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HELP! Cracked Peeling Lips

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Rockalilly
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Thu May 29, 2008 10:34 am      Reply with quote
About 3 weeks ago, my lips started hurting like they were chapped with a little peeling and I got these red, cracked dry patches on the corners of my mouth. Around this time I started using Softlips because I wanted to incorporate a sunscreen for lips into my regimen. At that time, I spent a Saturday in the sun and even though I wore a hat, I felt like I needed to reapply the Softlips every 2 minutes. That evening, my lips hurt and were peeling. I figured they had gotten burnt but I also stopped the Softlips just incase that was it. I started using organic beeswax lipbalms but they weren't helping. I switched to Blistex in the blue pot about a week ago.

So far, my lips seem to be getting better, but the cracking and peeling in the corners of my lips has gotten worse. It's like the inflamed area has gotten a little bigger and I'm very self consious about it. At first I thought it was an allergy, but it hasn't healed after stopping what could have caused it. I thought it could be yeast (yuck) so the past few nights I've put a topical cream on that's supposed to help for that but I wake up and they seem worse than if I had just used Blistex. I haven't made any big diet changes and I haven't changed my toothpaste.

I'm hoping that you guys will have a good solution for me! I'd like to avoid seeing my doctor (I don't like my healthcare, I just don't want to waste a bunch of time to hear there's nothing she can do for it). If there are any remedies you guys can suggest I'd be grateful! Thanks!

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Nimue
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Thu May 29, 2008 5:45 pm      Reply with quote
I think you should stop using lip balm. Use a nice (mostly natural) moisturizer for sensitive skin on your lips instead. You can use an eye cream maybe. (Use moisturizer with spf for when you're in the sun). There is also lips2kiss, but that's not cheap. Switching to moisturizer on the lips is the inexpensive version...

Rockalilly wrote:
About 3 weeks ago, my lips started hurting like they were chapped with a little peeling and I got these red, cracked dry patches on the corners of my mouth. Around this time I started using Softlips because I wanted to incorporate a sunscreen for lips into my regimen. At that time, I spent a Saturday in the sun and even though I wore a hat, I felt like I needed to reapply the Softlips every 2 minutes. That evening, my lips hurt and were peeling. I figured they had gotten burnt but I also stopped the Softlips just incase that was it. I started using organic beeswax lipbalms but they weren't helping. I switched to Blistex in the blue pot about a week ago.

So far, my lips seem to be getting better, but the cracking and peeling in the corners of my lips has gotten worse. It's like the inflamed area has gotten a little bigger and I'm very self consious about it. At first I thought it was an allergy, but it hasn't healed after stopping what could have caused it. I thought it could be yeast (yuck) so the past few nights I've put a topical cream on that's supposed to help for that but I wake up and they seem worse than if I had just used Blistex. I haven't made any big diet changes and I haven't changed my toothpaste.

I'm hoping that you guys will have a good solution for me! I'd like to avoid seeing my doctor (I don't like my healthcare, I just don't want to waste a bunch of time to hear there's nothing she can do for it). If there are any remedies you guys can suggest I'd be grateful! Thanks!
lunarmm
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Thu May 29, 2008 7:39 pm      Reply with quote
Sounds like you are having an allergic reaction to something. You may need to see a doctor to clarify what's going on.

You might try an emu oil product - usually very healing. I like products from Laid in Montana www.laidinmt.com.

I have their 15% emu oil lip balm in Tangerine and love it. It comes in other flavors (unscented, cherry almond, peppermint, vanilla/spice):
http://cart.laidinmt.com/catalog/LM-Lip-Balm-orderby0-p-1-c-12.html
$4.95 Large 1/4oz tube. 15% emu oil. These moisturizing lip salves contain emollient Cocoa Butter and Jojoba Oil with soothing, replenishing Emu Oil, Aloe & Vitamin E. Beeswax, nature's sealant, caresses your lips with long lasting protection.

Or you could try their:
EMUgency™ All Purpose First Aid Pocket Stick
Emu Oil and herbs soothe wounds, bug bites and rashes
(20% Emu Oil) 1/4 oz / 7.5 ml
http://cart.laidinmt.com/catalog/LM-EMUgency-First-Aid-Stick--Spray-orderby0-p-1-c-27.html

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Fri May 30, 2008 4:57 am      Reply with quote
I use whipped unrefined shea butter on my hair (ends mostly) at night. What's left over on my hands I put on my lips. This has really helped with dry, cracking, flaking that I've had.
Dahli
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Fri May 30, 2008 9:46 am      Reply with quote
I've seen that this can often be caused by a vitamin B2 deficiency. If you aren't already I'd check into a high potency balanced B supplement and introduce more leafy green vegetables, avocado, broccoli and asparagus for example as food sources are the best way to get it. The supplements are just insurance.
micka686
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Fri May 30, 2008 10:33 am      Reply with quote
Ohhhh...what a nightmare I had with the same problem a couple of months back. There is a whole tread about this problem by a member named "IcyFire". You really should check that out. The condition is caused by angular cheilitis. This is caused by a common yeast called Candida albicans. This is the same yeast that causes vaginal yeast infections in women. There is no one cause for angular cheilitis, and the cracks can develop for a number of different reasons, including:yeast, staph, or strep infections, dry lips and skin (particularly during dry winter weather!), B-vitamin deficiencies, including B2 (riboflavin), B6, and B12, iron-deficiency anemia (low red blood cells due to too little iron), allergic reaction to some substance (particularly products used on the lips, such as lip gloss/stick/balm, and even dental care/oral hygiene products, such as toothpaste)
poorly fitting dentures (or no teeth or no dentures at all).


Please google "angular cheilitis" in order to get more answers.

Good luck.
bethany
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Fri May 30, 2008 3:23 pm      Reply with quote
micka686 wrote:
Ohhhh...what a nightmare I had with the same problem a couple of months back. There is a whole tread about this problem by a member named "IcyFire". You really should check that out. The condition is caused by angular cheilitis. This is caused by a common yeast called Candida albicans. This is the same yeast that causes vaginal yeast infections in women. There is no one cause for angular cheilitis, and the cracks can develop for a number of different reasons, including:yeast, staph, or strep infections, dry lips and skin (particularly during dry winter weather!), B-vitamin deficiencies, including B2 (riboflavin), B6, and B12, iron-deficiency anemia (low red blood cells due to too little iron), allergic reaction to some substance (particularly products used on the lips, such as lip gloss/stick/balm, and even dental care/oral hygiene products, such as toothpaste)
poorly fitting dentures (or no teeth or no dentures at all).


Please google "angular cheilitis" in order to get more answers.

Good luck.


I have had the same problem, and it was also yeast related.

My doctor had me get some Nizoral dandruff shampoo at the drugstore - it contains an anti-fungus medication, since dandruff is often caused by yeast. I had to wash the outsides corners of my mouth a few times a day with it, and then apply an anti-yeast Rx.

I am a big fan of the Blistex in the blue pot - you can keep using that on your lips, but I would try to keep it away from the corners IF they continue to stay irritated.

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Rockalilly
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Sat May 31, 2008 2:08 am      Reply with quote
Thank you to everyone who responded! I'm starting to think there's a strong chance it's yeast, I might make an appointment with my doctor. I have a feeling that it wont go away without prescription ointments. I had done a search before I posted for yeast but had trouble finding any posts about it on the mouth. I thought I had read one awhile ago, though. I'm going to do a search for "IcyFire" to see if I can find it. Maybe there will be more suggestions for ointments.

Nimue, I tried using my eye cream last night, it felt a little strange. I avoided my Blistex for today but my lips feel really dry and irritated when I'm not wearing lip balm so I'll probably try putting on my face moisturizer tonight, avoiding the cracked areas.

Lunarmm, thanks for the links to the emu oil lip balm. I've read so many things about emu oil but I've never tried it. The healing stick sounds great too!

Marci, I've been looking for shea butter and a lot of sites list it as having healing properties... I always thought it was just for moisturizing. Do you have any brand recommendations? I like the fact that even if it doesn't heal my lips, I can use it on my hair.

Dahli, I'm going to start taking my vitamins more regularly. I don't think I have a bad diet, but it doesn't hurt to try to improve. If that's my problem, then I'll consider myself lucky!

Micka, I looked angular chelitis up and it's a little scary! Now, I'm afraid it's not going to heal as soon as I want it to if I don't go to the doctor. So I guess this is a thanks for freaking me out! I think I really needed the confirmation that yeast around the mouth is a definite possibility!

Bethany, Thanks for the Nizoral recommendation. I'm going to buy some tomorrow and hope it helps!

Thanks again everyone- you have no idea how much I appreciate your suggestions and advice! Very Happy

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Nimue
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Sat May 31, 2008 5:06 am      Reply with quote
Rockalilly wrote:


Nimue, I tried using my eye cream last night, it felt a little strange. I avoided my Blistex for today but my lips feel really dry and irritated when I'm not wearing lip balm so I'll probably try putting on my face moisturizer tonight, avoiding the cracked areas.



Rockalilly,

If you look at the lips2kiss thread, people's lips got worse before they got better because of the dependency on wax based lip balm. It takes a while to adjust to not using wax on your lips. Wax actually dehydrates the lips although it feels like it moisturizes, that's pretty much the premise of lips2kiss. It's ok if switching from lip balm feels initially weird.

What eye cream are you using? Eye cream is probably the safest, because it's less likely to have anything irritating. Look for a moisturizer that's really simple and moisturizing and that doesn't have much for acne prevention. Look for something that has HA.

I used to always need to be wearing lip balm before I started using lips2kiss. Now I don't even need the lips2kiss products that much... My lips are healthier in general. By the way, here I'm only trying to approximate lips2kiss, it's obviously not the same as using the lips2kiss products. I'm not an authority on lips... If you want healthier lips, maybe lips2kiss is worth looking into for you too.
Rockalilly
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 1:49 am      Reply with quote
I'm going to look into Lips2Kiss, but at this time getting this thing cleared up is my main concern. I'll probably do the lip treatments after my wedding, just incase there's a transition period where my lips get flakey.

I've been using Philosophy's Hope in a Tube, so far it's the only eye cream that doesn't make my eyes itchy. I've tried some of the highly recommended L'Oreal ones and I end up passing them on to my fiance because there's something in it that reacts with my sensitive skin. I'm going to look into trying the Neutrogena Anti-aging one with HA and once this clears up, I'll put it on my lips as a night treatment.

So I did a search for IcyFire's thread and I found it! It actually linked me to a thread about the same thing started by CareKate- which had some invaluable information. So I ran to the drugstore and loaded up.

What I found out from the thread is that if it's yeast, keeping it moist is bad because that's what it thrives on. I also found out I was using the wrong yeast cream which might be why it didn't help when I was putting it on (I used some Monistat which isn't recommended for oral application, but I was careful not to get it on my lips or in my mouth). I read petroleum jelly is good for it because it doesn't get absorbed so your lips stay dehydrated underneath... sounds a little off to me, but I might try it. CareKate said she was getting good results from using a blend of tea tree oil and vit-e oil, which sounds soothing. Another thing she noticed was that peppermint was making it worse. I didn't even think of this! I feel like an idiot! Today I didn't have my blistex and my lips were killing me. They were cracking and flaking badly so I was applying peppermint lip balm most of the day. Finally this evening, my lips were so raw and the worst they have been. Sad

So tonight, I bought:
-Nizoral A-D (got a funny reaction from my fiance when I tried to tell him it was recommended and dandruf is linked to yeast)
-Clortrimazol (it's cheaper when you buy it in the foot care section, the athlete's foot formula has the same percentage as the stuff found in the feminine care section)
-Petroleum Jelly (was tempted to get the one with Shea buter because it smelled nice but it had fragrance added, so I got the regular)
-Vitamin E Oil
-Tea Tree Oil
-Non-Mint Toothpaste (it's Orange and bit odd)

Another tip I read was that it can also be caused by an allergy to Salicylic Acid. So I've *temporarily* stopped using my Juice Beauty Blemish Clearing Serum, which makes me sad because it was working really well for me.

So tonight I washed my face, washed the area with Nizoral, let it dry out completely and then applied the Clortrimazol, let it sink in and applied another layer. My lips are feeling a bit dry and tight, there's a little stinging but not as bad as an hour ago before washing and treating. I also took my vitamins including a multi-vitamin and 2 B-Complex vitamins.

I'm going to keep updating this thread with what I'm doing and my progress so if this all works, maybe it'll help someone out in the future. If it doesn't it can save someone the trouble!

Sorry for such a long post!

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Rockalilly
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 1:59 am      Reply with quote
Sorry for running on so much! There's also some really important information I feel like I need to post!

When I Googled "Angular Cheilitis," a lot of websites popped up claiming they had miracle cures you can find in your average household. When you click to see the cure, they try to charge you $67 through PayPal. It's really sad but there are so many scams out there linked to this problem. I sincerely hope no one falls for this. My fiance was appalled and offended when he saw how these people are promising miracles and trying to take advantage of people who are suffering.

I have found more information on this forum than I did on Google. It kind of makes me sad, but it makes me really happy to know I have this wealth of knowledge and experience right here. So I appreciate everyone helping and sharing their insight! Very Happy

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Sun Jun 01, 2008 3:29 am      Reply with quote
Rockalilly wrote:
I'm going to keep updating this thread with what I'm doing and my progress so if this all works, maybe it'll help someone out in the future. If it doesn't it can save someone the trouble!


If you do find that it is yeast, keep that in mind if you ever break out in a rash under your breasts. For that, my doctor had me wash with the Nizoral, and then apply Lotromin Spray to keep the area dry. He did not like to apply some of the Rx creams any more than necessary due to the likelihood of skin discoloration.

Hang in there, and keep us posted!

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Sun Jun 01, 2008 5:55 am      Reply with quote
Good luck clearing it up! That's a good idea to wait until after the wedding before doing lips2kiss. Many members had a peeling period, though I didn't peel at all.
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 8:24 am      Reply with quote
*Please* go to a dermatologist and find out what it is specifically and get a prescription if necessary. Right now it seems like you're spending a lot of $$ on products that might not help and may actually make the condition worse.

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Nimue
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 8:40 am      Reply with quote
That's probably a good idea...

lunarmm wrote:
*Please* go to a dermatologist and find out what it is specifically and get a prescription if necessary. Right now it seems like you're spending a lot of $$ on products that might not help and may actually make the condition worse.
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 8:52 am      Reply with quote
Have you ever try unrefined shea butter?
micka686
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 9:42 am      Reply with quote
lunarmm wrote:
*Please* go to a dermatologist and find out what it is specifically and get a prescription if necessary. Right now it seems like you're spending a lot of $$ on products that might not help and may actually make the condition worse.


I actually agree with Lunarmm...You really should go and see your dermatologist. Gathering all info online is just so you know what's going on with your body. You really have to leave the rest to an expert. There is no ONE cause for your condition.

Whatever u use, make sure to use petrolume jelly on your lips at night, otherwise the corners of your lips are going to crack and feel and look aweful the day after. It doesn't cure it, but it prevents your lips to become worse.

As I said, I was suffering from the same condition, but it cleared up by itself. But the whole time, I was careful to keep it smooth and it wasn't noticeable at all. I was the only one who knew it was there.

Good luck
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:53 pm      Reply with quote
Carmex - it works.

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Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:02 pm      Reply with quote
So, I do have an appointment on Monday morning with my doctor, but I was hoping to find products to help me until then. Unfortuntately, I'm part of a healthcare system I hate. I can't go directly to a dermatologist, I need to go through a whole waiting and (expensive) referral process first. It's totally unrelated, but a few months ago I fell and hurt my foot really badly, it took 5 days for me to get an x-ray and during it all never saw my doctor (or any doctor) at all. That's why I hate going to my doctor. (Sorry, I had to vent, I do like doctors... when I actually get to see them.)

Anyways, I finally got to speak with an advice nurse. She said that she doesn't think it's yeast because I don't have any burning white patches in my mouth or on my tongue. But since I have cracks, they're suseptible to getting staph infections so I need to take care of it. She was really knowledgeable and told me that most typical causes are SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate) and Phenyl Salicylate/ Salol. My toothpaste is SLS free so I know it's not that. Apparently, Phenyl Salicylate/ Salol is a very common ingredient in lip balms so it could be in the Softlips that I initially thought had caused it. She also told me that it's common to have a type of allergic reaction to Sun and cold weather that could cause this.

She recommended that I stop all the anti-fungal stuff because it wouldn't help it if it's not yeast. Although I do have to note that none of the stuff I used last night and this morning (Nizoral and Clortrimazol) irritated my lips or made them crack more. She did recommend that I brush with a mixture of baking soda and water because toothpaste can have irritating chemicals. (I thought I was doing well with my organic flouride and SLS free stuff, but I'm gonna give the baking soda stuff a shot.) I am also allowed to use moisturizers on my lips that don't have the irritating chemicals.

So I took back all the products I bought last night; Walgreens has excellent customer service and didn't even seem to care I was returning opened and used products. I did a light exfoliation earlier with a towel so I could get the dead skin off. I was scared to exfoliate, I didn't want to open any cracks or make them worse but now they feel better because moisture can actually penetrate my lips keeping them more supple. Earlier today I used Blistex in the blue pot to keep my lips moist. I also went to Whole Foods and they didn't have "unrefined" shea butter, but I got 100% natural shea butter. It's solid and has no preservatives so I hope it's the same. I've now put that on my lips. The corners of my mouth are still cracked and peeling, but my lips are a thousand times better than they were last night. Very Happy

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Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:15 pm      Reply with quote
Hi there! I have very sensitive lips and have dealt with a lot of cracking and peeling over the past few months. I even tried L2K but unfortunately my lips were just too sensitive and the cracking got even worse! I have found what I consider to be the "magic formula" though, and it might help you, too. Here it is:

Before bed:
Apply a bead of Osea's eyes and lips directly to lips. (If you have never used Osea's products before you are in for a treat--- they make some of the best moisturizers in the entire world!) After one night you will notice a difference. Let the Eyes and Lips soak in for a minute or so, then seal it in with a layer of vaseline and go to bed.

Daytime:
Apply another bead of Osea's Eyes and Lips, and seal it in with one of 100% Pure's lip glosses. (Their lip glosses are something like 80% pure vitamin e oil and they are very healing.)

This routine has worked fantastically for me--- the cracks on my lips have healed completely and my husband raves about how soft and kissable my lips are.^-^ I hope some of this helps--- hang in there and keep us updated!

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bethany
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:21 pm      Reply with quote
Rockalilly wrote:
Anyways, I finally got to speak with an advice nurse. She said that she doesn't think it's yeast because I don't have any burning white patches in my mouth or on my tongue.


While it may not be yeast in your case, mine definitely was and I had no white patches in my mouth or on my tounge.

However, after another rash broke out under my breasts, they ran a series of tests that confirmed that I have a systemic yeast infection (probably due to taking antiobitics for acne for many years). I have had it for years (and still do), and keep it under control by watching my carb intake. But I have never had any patches in my mouth, nor do I get the traditional vaginal symptoms.

Just an FYI in case their solution doesn't work for you (but I sure hope it does!).

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Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:56 pm      Reply with quote
Thanks Liz! I'll try your recommendations! I've been looking at 100% Pure's products for a while... now I have an excuse to splurge! Very Happy

Thank you Bethany for sharing your experiences with me. I will deffinitely see if there's a test or culture the Dr. can do to confirm it's not yeast. I'll also keep watch on the skin under my breasts. I am ample chested and there's a lot of area there... so I'll keep an eye on it. I actually follow a low-carb and sugar free diet already... who knew there were more benefits than just weight control! Wink

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Nimue
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 8:10 pm      Reply with quote
I've been looking at 100% pure lip glosses just now! Really considering getting one on my next order...

manslayerliz wrote:
Hi there! I have very sensitive lips and have dealt with a lot of cracking and peeling over the past few months. I even tried L2K but unfortunately my lips were just too sensitive and the cracking got even worse! I have found what I consider to be the "magic formula" though, and it might help you, too. Here it is:

Before bed:
Apply a bead of Osea's eyes and lips directly to lips. (If you have never used Osea's products before you are in for a treat--- they make some of the best moisturizers in the entire world!) After one night you will notice a difference. Let the Eyes and Lips soak in for a minute or so, then seal it in with a layer of vaseline and go to bed.

Daytime:
Apply another bead of Osea's Eyes and Lips, and seal it in with one of 100% Pure's lip glosses. (Their lip glosses are something like 80% pure vitamin e oil and they are very healing.)

This routine has worked fantastically for me--- the cracks on my lips have healed completely and my husband raves about how soft and kissable my lips are.^-^ I hope some of this helps--- hang in there and keep us updated!
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Sun Jun 01, 2008 8:28 pm      Reply with quote
You might want to consult a doctor. A friend of mine has been suffering from cracked lip for years and have tried many lip care product without success. She consult the Doc and he said it is a lack of Vitamin B & C. After popping the vitamin Doc prescribed, the lip improved tremendously and recovered.
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Sun Aug 24, 2008 6:30 pm      Reply with quote
I have been suffering from the exact same problem for almost a year. This pure lip gloss and osea's eye & lip cream sound great. Do you know where i can buy these?
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Donell Super Skin Brightening Cream (1 oz) Pür Minerals All Over Glow Face & Body Bronzer (30 g / 1 oz) Skin Tx Starter Kit - Program 1 - Normal/Dry (7 items)