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Allergen, Not An Allergen Featured

COCONUT WATER: Allergen or Not An Allergen?

Not An Allergen

Coconut Water

It’s not (yet) commonly used on skin but it could be: coconut water is very hydrating, moisturizing, a great source of vitamin C, is non-comedogenic, and is not a top contact allergen. It also has growth hormones and cytokines which have been shown to promote cell growth. Like most coconut derivatives, it also has some anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. And it has antioxidants!

Drinking it has several benefits, too. It’s rich in antioxidants, vitamins, nutrients, iron, and potassium, which is why it’s a favorite alternative to sports drinks — which also tend to have dyes, flavors (related to fragrances), and preservatives as contact allergens, plus lots more sugar). Don’t overdo it, however: too much potassium (hyperkalemia) is very dangerous.

To be clear, we’re referring to pure coconut water, i.e. directly from the fresh coconut or the ingredients list on the package shows that one ingredient. Other coconut waters might contain preservatives or flavors to watch out for.

If you have a history of sensitive skin, don’t guess: random trial and error can cause more damage. Ask your dermatologist about a patch test.

To shop our selection of hypoallergenic products, visit vmvhypoallergenics.com. Need help? Ask us in the comments section below, or for more privacy (such as when asking us to customize recommendations for you based on your patch test results) contact us by email, or drop us a private message on Facebook.

For more:

On the prevalence of skin allergies, see Skin Allergies Are More Common Than Ever and One In Four Is Allergic to Common Skin Care And Cosmetic Ingredients.

To learn more about the VH-Rating System and hypoallergenicity, click here.

Main References: 

Regularly published reports on the most common allergens by the North American Contact Dermatitis Group and European Surveillance System on Contact Allergies (based on over 28,000 patch test results, combined), plus other studies. Remember, we are all individuals — just because an ingredient is not on the most common allergen lists does not mean you cannot be sensitive to it, or that it will not become an allergen. These references, being based on so many patch test results, are a good basis but it is always best to get a patch test yourself.

1. Warshaw, E.M., Maibach, H.I., Taylor, J.S., et al. North American contact dermatitis group patch test results: 2011-2012. Dermatitis. 2015; 26: 49-59.

2. W Uter et al. The European Baseline Series in 10 European Countries, 2005/2006–Results of the European Surveillance System on Contact Allergies (ESSCA). Contact Dermatitis 61 (1), 31-38.7 2009.

3. Wetter, DA et al. Results of patch testing to personal care product allergens in a standard series and a supplemental cosmetic series: An analysis of 945 patients from the Mayo Clinic Contact Dermatitis Group, 2000-2007. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2010 Nov;63(5):789-98.

4. Verallo-Rowell VM. The validated hypoallergenic cosmetics rating system: its 30-year evolution and effect on the prevalence of cosmetic reactions. Dermatitis 2011 Apr; 22(2):80-97.

5. Ruby Pawankar et al. World Health Organization. White Book on Allergy 2011-2012 Executive Summary.

6. Misery L et al. Sensitive skin in the American population: prevalence, clinical data, and role of the dermatologist. Int J Dermatol. 2011 Aug;50(8):961-7.

7. Warshaw EM1, Maibach HI, Taylor JS, Sasseville D, DeKoven JG, Zirwas MJ, Fransway AF, Mathias CG, Zug KA, DeLeo VA, Fowler JF Jr, Marks JG, Pratt MD, Storrs FJ, Belsito DV. North American contact dermatitis group patch test results: 2011-2012.Dermatitis. 2015 Jan-Feb;26(1):49-59.

8. Warshaw, E et al. Allergic patch test reactions associated with cosmetics: Retrospective analysis of cross-sectional data from the North American Contact Dermatitis Group, 2001-2004. J AmAcadDermatol 2009;60:23-38. 

9. Foliaki S et al. Antibiotic use in infancy and symptoms of asthma, rhinoconjunctivitis, and eczema in children 6 and 7 years old: International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood Phase III. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2009 Nov;124(5):982-9.

10. Kei EF et al. Role of the gut microbiota in defining human health. Expert Rev Anti Infect Ther. 2010 Apr; 8(4): 435–454.

11. Thavagnanam S et al. A meta-analysis of the association between Caesarean section and childhood asthma. Clin Exp Allergy. 2008;38(4):629–633.

12. Marks JG, Belsito DV, DeLeo VA, et al. North American Contact Dermatitis Group patch-test results, 1998 to 2000. Am J Contact Dermat. 2003;14(2):59-62.

13. Warshaw EM, Belsito DV, Taylor JS, et al. North American Contact Dermatitis Group patch test results: 2009 to 2010. Dermatitis. 2013;24(2):50-99.

Want more great information on contact dermatitis? Check out the American Contact Dermatitis SocietyDermnet New Zealand, and your country’s contact dermatitis association.


Laura is our “dew”-good CEO at VMV Hypoallergenics and eldest daughter of VMV’s founding dermatologist-dermatopathologist. She has two children, Madison and Gavin, and works at VMV with her sister CC and husband Juan Pablo (Madison and Gavin frequently volunteer their “usage testing” services). In addition to saving the world’s skin, Laura is passionate about health, inclusion, cultural theory, human rights, happiness, and spreading goodness (like a great cream!)

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Beauty Featured

Bold, Matte Lips: Instant Energy

Bold matte lips in everything from juicy oranges to deep berries light up outfits…and your mood!

Watch how Velvet Matte Lipstick in punchy hues like Copa, Flamingo and (shown on Marie, above) Babe lift your energy faster than a double espresso.

Your lips get a health boost, too with ingredients like green tea and virgin coconut oil!

Categories
Featured Skin

A Fresh Start With Spring In Japan!

Sakura, or the cherry blossom, is Japan’s national flower. Celebrated by Japanese people of all ages, sakura are found in everything from textile patterns to a curious dessert flavor. Sakura blooms in March or April, and is even part of the daily weather forecast as the reporter announces where the “Cherry Blossom Front” has started. The Japanese business and school year starts in the spring, so Sakura also represents “graduation, “commencement,” “blessing,” and “joyous.” 

FreshStart-SakuraSpringInJapan

This joyous abundance signals that it’s time for a fresh start, a spring cleaning of the things that do not, as Marie Kondo would call it, “spark joy.” Take your skin care routine. Your skin, like the rest of our bodies, evolves over time. Take the cue from the blossoms — perhaps it’s time to transition back to the essentials. Re-evaluate what your skin needs (maybe even ask your doctor for a patch test if you’ve had a nagging skin issue for years), what your skin goals are, and redesign your targeted skincare regimen. 

Start with a Skin “Detox” to help your skin get back to its most non-irritated state. Then, choose from among our most popular regimens, or ask us to help customize a regimen for you! Give us a call at (212) 217 2762 or drop us a private message on Facebook, Ask VMV, or if you’re in Japan, shop at vmvhypoallergenics.jp.

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Beauty Featured Skin

Trash & Re-Stash: Hypoallergenic Alternatives For Your Entire Medicine Cabinet!

Start from scratch — with hypoallergenic alternatives — to end the scratching!

You Just Got A Patch Test?

Great! Now you know exactly what you need to avoid and are on the road to skin health, clarity, and comfort. But…what’s that? Your patch test shows you’re allergic to ingredients in pretty much everything you use now? You have to throw it all away — all of it…shampoo, cleanser, lotions, makeup — and start from scratch with hypoallergenic alternatives? That can be scary. So can that “naked” feeling of not using anything at all until you find products without your allergens.

Think about it: you have to go without using anything (including, in many cases, antiperspirant and toothpaste) until you find products you can use…and it may have taken you weeks or months to find all the stuff you use now!

Before you resign yourself to Walking Dead chic, try this: ask your doctor about our Allergen-Free Starter Set or pick up our Skin “Detox” Kit. Either covers all your basic needs so you needn’t panic when beginning your hypoallergenic lifestyle. Each formulation has zero of all 76 of the most common allergens (based on over 28,000 patch tests), making them ideal for the majority of allergic, irritated, or hyperreactive skins. Then, use this chart for an easy guide to hypoallergenic alternatives for your medicine cabinet staples. Still reeling from ingredient lists? Contact us for customized recommendations based on your patch test results!

 

TRASH & RE-STASH CHART

Match what you need to trash with its hypoallergenic alternative. When in doubt, select products with the highest VH-rating (VH-76/76) — which means they have none of all common allergens.

Still unsure? For customized recommendations based on your patch test results, contact us by email, or drop us a private message on Facebook. To shop our selection of hypoallergenic products, visit vmvhypoallergenics.com.

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Featured Skin Skinthusiasm

Refrigerate Your Skin Care?

Fan Tip: Chill Your Skin Care! 

Razor burn? Puffy eyes? Got a reaction that needs calming? Or a pimple that needs flattening? Want to tighten your pores…or just a fabulously cool feel when applying your skincare?

“Throw some of your favorite VMV Hypoallergenics products in the fridge, especially in the summer!” – skinthusiast Earl Chad Palacios Estenor‎

Fellow “skintellectual?” Avid “skinthusiast?” Share your tips with our “skinfatuated” community! Tag @VMVHypoallergenics on Facebook or Instagram, or @VMV on Twitter!

Click through the slideshow below to find out the surprising benefits to keeping skincare in the cold!

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Featured Skin

Smooth Operator

smooooooth operator

BARE NECESSITIES

Incredibly lightweight yet packed with virgin coconut oil, coconut fatty acids, glycerin, and antioxidants, it’s hard to believe how intensely moisturizing and reparative this all-over lotion is.
The smoothest move you’ll ever make for parched skin.


EssenceLotion-PAH-VMV-sm-01.11.'13-57347
Try it after our hypoallergenic waxing service for instant softness and anti-inflammatory healing!

Categories
Featured Skin

Take A Walk On The Mild Side: Skin-Friendly Laundry!

Your laundry could be affecting your skin.

Clothing contact dermatitis can be caused by the elastics of your undergarments, dyes in clothing, as well as “mordants” (chemicals related to metal present in some fabrics to help colors bind better).

Check for skin abnormalities in symmetrical shapes or patterns where clothing normally touches skin: on the waistline, on the perimeter of the underarms, where bras come into most contact with your torso, on legs for reactions to jeans (which is a lot more common than you might think!) and on ankles or calves for reactions to sock elastics.

In laundry detergent, fabric softeners and drying sheets, some of the common culprits are fragrance and preservatives. If your skin is dark, red, itchy or dealing with stubborn acne that just won’t go away even after proper prevention and therapy, check where the skin issues occur. The underarms and neck are common problem sites, but “private parts” can itch from contact with underwear and the sides of the face can be affected by contact with your pillow when you sleep.

FawnLaunder-BasketLamb-2013-sm-20160407
Laundry soap so mild, you could bathe with it!

Fawn & Launder is a uniquely skin-safe, ultra-gentle laundry shampoo that is allergen-free…and it contains coconut-derived monolaurin plus skin-soothing antioxidants!
Use this skincare-as-laundry for the clothing and linens of: infants and children; those with extra-dry, sensitive, atopic, or hyperpigmented skin; or those with contact acne and/or clothing contact dermatitis.

It’s a wonderful opportunity to fawn as you launder (the closest thing to a hug in a laundry basket).

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Family Blog Featured Healthy Living

Sweet Potato & Coconut-Caramel Crisps

This sweet treat is packed with antioxidants, fiber and healthy oil!

“Kamote-cue” is what we’d call this traditional tropical-provincial treat (variations of it, particularly with banana, abound in Southeast Asia). My family has snacked on it for generations. The sweet potatoes are right at home any time of year, and the surprise of coconut warms up even the chilliest of days 🙂 I hope you enjoy it as much as we have…and do! Regularly!

Laura

 

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

  • Sweet potatoes.
  • Know-It-Oil virgin coconut oil.
  • Coconut sugar. Choose organic if you can.

HOW:

Slice sweet potatoes into thin crisps about 1/4 to 1/8-inch thick (thicker gives you more sweet potato yumminess; thinner gives more crunch).

Pour Know-It-Oil into a frying pan over medium heat. Add in sweet potato slices. Sprinkle coconut sugar — which will start to caramelize quickly — onto each slice. After some browning, flip crisps over and repeat coconut sugar sprinkling.

Remove crisps when browned to your liking. My family is notorious for loving crunch, so we like these with very browned, slightly burnt edges. Strain, then pat dry on paper towels.

Serve as a midday pick-me-up, movie night snack, or for dessert!

#skinsideouthealth

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Beauty Featured Healthy Living Skin

Age LESS: Six Things To Do Now To Stay Younger, Longer

There are many things we can do that are proven to keep us younger, longer — not just looking it but physically being it. Simple steps, sans needles or “miracles.”

Skeptical about how much anything you do can affect your biology? New studies are showing that our actions can influence our genes so much as to alter their behavior, slowing the aging process, preventing diseases we “should” get based on our genetic profile, extending life spans…changes so profound we might even pass them on to our children. We’ve chosen the top six most rewarding, most effective ways to truly, systemically age less.