It has been known anecdotally for a long time that the B Vitamins cause acne eruptions. Until recently the understanding of why this occurs has eluded many. Recent research however has revealed that the acne bacteria, Vitamin B12 and skin microbiome have a intertwined relationship.
Research has identified that there is a difference between gene expression of skin bacteria in acne patients, compared to healthy individuals with clear skin. They found that the B12 synthesis pathway of Propionibacterium acnes (P.acnes) in acne patients was low compared to healthy individuals, which led them to study the relationship between B12 and acne. Many bacteria need B12 for metabolic activity and they have the ability to synthesise their own.
What the research found is that when B12 is supplemented that the bacteria stopped producing their own supplies and instead begin producing porphyrins molecules. Porphyrins can generate inflammation and acne is triggered by inflammation initially.
Vitamin B12 actually altered the normal metabolic pathway and activity of the skin bacteria. B12 supplementation can make clear skin become prone to acne skin, which has been evidenced by the increase in breakouts post vitamin B12 supplementation.
Researchers also observed that another pathway, the porphyrins biosynthesis, is linked to the B12 biosynthesis pathway. They hypothesize that when there is an elevated B12 level, it leads to an overproduction of porphyrins by P.acnes. Previous studies have shown that porphyrins can induce inflammation and acne.
So what can you do?
Avoid supplements that have high doses of vitamin B12 in them. Be aware of foods high in vitamin B12. Milk, Cheese, Liver, Kidney, Pate, Clams, Crab, Oysters and Mussels all contain high levels of vitamin B12. For those of you in Australia the beloved Vegemite is another source of B vitamins. You may want to limit some of these food choices if your skin is currently experiencing breakouts and flare ups.
Cocoa is prized for its natural nutritional benefits. It is high in magnesium which has benefits. However, if you are acne prone it is best to get your magnesium from other sources.
Whether or not chocolate causes acne has been a huge debate. It is known without a doubt dairy and sugar can aggravate acne skins.
A study published in the Journal of Clinical Aesthetic Dermatology in 2014 found cocoa consumption is detrimental to those who are acne prone.
A double blinded placebo study examined the effect of cocoa consumption on acne lesion exacerbation. Fourteen men between the ages of 18 and 35 were assigned to swallow capsules filled with either unsweetened 100% cocoa, hydrolysed gelatin powder or a combination of the two.
The number of pimples and blackheads/ whiteheads we’re assessed and photographed at the beginning, day 4 and day 7. They were given only one tablet containing cocoa to see the effect on the skin.
What they found was that a ONE time consumption of cocoa actually increased the amount of pimples by 2.5 times by day 4. The number of blackheads and whiteheads increased by almost 2.5 times. By day 7 the blackheads and whiteheads were almost 3 times.
If you think you don't need a neck cream till your 30's you may need to think again.
We have a generation of people who are going to look older than their parents possibly with neck lines.
Why is this??? It's because of electronic devices. Children as young as 2 are using them.
Their head is in a position that creases the skin constantly. It's actually a phenomenon that is occurring and there has been scientific literature in reference to it.
There are many that use oils in place of a moisturiser. Is this really the best thing for your skin?
The most common oils used are Rosehip and Coconut Oil. Those that replace their moisturiser with oils have a skin barrier that is majorly impaired which ages them rapidly. Many wonder how this is the case when the oils have so many benefits.
It comes down to the fact that our skin requires the following three things in balance to maintain our skin barrier.
1. Fatty Acids
Vegetable oils only contain one of these.....Fatty Acids. They do not contain Cholesterol or Ceramides. By just using oil you stop the skin barrier from repairing and your skin will develop a low grade of inflammation which is basically cooking your collagen and elastin making you age faster. By the time those pesky wrinkles have begun to emerge the ageing process has already started and simply adding oil will in fact make it worse.
There are many oils that contain over 25% oleic acid. These oils disrupt the skin barrier by causing moisture loss which results in flaking, an overproduction of skin cells. This may not be seen to the naked eye.
The moisture loss causes a temporary swelling of the surface which makes you feel like you are hydrated. Continued use will degrade the skin barrier. If you were to be measured with a technical device accurately measuring hydration, it would show the skin is losing moisture and the feeling is only superficial.
In an acne skin these oils will result in breakouts. If there are too many skin cells it will clog the follicle. Acne skin cells are different to a normal skin. Their skin comes off in sheets rather than grains of sand which blocks the follicles.
Common oils that contain over 25% oleic acid are Olive Oil, Macadamia Oil, Almond Oil, Apricot Oil, Avocado Oil, Marula Oil and Argan Oil.
There are 3 key ingredients that need to be in a cream to effectively repair the skin barrier. Ceramides, Cholesterol and Fatty Acids. Not only does it need all of these but they also need to be in the right proportions, being a 1:1:3 ratio.
So why does the skin of an eczema sufferer have so much trouble repairing itself?
Well it all comes down to genetics. Eczema sufferers have a mutation in the gene called Filaggrin. Filaggrin provides moisture and is an essential component of restoring the skin barrier. Eczema sufferers only have one copy of this gene, instead of two.
Dr Su (Royal Children’s Hospital – Melbourne) was involved with ground breaking research on eczema. Dr Su discovered that a defective skin barrier was the primary cause of eczema. Eczema sufferers have tiny cracks in the skin barrier that predisposes some people to eczema, allowing irritants to penetrate and set off an inflammatory cascade.
People prone to eczema have a much thinner skin barrier than people with normal skin and this can be seen under a microscope, even if they do not have obvious eczema lesions. This is why daily application of a moisturiser containing the 3 key ingredients is vital, because genetically eczema sufferers don’t have a normal skin.
Our Calm Protect Revive or Rescue Balm is the perfect cream for treating eczema.
Did you know that the pimples popping up on your skin today actually began to form approximately 90 days ago?
It takes about 90 days for a pimple to form. It starts as a microcomedones in the pore and can take 3 different paths: a whitehead, a blackhead or a pustule, depending upon the presence of bacteria and inflammation.
Hyaluronic Acid keeps skin moist and elastic while hydrating the skin and smoothing out fine lines. It holds 1000 times it’s own weight in water. Hyaluronic Acid production in the skin reduces as we age, resulting in loss of elasticity which develops as wrinkles. It plays an important role in tissue regeneration and prevention of scarring.
Not all Hyaluronic Acid is created equally.
Peptides are short chains of amino acid sequences. They have the ability to trigger cellular processes that stimulate collagen production.
Peptides evolved from research into wound healing and studies on growth stimulation from human skin fibroblasts. Wound healing studies on human keratinocytes cultures showed a stimulatory effect from topical application of peptides.
There are four types of peptides.
1. Signal Peptides
2. Neurotransmitter-inhibitor Peptides
3. Enzyme Inhibitor Peptides
4. Carrier Peptides
Peptides have been proven to be more effective than the gold standard prescription Vitamin A in the treatment of photoageing.
There are 300 000 pores on the face. During childhood the pores are nearly invisible because the sebaceous glands aren't active.
Oilier skins will naturally have lager pores due to the output of sebum. But the main cause is the cutaneous sagging with age (loss of firmness and elasticity). The diameter of pores is multiplied by 2 between the age of 25 and 50. Visible pores first appear in the T-zone and then on the sides of the nose and cheeks.
Milk Repair and Reactive Skin Cream are our best products to target pore sagging related to ageing. For oily skins we recommend Plant Harmonising Serum and Reactive Skin Serum.
Katie Tilson is a fully qualified Beauty Therapist passionate about skin health and dedicated to ongoing training and education to ensure you receive superior skin treatments.