, dry skin. When any of the components of NMF are applied to the skin, they can help restore skin's own NMF.

NeoGlucosamine® / Acetyl Glucosamine

NeoGlucosamine® is NeoStrata's patented non-acid amino sugar technology that gently exfoliates the skin to promote cellular turnover, diminishes fine lines and wrinkles, and exfoliates hyperpigmented spots and acne for a more even skin tone. Cellular turnover is increased, improving skin clarity and brightness gently, without irritation. NeoGlucosamine® is also a building block of Hyaluronic Acid, skin's natural filler, promoting superior plumping of the skin, smoothing the appearance of lines and wrinkles from the inside and creating a firmer, more lifted look.

No Animal Testing

NeoStrata products are not tested on animals. Human volunteers and in vitro models are used to test NeoStrata and Exuviance products. For more information about our policy, please click here.

Non-Comedogenic / Non-Acnegenic

This product was tested on faces to ensure it does not cause an increase in blackheads, whiteheads and acne pimples.

Occlusive

Topically applied agents that retard the loss of water due to evaporation from the skin, and thereby increase the water content (moisturization) of the skin. 1

Oily Skin

Your skin fits this condition if you have excess oil and shine a few hours after washing.. Cleansers and toners need to be carefully selected so as not to irritate or dry the skin which may stimulate over production of sebum by the sebaceous glands. Light, oil-free moisturizers should be used to keep skin hydrated without being oily. Mattifying formulations help to reduce visible shininess with each application. For product recommendations, visit our Oily/Acne-Prone category.

Octocrylene

An organic and chemical sunscreen that absorbs UVB rays and part UVA rays for broad-spectrum protection.

Ophthalmologist Tested

Ophthalmologist testing was conducted for this product showing the product is safe for use around the eyes and in conjunction with contact lenses.

Panthenol / Pro-Vitamin B5

A humectant that improves hydration and helps soften and soothe the skin.

Parabens
Parabens are preservatives that are widely used in cosmetic and skin care products. It is important to use preservatives to prevent contamination and microbial growth with repeated use. However, consumers are asking more questions about parabens and on occasion request paraben-free formulations. As a result, we are actively researching paraben-free alternatives and are committed to providing new formulations that are paraben free. NeoStrata paraben-free products: NeoStrata Sheer Hydration SPF 35, NeoStrata Oil Control Gel, NeoStrata Lotion Plus, NeoStrata Gel Plus, NeoStrata Oily Skin Solution, NeoStrata HQ Skin Lightening Gel. Exuviance paraben-free products: Exuviance Antioxidant Perfect 10 Serum, Exuviance Collagen Triple Boost Serum, Exuviance OptiLight Essential 6 Serum, Exuviance Toning Neck Cream, Exuviance Age Reverse Day Repair SPF 30, Exuviance Age Reverse Night Lift, Exuviance Age Reverse Eye Contour, Exuviance Age Reverse BioActiv Wash, Exuviance Clear & Smooth, Exuviance Night Renewal Hydragel, Exuviance Matte Perfection, Exuviance Sheer Refining Fluid SPF 35, Exuviance Intense Lightening Complex.

Photoaged

Nearly all of the visible signs of aging are due to accumulated sun exposure. This condition, known as photoaging, causes the appearance of wrinkled, dull and lifeless skin on sun exposed areas of the body. The alpha hydroxyacids, including glycolic acid and the polyhydroxy acids including gluconolactone and lactobionic acid, along with daily sunscreen usage have been shown to help reverse some of the visible signs of photodamage. Repeated use makes the skin texture smooth with a reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. AHAs also improve skin brightness and luminosity, helping to revitalize dull, lifeless skin. AHA products which are combination sunscreen plus moisturizers are recommended for daytime use. More intense corrective therapies are available from dermatologists and plastic surgeons as well as other skin care professionals. These include superficial peels, retinoids, lasers and dermabrasions. For product recommendations, visit our Lightening/Brightening and Lines & Wrinkles categories.

Photodamaged

Nearly all of the visible signs of aging are due to accumulated sun exposure. This condition, known as photoaging, causes the appearance of wrinkled, dull and lifeless skin on sun exposed areas of the body. The alpha hydroxyacids, including glycolic acid and the polyhydroxy acids including gluconolactone and lactobionic acid, along with daily sunscreen usage have been shown to help reverse some of the visible signs of photodamage. Repeated use makes the skin texture smooth with a reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. AHAs also improve skin brightness and luminosity, helping to revitalize dull, lifeless skin. AHA products which are combination sunscreen plus moisturizers are recommended for daytime use. More intense corrective therapies are available from dermatologists and plastic surgeons as well as other skin care professionals. These include superficial peels, retinoids, lasers and dermabrasions. For product recommendations, visit our Lightening/Brightening and Lines & Wrinkles categories.

Phytotal®

A botanical blend derived from burdock and margosa (neem) that helps control oily skin. With continued use, Phytoal reduces oily shine, leaving skin looking fresher, healthier and more evenly toned. A registered trademark of Croda, Inc.

Polyhydroxy Acids

Polyhydroxy acids (PHA) are a special type of AHA (alpha hydroxyacid) known to modulate keratinization, normalize stratum corneum exfoliation and thickness, and strenghten skin barrier function without irritating skin. For this reason, PHAs offer a distinct advantage over conventional AHAs (glycolic acid and lactic acid) when used on sensitive skin, such as rosacea, atopic dermatitis, and eczema. In addition, due to the additional hydroxyl groups, PHAs appear to attract more water through hydrogen bonding, and therefore provide enhanced moisturization to the skin. In fact, many PHAs are strong humectants that can attract and bind atmospheric water. Many polyhydroxy acids including gluconolactone and lactobionic acid have also been shown to function as antioxidants through chelation of oxidation promoting metals and thus can inhibit the oxidation of other food and drug substances and this property may prove beneficial in the prevention of photoaging.

Preservative

Ingredients which prevent or retard the growth of microorganisms and thus prevent the spoilage of cosmetic products. Spoilage can occur as a result of contamination from the manufacturing process, or through repeated exposure to the environment during normal use. 1

Prodew®

Prodew® is a highly effective moisturizing ingredient formulated with 8 types of amino acids. The composition of the amino acids is modeled after the Natural Moisturizing Factor (NMF) in skin. Prodew® provides these crucial amino acids building blocks of skin's own NMF and restores deep reservoirs of plumping moisture.

Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition characterized by red, irritated patches of skin that are usually covered with white scales which appear silver, elevated and rough. In this condition, skin cells are overproduced causing an elevated plaque to form, and there is a significant inflammatory component to the disease as well. People with psoriasis should seek the care of a dermatologist to help reduce inflammation and slow down skin cell production. Topical treatments including LCD / coal tar products are available over the counter and can be used to effectively treat the condition. Adjunctive products that may help alleviate the scaling component of the disease and enhance skin comfort include the polyhydroxy acid (PHA) formulations, which gently exfoliate the psoriatic plaques leading to a smoother and softer look and feel but does not treat the disease. In addition, corrective cosmetics are useful in concealing this condition when desired on a daily basis or for special events. For more information, and before and after photos of psoriasis treated with Psorent, visit our Psorent Psoriasis Topical Solution product detail page.

Retinyl Acetate / Pro-Retinol / Pro-Vitamin A

An antioxidant, that has been shown to enhance cell turnover, even the skin tone and diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Ideal for use on acne prone skin.

Rosacea

These clinically sensitive skin conditions 'over' respond to normal environmental and social factors. Atopic skin is extremely sensitive to any topical products, including normal cleansers and moisturizers, and often appears irritated and red. It is often difficult to identify a normal skin care regimen that does not irritate atopic skin, especially one that contains anti-aging ingredients. Rosacea is an inflammatory condition that some researchers believe is caused or worsened by a microorganism on the skin, which makes the nose and surrounding areas appear very red and inflamed, and often shiny and broken out. Those prone to rosacea may experience a flare after drinking a glass a wine, going outside into cold weather, feeling embarrassed and flushed, drinking hot fluids or eating spicy foods. There are many different situations that cause a flare in rosacea, including using many skincare and cosmetic products. The polyhydroxy acid (PHA) gluconolactone, is compatible with atopic dermatitis and rosacea, and provides the anti-aging benefits expected from an AHA. And, in a clinical study of rosacea patients, adjunctive use of gluconolactone-containing products was found to enhance the effects of the topical treatment azelaic acid (Finacea®) resulting in smoother skin with less redness. For more clinical studies information, visit the NeoStrata Case Studies: Compatibility with Rosacea and Atopic Skin and Strengthening of Skin Barrier Functions. For product recommendations, visit our Rosacea/Redness category.

Rough

Dry skin conditions range from mildly dry with light flaking and skin tightness to extremely rough hyperkeratotic disorders. Most dry, chapped skin can be relieved through the use of a good moisturizer with AHAs and PHAs for gentle exfoliation, moisturization and skin conditioning. The more bothersome dry skin conditions on the face require an extra heavy emollient formulation in combination with skin normalizing / conditioning alpha and polyhydroxy acids (AHAs and PHAs). The most severe forms of dry skin including ichthyosis and plaque psoriasis, generally require therapeutic products, and are best treated by a dermatologist. For product recommendations, visit our Sensitive/Dry and Dry/Scaly categories.

Saccharide Isomerate

Saccharide Isomerate strengthens skin barrier function. It is derived from plant based D-glucose and is made up of various sugars which are very similar in composition to the natural sugars found in the skin's own Natural Moisturizing Factor (NMF). When skin barrier function is compromised, dry, flakey, and even scaly skin can be the result.

Salicylic Acid

A topical anti-acne treatment that unclogs pores and clears acne blemishes, pimples blackheads and whiteheads.

Scalp Psoriasis

Scalp psoriasis is reported to occur in 50-80% of psoriasis sufferers and is categorized by having psoriasis plaques under the hair on the scalp and can extend past the hairline to the neck, forehead and around the ears. Scalp psoriasis is recognized by its silver-white scaling, redness, flaking and itch on or around the scalp. Extreme dandruff, dry scalp and seborrheic dermatitis of the scalp are usually categorized with psoriatic scalp because they present many of the same symptoms. Product attributes need to be taken into consideration when treating psoriasis of the scalp such as application, odor, and hair staining. The treatment for scalp psoriasis is somewhat difficult because of the presence of the hair (especially since most sufferers prefer to keep longer hair to hide the redness of the condition). Luckily, Psorent psoriasis topical solution is the ideal medium for treating scalp psoriasis. Its no-mess applicator allows the user to precisely dab the product to affected areas. Psorent has the consistency of water, so it doesn't stick to the hair like creams or conditioners; it works directly on the skin where it is needed. For more information, and before and after photos of psoriasis treated with Psorent, visit our Psorent psoriasis topical solution product detail page.

Scaly

Dry skin conditions range from mildly dry with light flaking and skin tightness to extremely rough hyperkeratotic disorders. Most dry, chapped skin can be relieved through the use of a good moisturizer with AHAs and PHAs for gentle exfoliation, moisturization and skin conditioning. The more bothersome dry skin conditions on the face require an extra heavy emollient formulation in combination with skin normalizing / conditioning alpha and polyhydroxy acids (AHAs and PHAs). The most severe forms of dry skin including ichthyosis and plaque psoriasis, generally require therapeutic products, and are best treated by a dermatologist. For product recommendations, visit our Hyperkeratotic/Scaly category.

Sensitive

'Sensitive' skin occurs from time to time in a majority of women, and each condition is as individual as the person experiencing it. While each person's condition is unique, the general condition is characterized by heightened sensory responses to chemical, environmental or social triggers. People with sensitive skin are more likely to experience stinging, itching, burning, dryness, redness and breakouts in response to their skin's particular trigger. Many people with sensitive skin experience mild stinging and burning from soaps and cleansers as well as alpha hydroxyacids (AHAs) such as glycolic or lactic acid. The polyhydroxy acid (PHA) gluconolactone provides the benefits of AHAs without the potential for stinging and burning even the most sensitive skin. If your skin sensitivity increases or becomes troublesome, you should visit a dermatologist since it could be a more serious skin condition requiring professional care. For product recommendations, visit our Sensitive/Dry category.

Skin Conditioning Agent

Ingredients used to provide special effects for the skin including enhancing the appearance of dry or damaged skin, reducing flaking and restoring suppleness. 1

Sodium Hyaluronate

Hyaluronic acid, is a natural glycosaminoglycan (GAG) found in the skin's support matrix. GAGs bind up to 1000 times their weight in water. When applied topically, they attract water and moisturize.

Stressed

Does the cold weather, dry winds, pollution or personal stress trouble your skin? If so, your skin can be classified as 'stressed' - that is your skin negatively responds to various environmental and social factors by becoming dry, irritated, sensitive, unbalanced and / or blemished. Stressed skin needs the conditioning and protective actions of antioxidants and polyhydroxy acids. For product recommendations, visit our Oily/Acne-Prone and Hormonal/Menopausal categories.

Titanium Dioxide

An inorganic and physical sunscreen that absorbs, blocks and scatters UVA and UVB rays for broad-spectrum protection.

Tocopheryl Acetate / Pro-Vitamin E

An antioxidant and skin conditioner that helps protect against the formation of free radicals and smooths and softens skin.

Triclosan

A broad-spectrum anti-bacterial agent for topical use. Helps reduce potentially problematic bacteria on skin.

Turmeric

Turmeric is a plant from the ginger family. It is native to South Asia and is known for its medicinal qualities. It is used in the treatment of burns and other skin ailments. Turmeric helps the repair of free radicals and helps decrease the appearance of facial pigmentation by reducing the skin's melanin production. This ingredient is commonly used in skin brightening products to help those who suffer with uneven pigmentation. It is a powerful antioxidant that protects against environmental toxins.

Uneven Tone

Your skin has 'uneven tone' if you have areas of discoloration on your face, chest, shoulders or hands from years of sun exposure. Uneven skin tone is a visible sign of photoaging that may also occur after pregnancy or as a result of using oral contraceptives. Correct skin tone with topical skin brighteners and exfoliators and be sure to avoid the sun and use sunscreen daily. For product recommendations, visit our Uneven Skin Tone category.

Vitamin K

Helps to build skin strength and resiliency which helps to reduce the appearance of dark under eye circles.

Vitiligo

Vitiligo is a skin condition in which there is a loss of brown color (pigment) from areas of skin, resulting in irregular white patches that feel like normal skin. It most often affects the face, elbows and knees, and hands and feet. Vitiligo appears to occur when immune cells destroy the cells that produce brown pigment (melanocytes). This destruction is thought to be due to an autoimmune problem, but the cause is unknown. Vitiligo may appear at any age. The condition affects about 1 out of every 100 people in the United States. Treatments include topical drugs, phototherapy and/or concealing cosmetics to mask the condition. For product recommendations, visit our CoverBlend category.

Wrinkled

Nearly all of the visible signs of aging are due to accumulated sun exposure. This condition, known as photoaging, causes the appearance of wrinkled, dull and lifeless skin on sun exposed areas of the body. The alpha hydroxyacids, including glycolic acid and the polyhydroxy acids including gluconolactone and lactobionic acid, along with daily sunscreen usage have been shown to help reverse some of the visible signs of photodamage. Repeated use makes the skin texture smooth with a reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. AHAs also improve skin brightness and luminosity, helping to revitalize dull, lifeless skin. AHA products which are combination sunscreen plus moisturizers are recommended for daytime use. More intense corrective therapies are available from dermatologists and plastic surgeons as well as other skin care professionals. These include superficial peels, retinoids, lasers and dermabrasions. For product recommendations, visit our Lines & Wrinkles category.

Zinc Oxide

An inorganic and physical sunscreen that blocks or scatters UVA and UVB rays for broad-spectrum protection.

References

1. CTFA Cosmetic Ingredient Handbook, Second Edition, 1992.
2. The Bantam Medical Dictionary, Laurence Urdang Associates, 1981.

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