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16 Expert Answers for Eyes, Lips, Skin

By Didi Gluck and Genevieve Monsma

WebMD Feature from "Marie Claire" Magazine

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Photographed by Greg Delves

Q: Is Glitter Dangerous for Your Eyes?

Marie ClaireA: “Glitter can be especially problematic for contact-lens wearers,” says Marc Weinstein, an optometrist in New York City. “The little particles can get lodged under lenses and scratch the cornea, which may lead to serious infection.” To avoid, put in your contacts before applying glitter, and don’t rub your eyes once you’ve got it on. And always, always remove eye makeup (and all makeup!) before bedtime. Try Lancôme Effacil Cleansing Lotion for Eyes.

Q: Are Cellulite Creams a Scam?

A: No studies have ever shown that ingredients in cellulite creams truly help eliminate skin dimpling, says Ariel Ostad, M.D., clinical assistant professor of dermatology at New York University Medical Center. But you may see a small improvement upon application, since massaging a cream into the skin helps increase blood flow to the area, evening skin tone and smoothing lumpiness. However, this effect does not require a special cream (any body lotion will do), and the results are only temporary.

Q: Does Putting Hemorrhoid Cream on Eye Bags Really Shrink Them?

A: Yes, says Fredric Brandt, M.D., a cosmetic dermatologist with practices in New York City and Miami. The active ingredient in most hemorrhoid creams, benzocaine, causes blood vessels to contract, which reduces puffiness. The downsides? Hemorrhoid cream can be dehydrating, says Mona Sappenfield, an aesthetician and the owner of Mona Spa & Laser Centers, so you may be shrinking your bags, but inducing fine lines and irritation. Also, one can develop an allergy to benzocaine with overuse, so limit your applications to emergencies, says Bruce Katz, M.D., founder and director of the Juva Skin & Laser Center and MediSpa in NYC.

Q: How Can I Keep My Eyeshadow From Creasing?

A: “By eliminating as much oil as possible from your lids,” says celebrity makeup artist Tina Turnbow. To do it, use an eyeshadow base (such as Fresh Freshface Perfecting Eye Primer) or pressed powder before applying color. Turnbow also advises choosing looser, more powdery shadows if creasing is a problem for you, because the binders they contain (ingredients that hold pigments together) are less oily. And stay away from shimmery shades, since they tend to crease more noticeably. Try Bourjois Suivez Mon Regard Multi Shimmer Loose Eye Shadow.

Q: How Can I Safely Get Rid of a Tattoo?

A: Lasering, particularly with the Alexandrite and ND-Yag lasers, will get rid of most tattoos, says Dr. Brandt. But one laser cannot remove all colors, so be sure to go to someone with a variety of lasers—and lots of experience. Pastels or brand-new tattoos are typically hardest to remove, and browns may get darker if the pigment contains any iron, so always ask for a patch test first. The process typically takes between four and eight treatments (which can add up to $1000 or more), with a week of downtime in between each, says Dr. Ostad.

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