Buckingham: For starters, I want to emphasize the importance of preventing your skin from aging in general, starting when you’re young. When you go outside in the sun, wear protective hats, sunglasses, clothing, and sunscreen.
Your overall health impacts skin health too, so I recommend eating a healthy diet and exercising and not gaining excess weight.
People ask me what the most important components of skincare are, and I think it’s helpful to view those priorities in the same way we use the food pyramid to eat the right amount of certain foods for a healthy diet.
On that base layer of the pyramid is sunscreen, that’s the most important thing. Put that on after using a good facial cleanser to wash away the dirt and oil on your face.
The middle box is a vitamin A derivative such as retinol or Retin-A. We have research that shows if you use these products consistently, you can increase your collagen production and your elastin as well as increasing the epidermal turnover. This can keep the skin looking healthy and less dull. The little box at the top of the pyramid is topical antioxidants like vitamin C, peptides, and pigment-reducing agents.
Once you have that good skincare foundation, there are interventions we can do to reverse the effects of aging.
These include neuromodulators, such as Botox, which can temporarily cause the muscle to not contract as robustly as it should, which reduces the appearance of wrinkles.
Microneedling uses a pen-shaped or roller device with fine needles that penetrate the dermal level and create very tiny punctures in the skin. It heals within a day and promotes the growth of new collagen and elastin. Radiofrequency microneedling uses an actual plastic plate that has needles embedded in it that are stamped or inserted into the skin. While the needles are in the face, it emits radio frequency heat energy, which amplifies the effect of microneedling.
There are several laser treatment options depending on the amount of intervention needed. By using concentrated light in different wavelengths, these treatments can rejuvenate skin by increasing the production of collagen and elastin.
Chemical peels can range from very light peels that cause just a small amount of flaking to more intense peels that can require up to 10 days of recovery and continuous application of healing ointment.