Truisms about cosmetics
Truisms around the subject of cosmetics abound. ÖKO-TEST has investigated which ones are true and which ones are completely nonsensical.
Acupuncture helps against wrinkles
Tends not to be true. Purposefully placed acupuncture needles allegedly stimulate cell renewal, improve the appearance of the skin and make wrinkles disappear. Dr. Helmut Rüdinger of the executive committee of the German physician society for acupuncture considers the promises borderline: „There is not a single study, which proves that acupuncture lets wrinkles disappear“, he says. After acupuncture, however, one looks more rested.
Black coffee makes beautiful
Not true. Coffee is undoubtedly a pick-me-up, which has a very stimulating effect thanks to caffeine and numerous roasting substances. But it does not make you more beautiful. In some people, coffee even causes inner turmoil and redness in the face. The good news is that coffee is not as much of a fluid and mineral robber as was long thought. A new study by the German Nutrition Society (DGE) proves that coffee counts in the body’s fluid balance like any other drink. And drinking plenty is the be-all and end-all for beautiful skin.
Smoking makes you old
True without a doubt. Cigarettes are, along with too much sun, the beauty killer par excellence. The typical smoker’s skin is wrinkled, sallow and gray. Smoking reduces the blood flow to the skin and it ages faster because nicotine destroys collagen. According to studies, tobacco condensates also have a phototoxic effect. That is, sun rays have a stronger effect on the skin of a smoker.
Many cosmetic ingredients are good for the skin
Not true. Constantly new cosmetic preparations and samples with different ingredients can irritate the skin. It reacts irritated, reddens or scales. If you use many different products, you should not use a different brand for each one. Most manufacturers offer care series that are coordinated with each other. The skin tolerates this better.
Chocolate makes pimples
Not true. The prejudice has been investigated in clinical studies. The result: a high consumption of chocolate does not cause pimple flare-ups. Sebum production in the skin, another finding of the research, is independent of the type of diet you eat. Chocolate makes but happy and in this sense it is – in moderation – also good for the skin.
Green tea prevents skin damage
True. Green tea contains a lot of vitamin C and beta-carotene. It also contains abundant polyphenols. These secondary plant substances are strong radical scavengers. Used externally, in the form of compresses, green tea strengthens the acid mantle of the skin and has an anti-inflammatory and soothing effect. Tannins in tea tighten the skin.
Lemon bleaches freckles
Not true. Sour is not funny and lemon juice does not make freckles or age spots disappear. The bleaching effect of lemon juice is minimal. Fruit acids such as citric acid are used in creams and peelings. However, the aim is to smooth the skin and stimulate it to produce cells more quickly. Fruit acids can also irritate the skin.
Piercings have been around for thousands of years
Agree. Even the ancient Egyptians wore belly button rings as a sign of their noble ancestry and the Inuit pierced their cheeks with bone slices of whales for ritual motives. The new desire for body adornment was triggered above all by punks and homosexuals. While punks in the 1970s wanted to provoke with safety pins in their cheeks, piercings in the gay and sado-maso scene stood for a certain willingness to experiment and take risks on the part of the wearers.
Skin analysis necessary for optimal care
True only partially. Many cosmetic institutes offer them with the argument to be able to find the optimal cosmetic care series for the type of skin. „But for those who have normal, healthy skin, such an analysis is superfluous and only cupped the wallet“, says senior physician Dr. Mirjana Ziemer of the hospital for skin diseases of the University of Jena. A user without skin problems can easily notice for himself if a cream is too greasy or not moisturizing enough. Skin analyses are useful for stressed occupational groups such as hairdressers, bakers or cooks, in order to develop suitable cosmetic care products and protective measures for these groups.
Eating carrots makes you brown
True – at least for babies. They get a reddish-brown skin with their portion of carrot porridge. Responsible for this is beta-carotene, which is deposited in the skin. Adults would have to eat several kilos of carrots every day to do this. This could be achieved more easily with beta-carotene in pill form, but only in high doses. But they are suspected of increasing the risk of cancer in smokers.
After 40 you get wrinkles from losing weight
True. Because the skin is no longer as elastic, diets have undesirable consequences. When the fat pads disappear, the sagging skin is left behind. Extreme starvation diets in particular make the face look much older. A balanced diet with little fat and composure in the face of a few pounds too much are more recommendable.
Carrots make your eyes shine
Not quite true, but: carrots are important for eyesight. They contain carotenoids, which are converted into vitamin A. This is important for building up the visual pigment, protects the mucous membrane and intercepts free radicals. Carrots thus keep the eyes fit and prevent strained blinking. This in turn prevents wrinkles around the eyes.
Stretch marks can be avoided
Is not always correct. When the belly slowly grows larger during pregnancy, the skin gradually stretches with. But in some women, the connective tissue eventually no longer yields – and tears. This cannot be avoided with certainty, because the cause is an inherited weakness of the connective tissue, which is sometimes more, sometimes less pronounced. To prevent stretch marks, you can regularly massage and pluck the skin to make it more supple. Around the navel, the skin is particularly stretched, so apply a good cream or care oil to this area every day.
More and more adults suffer from pimples
True. Experts estimate that about 40 percent of adults between the ages of 25 and 40 suffer from blemished skin and its consequences. The main reason for this is stress, which triggers the increased release of male hormones in the body. These stimulate the sebaceous glands and thus cause the unwanted pimples.