June 3, 2010

Despite our Scars, WE ARE BEAUTIFUL!

Hello Lovies!

First! I must apologize for being unpredictable with my posts! I cannot afford a laptop and so I must use my grandfather's dusty desktop to keep all of you up to date :) So long as its working I'm just happy to be in touch with you all!

Second, PLEASE, don't be discouraged by the length of this post. This information is crucially vital to our skin care, so dig in, and ward of all signs off approaching Lupus brain fog! I know its tough, but you can do it!

NOW! For the juicy stuff. I've been receiving lots of requests for a Make-up blog post, and was extremely lucky to attend a Make-up Camouflage workshop thanks to the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation a few weeks ago!

 Many of us are battling with pain, stress, mood swings, and harsh words from the people around us. It seems a difficult task for others to relate to what those of us are living with lupus are experiencing daily. Not all of us are experiencing Discoid Lupus (Lupus affecting the skin usually involving lesions) there are multiple types of Lupus Rashes that are affecting many of us differently.  I have to say that it infuriates me that so many of you are receiving backlash just because your Lupus has left scarring! So I've done some digging in hopes of sharing some insight with you all.

The days of feeling negative, depressed, and ashamed need to come to an end! I want each of YOU to remember that you are not your skin, there is much more depth and personality to each of us that no one else has. I will share both natural ways & physical ways we can use to feel as beautiful on thee outside as we are inside! Here we go, I hope you all have your pens ready :)

Natural Skin Remedies & Help

Here are some ways to relieve "itchy" rashes while also helping to prevent them.

Top 7 Natural Remedies For An Itchy Skin Rash

1. Witch Hazel
: Acts as an astringent that relieves an itchy skin rash as well as more serious skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema. Because of its anti-oxidant properties it is also used for treating sunburn. For maximum benefit, use fresh witch hazel bark. Simmer one ounce of the bark with one pint of water and leave for ten minutes. Strain and cool. Apply with a clean cloth and leave it on for 30 minutes.

2. St Johns Wort
: This yellow flower native to Europe has been used for thousands of years, from the Greeks to Native Americans It is well known for it use in treating depression and anxiety, though because of its astringent properties it can also be used to to moisturize and refresh the skin, particularly an itchy skin rash.

3. Aloe Vera
: This is gel-like substance from cut Aloe is widely known for treating skin burns and sunburns. Aloe vera also helps in healing wounds and minor skin irritations such as an itchy skin rash. This plant produces anti inflammatory, anti bacterial, and anti fungal properties. It also contains folic acid, zinc, and vitamins C and E. The best way to get the benefits of aloe vera is to use the fresh gel from the plant. At the time of application, slice off a portion of the leaf and directly apply the gel to the affected area.

4. Calendula Essential Oil
: Calendula is widely used for reducing inflammation and treating diaper rash. Experts say that Calendula works by stimulating the production of white blood cells that aid in destroying harmful microbes. You can also use the actual herb by mixing it with boiling water, one cup of the boiling water to two teaspoons of the herb. Let it simmer for about ten minutes. After the mixture has cooled, apply to the affected area by using a clean cloth.

5. Chamomile Essential Oil
: Has anti inflammatory (anti-microbial) properties that soothes and eliminates an itchy skin rash and irritations. Chamomile is also used in treating eczema, psoriasis, and sunburn. Please be aware, people who are normally allergic to grass and ragweed may acquire an allergic reaction to chamomile.

6. Jewelweed
: Provides relief from poison oak, poison ivy rash, insect bites and bee stings. To use, crush the fresh leaves into a ball and rub over the rash as quickly as possible

7. Wild Pansy
: This is a European wild flower that soothes and relieves itching and skin irritations associated with eczema. This is also used for soothing acne problems.

*For more information  Click Here  As always please discuss all natural remedies & herbs with your doctors to be sure they do not conflict with your medications! 

The foods we eat also play a LARGE role with our skin. You'd be surprise to know how all your favorite foods may be causing acne, rashes, and other types of skin impurities. It may be a tough cookie to swallow lovies, but isn't it better to be safe than sorry?! Eating healthier is a small sacrifice we can make to make our lives a bit better. There is very little we can control about Lupus, but we CAN control what we put into our bodies! Here are some Tips on remedies & foods that are good for your skin:

Tips on Caring for your Skin

Modifying the diet as well as increasing physical activity can work miracles to improve the skin. It is explained below:

Increase Water Intake
This is one of the best tips on caring for your skin. To maintain youthful look of the skin, it is essential to drink plenty of water. 7 - 8 glasses of water a day ensures healthy glowing skin for years to come. Pimples on the face are often the result of drinking insufficient amount of water. Appropriate water intake is often regarded as a cure for dry and unhealthy skin. Drinking warm water, detoxifies and rejuvenates the skin. It can also be helpful to eliminate blackheads, that are associated with acne. In short, water intake is essential to keep the beauty of the skin intact.

Exercise is another home remedy for skin care. Following a daily exercise routine promotes a healthy skin. Why? This is because, exercise stimulates blood circulation, which has a positive impact on the overall appearance of your skin. As we all know, proper circulation of blood is essential to transport nutrients to different parts of the body. The increased blood flow to the skin during exercise, ensures proper delivery of nutrients to the skin. It is observed that inactive people are prone to skin problems like acne. Daily exercise can delay signs of aging such as wrinkles as well as allow a person to stay in good shape.

Healthy Diet
What you eat matters a lot for your skin. Are you looking for a wrinkle free completion? A nutritious diet is the key to have a younger looking skin. Having healthy foods in the diet can help to maintain the luster of the skin, years down the line. This is an 'easy to implement' home remedy for skin care that can work wonders to eliminate skin problems. Antioxidant rich foods are considered to be skin friendly foods and hence need to be included in the diet. Antioxidants are substances that protects the body against ill-effects of free radicals that occur with age. Free radicals produce damaging effects on the skin such as development of wrinkles. These effects can be delayed by eating foods high in antioxidants, which are given below:

  • Green leafy vegetables (cabbages, kale, spinach)
  • Vegetables like sweet potatoes and fruits such as oranges, strawberries and mangoes
  • Carrots and tomato vegetable juice
No Smoking
This is one of the useful tips on avoiding skin damage. The line 'smoking is injurious to health' emphasizes the fact that this habit is detrimental to health. If long term use of smoking causes respiratory disorders, then the immediate side effect of this unhygienic habit can damage the skin. The quality of skin diminishes in people who smoke daily. Skin aging signs such as wrinkles appear early in these people. In other words, premature wrinkling of skin is the most common side effect of smoking. Facial features change drastically in smokers and in no way these 'changes' are pleasant. Stop smoking and with a healthy diet, one will notice a considerable improvement in the texture of the skin.

Topical Treatment

One does not have to necessarily visit a salon to know beauty care tips. Books on home remedy for skin care provide effective solutions to maintain a healthy skin. Some of them are listed below:

Lime Juice
Prepare a lotion containing equal amounts of rose water, glycerin and lime juice. Daily application of this solution can restore softness in the skin and help to get rid of pimples.

Use of papaya is extremely beneficial for the skin. It is commonly used to treat a wide range of skin diseases and stop premature aging of skin. Apply mashed papaya on the skin daily to eliminate rough skin. A papaya mask is commonly used for the treatment of acne.

Pineapple Juice
This is one of the best home remedies for healthy skin. A mixture of carrot and pineapple juice has been very effective to give a better look to the skin. This home remedy for face can rejuvenate the skin as carrot juice contains vitamin A that is know to revitalize the skin. Apply the mixture on the face and leave it, for a period of 10 -15 minutes. Using this solution, daily, provides protection against sun damage.

Top Foods That are Good for Skin
Selected below are the top food which are good for skin health, that are must in a diet if you want a beautiful skin.

#1 - Green Tea: Green tea is known to be having highest amount of antioxidants. Hence, green tea helps to combat many effects of harmful free radicals. It helps to protect skin from the damage of sunlight radiation, that causes 90% of all signs of premature aging. It also helps to prevent skin cancer. Not just it helps to combat skin damage, but also helps to rejuvenate skin cells. Green tea also helps to fight inflammation, soothe acne and lighten skin. Green tea is easy to make, so have 2-3 cups of green tea in a day!

#2 - Carrots: Carrots are very good for skin. Consuming 1-2 glass of carrot juice or 4-5 carrots on a daily basis, will act as your natural sunblock. Carrots are the best foods good for skin acne, and hence, people who are suffering from acne and blemishes problem, should have carrots on a daily basis. It is rich in many nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin C and potassium, which are all very good for skin. So, make a salad, juice or eat them like snacks regularly to get a clear and glowing complexion. Read more about, carrot juice benefits for skin.

#3 - Lemon Water: Having lemon water is known to be excellent for skin care. Lemon is a natural antiseptic medicine, that helps to cure many skin related problems. Lemon is rich in vitamin C and is a good citrus fruit, that rejuvenates the skin from the inside and brings a healthy glow to it. Having it everyday, will help you get rid of wrinkles and blackheads. Learn more about, health benefits of lemon water.

#4 - Water: Water is easily available, all one needs to do is keep drinking lots and lots of water all day long. Make sure you drink at least 3 liters of water throughout the whole day. Water will help to keep the body flushed, and free of any nasty toxins. Drinking water benefits to keep your body moisturized, maintain eyes bright and clear, and the complexion radiant!

#5 - Salmon: Salmon contains omega-3 fatty acids, which help to reduce inflammation in the body. This can help to reduce and protect the skin against sunburn and skin cancer. Eating salmon recipes regularly, greatly helps to improve skin texture, add shine to the eyes, skin, hair and nails. It also helps to boost skin's ability to retain water, and is known as one of the best foods good for skin elasticity, as it increases the production of collagen, keratin and melanin. If you are a vegetarian, then go for foods made out of flax seed, as it also contains omega-3 fatty acids.

#6 - Berries: Berries being rich in antioxidant content, are very good for skin. Berries will protect against the harm of free radicals, and also help to repair damaged skin. So, eat blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, etc.

#7 - Avocado: Avocado is known to be a potent beauty booster among foods good for skin. Avocado is a tasty fruit and has healthy fats that will make your skin plump and smoothens the dry skin. You can include avocado in your diet, and after eating the fruit, rub the peel on your skin. More on, avocado oil for skin.

Foods to Avoid to Maintain Good Skin
Given above were some of the best foods good for skin. However, one should avoid the below mentioned foods for natural skin care.

  • Protein containing foods like sausage, bacon, and ground beef.
  • Foods which contain the bad fats which are the trans fatty acids, found in partially hydrogenated vegetable oils. Trans fats are mostly found in junk food. Also, avoid foods containing butter.
  • Try to avoid eating French fries, raisins and any full fat dairy products.
  • To maintain a good skin, avoid alcohol and caffeine too.
So, include the above best foods good for skin, in your diet. And have these foods regularly, and soon you will see your skin glowing!

Earlier in the post I spoke about a  Camouflage Make-up  class I attended with the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation. Here I learned about two different products that are amazing in covering Lupus scars! We even had a live session where several volunteers had their make-up done & I must say I was impressed with the coverage. The make-up artist name is Sheila J Makeup, she happens to also be a full-time nurse who is obsessed with make-up and took the time to come over and show us Lupus patients the right products and how to use them! She was such a sweetheart :)

Sheila brought up the importance of using hypo-allergenic products to prevent allergic reactions, this is extremely important as many of us have such sensitive skin. Be VERY careful when choosing products that it will not cause further skin irritation. Check and be sure what you are using is hypo-allergenic!

To begin she used a product called Dermacolor which is a camouflage make-up system. You can pick your choice of palettes that fit close to your skin, and then mix them bit by bit with a make-up brush and apply only to your problem areas. The key is to blend, and keep blending until you reach your skin-tone. She showed us how to do this in class and each person took only about 15 minutes or less!

First, apply a sunscreen underneath make-up. Unless you are using make-up that already comes high with SPF protection. After applying foundation and blending, Sheila then advised to apply a setting powder, let it sit for 15 seconds and brush it off. This helps to "set" the make-up.

Sheila also recommended several other products such as Dermablend and Nicole Paxson Cosmetics. You can stay updated by following her 'Aesthetic Camouflage' Makeup Blog for helpful tips & feel free to ask her questions, she's extremely nice and definitely gave everyone at my local Lupus support group the feeling of bringing our beauty from our insides out!

So be brave lovies & let your beauty SHINE, Never let anyone make you feel embarrassed. Lupus is nothing to be ashamed of, we cannot prevent how it affects our bodies but we can change how we live with it. Zero tolerance for those who refuse to understand our pain, I do and we do and that is all that matters. You're never alone and together we're gonna show the world just how BEAUTIFUL we truly are starting from the INSIDE OUT!



  1. wow! long post and full of MUCHO work!!! Thank you! I never realized proteins had as much to do with it!!

    loving the work you've put into it!!!

    Reading more! bookmarking!!
    Melissa (aka DrSnit)

  2. Awesome post, babe!!! Thanks so much for doing it. There's a few tricks I'll be doing for sure. And I definitely want to try the make-up you listed. One of them at least. I never leave the house w/o foundation on, cause I'm so sensitive about the stupid butterfly rash I have from lupus. Thanks again for the post, babe!! xoxoxox

  3. Here is what I have found that covers my butterfly rash very well. I have started to use Neutrogena Pressed Powder instead of the Mac Studio Fix I was using. I wanted to find something cheaper, and Neutrogena works very well to cover my rash, and is much cheaper than Studio Fix.

  4. I was really sceptical about the effect of food on lupus but after making sure I'm eating something fishy 3 times a week there's been huge improvement in my joints. Last nights grilled salmon steak was fab and only took five minutes.

  5. Glad I could help lovies!!!

    @Lupoid, I was a skeptic at first as well. But after only a week of changing my diet I feel completely different, my energy levels have risen, and the pain isn't as severe as months back!

    Thank you for letting me know how your diet changes are affecting you lupus, trying to inspire lupies to get health conscious with their food!

  6. what's wrong with raisins!??!

  7. I do believe in the power of natural skin care products . The use of Aloe Vera in treating itchy skin rash do works!

  8. Yes, I agree with you, Dianne! Nothing beats the natural products for skin treatments, that’s why I liked the long island spa for they always go for what’s natural and close to nature.

  9. Since I became a mompreneur, I started to increase my fruits and vegetable intake. I always make it a point that fruits or vegetables are always part of my everyday routine. Aside from the fuel that it gives me to work, I saw it as a way of taking good care of my skin as well.

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  11. Thanks so much for the great info....natural is truly the way to go and watching what we eat.

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