Though women often fixate on wrinkles, a series of studies shows that evenness of skin color may be equally important for beauty. Men find faces with homogenous hues more attractive than splotchy faces, not that you should be concerned what men think! But the authors conclude that smooth skin suggests youth and good health according to the study.
Amanda, our skin expert, weighs in on how to achieve smooth, even skin tone.
A number of treatment options are available to achieve a smooth, even skin tone. Ablative treatment should be started in the fall as your skin will be increasingly sensitive.
Treatment recommendation is based on the severity of sun damage and/or hyper pigmentation. Hyper pigmentation can result from estrogen, if you are taking birth control pills or hormones, you may notice darker pigmentation on your cheeks, forehead, and above the upper lip. Speak with your healthcare professional if you are taking any hormone or oral contraceptive. Sunscreen must be applied, SPF 30 or higher to provide protection. Whether it is moisturizer, I recommend, Neutrogena Daily Moisturizer SPF 45, or make up, Lycogel SPF 30. If you are active and in the sun many hours per day, you must remember to reapply sunscreen every couple hours, wear light colors, and a floppy hat. Coolibar offers clothing with UVA/UVB protection built in.
Remember to schedule any appointment with a licensed individual specializing in cosmetic dermatology, dermatology, or facial plastic surgery. A micro peel combines microdermabrasion with a glycolic chemical peel. Exfoliation allows the glycolic acid to penetrate for better optimal improvement. Multiple treatments are needed as the peel is superficial. The overall benefit is improved texture/feel of your skin. Approximate cost per treatment is $150. Non ablative resurfacing (Palomar 1540) diminishes fine line/wrinkles, appearance of acne scarring, and sun damage. Multiple treatments are needed at monthly intervals to achieve maximum benefit. The downtime is minimal. Non ablative resurfacing is an option for individuals with fine lines, sun damage and acne scarring. If the wrinkles are deep and skin laxity is present, fractional laser resurfacing is a better option. Approximate cost $300 to $800 depending upon area treated. Fractional Laser Treatments are the best option to achieve maximum improvement. Active FX, Deep FX, and Total FX leads the way in fractional laser resurfacing. Outcome and downtime is optimized with Active FX and Deep FX, one treatment will achieve maximum results, and downtime is approximately one week. Fractional procedures ablate tissue, deposit heat, and promote regeneration throughout the underlying skin layers. Ablation removes the skin discoloration and the deep heating causes collagen contraction and long term remodeling. Approximate cost to treat the full face and décolleté is $3500. www.aesthetic.lumenis.com
Topical Treatment Options
Apply TriLuma Skin Lightening Cream every other night 1 hour prior to going to bed (this Prescription bleaching agent targets sun damage, and areas of hyper pigmentation as well as fine lines as it contains a retinoid. The cost has decreased significantly and is the most effective bleaching agent available. Available by prescription only. Approximate cost $100 if purchased in a physician’s office. Renova (tretinoin cream) 0.02% effectively improves the signs of photo damage. Benefit is seen in 4 to 12 weeks and continuous improvement with long term use. Renova is beneficial when used in combination with a skin care and sun avoidance program. Initially, use this cream two to three times per week for the first two weeks. If you tolerate this and do not become too dry you can increase the use to every other night for two to three weeks, and if tolerated use nightly. Some individuals tolerate using the product daily; take it slow and allow your skin to build up to daily use. My personal experience is the reason I give you these instructions, I tolerated Renova 0.02% nightly after 4 months of use. My skin care regime includes RevaleSkin face wash, RevaleSkin Day Cream, RevaleSkin Night Cream, and Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Sunscreen SPF 85.
Over the Counter Topical Treatment Options
NEUTROGENA--dermatologists developed, products contain an SPF 30 and higher, light weight, contain active ingredients to meet the needs of anyone seeking to improve and enhance his/her appearance. http://www.neutrogena.com
REMEMBER ALL PRODUCTS REQUIRE LONG TERM USE TO SEE IMPROVEMENT AND GAIN LONG LASTING EFFECTS. IMPROVEMENT IS TYPICALLY NOTICED AFTER 6-8 WEEKS OF USING THE PRODUCT.
Source: Berhard Fink, University of Goettingen, Psychology Today