Courtesy of Shan Albert
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Accutane: A trademark name for isotretinoin, a vitamin-A derivative, which is used to treat severe acne. It inhibits sebaceous gland secretion.
Acetylcholine: The first neurotransmitter ever identified.
Alphahydroxy acid: Various fruit acids that are capable of trapping moisture in the skin and initiating the formation of collagen.
Amphoteric AHA: A form of alphahydroxy acids which allows for slower penetration, decreasing irritation and making it more suited for sensitive skin.
Androgens: General term for any male hormone, like testosterone.
Antibiotic: A drug that kills bacteria and other germs.
Antioxidant: A chemical that inhibits oxidation.
Arginine: An amino acid found in proteins that is essential for nutrition.
Avobenzone (Parsol 1789): A sunscreen ingredient that blocks the entire spectrum of UVA radiation. Parsol 1789 is the trade name for avobenzone.
Azelaic Acid (Azelex): A naturally occurring dicarboxylic acid found in whole grain cereals that is commonly used to treat acne and as a skin lightener.
Benzophenone: Benzoic acid. Commonly used in sunscreens.
Benzoyl Peroxide: An antibacterial medication used to treat acne.
Betahydroxy acid: Includes salicylic acid. Penetrates deeply to exfoliate skin.
Blepharoplasty: Eyelid surgery to remove excess fat, skin, and muscle from lower and upper eyelids, improving the appearance of the eye area.
Broad spectrum: A sunscreen that protects skin from both UVA and UVB rays.
Chirally correct: A product or ingredient which has the most beneficial effects with the fewest negative effects.
Coenzyme Q10: An antioxidant which inhibits the aging process on a cellular level.
Diuretic spironolactone: A potassium-sparing diuretic.
Emblica: Commonly known as the gooseberry, it is the richest known source of vitamin C.
Endermologie: A cellulite treatment using a computerized machine to massage tissues under suction.
Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF): A small protein that can help with normal cell growth and wound healing.
Essential oil: A concentrated, hydrophobic liquid containing volatile aromatic compounds extracted from plants.
Fraxel laser: A laser therapy which reduces fine lines and wrinkles and improves skin texture and pigmentation.
Genestein: One of the isoflavone class of flavonoids.
Glycolic acid peel: A skin treatment using glycolic acid to superficial wrinkles, uneven skintone, enlarged pores, acne scars and age spots.
Home peel: A chemical peel that is designed for home use. It is generally milder than a professional peel.
Hydroquinone: A topical treatment designed to lighten darkened skin (from melasma, age spots, freckles, and cholasma) while decreasing the formation of melanin.
Hyperpigmentation: Darkening of the skin, commonly produced by ultraviolet radiation, which provokes melanocytes in the skin.
Hypopigmentation: A condition caused by a deficiency in melanin formation or a loss of preexisting melanin or melanocytes.
Intense Pulsed Light (Photofacial): A therapy that emits high intensity pulses of light generally used for skin rejuvenation and acne treatment.
Jessner peel (or Jessner’s peel): A peel consisting of lactic acid and salicylic acid used to lighten hyperpigmentation and to treat sun damage.
Kojic acid: A skin-lightening agent used to treat hyperpigmentation.
Lentigines: Also known as sun spots, age spots, and liver spots. Harmless flat brown discolorations on the skin of the face, neck and hands.
L-lactic acid: An AHA derived from milk, which helps skin be more flexible, smoother, and more even-toned.
Melasma: Dark brown symmetrical patches of pigment on the face. Occurs in almost half of all pregnant women.
Microdermabrasion: An exfoliating treatment in which the skin is “sandblasted” with ultra-fine crystals of aluminum-oxide or other ingredients to remove the top layer of skin.
Milia (milium): Benign, keratin-filled cysts that look like tiny hard white bumps. Most commonly found around the nose or eyes.
Nd: Yag laser: One of the most common types of lasers used to treat a variety of skin conditions.
Neti pot: Jala neti is a yoga technique, meaning “water cleansing.” Salted water is used to rinse out the nasal cavity. Also known as nasal irrigation.
Octyl methoxycinnamate (Parsol MCX): A common sunscreen which absorbs UVB rays
Parabens: A group of preservatives used in cosmetics to prevent bacterial and fungal growth in products.
Peptides: Short chains of amino acids that combine to form proteins.
Prevage: A topical antioxidant. Trade name for idebenone.
Pulsed dye laser: A laser therapy which can improve acne scarring and fine wrinkles by increasing collagen production.
Renova: A retinoid used to treat photo damage and hyperpigmentation.
Retin-A: A retinoid that is used as a topical prescription acne treatment.
Retinoid (Retin-A, Renova, Avage, and Differin): A vitamin A derivative which works to increase cell turnover and exfoliation by stimulating cell production underneath the skin
Retinol: An over-the-counter vitamin A derivative.
Rosacea: A skin condition characterized by inflamed, red, oily, acne-prone areas.
Salicylic acid: A drug that removes the outer layer of skin. Used to treat various skin conditions.
Stratum corneum: Outermost layer of dead cells in the epidermis.
Systemic Antibiotics: Target the bacteria P. acnes that are thought to be responsible for local infection in acne. Common antibiotics are tetracycline, erythromycin, doxycycline, and minocycline.
TCA peel: A trichloro acetic acid peel is a medium peel which improves superficial discoloration and eliminate fine wrinkles.
Telangiectasia: Dilated superficial blood vessels which may occur in rosacea.
Tetracycline: A systemic antibiotic used in the treatment of acne.
Titanium dioxide: A physical sunscreen that acts as a sun block. It will not break down in the heat.
Tretinoin/Retinoic Acid: A vitamin A derivative used to treat acne.
Triactive: A laser treatment which can temporarily reduce the appearance of cellulite.
UVA (Ultraviolet A): Long wave solar rays responsible for wrinkles and photoaging, resulting in a leathery appearance.
UVB (Ultraviolet B): Short wave solar rays responsible for sunburn and skin cancer.
Vitamin K: A vitamin that acts to protect our body from bleeding problems. In skin care, it is used to treat bruises and spider veins.
Zinc oxide: A physical sunblock that soothes and protects against UVA/UVB rays.