We asked dermatologists and skin care experts for their go-to tips to helping your skin look its best. Here’s what they recommend—from procedures to products.
1 LASER TREATMENTS
“I have two tips. My first tip is that winter is a great time to do rejuvenating procedures to help make your skin look better, but more importantly healthier. My most popular and favorite go-to procedure is the Fraxel laser. I was lucky enough to have trained with the physician at Harvard who invented this laser, so in my hands I find that with a single treatment we can clean up a majority of the brown sunspots and give the skin an improved texture. I often use a combination of lasers [at] the same time as the Fraxel to help reduce redness, brown and also help stimulate collagen. What many people don’t know is that the Fraxel laser also makes the skin healthier and has been shown in studies to reduce the number of pre skin cancer cells patients make. Some of my patients who have made multiple skin cancers swear by this procedure. I always recommend patients see a dermatologist with extra training (fellowship) in lasers to make sure they are in the most expert hands possible.
My second tip is for everyone, not just people looking for laser, and that is [that] as we get into the colder months we tend to run dry heat which dries our skin out faster. I recommend putting on a moisturizer within the first three minutes of getting out of the shower as this will help trap and keep as much moisture in the skin as possible. For the body, you want to use a thicker cream and for the face a cream is fine if you tend to have dry skin. You need not spend a ton of money—many great moisturizers are from companies like Neutrogena, Cetaphil and Aveeno, that are reasonably priced.”
—Omar A. Ibrahimi, MD, PhD, founding medical director of the Connecticut Skin Institute in Stamford and Milford, CT.
2 IMPORTANCE OF RETIN A
“As a cosmetic surgeon and skincare expert, I have a few gems that I tell all patients about. My No. 1 is Retin A. Retinol is a weaker derivative of vitamin A, whereas tretinoin—a.k.a. Retin A—is vitamin A. I call it the true fountain of youth because it has over 50 years of clinical usage with proven effective results for improving skin appearance and quality and has been used medically to treat acne and precancerous skin conditions like actinic keratosis. The tretinoin preparations can be used to treat fine wrinkles, dark spots, or rough skin on the face caused by sun exposure. It works by replacing older skin with newer skin, and eliminates cells damaged by sun exposure. This leads to vibrant youthful skin. Tretinoin works best when used within a skin care program that includes sunscreens that protect the treated skin from the sun’s UVA and UVB rays. However, it does not completely or permanently erase these skin problems or greatly improve more obvious changes in the skin, such as deep wrinkles caused by the sun or the natural aging process. For those, laser resurfacing is the best, like Co2 and Fractionated non- ablative lasers. Tretinoin is available only by doctor’s prescription.”
— Karen Soika, MD, owner and surgeon at Greenwich Cosmetic Surgery and Medical Spa, Greenwich, CT
3 3D LIFT
“Greenwich 3D lift is a non-surgical three-layer skin rejuvenation treatment to tighten, lift, retexture and rejuvenate your skin, helping to improve skin, layer by layer. First, we target the top, or epidermal, layer to even your skin tone and shrink your pores. Then we dive deeper to improve the dermal layer and address issues like fine lines, wrinkles and acne scars. Finally, we reach the third layer, which is where fat, muscle and connective tissues are located. Here, the 3D Lift boosts collagen and elastin production, strengthening fibers that have become lax over time. The visible effect is a lifted, firmer appearance and a tight, smooth surface with a youthful glow. This treatment, which is exclusively available at Greenwich Medical Spa, is performed in a series of three to four vis- its, and it requires little to no downtime. You’ll see results immediately from your first treatment, but maximum results appear about six months after your final treatment.”
— Amanda Pucci, NP, aesthetic nurse practitioner and clinical director of Greenwich Medical Spa, with locations in Greenwich, Ridgefield and Westport, CT and Scarsdale, NY
4 EXERCISE, SLEEP, NUTRITION
“We have many topical creams and lotions based in science. As many, if not more, energy sources (like lasers, focused ultrasound, radio- frequency devices and others) are available. Just like our lifestyles vary, so do the skin types of our patients. What may do well for one patient, may not do so well for another. The best advice I can give is to see a dermatologist for a consult for your type of skin and know that the most important under-the-radar information I can give is to exercise, eat a proper diet, get 7 – 8 hours of sleep every night. Then, the other procedures introduced by your dermatologist will have the opportunity to work and give great results.”
— Henry C. Gasiorowski, MD, dermatologist with Greenwich Dermatology, Greenwich, CT
5 AT-HOME SKINCARE
“Get yourself a great aesthetician who can empower your at- home skincare routine. Eighty percent of skin care results are determined by your home care. It can be quite catastrophic to use the wrong products. If I could only use one product, it would be our medical- grade La Suite Skincare Retinol Serum 5.0. It is the powerhouse in any skincare routine because it helps all the other products work better by speed- ing up cell turnover. What’s more, it is the best product for nearly all skin types and conditions to use in between professional treatments. My top treatment tip is to seek out high-tech modalities like ultrasound, microcurrent, and LED for transformative, advanced results without going under the knife. Our Megaformer facial is like a pilates session for your face and includes these three modalities to lift, tighten and firm.”
— Rhea Souhleris Grous, founder and director of aesthetics, La Suite Skincare in Greenwich, CT