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What Can I Do At Home To Reduce The Signs Of Aging?

Wednesday, July 28th, 2021

More than ever, skincare has become a booming. progressive industry!  Finally, we have entered a culture  or state of mind that says it’s okay to value ourselves,  to invest in ourselves.   I’m not talking about entitlement,  That’s a whole other kind of topic. I’m talking about self-care and self-respect.  On one hand, that’s great.  We are living longer but we don’t necessarily want to look like it, am I right? This boom has created a push to develop and (hopefully) improve the very products you need to keep your skin looking good for as long as possible.  Now, on the other hand, wow – the sheer number of options out there is over-whelming, and it can be a disappointment and costly lesson to try to figure out which products work and which products are just marketing hype.  How many of you have drawers full of  product disappointment?

An at-home skincare regimen can mean so many different things to different people.  During each new skincare evaluation, I ask my patient to tell me what they are currently doing for their skin.  The answers range from an over-the-top laundry list of products to absolutely nothing.  I have always believed that delivering age-reversing results for our patients is best accomplished through dedication to communication, teamwork and most of all, consistency. You can start small with a smart, simple, medical-grade, proven-effective skincare product regimen at-home and move forward if needed, as you become more comfortable.

So, what can you do at home to reduce the signs of aging, sun damage and improve your skin’s texture and tone?  I will review a few of my favorite at-home product categories that will help you do just that!

Before I dive into discussing each basic product category, the first thing I want to talk about is the principal reason our skin ages.  Can you guess it? I’ll give you a hint… is NOT our age itself… but rather recurring sun exposure from birth onward. Studies indicate that approximately 80% of our lifetime sun exposure comes from “incidental” sun exposure, not a day at the beach.  Incidental sun exposure refers the UV rays you catch while walking your dog or in my case…walking my cat, walking to your car, sitting in front of a window in your home or while driving etc.  That being said, if you are not applying and re-applying quality, broad-spectrum UVA/UBA sunscreen on a daily basis, then the rest is for not because unprotected sun exposure will speed up your aging process and lines, wrinkles, rough texture, dull skin are certainly on the horizon.

Any basic anti-aging skincare regimen should include four application categories, although in some cases we may be able to streamline it even further.  Now of course, depending on the severity of your skin damage and your goals, we would customize a regimen specifically for you and skin concerns, but this will give you some good general knowledge.

 

The categories in review are:

  1. Cleansers
  2. Transformation products
  3. Anti-aging moisturizers
  4. Protection:

 

 

Okay, so the first product category I typically recommend to fight the signs of aging and achieve glowing skin is a good cleanser.

 

  1. CLEANSE:

In general, I prefer facial cleansers that contain exfoliating enzymes, AHA’s, BHA’s, and certain botanical ingredients. These ingredients will help to break down the build-up of dead skin cells, bacteria, grime, and sebum.  They can also stimulate circulation and improve cellular turn-over; all good things when you are looking for that natural glow.

In the Castillo MD Skin Science Skincare line, I recommend one of the following cleaners depending on your skin type:

Advanced Enzyme Cleanser:

This cleanser can be used for dry, normal, oily, combo, acne sensitive skin types.  It is formulated to deliver a brighter, clearer complexion and encourages the healthy production of new skin cells. Papaya Enzymes and salicylic acid exfoliate dead cells, kill bacteria in pores and removes impurities and make-up without stripping the protective skin barrier.

 

Gentle Cleanser:

Gentle cleanser is for dry, normal, post-procedure, rosacea, sensitive skin types. It is formulated with botanical ingredients such as Clary Sage, Aloe, Cucumber Fruit, and Ginger Root. This cleanser will clean, condition and invigorate the skin, leaving it feeling soft, smooth and visibly younger looking without causing irritations. It is also a good choice for mature skin that is dry as aggressive cleansers can compromise the protective skin barrier even further.

 

  1. TRANSFORM:

This category refers to products that have a specific anti-aging job to do.  Transformation products might be used to reduce brown pigmentation, fight free-radicals, repair damaged DNA cells, brighten your complexion,  improve texture, reduce lines, wrinkles and large pores.  Depending on the skin concerns you may have, one of the following products might be recommended in your anti-aging at-home treatment plan.

 

Clear Skin Pads

These pre-soaked pads are a quick and simple way to deliver an at-home, anti-aging micro-peel to exfoliate and improve dull skin, rough texture and lines or clean out pores, correct acne and prevent future breakouts.  Clear Skin Pads soften and sooth acne-prone, inflamed skin while reducing irritations and redness with a botanically infused formula.  Contains Glycolic Acid, Salicylic Acid, Lactic Acid, and Yeast, Horse Chestnut, Ivy, Burdock, Olive, and Clary Sage Extracts.

 

Tretinol PM Serum

Beyond sunscreen, topical Vitamin A products (retinoids) such as Tretinol PM Serum are the most beneficial, proven-effective anti-aging topicals available.  Tretinol PM Serum stimulates cellular regeneration which improves tone, texture and hyperpigmentation. It reduces lines and wrinkles (who doesn’t love that)!  It is naturally derived, sulfate and paraben free and contains antioxidants.  This is an after dark product only.  You should not apply this product during the daytime as it can make you more sun sensitive and could increase your chances of developing unwanted pigmentation.  If you are going to use this product you should always wear a sunscreen during the day.  Vitamin A products generally have a reputation for being harsh at first.  However, Tretinol PM Serum is impressively gentle due to the product it’s silky emollient delivery system.

 

Antioxidant Serum:

This is a powerful combination of medical-grade Vitamin C (15% L-ascorbic acid), Vitamin E, ferulic acid and a peptide complex. It enhances collagen syntheses, which means you can expect firmer more supple skin.  Vitamin C is the ultimate skin brightener. Not only will it brighten dull, lifeless skin, but this antioxidant serum inhibits melanin production which helps reduce unwanted pigmentation and melasma,  leaving your skin clearer and luminous.  Antioxidant Serum neutralizes free radicals to protect the skin from cellular damage, resulting in healthier, more radiant skin inside and out! It even increases the broad-spectrum in sunscreen as it helps to fight UVA/UVB sun damage.  Vitamin C reduces sunburns, redness and irritation. It is a wonderful anti-inflammatory and increases your skin’s ability to produce collagen. This product can be used twice daily. It is formulated for dry, normal, oily, combo, acne sensitive skin types.

 

Pigment Reducer:

This is a recent addition to Dr. Castillo’s skincare line.  This is another “after dark” only product.  It is an advanced, multi-active formula designed for rapid and significant improvement in the appearance of unwanted pigmentation. Pigment Reducer features an innovating lightening complex combined with alpha-hydroxy acids and botanical extracts to maximize penetration and stimulate cell turn-over.  This technology interrupts the melanogenesis pathway at multiple points, resulting in visible reduction in brown spots and other pigmentation.

 

Microdermabrasion Scrub:

Microdermabrasion is a wonderful, inexpensive addition to almost any skincare regimen in need of exfoliation or resurfacing to improve rough texture and allow your smooth, natural glow to show through!  It gives your skin an instant little boost of radiance.  It smooths dull, dry skin by exfoliating away dead cells and debris from your skin’ surface. It allows your skincare products to penetrate more effectively and will improve the look of your make-up.  While I am focused on faces to today, this product is also wonderful on your neck, chest, legs, feet, hands, lips, everywhere really! You will love how smooth your skin feels after using Castillo MD Skin Science Microdermabrasion Scrub .  This product is also beneficial to help maintain the result of an in-office microdermabrasion in between treatments.

 

  1. MOISTURIZERS:

For many patients, winter means drier skin. Not only does the outside air become drier but when you turn on the heat, our homes and vehicles become drier too and our skin suffers.  Without proper hydration and moisturization, skin can become dull, dry, flaky and irritated. Lines and wrinkles will become more apparent and cosmetics will not perform as well if your skin becomes dry.  You can avoid losing that supple, youthful appearance but using a moisturizer that is appropriate for your skin type.

 

Lush Replenishing Cream:

Lush Replenishing Cream is a patient favorite for sure! It is an elegant moisturizer that combines 5% Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) with barrier enhancing lipids. It is intended for dry, normal, sensitive skin types and those with occasional minor acne breakouts.  It is formulated to decrease the appearance of sun damage, texture, hyperpigmentation and lines. Because of its anti-bacterial properties and oil reducing factors, those with mild-acne breakouts may also benefits from this moisturizer.

 

Calmative Cream:

Calmative Cream is intended for dry, normal, combo, oily and sensitive skin types. It is fortified with Vitamin K, Sunflower Oil, and Sweat Almond Oil. It is a concentrated, restorative treatment moisturizer that helps reduce dark undereye circles and puffiness. It reduces the appearance of bruising, spider veins and broken capillaries. Calmative Cream is an excellent choice for those with conditions such as Rosacea who wish to reduce facial redness. Soothing, hydrating properties help skin retain its natural moisture. Calmative Cream combats symptoms of aging with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and calming emollients relieve redness and irritation associated with rosacea. It can be used for pre and post-treatment of fragile skin.

 

Revive Recovery Complex:

Revive Recovery Complex contains four different ceramides to restore the skin’s barrier function which helps the skin maintain its structure. Maintaining structure decreases water loss and increases factors which hydrate and protect the skin and aid in the skin’s recovery after exposure to stress. It is specially formulated with cactus and yeast extracts to significantly reduce irritation and redness caused by AHA’s, or  retinoids.  Appropriate for Dry, normal, combo, sensitive, and irritated, acne skin types.

 

  1. PROTECT:

The last step in this basic skincare routine as I mentioned earlier is the most important if your goal is to create or maintain a healthy, youthful appearance.

Sun Defense SPF 45

Sun Defense is designed to protect the skin from UVA / UBV and infrared radiation. It is a thin, lightweight, medical-grade, broad-spectrum sunscreen that is recommended for acne, oily, combo and sensitive skin types.  It absorbs quickly and contains high levels of Niacinamide along with Vitamin E, knotweed extract and hyaluronic acid to increase firmness and elasticity and reduce redness and blotchiness.

 

Physical Defense SPF 49

Physical Defense  is a very versatile, medical-grade, broad-spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen. It is both gentle and light-weight.  It absorbs and dries quickly.  It offers our patients a more natural approach to sun protection by utilizing only chemical-free active ingredients.  Zinc Oxide & Titantium Dioxide sit on top of the skin to deflect UV radiation. Physical Defense SPF 49 creates a moisture barrier to stop the skin’s water from evaporating to help maintain hydration.  This sunscreen is beneficial for all skin types, especially those who are sensitive to over-the-counter chemical sunscreens. Barrier reef safe.

 

Prime Defense SPF 40:

If you love the feel of a good BB cream, you will love Prime Defense.  I always feel a little extra pampered when I am applying this product. It just feels so good!  Not only does it provide you with the necessary sun protection, but the pigments in this luxurious tinted sunscreen help to even out your skin tone.  Prime Defense contains protective anti-oxidants like Vitamin C & E, and Ferulic Acid Ester along with barrier protective lipids.  Prime Defense is a chemical-free sunscreen.  It even contains silicone polymers that provide a make-up primer base which leads to an even, smooth make-up application.

If you would like more information on building a custom skincare regimen that is right for you, contact Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Center in Champaign at 217-359-7508.

 

 

Roxanne Grace
Skincare and Laser Specialist
G. D. Castillo, M.D.
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY http://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com

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Microdermabrasion

Thursday, January 16th, 2020

Microdermabrasion:

If you are feeling disenchanted with the texture and appearance of your skin, you might check with your local cosmetic plastic surgeon to see if they offer Microdermabrasion.  It can be a simple, even relaxing way to revitalize your complexion.

What is it?

Microdermabrasion is an in-office skin treatment that is used to treat sun-damaged skin, signs of aging, acne-prone skin, acne scarring, mild pigmentation, rough texture and lines. It increases circulation and exfoliates and removes the superficial layer of dry, dead skin cells, leaving your skin feeling smoother and looking brighter, much like a buff and polish process.

How does it work?

There are two basic types of microdermabrasion:

  1. Crystal Microdermabrasion – This is the original form of microdermabrasion. It was first used over in Europe and then came to the United States by the early 1990’s. In this version, crystals (usually made of aluminum oxide) are sprayed over the skin to exfoliate, then the crystals and skin cells are suctioned back through a tube suction system.

Personally, I am less of a fan of this type of microdermabrasion though it is widely used.  It can sting when the crystal hit the skin, making it a less enjoyable experience.  The crystals can be messy and there is potential for crystals ending up in places they should not. For those who are more sensitive, breathing in aluminum oxide can cause temporary breathing difficulties.

  1. Diamond Tome Microdermabrasion – This version utilizes interchangeable diamond-tip wands with varying degrees of abrasiveness to gently exfoliates and loosens the dead cells which are then suctioned away through a sterile vacuumed system. There is no debri or crystals making this system a healthy choice for both the operator and the patient.

If you have never had Microdermabrasion (or skin treatments such as Micro-Fractional Laser Resurfacing) then it is generally best performed in a series of treatments as each treatment results in more improvement. On average, you can anticipate having about 6 treatments to get your skin back in shape; of course, this depends on the condition of your skin to begin with.  Once your initial series is completed, you may want to consider a microdermabrasion treatment every 4-6 weeks to maintain your results. While microdermabrasion is most often used to treat the face, it can address skin concerns of the neck, chest, hands, arms, legs etc.

At Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Center, we take microdermabrasion a few steps further. We offer “Medical Microdermabrasion,” which is a 5-step process.  We begin by exfoliating the skin with microdermabrasion with a Diamond-tome system as described above but we don’t stop there!  We follow with a glycolic application, an oxygen-nutrient mist, a mini facial massage, and finally an application of premium medical grade skincare products.

What improvements could I expect?

With recurring treatments, you can expect to see diminished appearance of lines, rough texture, and acne scarring.  You can expect a more even skin tone, fewer break-outs, a softer feel, and a radiant glow. Microdermabrasion can also help maximize the benefits of your at-home skincare product routine.

 Am I a good candidate?

Microdermabrasion is safe for all colors of skin.  It is best utilized for those with minimal to moderate lines, rough texture, dull, dry or lifeless skin, sun damage, clogged pores / black-heads, acne-prone skin, mild pigmentation concerns.  Microdermabrasion can also be an alternative solution for those with melasma (condition usually due to hormonal changes that results in brown or grey-brown patches on the skin) that becomes aggravated with other forms of treatment.

Those who have Rosacea and those who have active cold sores should avoid this treatment. Those who have waxed, had a chemical peel or other facials treatments should avoid microdermabrasion in the same area for a few weeks.

How will I look after my treatment?

The good news is there is no down time for this rejuvenating treatment.  Your skin may look slightly flushed 10-30 minutes after your treatment. When more advanced ranges of abrasiveness are used, it can result in cat like scratches that will resolve quickly.  Your skin will look and feel smoother after the first treatment and will continue to improve with each additional treatment. You can apply cosmetics right away.  You can return to work, go out for lunch, or carry out any of your daily activities immediately.

Microdermabrasion or exfoliation of any kind will make you skin more sun sensitive for a few weeks. Be sure to apply quality broad-spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen daily and reapply as needed.

 

Yours Truly,

Roxanne Grace Hammond
Skincare & Laser Specialist
G.D. Castillo, M.D.
COSMETIC PLASTIC SURGERY http://www.cosmeticplasticsurgery.com

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