reverse skin damageIt’s common knowledge the negative effects too much UV ray exposure can have on your skin’s appearance and health. By now we all know sunscreen is a must and should be worn EVERY DAY your skin’s exposed to the sun, year ‘round.

But what about the accumulated sun damage on our skin from the days we weren’t so careful?  Good news, the damage can be reversed.

“Whenever you start protecting yourself from the sun, you will stop the process of additional damage and start to reverse, to some extent, what you’ve already accumulated,” says Neal Schultz, M.D., a cosmetic dermatologist based in New York City. Throw in a decent skin regimen, which we will explain below, and you are well on your way to some serious skin recovery.

What to look for in a skin regimen for optimum sun damage reversal:

You want to smooth your skin to create brightness and luster, in addition to promoting new skin cell growth. A fruit acid exfoliant does just that by exfoliating dulling skin cells to help minimize pores and stimulate collagen production for a natural, healthy radiance. Utilizing an alpha hydroxy acid that’s naturally produced by the human body, a lactic acid toner aids in producing a smooth skin surface that should promote better results from moisturizers and anti-aging products.

Microdermabrasions are also perfect for freshening and brightening the skin by exfoliating the dead skin cells.

TCA or AHA chemical peels provide a deeper exfoliation and can also correct pigment problems.

Reparative Antioxidant Serum
Daily or nightly use of antioxidant-rich topical creams or serums help protect the skin’s DNA to prevent cancer while also protecting the collagen and elastic tissue from free radicals that can cause wrinkles and sagging skin. Though eating antioxidant-rich foods is important, you should also apply creams and serums with additional antioxidants that the skin can absorb directly.

A Good Moisturizer
Determine what skin-type you are then find a clinical-grade moisturizer made for your type of skin. A good moisturizer is meant to keep moisture in, making skin soft and supple while preventing dryness.

To maintain your improvement, use sunscreen every day to prevent additional damage. New FDA recommendations emphasize using sunscreen labeled as broad spectrum (meaning it protects against both UVA and UVB rays) with SPF values of 15 or higher. Even better is to incorporate a separate facial sunscreen with a higher SPF. Most are now formulated to be light-weight to work well under makeup and oil free to not clog pores.

If you’re looking to purchase any of the above products, we highly recommend Thermaderm’s Skin Renewal System which includes a cleansing wash, fruit acid exfoliant, OPC reparative serum, application pads, and your choice of moisturizer for $160; and their Platinum Protection Facial Sunscreen for $29.

You can purchase and see full descriptions of each product by clicking on the links, or by stopping in at either one of The Lett Center’s locations.