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The 5 Most Common Beauty Questions – and Some Helpful Solutions

Q: What's the best way to deal with age spots - and keep hands from aging?

A: These brown spots (also known as "age spots" or "liver spots") are actually the result of sun exposure. So one way to avoid them is to protect your hands from the sun. Doing so will not only reduce the risk of age spots, but also reduce collagen breakdown so your hands will wrinkle less.

Rarely found in those under 30, age spots areagerelated, so a lifetime of sun exposure will give away your birthdays! If you use sunscreen from early in life, you will reduce the risk of age spots in later years. But its never too late: using sunscreen after age spots develop will help prevent more from appearing.

While skin lightening products will help diminish some age spots, only permanent treatments, such as lasers or chemical peels, can remove them completely. One caveat: While these treatments are effective, skin on the backs of the hands contains fewer blood vessels than the face, so healing can take longer.

Q: Why do anti-oil shampoos seem to make my hair oilier?

A : The problem is known as "rebound" oil production - a condition that occurs when you strip so much oil from your hair that it sends a message to your sebaceous glands to produce more oil. The greatest offenders are harsh shampoos, some of which are formulated for oily hair. To combat the problem, choose a shampoo for "dry," "sensitive," or color treated hair. These products are designed to give the most thorough cleansing without stripping the hair. So not only will you effectively remove all the oils, you won't trigger the "oil alarm" when doing it.

This holds true for oily skin as well. Indeed, experts say the body's natural response to skin irritation is oil production. So, the harsher the cleanser - and the more oil you remove - the more oil your sebaceous glands will produce. So what type of cleansers should you use? Look for products marked "gentle," like those recommended for dry or sensitive skin. They will remove excess oil, while leaving the barrier of fatty acids in tact. This will protect skin and keep oil production under control.

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