Lifetime Achievement Award:

Britney, Beotch!

She sang that she wanted “More,” and she got it in 2007.  Attention, that is. Celeb tsunami Britney Spears single handedly saved a faltering US economy by driving up sales of paparazzi flash bulbs, tabloid ink, and worn out laptop screens. With so much nightlife lovin’ skin exposed, it should not surprise anyone that at the tender age of 26, Britney has already had a lifetime worth of skin issues.


Her persistent acne is the stuff of legend.  Many are prone to teen acne and outgrow the disheartening condition by their early 20’s. Others are blemish free in adolescence, and are shocked to begin breaking out in college.  Spears is one of the rare few to be zit prone starting in her Disney pop tween years as well as her multiply divorced 20’s.  We’ll forego the usual comments about the contribution of a stressful lifestyle on problem pores, and remind Brit and all of you, that many treatments for acne exist and there is hope (see Skinnies award winner Will Smith for more details).

Growing back hair is a lot easier than preventing pimples. The question, why would a women shave her scalp in the first place?  Hair represents a  potent symbol of health, beauty and fertility. Not every woman requires locks as luxurious as American Idol’s Sanjaya, but substantially thinned tresses can be seriously distressing. 

Severe physical and emotional stress can cause telogen effluvium (TE), where all of the scalp’s follicles get set on the same schedule and release their hairs together.  Hairs rain out of the scalp like water in a Rihianna video, but fortunately sufferers don’t need an “umbrella ella ella.”  For most, this type of hair loss resolves within a few months.  Spears did not have a flare of TE, but voluntarily achieved the same result by shaving her head.  We are dermatologists, not psychiatrists, but you don’t need a degree to see skin health is not Britney’s only issue.

S'up with Brit's lips?
Attacked by a bumblebee?
Hmmm, doubt it.

Britney knocked out this year’s Skinnies competitors by appearing to undergo a final cosmetic procedure, lip enhancement.  Full lips are a universal sign of hotness.   Angelina Jolie has them naturally, and her fellow starlets covet them as much as Beowulf wanted to get busy with Jolie’s she demon self.  With photos showing a suddenly swollen pout, it appears that Spears was either stung by a bee (ouch!), or Speared with a cosmetic doctor’s needle (also uncomfortable, we recommend anesthetic). Whether Spears’ lips were injected with collagen (old school), restylane (last year’s model), or juvederm (new volumizer in town), the problems are the same.  Unfortunately, puffed up lips rarely look natural.  Eventually, Brits lips will return to their attractively normal state, where we recommend they stay.  This is not the time to break out with a karaoke version of “Oops, I did it again.”

We should note that Britney’s epidermis is not entirely tabloid territory. Her tattoos are small and discrete, no “Prison Break” roles for her.  Her controversial MTV awards appearance revealed that while she no longer sports cgi-style Spartan “300” abs, she is luckily free of stretch marks and only shows a sprinkling of cellulite after delivering two kids. Will her sister, Jamie Lynn, fare so well?

And despite getting too much sun (see last year’s Skinnies), she has not yet developed craggy pruny wrinkles. Our recommendation for Britney's handlers: Stock her shelves with sunscreen and sunless tanners.  Take the batteries out of her electric razor.  And give those lips a rest, or risk even more attention at

Runner-up, Lifetime Achievement Award:
President George "W." Bush
Though our 43rd president got nowhere near as much press as his pop music fan, “W” only narrowly lost the epidermal award to Spears.

In addition to sun damage, stress zits, abrasions, and a unibrow, it was also reported that the sitting prez was diagnosed and treated for Lyme disease in the last year.  He noted a rash on his leg, prompting the diagnosis.  Caused by a bacteria spread by deer tick bites, this is one bioterror scare we can’t blame on Al Queda.  Lyme disease appears to be a common cause of chronic forms of arthritis and nervous system symptoms.  When caught early, as in Bush’s case, a round of antibiotics knocks it out.  As long as “W” can steer clear of his VP’s birdshot, he may make it through 2008 blemish-free.

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