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Anti-Aging Q&A

The appearance of fine lines and wrinkles is one of the top skin care concerns of women. Signs of aging can begin to develop at any age, particularly if the complexion suffers damage from the sun or environmental pollutants, and I receive many questions from women regarding anti-aging skin care as a result. Today, I wanted to share with you some readers’ questions that I feel can help many women in their quest to obtain more youthful complexions.

1. There are so many products for anti-aging on the market and my doctor says I should use clinically proven brands. What’s the advantage?

Your doctor's advice is definitely sound. Clinically proven brands are those that have been extensively researched in a laboratory setting, similarly to the way prescription medications are tested prior to their release on the market. The testing provides data on the efficacy of the formulas, so when you select a clinically proven skin care formula, you can be more assured that it will better likely produce results for your complexion. In addition, clinically proven formulas are also tested for safety.

An example of a clinically proven anti-aging system is the SkinCeuticals skin care collection. The brand rigorously tests all of its anti-aging formulas, such as the very popular SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic serum. This treatment is intended for addressing signs of photo damage, including fine lines, inflammation and hyperpigmentation. In clinical studies, the formula was shown to not only improve signs of damage, but also to reduce damage to the skin by as much as 96 percent.

2. I keep hearing about antioxidants. What are they and which ones are most effective? Can you recommend any specific products?

An antioxidant is a nutrient that is capable of neutralizing reactive particles in the environment known as free radicals. Your skin is constantly exposed to free radicals, which over time; damage the structure of your skin cells. Antioxidants transform these particles into harmless molecules like oxygen, preventing cellular damage. With regular use, antioxidants can strengthen the skin’s defenses, making it less vulnerable to common problems. There are many antioxidants that are effective at protecting the complexion, including coenzyme Q10, polyphenols, ferulic acid, idebenone, lutein, zeaxanthin, astaxanthin, alpha lipoic acid and vitamins A, C and E.

Many skin care brands produce antioxidant anti-aging formulas. One of my favorite products is SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF. This formula contains a blend of ferulic acid, the polyphenol phloretin and vitamin C. A winner of multiple awards, the anti-aging serum is clinically shown to reduce cellular damage and decrease the likelihood of the development of hyperpigmentation when used daily.

3. I have considered a face-lift but the traditional procedure is quite gruesome. Are there new, less invasive procedures?

Today, there are many clinical interventions available as alternatives to the traditional facelift, and each alternative is ideal for specific skin care concerns. Most facelift alternatives focus on strengthening the skin by activating the skin cells. Some women experience results from treatments that use heat to encourage collagen production and firm the skin. Lasers can also be utilized to stimulate the skin cells and tone loose, sagging skin to soften signs of aging. Microcurrent facelifts are increasing in popularity and involve using controlled electrical current applied to the skin to rejuvenate the facial cells.

In addition to clinical treatments that provide cellular stimulation, facelift alternatives can address signs of aging by working directly on lines and wrinkles. Injectables like botulinum toxin A reduce contractions in the skin tissue, making fine lines flatten. Injections of collagen or hyaluronic acid can also be used to plump the skin and fill in wrinkles. Chemical peels remove the outer layer of skin tissue, which decreases the depth of wrinkles. And of course, there are topical face treatments that you can use at home in lieu of a facelift.

4. There has been a lot of news about human growth hormone and how it can help with aging skin. Are there any brands offering this new technology?


Human growth hormone is one of the most exciting new ingredients developed by the skin care industry in recent years. This natural or synthetically produced hormone revitalizes the skin cells, encouraging them to restart protein manufacturing in areas where the skin tissue has been weakened.

Neocutis is well known for developing skin care products that contain human growth hormone. The brand's Neocutis Bio-Restorative Serum with PSP combines the hormone with an amino acid and peptide blend that provides the skin with raw materials necessary for protein production. In clinical studies, the treatment was shown to begin producing results in as little as 7 to 14 days. A slightly milder version of the formula is also available for the eye area and is called Neocutis Lumiere Riche Bio-Restorative Eye Balm with PSP.

5. I’m only in my 30s but I have premature aged skin. Why could this be and can I take steps to keep it from getting worse?


First of all, you're not alone, many women see their first signs of aging develop in their 30s. It's probably not possible for even your doctor to definitively tell you why your skin has aged prematurely, as usually, many factors contribute to the development of signs of aging.

Sun damage is the leading cause of premature aging, and it doesn't always come simply from sunbathing or hitting the tanning bed. Your skin is exposed to the sun every day, and that constant exposure adds up to damage over time. If you don't use a daily moisturizer with SPF to protect your skin, you should start, and be sure to apply a sunscreen when you'll be outdoors for an hour or more at a time.

Smoking is another major cause of premature aging, so talk to your doctor about strategies to quit if you're currently using tobacco. Chronic skin dehydration leaves the skin more prone to wrinkling, making the use of a moisturizer twice per day essential to protecting your complexion from wrinkles. A poor diet and stress can also contribute to signs of aging; be sure to eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables and take time for yourself to relax and unwind.

Remember: no anti-aging skin care regimen will begin producing results overnight. When you start using a new product or system, be patient and give the formulas several weeks to a few months to work.

Please ask your doctors these questions and any other questions you might have. It’s important to follow your doctor’s advice before starting any skin care regimen.

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