Now on to — The Problems To Be Solved:
There are 15–30 layers of dead skin cells on the surface of our faces.
It’s these dead cells which prevent our skin from looking plump, healthy and youthful.
When your skin is covered with these dead cells, moisture can’t reach the living cells. This causes your skin to get dehydrated, it feels rough to the touch, is tired-looking and dull and sometimes, it’s even shiny and that’s not from oil.
Have you ever noticed tiny white bumps on your skin, usually near your eyes? Those are called milium cysts. They are caused by very dry and dehydrated skin which has trapped particles of the skin cell protein under the surface.
Dehydrated skin can’t function properly. Not only that — it can’t absorb your serums and moisturizers.
A good analogy is to think about how you clean your kitchen counters…..Do you use a dry sponge? No! Because the sponge is hard and not pliable. And like a dry sponge, your skin won’t absorb moisture if it’s dry.
Sun damage is another concern. Many of us have spent way too much time in the sun and now we have lines, wrinkles and dark spots. By the way…most of these signs of aging are from sun exposure and NOT from the passage of time. It’s called Photoaging and Extrinsic Aging which refers to the aging of our skin caused by lifestyle choices.
Some of you have a history of acne — or know teens or young adults with active acne. Acne is a frustrating and distressing condition and even when there is no active acne, it often results in a bumpy texture, pitting and color scarring.
There are 2 ways to correct and improve these issues of dehydration, scarring, rough texture, lines and wrinkles: One is to resurface and the other is to rebuild.
Resurfacing is done with chemical peels and microdermabrasion, often at the same appointment.
Resurfacing techniques help with the appearance of lines and wrinkles by making the “hills meet the valleys.”
This means that as the upper layers are removed, the distance between them and the depression of the lines and wrinkles is lessened. This is what is meant when you hear the phrase “visible improvement of lines and wrinkles.”
Chemical peels work by dissolving dead skin cells which helps to remove them from the surface of your face which — in turn — allows your products to do their job of hydrating live skin cells.
All peels will soften the look of wrinkles and even-out skin tone & scarring by removing stained skin cells at the surface.
This time of year is a good time for a chemical peel series because of the shorter, cooler days. A series is 6 short appointments, done a week apart, to force your skin to exfoliate and improve quickly and to reach a new baseline from which further improvement can be made. You may have a series 2x/year.
Peel solutions include Jessner, Salicylic, Glycolic, TCA or Lactic acids. Each one has it’s purpose and I choose the best one for your skin type and condition.
For example, Salicylic acid is best known as an acne treatment but it is also an excellent choice for hyperpigmentation and sun damage.
Lactic Acid is a humectant and is great for dry and dehydrated skin. HUMECTANTS are ingredients which draw and bind moisture into the skin, “a substance that promotes retention of moisture” (from Miriam-Webster.com)
Microdermabrasion is useful for controlling oil, exfoliating stained, sun damaged cells and improving acne scars. I call it a power scrub and it works especially well as a way to clean out clogged pores.
Microdermabrasion is also helpful for dehydrated and scarred skin because it improves the skin’s surface and makes your skin look and feel smoother.
Again…. without the dead cells acting as a barrier, the active ingredients and moisture in your products can find their way down to the lower layers of skin. This really helps to correct dehydration.
But sometimes, resurfacing isn’t enough. Sometimes, the skin needs rebuilding and a different technique is required.