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Vaccine: An immunization performed primarily by needle injection that creates antibodies to fight a particular virus.

Valerian Root: Valerian extract, derived from the dried rhizomes and roots of the plant, has been used as a mild tranquilizer in teas and has a calming effect for several disorders such as restlessness, nervousness, insomnia, hysteria, menstrual problems, and as a sedative for nervous stomach. Valerian has the following actions: sedative, anticonvulsive, hypotensive, tranquilizing, neurotropic, and anti-aggressive.

Vanadium: Vanadium is required for glucose tolerance. It aids in glucose oxidation and transport. The University of Vancouver, BC, Canada stated the Vanadium will replace insulin for adult onset diabetics. Vanadium is also needed for cellular metabolism and for the formation of bones and teeth. Inhibits cholesterol synthesis. Deficiency may be linked to cardiovascular and kidney disease.

Vanillin: A natural tanning accelerator that reacts with skin proteins under the influence of heat and light to produce a tan. A white crystalline aldehyde having a burning taste and characteristic odor of vanilla. It is extracted from vanilla pods, and is also obtained by the decomposition of coniferin, and by the oxidation of eugenol. In flavor formulations, vanillin is used widely either as a sweetener or as a flavor exhauster, not only in imitation vanilla flavor, but also in butter, chocolate, all types of fruit and tutti-frutti flavors, root-beer, cream-soda etc. Vanillin itself has some bacteriostatic properties and has, therefore, been used in formulations to treat dermatitis.

Varicose Veins: Veins that are swollen and dilated, usually visible on the skins surface and most common on the legs.

Varicosites: Enlarged veins or an engorged complex of smaller vessels.

Vascular: Relating to the body's blood vessels (arteries, veins, and capillaries).

Vascular System: They system includes the heart, blood vessels, lymphatic, pulmonary, and portal systems.

Vasculitis: Inflammation of one or more blood vessels.

Vasoconstriction: The narrowing of dermal blood vessels.

Vasoconstrictor: A nerve, agent or substance that narrows blood vessels.

Vehicle: When referring to topical dermatological drugs, it is the medium in which the active is formulated.

Vegetable Stearate: A salt of stearic acids derived from vegetables.

Vellus: A soft, wispy, barely noticeable hair located all over the body.

Venous: Pertaining to the veins, or more broadly to include both venous and lymphatic circulation.

Verruca: A Wart or wart like projection.

Vetiver: An essential oil derived from an African tree root and traditionally used to make mats and rugs. Vetiver has an earthy, smoky scent and may be an additive in perfumes. It is also used in aromatherapy for grounding and has been said to prevent stretch marks and help counter aging when applied topically.

Vesicle: A vesicle is a blister filled with clear fluid. A vesicle can be as large as a pea, but if it is larger is called a bulla.

Violet Flowers: Flowers high in vitamins A and C with soothing and slight astringent properties. These flowers are used in facial saunas and facial rinses.

Viscosity: The thickness or thinness (or stickiness) of a product and/or substance. If a substance has low viscosity, it tends to flow more easily (it is thinner); a high viscosity substance is less fluid (thicker).

Vitamin A: (Beta Carotene) Helps maintain smooth, soft disease-free skin; helps protect the mucous membranes of the mouth, nose, throat lungs, which helps reduce our susceptibility to infections; protects against air pollutants and contaminants; helps improve eye sight and counteracts night-blindness; aids in bone and teeth formation; improves skin elasticity, moisture content and suppleness; and helps reverse the signs of photo-aging. A lack of vitamin A can cause skin to become dry and hardened. Go to the Vitamins Dictionary and look up Vitamin A.

Vitamin A derivatives (Retinoids: retinol, retinyl palmitate, retinyl linoleate, retinyl acetate) Vitamin A derivatives such as Retin-A can help prevent and reverse sun damage. They have exfoliating and skin strengthening properties. They are used clinically in the treatment of severe cystic acne, psoriasis, and other disorders of keratinization.

Vitamin B: Eleven different vitamins known as B complex : thiamin (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), folic acid, biotin, pantothenic acid or panthenol (B5), pyridoxine (B6), choline, inositol, PABA, and cyanocobalamin (B12). Antioxidants and body regulators that work better together than alone.

Vitamin B1: See Thiamine.

Vitamin B2: See Riboflavin.

Vitamin B3: See Niacin.

Vitamin B5: See Pantothenic Acid.

Vitamin B6: See Pyridoxine. Go to the Vitamins Dictionary and look up Vitamin B6.

Vitamin B9: See Folic Acid.

Vitamin B12: (Cobalamin) Vitamin B12 helps in the formation regeneration of red blood cells, thus helping prevent anemia; necessary for carbohydrate, fat protein metabolism; maintains a healthy nervous system; promotes growth in children; increases energy; needed for Calcium absorption.

Vitamin C: (Ascorbic Acid) Vitamin C is essential for healthy teeth, gums Bones; helps heal wounds, scar tissue, Fractures; prevents scurvy; builds resistance to infection; aids in the prevention treatment of the common cold; gives strength to blood vessels; aids in the absorption of iron. It is required for the synthesis of collagen, the intercellular cement which holds tissues together. It is also one of the major antioxidant nutrients. It prevents the conversion of nitrates (from tobacco smoke, smog, bacon, lunchmeats, some vegetables) into cancer-causing substances. Moreover, Vitamin C has been shown to help slow the production of hyperpigmentation ( age spots ) while providing some UV protection.

Vitamin D: Vitamin D is necessary for healthy bones and teeth, for proper assimilation and body balances of calcium and phosphorus, and for preventing rickets. It is fat-soluble and is not sensitive to heat, light, or oxygen.

Vitamin E: Vitamin E is a major anti-oxidant nutrient; retards cellular aging due to oxidation; supplies oxygen to the blood which is then carried to the heart and other organs; thus alleviating fatigue; aids in bringing nourishment to cells; strengthens the capillary walls prevents the red blood cells from destructive poisons; prevents dissolves blood clots; has also been used by doctors in helping prevent sterility, muscular dystrophy, calcium deposits in blood walls and heart conditions.

Vitamin F: An essential fatty acid, this vitamin helps form the membranes that protect the skin cells, preventing the formation of dry, scaly skin.

Vitamin H: See Biotin.

Vitamin K: Needed for normal blood clotting. It may help protect against osteoporosis, may inhibit some cancer tumors, also aids in reducing excessive menstrual flow. Vitamin K occurs primarily in plants and is also synthesized by intestinal bacteria in the small intestine. It is fat-soluble and is sensitive to light, oxygen, strong acids, and alcoholic alkalis.

Vitamin P: See Bioflavonoids.

Vitamins: Foods containing vitamins A, D, E, F, H, K, P, and the B complex group are necessary in diets to maintain good health.

Volatile oil: Active aromatic oils in plants that evaporate readily.