Posted in Q&A, tagged acne, acne scars, acne solutions, acne treatments, blackheads, facial acne, glycolic acid, help acne, retin, Retin A, retin A Micro, retinol, retinola, skin acne, treat acne on May 4, 2012 |
31 Comments »
I got a great email from a 16 year old who is using Retin A micro for acne control. Like most of us, she got the prescription with little or no advice about how to use it. She wanted to know what scrubbing grains, toners and moisturizer I would recommend. She was concerned about the redness and peeling and wanted to avoid these problems with additional skin care products
Retin A was actually originally developed and approved for acne management. This vitamin A derivative helps the skin to empty pores clogged with debris, shuts down overactive oil glands and helps skin turnover to reduce discolorations from old acne eruptions. This process includes flaking off old dry keratin that is contributing to blocked pores and breakouts. Some peeling and flaking is necessary and actually good. However you need to keep it under control to avoid too much redness and irritation.
The solution is to allow Retin A to do what it does best. Twice a day use an extremely gentle oil-free cleanser such as Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser and apply with damp cotton pads. Rinse off with handfuls of lukewarm water. Even a washcloth can be too rough in the first months of Retin A treatment Start by using Retin A every other night and gradually, over three weeks, work up to an every night routinue.
In the early months of using Retin A its very import ant to avoid additional irritants such as scrubbing grains or pads, toners and even alpha hydroxy acids ingredients such as glycolic acid. It certainly takes a leap of faith to abandon these tried and true acne aids and simply trust Retin A to clear your skin– but that’s the best way to succeed. These products and ingredients are simply too irritating to be used at the beginning of Retin A therapy and can make the skin so red and sore that people abandon Retin A treatment.
Using a moisturizer to control the peeling can actually lead to additional breakouts. If your skin becomes too irritated and flaky, use a tiny dab of oil-free moisturizer and take a two day Retin A holiday. In the morning make sure to use an light fragrance-free oil sunscreen such as Aveeno Ultra Calming Daily Moisturizer SPF 30. Retin A increases sensitivity to sun damage and its ESSENTIAL to use a sunscreen each and every day– even when its cloudy.
After six months, you skin will become comfortable, even bored with Retin A. At this point you can amp up the impact by adding exfoliators such as 3M Buf Puf Pads or my beloved Clarisonic cleanser. Toners and peels with glycolic acid can provide additional benefits for acne-prone skin. But if irritation and flaking reappear, cut back on the extras and focus on Retin A.
Read Full Post »
Posted in Uncategorized, tagged acid peel, anti-age, anti-aging, anti-aging acne, anti-aging beauty, blackheads, blckheads, dermabrasion, dermis, eye cream, facial anti-aging, glycolic, glycolic peel, milia, retin, retin micro, retinol, retinol a, scars, skin a, skin care, Tri-luma, white heads, wrinkle remover on January 3, 2011 |
32 Comments »
Its amazing what you can learn at a medical conference. At a lunchbreak at the recent Mount Sinai Derm meeting, I sat down next to two young dermatologists. They were talking about milia, those little white bumps under the skin– sort of faux pimples. ( In the picture below my milia is under my eye). Milia are formed when a pore becomes blocked with dead skin cells. They are more common as we get older, the result of slower cell growth. Unlike the garden variety pimple, they do not contain oil or bacteria so they don’t become red and inflamed. Milia just sit there. Forever.
Another important difference, milia are actually in the dermis and if you try to remove them yourself, you can do real damage to the skin. Seriously, you can get infections and even scar the area. Case in point: Even when I had my milia removed by a physician, I got a shiner!
Sitting next to the derms I learned two new facts:
1) The best way to deal with milia is to exfoliate regularly with Retin A, dermabrasion or glycolic peels. Milia tend to come back in the same area but since I have been using Tri-luma ( which conains Retin-A), I have been milia-free.
2) Its an old wives tale that rich face creams promote milia. Good to know since I use a moisturizer under my eyes every night.
I’d love to hear about your experiences with milia. Where do they appear? How do you handle them?
Read Full Post »
Posted in Uncategorized, tagged acid peel, anti-aging beauty, anti-aging skin care, blackheads, DDF Revolve Exfoliator, facial anti-aging, glycolic, gylcolic peel, hyperpigmentation, IPL, microdermabrsion, Retin A, SPF 50, Triluma on October 1, 2010 |
2 Comments »
As I progress in this anti-aging journey, I’ve discovered two things about myself:(1) I really want to look good; (2) I want to look good really FAST. The little home DDF Revolve Exfoliator delivered on both accounts. My skin looked fresher and healthier and it took only one minute.
The small hand held Revolve 400X is ultra easy to use. It comes with two types of heads– a brush for deep cleansing and a sponge that’s used with a gritty gel. The instructions are short and simple. Squeeze out 1/2 teaspoon of the gel onto the sponge head. Wash face as usual but don’t dry. Push the grey button and press the vibrating sponge agaist your face for one minute. I also aimed the exfoliator at my neck to tackle that dull, bumpy skin. Then I rinsed off my face throughly to remove the gritty bits.
The difference was clear and immediate. My skin had such a healthy glow I didn’t want to cover it with foundation. I was especially impressed how it gently cleared the pores on my nose. But don’t take my word for it. In these before (top)and after (below) pix you can see a pinker, brighter color after using home microdermabrasion.
But the benefits of the DDF Exfoliator are not without rules and regulations. This cute curvy machine cannot be used more than twice a week– and not on skin that is using glycolic acid ( moisturizers or peels) or Retin A. That is not good news.
Current recommendations are to avoid retinoids and glycolic peels for 48 hours before laser or IPL treatments. I’m going to adopt those guidelines for home microdermabrasion. Its going to take a bit of juggling to get the benefits of both retinoids and microdermabrasion. Have you had to coordinate using two different skin treatments? Any suggestions?
Read Full Post »
Posted in Uncategorized, tagged acne, acne laser, acne scars, anti-aging, anti-aging beauty, anti-aging skin products, benzoyl peroxide, blackheads, glycolic acid, hormones, i phone, LED light, pimples, Retin A Tazorac, salucylic acid, sunscreen, teenage acne, wrinkles on July 26, 2010 |
9 Comments »
There is a gorgeous buffet of choices for acne care including gels, pills, antibiotics, lights, retinoids, lasers, hormones, peels and wipes. There is even an i phone app that offers an acne-fighting light that has good science behind it! This plan looks at a way to integrate standard acne fighters with anti-aging protection.
In the Morning:
* Wash face with oil -free cleanser such as Healthy Skin Anti-Wrinkle Anti-Blemish Cleanser ( Neutrogena, $7.99) and Clean and Clear Continuous Control Acne Cleanser ( Johnson and Johnson, $6.99). Wet your face and rub a dab into your face. Massage gently and rinse thoughly with warm water.
* Apply a treatment product that contains acne fighters such as benzoyl peroxide which deals acne causing bacteria in the pores or salicylic acid which dries up blackheads and small blemishes.
* Top with oil-free moisturizer/ sunscreen such as Oil-Free Moisture, SPF 15 ( Neutrogena, $10.99)
* Wash your face with oil-free cleanser ( see selections for daytime)
* Wait for 30 minutes before applying a heavy duty treatment product such as an antibiotic gel like Clindamycin( prescription only) or a Retin A formulation for acne such as Tazorac. Start using them three times a week to allow your skin to get used to them and work up to every night.
Once a week use a home glycolic peel. My current favorite is Exfoliating Glyco Peel System from Patricia WexlerMD ( $60). Glycolic acid is awesome! It takes off the top dead layer of skin cells that encourages healthy skin growth. It is a valuable acne fighter as well as a great anti-aging tool. In fact, for twenty somethings, glycolic acid becomes the first line anti-aging tool.
Read Full Post »