What can you do to get your skin looking its best?

There are many skin care items out there.  This can be helpful but it can also be very confusing.  Over the next few posts I will be talking about some general products to help improve your skin.  Today's topic is on Retin-A.  

When people first come on, one of the first products I recommend is a Retin-A product.  The way this works is it helps to cause your skin to turn over faster.  This is helpful because it allows for more youthful skin cells to come to the surface and you slough off the older, thicker skin.  When starting out with this product you cannot use it every day.  The reason is your skin has to get accustomed to it.  Otherwise you will start to peel.  In about three weeks you will notice an improvement both in the appearance as well as the texture of your skin.  As a side benefit, it can help improve acne as well.  

Retinol

Skin Cleansers

Continuing this month's posts on skin care, today we talk about skin cleansers.  When taking care of your skin it is important to choose a cleanser that is not too abrasive and does not overly dry out your skin.  These types of cleansers can lead to dry, cracked skin which is more prone for infection and redness.

Because there are too many skin types to provide specifics on the types of cleansers, I will mention a few generalities that I like to see.  I am a fan of having ingredients that help to create a superficial exfoliation.  This includes ingredients such as salicylic acid, lactic acid, and glycolic acid.  When used in mild concentrations as is found in facial cleansers, they can help to further exfoliate the top layer of skin leading to a more youthful appearance.  Now these ingredients are not for everyone, especially those with sensitive skin, but they can have a very nice improvement in the texture of the skin for those who are candidates.  My personal line includes a foaming cleanser with salicylic acid and lactic acid.  Ask your health care provider what cleansers is best for you.  

Exfoliating cleanser proof

How to improve facial wrinkles

There are many way to go about addressing facial wrinkles.  The best option really depends on the severity of the wrinkles and whether you can afford any downtime.  We have previously talked about Retinol products.  Today we are talking about ways to hydrate the skin and improve the appearance of wrinkles.  In our Volumizing Moisture Cream the ingredients helps to draw water to the surface.  This will case a noticeable improvement in the appearance of all of the facial wrinkles, with the finer ones almost disappearing and the deeper ones softening.  Like any moisturizers, these productsare not treating the root cause of the wrinkle.  That is done with either a face lift, skin resurfacing with lasers/chemical peels/dermabrasion, or using retinol products.  But the benefit with creams like ours is there is no downtime and you can quickly start seeing the result with daily use.  

Volumizing Moisture Cream

Skin inflammation?

There are many great skin care products.  A good vitamin C serum (or C serum), should be part of everyone's skin care regimen.  They work as an anti oxidant to help calm inflammation of the skin.  This is especially helpful for those with some redness to their skin, sensitive skin, recurrent acne, or simply uncomfortable skin.  It really compliments well to a retinol product to be used on alternating days.

C cerum.jpg

How to treat splotchy skin?

A common question I get is how to treat splotchy skin or skin discolorations.  The treatment options vary.  The first line treatment, and what you use for maintenance after any treatment, is a skin lightener.  A common misconception is that these will "bleach" the skin.  That is incorrect.  Depending on the active ingredient they are working on the root cause of the discoloration which is the cell that makes skin color (the melanocyte).  This may mean they prevent the cell from making the color, prevent it from passing the color to the skin cells, or prevent those pigmented cells from coming to the surface where they can be seen.  In our product we used a customized combination of Arbutase (similar to hydroquinone) and Kojiac acid which work in complimentary ways.  Because these act on the cell producing the color, it takes about 6 weeks to notice an evening out of your skin tones.  And even though pigmented moles are caused by the melanocyte, skin lighteners do not treat them.  Rather, they help with the uneven skin tones.

advanced brightening cream

Treatment options for a double chin

This is a very common question that I get, "How to treat the double chin."  

I have discussed some of the more common treatment options below:

iposuction is designed to physically remove the fat through well placed, camouflaged incisions.  In patients under age 35 the skin will have enough elasticity to tighten back up and not need any further treatment.  This is useful for both the lower cheeks and the neck area.  

ybella is an injection of a material that dissolves fat.  It is performed in the office in about 15 minutes.  It usually takes at least 2 and up to 4 treatments with swelling after each treatment that improves in a few days.  It is only approved for the double chin area.

martLipo will use an approach just like regular liposuction but instead of using a device that suctions and removes the fat, it uses lasers to dissolve the fat.  The proposed added benefit over traditional liposuction is that it leads to better skin tightening, but whether that is takes place is something we can discuss.   It may have less bruising than standard liposuction as well.  

oolSculpting is another fat removal device.  It uses a suction followed by the application of cold temperatures to kill the fat cells over 35 minutes (or an hour if the old hand pieces are being used).  This does not use any injections or incisions compared to the other treatment options above.  

The gold standard treatment will be a combination of liposuction and a neck lift to help with the full neck.  This does have downtime and a recovery period from surgery which needs to be considered.  

s far as what you should choose, that is a decision you should make with the guidance of a facial plastic surgeon.  In the right hands and for the right patient, these can call be good treatment options.  

What is Botox and Dysport?

Both of these drugs fall into the category of neuromodulators.  That means they help to improve wrinkles that develop with muscle activity.  How they work is very scientific and difficult to understand (deals with synapses, vesicles, neuromuscular junctions, etc.).  Therefore, I would like to simplify this.  Consider that your brain sends a signal to a muscle for that muscle to contract.  BOTOX acts like a crossing guard.  When it is present, it blocks that signal and the muscle will not contract so you see an improvement in the wrinkles caused by the muscle.  The body works around this by "building a new road" which bypasses that crossing guard.  This process takes about 3 months which is why that is how long BOTOX and Dysport work. 

An event coming up? When should you get Botox?

During the holidays there is often an increase in people seeking Botox and other neuromodulators. It is important to realize that it takes up to 2 weeks to reach the maximum effect (and about 3-5 days before you start noticing any difference). It is important to keep this in mind if there is an event coming up. What you don't want to do is get treated the same day as your event since you won't get any benefit.