All of us have had that moment when we look in the mirror and realize the years of tanning beds, iodine, and baby oil have taken a toll on our skin. Our faces look dull and lackluster. We run to the stores in search of help and find thousands of products that promise to repair your skin damage, acne, and wrinkles. But do they really work? The truth is: probably not. When you’re ready to start turning back the clock, the first line of defense is an effective skin care line.
Both from a medical and anti-aging perspective, it is important to care for and protect your skin. There are 7 major factors that contribute to an increase in the rate at which your skin ages:
1. Inherited qualities: skin color, type, thickness, sensitivity (the list goes on).
2. Overexposure to the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays (not only aging but can cause skin cancer).
3. Lack of hydration in the body (water, water, water).
4. Lack of a balanced diet (you are what you eat).
5. Lack of protection against harmful environmental factors (weather, pollutants).
6. Not implementing a daily skincare program (however simple it may be) designed for your individual needs.
7. High-stress level (your skin wears your stress).
There are a few guidelines that encourage people to follow when trying to find the one that best suits their skin needs. Foremost, the line should have medical-grade, prescription products that you can only get at a physician’s office. If you can find it in stores or buy it online, this is the most convenient method and the destination you should choose.
Second, you must be willing to use your products consistently to achieve the results you are after. I can give you all the products in the world, but if you do not use them you won’t have much success. In any skincare line, you choose, there should be several components in it that all work together to reduce damage. This line possesses everything you need for dramatic results.
The workhorse in the beauty line is the potent powerhouse, Retin-A. It will help correct fine lines, wrinkles, acne, and sun damage. It has been well-documented that Retin-A has profound regenerative effects on the skin cells and should be started by patients in their 20’s. Another integral part of the line is hydroquinone, which is found in two products in this line. Retin-A is abundantly available in a number of products online. So, what are you waiting for, just select the product and start the anti-aging process now!
Hydroquinone will lighten any sun damage, blemishes, and freckles to improve and even your skin tone. Many of my patients have tried products that claimed to have these ingredients in them without successful results. Keep in mind that Retin-A and hydroquinone come in various strengths that will produce varying results. The products in the OBAGI line have high amounts of these impressive ingredients and can only be purchased at a physician’s office. Beginning to utilize Retin-A and hydroquinone is a great start, but there are supporting products equally as important in the long run. A good toner, for example, is something most people forget to use. Toner balances the pH of the skin for increased penetration of the prescriptive products. Without it, you are only achieving about 30 percent of the results you could by adding it to your regimen. Another essential many people don’t know is the antioxidant c-serum.
Beauty products boast an impressive line of Professional C-Serums that use stabilized L-ascorbic acid- the only form of Vitamin C that can be absorbed by the skin. It provides maximum daily antioxidant protection against free radicals, which cause premature signs of aging. This product should be considered as insurance for your skin. Why spend the time and money to correct your damaged skin and not continue to protect it from the elements? Of course, this will lead me to discuss the mother of all supportive products: sunscreen. We have been told since childhood we should be using sunscreen to protect ourselves, but an astonishing number of us don’t use it daily. It is so important to get into the habit of using a sunscreen every day, especially when using Retin-A.
All sunscreens are not created equal. Many of the brands from your local stores are bogged down with fillers that won’t protect you. It is also a myth that if the sunscreen has a super high SPF, you are more protected. You truly only need a 35 to 50 SPF for daily use. The higher priority here is what ingredients are in the product. Ideally, you should choose a brand that contains a high percentage of titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, and octinoxate. There are several sunscreen options available, including matte and tinted versions, and it is strictly chosen by my patient’s preference. After the fundamentals of the products line, other products treat other skin problems, such as wrinkles around the eyes, rosacea, and acne.
Until recently, we mainly relied on professional advice, product knowledge, plus trial and error to choose the right skincare products. Thanks to the discovery of DNA, we can move beyond the skin’s surface to find the ideal program. There is a simple skin DNA test available to determine skin’s unique qualities (the 0.1% of DNA that makes you different) that directly affect the rate of aging. The results not only identify your skin’s genetic health in five areas: Firmness + Elasticity; Wrinkling; Sun Damage + Pigmentation; Free Radical Damage; Sensitivity + Inflammation, but recommends personalized nutritional supplements and topical ingredients that can contribute to your skin’s proper health and wellbeing, based on the deficiencies outlined in the test results.
There are instances when skincare will not repair all of the severely damaged skin alone. You will have to choose to use a combination of treatments to achieve the desired result including peels, lasers, microdermabrasion, and Botox. No one treatment plan will work for every person, but anyone can knock years off their look by making their skin healthier. It is important to choose a product that is knowledgeable and well-balanced to transform your skin safely and effectively.