Skin and Beauty

Skin and beauty are very closely related. Learn more about skin and beauty at HowStuffWorks.

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Your body undergoes a lot of changes as you get older, and your skin isn't immune. What can you expect, and what can you do to keep your skin soft and supple as you age?

By Nathan Chandler

Some spa treatments sound like they'd be perfect balms to sooth a pregnant woman's frazzled nerves and tired body. But not every treatment is safe for an expectant mother. Which ones should you avoid, and what are the dangers?

By Jessika Toothman

Get fast facts on tattoos, and learn how tattoos are created and how they can affect skin.

By John Barrymore


Most of us know that you should protect yourself from the sun when you go outside. But many outdoor activities, like swimming at the beach or playing sports, can wash off sunscreen. Is it really possible for a sunscreen to be sweat-proof?

By Jessika Toothman

Although we don't often think of it, our lips are easily exposed to the sun's harmful rays when we venture outside. If you're wearing lipstick, does the popular cosmetic help or harm your chances of getting skin cancer?

By Jennifer Sellers

In esthetics school, students learn much more than mud masks and pimple popping. The training prepares estheticians to help burn victims and cancer patients.

By Charles W. Bryant

Sometimes, your skin just isn't at its best, and instead of radiating a healthy glow, it just looks dull. When you decide a spa day is the cure to your complexion ills, it’s likely a steam is in your future.

By Rachel Oswald


One of them went to medical school. And one of them went to trade school. And both can assist you with skin problems. Who should you see for what kinds of problems?

By Charles W. Bryant

Thanks to airbrushing and professional makeup artists, most celebrities seem to look perfect all the time. But even in the rarefied air of glamorous stardom, some celebrities are known for gorgeous skin. Check your jealousy at the door for this list.

By Molly Edmonds

For most of us, bird poop is something we have to wash off our cars (or our heads, if we're unlucky), but some people are paying good money to slather it on their faces. Welcome to the geisha facial -- and a faceful of nightingale poop.

By Shanna Freeman

If you have acne-prone skin, your esthetician may suggest a facial that includes extractions. Will these help or harm your skin?

By Julia Layton


A relaxing facial with steam and massage can be a great way to renew your spirit and skin from the outside in. When you're contemplating a little pampering, though, don't make the mistake of thinking that all spas are created equal.

By Sara Elliott

Many razors, foams and other shaving products out there are tailored specifically toward men or women. Is there really much difference in the way men and women need to shave?

By Meghan E. Smith

No matter what part you're playing, stage makeup helps you look your best. But how do you know what type of makeup to use, and how much? As it turns out, it's a bit of an art and a science.

By Jonathan Strickland

Like us, the Egyptians used cosmetics to accentuate beauty and to protect skin from the harsh climate. What perfumes, soaps and makeup did they use?

By Debra Ronca


Insect repellents work by spending hours in contact with your skin. Can these chemicals that insects find so repulsive possibly be OK for your skin?

By Jonathan Atteberry

The contents of modern products, from toothpaste to shampoo, can sometimes make you feel like you need a degree in chemistry to identify them. What do the tongue-twisting parabens listed on the label do?

By Tom Scheve

Getting rid of your five o'clock shadow or perfecting your bikini line probably isn't one of your favorite things to do. Do more blades equal a better shave and less time devoted to making you look fabulous?

By Susan L. Nasr

A bronzed skin is de rigueur in some circles, but with the risks from sun and tanning bed exposure, what's a health-conscious person to do? How does a spray tan deepen your color, and is it safe?

By Linda C. Brinson


Whether you're trying to keep your brows perfectly arched or dig out a splinter, tweezers are amazingly handy. How can they become even handier?

By William Harris

Are tanning beds more or less safe than the sun? Is a base tan a good way to protect your skin? Before you risk your hide for a bronze glow, demystify what you know about tanning.

By Marie Willsey

Red and irritated. Dry, scaly and cracking. None of us want our skin to look and feel this way, but sometimes it seems there's not a lot we can do about it. But is there a new way to fix it?

By Tom Scheve

There's an old saying that, as you get older, you need to choose between your face and your rear end. Is it true? Will your face suffer from your svelte shape?

By Stephanie Watson


The word "collagen" doesn't exactly sound like the most delectable treat, but if it prevents wrinkles, who wouldn't eat it? Pigs' feet and fish skin can't be so bad if they keep you young.

By Charles W. Bryant

Even the most knowledgeable and diligent sunscreen users can come home from a day in the great outdoors with burnt skin in certain places. What spots do we tend to miss when we're slathering ourselves with SPF?

By Molly Edmonds