Eczema or Atopic Dermatitis is an inflammatory skin condition that causes dry, itchy and inflammed skin in approximately 10% of the population and up to 20% of children and babies. There are different types of eczema including chronic and contact dermatitis and can affect different parts of the body at different stages of life.
It is caused by a variety of factors including genetics, diet, allergens, irritant contact, personal care products, stress, toxicity overload, gut health and lifestyle. Research has shown that people with chronic eczema have defective skin barriers and an oversensitive immune system.
The skin barrier is thinner than normal, does not hold water as easily and may not produce enough oils to hold the skin cells together meaning they dehydrate easily and are more susceptible to allergens and bacterial imbalance. Studies also indicate that dermatitis patients have an impaired immune response that prevents them from producing adequate amounts of antimicrobial peptides in their skin. Their skin is less acidic and show a reduced buffering capacity. The bacteria Staphylococcus aureus is found on over 90% of eczematic skin.
People with eczema tend to have oversensitive immune systems that produce large amounts of IGE antibodies. These are produced in response to irritants such as dust, grass, foods, pest and toxins. The broken skin allows for greater contact with irritants which perpetuates the overactive cycle. There tends to be decreased gut barrier function from a combination of a modern diet, genetics, drugs, alcohol and the overly high gluten consumption in a standard western diet. This can lead to intestinal permeability or leaky gut meaning undigested food and toxins can more readily enter the bloodstream and cause problems.
Due to the complexity of the condition and the wide ranging, interconnected influences effecting the skin, it is crucial to systematically target potential causes of problems.
Prolonged, repeated use of high-potency steroids particularly on thin epidermal regions (face, neck, hands) can lead to Topical Steroid Withdrawal Syndrome (TSW).
Many, although not everyone who uses topical steroids will develop TSW. It is characterized by red, itchy, burning skin that can appear between treatments or after ceasing topical steroids. Over time, applying topical steroids results in reduced effectiveness, requiring a high potency steroid to achieve progressively less clearing. The original problem often escalates as it can spread to other areas of the body. The skin also exhibits an increased allergic response to external environmental and chemical substances.
Upon discontinuation of steroids, those with TSW often exhibit symptoms including skin redness, flaking, skin hypersensitivity, skin atrophy, hair loss, fatigue and mental health issues. It is absolutely devastating to experience and significantly effects a persons quality of life as well as their ability to work, socialise, maintain mental stability and live freely.
Psoriasis is a chronic skin problem where the immune system mistakes the skin cells as a pathogen causing them to grow too quickly. This results in thick, white, silvery, or red skin patches. 2.6% of Australians suffer from psoriasis and it most commonly affects the scalp, knees, elbows, hands and feet. However, it can occur anywhere on the body.
There are a number of genetic causes, in particular an impaired immune response. Stress, diet, allergens, environmental irritants and lifestyle also contribute to the problem.
Psoriasis is a skin disorder driven by the immune system, especially involving a type of white blood cell called a T cell. Normally, T cells help protect the body against infection and disease. In the case of psoriasis, T cells are put into action by mistake and become so active that they trigger other immune responses, which lead to inflammation and to rapid turnover of skin cells.
Normally, the outer layer of dead cells, which form the surface of our skin, gets rubbed off or fall away as new cells are made to replace them. This normally happens every 28 days. In skin affected by psoriasis this occurs every 4-7 days, mixing with the dead cells. As the new cells can't be sloughed off quickly enough, they accumulate on the surface of the skin, forming a raised layer of inflamed and scaly patches called plaques.
As an inflammatory skin condition linked with an overactive immune response and impaired skin cell production, the problem needs to be targeted holistically. Psoriasis is a sign that the immune system is out of balance, which causes the body to mistake it's own skin cells as pathogens.
Do you have small bumps on your skin? It could be keratosis pilaris or if itchy folliculitis. Keratosis pilaris is a buildup of keratin and dead skin cells within the hair follicles, which causes them to bulge and become irritated and inflamed.
Folliculitis is a skin condition that causes small red bumps due to inflamed hair follicles in the skin by bacteria or a blockage. This condition is normally caused when hair follicles are inflamed with bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus. How long have u had it? Where does it effect? This gives you an indication of the cause.
1. Laundry: Wash in either bicarb soda+white vinegar or soap berries on highest heat setting as many laundry chemicals irritate skin, high heat kills dust mites.
2. Exfoliation: Use a soft sponge over all the main areas when showering, you can get the one with the handle for your back & a softer one for face to help clear dead skin. Use a gentle nautral cleanser with it twice a week and just water the other times.
3. Water temp: Don't shower hot, use luke warm water & end it cold to alllow for better blood circulation. Can just stick head forward, then arms & legs instead of whole body at once to make it easier.
4. Clothing/towels/bedding: Only use organic natural fibres like cotton, hemp, bamboo, linen. No polyester, viscose, petrochemical materials touching skin.
5. Antibacterial: Make a light clay paste using clay & apply it to affected areas weekly to calm itching, deep cleanse pores & target skin bacteria. Wash off after 15 minutes.
6. Moisturise/Hydrate: Use a natural minimal moisturiser like the Aether ones, if your skin is naturally very oily then instead use a hyaluronic acid serum to help it hold water rather than supplying more oils.
There are many forms of skin damage and impairment which includes sun damage, sun burn, ageing skin, scars, acne scars, stretch marks, redness and wrinkles.
These can be caused by over exposure to sun, diet, genetic, lifestyle and personal care factors. Maintaining healthy skin involves eating correctly, exercising, always wearing sunscreen when in the sun and having the correct skincare regime that support's the skin's natural balance.
Increase the amount of water you drink if you have dry skin as it helps hydrate the skin. Ensure your diet is nutritionally balanced so you provide the body the right environment to heal. Always protect your skin from the elements. Wear sunscreen in the summer and gloves in the winter. Minimise the use of products containing things like fragrance, alcohol, colours and sodium lauryl sulfate which can cause long term damage.
Use biocompatible skincare products that supplement your natural skin lipids & natural moisturising factor such as our Hyaluronic Serum & Biomime Cream 297.
Acne is a common chronic disorder affecting the hair follicle and sebaceous gland, in which there is expansion and blockage of the follicle and inflammation. There are several variants.
Acne can run in families, but many people with acne do not have affected people in their family. It is likely that a combination of genetic, hormonal and lifestyle factors (such as diet, stress, skincare products etc) act in combination to cause most acne.
It can be provoked by polycystic ovarian disease, drugs (steroids, hormones, anticonvulsants, epidermal growth factor receptor inhibitors and others), occlusive cosmetics, high environmental humidity and diets high in dairy products and high glycaemic foods.
Four key pathogenic processes lead to the formation of acne lesions: alteration of follicular keratinization that leads to comedones, increased and altered sebum production, follicular colonization by propionibacterium acnes and complex inflammatory mechanisms involved with immunity.
It is recommended to target the root cause of acne rather than constantly use antibiotics and immune suppressants. Remove hormone disrupting chemicals from your diet, minimise meat, chocolate, sugar, high GI foods and dairy, switch to our Hypoallergenic Diet, destress, quit smoking, minimise makeup use (use mineral makeup preferably) and remove dimethicone based skincare products.
Switch to our gentle, skin compatible range including our gentle All Cleanser and deep cleansing Healing Bioclay. Our Hyaluronic Serum is minimal, ultra hydrating and oil free.
Sensitive skin has been described as unpleasant responses to stimuli that should not provoke such sensations. Adverse effects include itching, burning, stinging, tightness, and dryness.
Around 60–70% of women and 50–60% of men report having some degree of sensitive skin. There are different degrees of sensitivity across age groups, locations and skin sites. Many people have sensitive skin that requires special attention. Whether it is children and babies, women, men or those with problem skin conditions.
The increasing prevalence of sensitive and problem skin is of no surprise. It is likely exacerbated by irritating personal care and household products, the standard modern diet and environmental irritants. Many of today's personal care products contain a variety of highly irritating ingredients such as sodium lauryl sulfates, colours, fragrances, lanolins and alcohol. The degree of sensitisation they can provoke varies based on usage, dose and who and were it is used.
There is no standard definition of hypoallergenic, sensitive, gentle or natural products, so that makes it difficult for customers to choose the right products. Any single ingredient in a product can provoke sensitive skin and each individual reacts differently to each product, making it difficult to find the right products.
The Aether range has been specifically formulated for the most sensitive skin and has the most rigorous health and gentleness standard in the industry. Not only are we fragrance, lanolin, colour, cortisone and alcohol free. We are also the first to be gluten, dairy and citrus free as well as not containing most of the common food and chemical allergens. In fact we don't use over 1300 questionable ingredients. All our products use less than 10 ingredients and they are 100% natural. We have formulated the range in a way that the overwhelming majority of people should not have an issue with them.
Our founder Kevin was allergic to almost all the products available commercially. Even the ones that are based on all natural ingredients often contained far too many ingredients and stung his skin.