Our strange body conditions aren’t usually topics open for discussion at dinner parties, but some people are too uneasy about weird growths and mysterious hairs to discuss it even with a doctor. Read on to find out the common questions and answers to the most embarrassing questions.
Why are my nipples flat or inverted? Some nipples don’t protrude because the connective tissue in the deeper layers of skin tugs on the underside of the nipple, pulling it downward. In some cases, flat or inverted nipples can be treated with a filler like Restylane or Juvéderm. If the nipples don’t respond to injections, a simple surgical procedure that cuts and loosens the ligaments pulling down on the nipple may be an alternative.
Is it strange for women to have nipple hair? Nipple hair is more common than you’d think, although it’s actually more likely to sprout from the areola than the nipple itself. While it is safe to pluck nipple hair or clip it with cuticle scissors, waxing is another alternative. If you’re a woman and you suddenly notice a large number of hairs growing on your breasts, it may be a sign that you have a hormonal imbalance, which you should discuss with your doctor.
What are these bumps on my areola? Bumps on your areola may be a sign of enlarged and clogged oil glands. Squeezing may turn the bumps into pimples or nasty boils, so try to leave them alone. If the bumps drain liquid or pus, or don’t go away on their own, tell your doctor.
Should I be worried about having an extra nipple? Yes, that’s right — some people have extra nipples. Technically known as supernumerary nipples, they’re usually much smaller than the main nipples, and they tend to appear on the chest below the main ones. Not to worry though — they’re relatively common, and they’re usually harmless. However, if your extra nipple feels tender, grows, or changes in shape or appearance, consult your doctor.
What can I do about gray hair that’s sprouted below the belt? There are a lot of annoying things about getting older, but going gray in the pubic region for some is a wake-up call associated with aging. You do have options, though. Here are a few age-defying hair-care tips for the pubic area.
- Color it. Make your pubic hair match the rest of your hair with a dye from BettyBeauty.com. These dyes are specially formulated to be nonirritating for use on your pubic area; they contain no ammonia or parabens, and they’re not tested on animals. Some salons also specialize in bikini waxing and dyeing.
- Camouflage it. If you want a low-maintenance alternative, you can temporarily camouflage gray pubic hair with a touch-up pen, or even mascara. Just be careful to avoid getting the color on your skin, and avoid coloring right after you shave or wax, when your skin is more sensitive.
- Clip it. If coloring or covering up your gray pubic hair isn’t for you, you can always use electric hair clippers to trim the hair short enough to make the grays less noticeable. You may also consider waxing your entire bikini area, or having your pubic hair removed with laser hair treatments or electrolysis.
How can I clear up butt acne? Breakouts on your backside (also called butt-ne) can be caused by clogged pores, just like facial acne. Other common causes include plugged hair follicles (keratosis pilaris), sweat bumps (miliaria), and friction from clothing. In some cases, a bacterial infection (like staph) can cause pimples on the butt. To keep your booty clear, follow these tips:
- Exfoliate. The skin on those cheeks doesn’t turn over as quickly as the cheeks on your face, so help it along by exfoliating with a loofah or a moisturizing body scrub. I like Rhonda Allison Beta Green Tea Scrub with salicylic and lactic acid.
- Medicate. If the bumps are rough, a buildup of dead skin cells is probably the culprit. Look for scrubs and lotions with lactic or salicylic acid (like Oxy Maximum Hydratin)
- Wear loose clothing. This will help prevent friction, which can clog sweat glands and lead to sweat bumps. If you must wear tight, stretchy workout clothes, try to shower immediately after.
If your butt remains pimply after following these tips, ask your doctor to prescribe medicated pads, such as clindamycin wipes, for more stubborn acne.
Should I be worried about my thick yellow toenails? Thick yellow nails can be a sign of something contagious, like a fungal infection. But many people’s nails turn yellow for other, relatively harmless reasons — poor circulation, walking barefoot, or not taking good enough care of their feet.
In some cases, yellow discoloration is caused by dark nail polish that has stained the nail bed. You’ll know polish is the culprit if the nail surface is smooth and the discoloration affects all the nails equally. This problem can easily be fixed by using a base coat, by periodically removing polish and going without for a while, or by switching to a lighter color.
If you do have some kind of fungus, it’s probably the same as the one that causes athlete’s foot. A fungal infection will usually cause nails to become thick and crumbly, not just discolored, and it may affect just a few or only one of your toenails. Fungal infections are commonly accompanied by scaly patches and itching on the soles of the feet or between the toes.
Another possibility is nail psoriasis, which can look exactly like a fungal infection, although people with nail psoriasis tend to have psoriasis patches elsewhere on their bodies, most often on the elbows or knees. The only way to really know what’s going on with your nails is to get them tested by your doctor.
I sweat buckets, and regular deodorant doesn’t work! What can I do? It’s hard to act cool when your armpits are dripping and you’re worried about staining your favorite shirt. Here are some secrets to keeping cool:
- First, check to make sure you’re using an antiperspirant (which helps keep you dry), not just a deodorant (which keeps you smelling fresh). For extra protection, switch to a stronger formula, like Dove Clinical Protection Antiperspirant & Deodorant.
- If you’re still sweating through your clothes, see a dermatologist who can examine you for possible underlying causes, such as a thyroid condition. Your doctor may recommend a prescription antiperspirant called Drysol (though this antiperspirant can be irritating to the skin).
- If none of these options work, talk to your dermatologist about Botox. The procedure involves the injection of tiny amounts of Botox right under the skin in the armpits (it also works for sweaty palms), and it keeps you dry for six months or longer.
What makeup can I use to cover adult acne without making it worse? It seems so unfair that we’re susceptible to acne again as adults, but it’s not uncommon, especially among women. Hormonal fluctuations related to menstruation and menopause may be to blame. Adult acne can be successfully treated, so first I’d suggest making an appointment with a an Aesthetican to evaluate your acne and help you find the right treatment. NAKED A Boutique For Skin offers a variety of treaments for all skin types.
In the meantime, if you’re trying to cover up a blemish or breakout, your best bet is to use a loose powder, such as Physicians Formula Mineral Wear Talc-Free Mineral Loose Powder or my favorite pro line is Colorscience Make-Up It’s hight quality make-up. Loose powder is better than liquid foundation because it provides natural-looking coverage without clogging your pores; if you need more coverage, then it’s better to use a liquid concealer than an oil-based stick, which is almost certain to clog your pores and make your acne worse. Dab on a little concealer and cover it up with a light dusting of the loose powder, then repeat if necessary.
I want to look tan but the spray tan I tried left me orange and splotchy. Help! Self-tanners contain two main ingredients, dihydroxyacetone (DHA) and erythrulose, that react with the proteins in the outer layers of your skin to produce a darker color. But patches of dead, dry skin soak up more of those ingredients, which is why elbows, knees, and other dry spots tend to get darker. Using a loofah or washcloth in the shower to exfoliate the dead, discolored skin cells will help any streaky color fade faster.
The quickest way to loosen the top layers of dead skin is to use a scrub containing glycolic acid; it should help you get rid of your leopard spots within three to five days. To avoid the splotchy look next time, start exfoliating at least a week before you use a self-tanner, and pay extra attention to any dry patches.
I have a skin-colored growth on my face. What could it be and how can I get did of it? If the growth is rough, skin-colored, and slowly getting bigger, there’s a good chance it could be a wart. Warts can be treated in the doctors office with a cold liquid nitrogen spray, which freezes them and makes them scab and fall off in about a week.
If your growth is smooth, beige to brown, and hasn’t changed in years, it’s likely to be a benign mole. Such moles can be removed by shaving them off at the surface. The skin underneath looks like a shallow abrasion and heals in about a week, although the mole can grow back over time.
Sebaceous hyperplasia is a condition in which oil glands become enlarged. The growths, often found on the nose, are typically yellowish pink and have a large pore in the center. They can be zapped with an electric needle, although they usually grow back within a few months.
Basal cell skin cancers are commonly found on the nose. If the bump is growing, getting darker, or otherwise changing, you should show it to a dermatologist, who may want to do a skin biopsy to make sure it’s not something dangerous. Thank you to Jessica Wu Dermatologist for the helpful information.
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