It’s always cool when all your friends grow up and do something really cool with their lives. I have a friend who is a dermatology clinician (fancy word for skin expert with a doctorate!) and he suggested that I allows a lil’ Q&A session on the blog so he can share some of his wisdom with all of us who have NO idea what the f is going on with our skin on a daily basis! I know we are all curious about where our zits come from, what anti-aging techniques work, and basic questions about daily skin care. Professional advice for free?? I’ll take it!
Here’s some questions and answers that YOU posed with expert answers! If you have any other questions that weren’t on here, feel free to leave them in the comments section and he’ll respond when he can! :)
Q: Best way to get rid of dark circles under the eyes?
A: Dark circles under the eyes may exist for a variety of reasons to include (a) genetics, (b) allergies, and (c) lack of sleep. Some basic ways to prevent dark circles under the eyes include drinking plenty of water and getting enough sleep each night. If you have a history of allergies or suspect that allergies may be playing a role in your dark circles, speak to your health care provider about potential allergy treatments. A variety of under eye creams exist and some are more effective than others. When choosing an under eye cream be sure to chose one that is free of (a) dye, (b) fragrance, and (c) harsh agents that may cause skin irritation.
Q: Any way to totally prevent cystic acne? Are cortisone shots the best?
There is truly no such thing as cystic acne; it is inflammatory acne, a fact that is proven by the rapid resolution of these lesions when injected with cortisone- an anti-inflammatory agent. If you are having frequent “cystic” or inflammatory acne outbreaks you may be a candidate for oral medications.
Q: Natural way to treat hormonal breakouts?
Many topical agents have been proven to reduce inflammation and bacteria on the skin, two contributing factors to acne. If you suspect your hormones, or an imbalance of hormones, is playing a role in your acne, see your health care provider.
Q: Is it really that bad to pop your zits?
YES. It causes more inflammation. Darkening of your skin called post inflammatory hyper pigmentation occurs and may result in scarring. Leave them alone! Warm compress of have them injected at a doctor’s office.
Q: Are chemical peels beneficial?
YES- in the right patients. Chemical peels should only be applied by health care providers experienced in the care of the skin and the application of chemical peels (dermatology and plastic surgery providers.) Don’t buy them off Groupon! For many people, chemical peels may improve (a) acne, (b) brown spots, (c) acne scarring, (d) oily skin, (e) wrinkles, and (d) texture of skin.
Q: Why do I get a recurring pimple in the same spot?
This may be attributed to overactive sebaceous (oil) glands or something as simple as chronic occlusion such as sitting with your palm on your chin.
Q: Is long term use of Aldactone for acne bad?
This medication is helpful for many women who need a systemic medication to regulate their male-like hormones involved in acne. Periodic monitoring, to include- but not necessarily limited to- serum potassium levels is essential.. Furthermore, women should not become pregnant while taking this medication.
Q: What’s the best store bought product to keep away crows feet/fine lines?
Any product containing retinol- an inactive form of prescription Retin-A; manmade vitamin A has been shown to stimulate collagen production.
Q: Scarring on dark skin – any alternatives to using hydroquinone?
Depressed or raised scarring will not change with hyderquinone; however, hyper pigmentation (dark spots) will respond to prescription hydroquinone as well as some other products. Retin-A, kojic acid, Finacea, salicylic acid, glycolic acid, bayberry, and even kelp have been shown to inhibit hyper pigmentation production.
Q: Psoriasis – any home remedy solutions?
Avoid trauma to the area. Utilize moisturizers with low levels of salicylic acid to thin the thickened skin. For those without elevated risk factors for skin cancer, a few moments of sun per day is often very helpful.
Q: Any special prescriptions adults should use for acne?
All adult patients should be using a prescription with Retin-A (it helps with acne scars). In addition to this drugs anti-acne properties it also has anti-aging and anti-cancer properties. Beyond this, many adult women need to be treated with an agent such as spironolactone which is designed to address hormonal concerns.
Q: What makes a moisturizer really good?
Plain, simple, no dye, no fragrance, no extra stuff. Cerave or Cetaphil Restoraderm are both good. A daily moisturizer should also contain an SPF #30.
Q: What is good for daily upkeep? Face wash, toner, and moisturizer?
Use a mild face wash. SPF is the most important. At least a number 30. NO toner- ever- it changes the pH of your skin and can upset your skin’s balance.
Q: Do microdermabrasion tools work?
Microdermabrasion treatments in my office utilize fine crystals which are delivered to the skin through a hand piece and vacuumed off. These crystals mechanically remove superficial layers of dead skin- this results in a brighter complexion and helps to relieve congested pores.
Q: Do firming eye creams work?
The more hydrated skin cells are- with water (moisturizers) the more plumped up and fat the skin cells are and the less apparent fine lines and wrinkles look.
Have a skin care question?? Leave it in the comments section! :)