Ask Shari – How to banish bumpy skin for good!
I get these questions all the time, and one of the most asked questions is about those little annoying bumps around your eye area and cheekbones.
What the heck are they? Here is a letter from a long time client.
I keep getting these small, hard bumps on my cheekbones and under my eyes. Sometimes they’re even on my eyelids. I don’t know what’s causing them, and they don’t seem to go away! How do I get rid of them?? Please help!
Don’t worry, this is fixable! Those pesky little cysts are called milia. They appear when patches of your skin get clogged by keratin. Keratin is a protein that gives skin its strength and flexibility. It’s also what makes up most of your hair and nails. Sounds good, right? Unfortunately, keratin can also trap dead skin cells, causing milia. Certain beauty products (especially those with oil) can lead to milia if they’re too heavy for the rate of your skin’s cell turnover. If you’re prone to milia, you should avoid oil-based eye creams, eye makeup remover, eyeliner and concealer.
While harmless, milia can be stubborn, lasting for weeks or months; left untreated, they can even be permanent. The fastest way to get rid of them is with the help of a professional. (Don’t attempt to remove them yourself as you’re likely to create a scar!)
Exfoliate milia away
The best way to treat and prevent milia at home is with exfoliators that will gently and effectively slough off dead skin cells, avoiding further buildup.
Glymed Plus OXYGEN Deep Pore Cleanser decongests pores and stimulates cell turnover. While it’s called a cleanser, it works more like a mask; after washing your skin, apply OXYGEN Deep Pore Cleanser and leave it on for 5-7 minutes. Remove with a damp washcloth. You can see results using it just once a week, but it’s safe to use up to 3 times a week.
Jan Marini Bioglycolic Bioclear Lotion is a gentle exfoliant suitable for all skin types. It resurfaces skin with 2% salicylic acid and glycolic acid, boosting cell turnover for glowing skin. It helps treat acne, blackheads, scarring and discoloration, and it has a light gel texture perfect for people with oilier skin. Plus, it’s not drying, so your new cells stay hydrated. Use it 2 times a day after cleansing, before your other products.
Retinol used 2 times a week or more will help break down cysts and boost cell turnover, making skin stronger. One of my favorites is PCA SKIN Intensive Clarity Treatment 0.5% Pure Retinol Night.
Safe anti-aging eye treatments
You can still use anti-aging products under your eyes, but avoid creams that are too thick for the delicate undereye area, as well as heavy oils like petroleum and mineral oil. Gel formulas can effectively firm skin and reduce fine lines without encouraging milia. Look for ingredients like peptides, vitamin A and niacinamide. Check out my favorite eye gels:
Jan Marini Marini Luminate Eye Gel has a brightening formula that helps reduce the appearance of discoloration and undereye circles.
PCA Skin Ideal Complex Revitalizing Eye Gel firms and lifts the skin around the entire eye area, including the upper eyelid.
Cheers to great skin,