Can you overdose on skin care products?

    When the satirical newspaper The Onion printed the article “Girlfriend Overdoses on Lotion,” the story of course was a joke.

    “When we arrived, Ms. Nagler’s blood-lotion level was 0.45. That’s four times the lethal limit,” said emergency responder Anne Jones. “We’re guessing that by the time her boyfriend found her, she had been inhaling cocoa butter and eucalyptus fumes for over 45 minutes. One more Buf-Puf of jasmine serum and it would have been too late.”

    Funny stuff. But given that most good jokes are steeped in reality, is the idea really so far-fetched?

    After all, most of us are familiar with the following skin-care routine: We purchase a product containing an ingredient geared toward erasing a blemish, maybe a spot treatment, maybe a cleanser, and we use it several times a day, hoping to rid ourselves of the annoying spot. When it doesn’t work, we try another, and another and another and another, maybe until our skin is dry and flaky – and probably now has a few more blemishes than we started with.

    While overdosing on a single ingredient is common, we can also go overboard on products, experts say. When we use a cleanser, a toner, a serum and a moisturizer – each with its own key ingredients – they may not be designed to work together, and they may overload your skin, causing confusion as each product counteracts the other.

    In fact, many products contain ingredients that are toxic to the skin, but we buy into the hype and have no idea that the product we’re using could be responsible for the some of our skin problems.

    Parabens are used as a preservative in many skin care products, but they’ve been linked to cancer as well as early puberty in both boys and girls. Benzoyl peroxide, used to treat acne, and a common ingredient in acne medications, has been linked to cancer and DNA mutation. Synthetic colors are usually made from coal tar, and they leave deposits on the skin that can lead to irritation. The chemicals in sunscreens have been known to generate free radicals, which damage skin and result in various signs of aging.

    Using even one problematic ingredient can result in damage, especially to the skin’s protective outer layer. When mixed, you could generate a sea of toxicity that leaves skin looking very different to the youthful promises on the packaging. So essentially yes, you can overdose, but usually it is when your skin has a particular sensitivity, or problematic ingredients, or an unsuitable mix of different products.

    However, you won’t end up in the emergency room of The Onion’s imagination.

    The solution? Do your research and know exactly what you’re putting on your skin.

    Check the ingredients, and use products designed to work together to protect against ingredient overload. Xtendlife skin care products are designed with only the most safe and effective ingredients... that help boost the production of collagen and elastin, reducing the signs of aging and improving the look of skin – no overdose required. We do not use any ingredients that are not safe to ingest.

    We recommend a two-part approach to healthy skin. First, use a line of products that are designed to work together to protect against the signs of aging. (Our Foaming Face Wash combined with the Age Defense Active Day Cream and the Restorative Night Cream is a good start.)

    Also, be sure you’re nurturing your skin from the inside out by eating a healthy diet, drinking plenty of water and taking supplements aimed at preventing the signs of aging, such as our Total Balance and Omega-3 lines.

    Our skin is our largest organ, so working on our health from the inside out is essential to looking and feeling your best.


    The Onion, satirical story,34884/