Gary W. Cole, MD, FAAD
Dr. Cole is board certified in dermatology. He obtained his BA degree in bacteriology, his MA degree in microbiology, and his MD at the University of California, Los Angeles. He trained in dermatology at the University of Oregon, where he completed his residency.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
- What are cosmetics? What is in makeup?
- What causes cosmetics reactions?
- Where do cosmetic skin reactions occur? What are symptoms and signs of a makeup allergy?
- What is on the cosmetic label?
- How can I be tested for a cosmetic sensitivity?
- What is the treatment for a makeup allergy?
- What is the prognosis of a cosmetics allergy?
- Is it possible to prevent a cosmetics allergy?
- Patient Comments: Cosmetic Allergies - Symptoms
- Find a local Dermatologist in your town
What are cosmetics? What is in makeup?
Cosmetics are substances applied to the skin (makeup and moisturizer), hair (conditioners), or nails (polish and lacquer) designed to enhance appearance. Cosmetics do not produce any sort of biological effect. They contain additives which augment their odor (perfumes), physical form (emulsifiers), color (pigments), and inhibit their degradation (preservatives) as well as variety of inert materials. They also may contain a array of exotic botanical substances for which the manufacturer may ascribe some vague benefit. The FDA and the USDA are responsible for administering laws involving the safety and purity of cosmetics. Revenue of the U.S. cosmetics industry will be about $59 billion in 2014!
What causes cosmetics reactions?
Untoward reactions to cosmetics seem to be rare considering their extensive use. This may be partly due to the fact affected individuals may just stop using the offending product rather than complain about it to a professional. Cosmetics may irritate the skin directly (by far the most common type of reaction) or induce an immune-mediated allergic response. Usually irritation would occur the first time a cosmetic is applied, as opposed to an allergic reaction which would require repeated exposures.
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