By Bailey LeRoux
Endless numbers of treatments, products and tools on the market claim to be the multistep problem solver for all your skincare woes. How to cut through the noise and find answers? We turned to local Abilene experts for tips.
No Purchase Necessary
While you can spend plenty of money on numerous products and treatments, you can also care for your skin with what you already have.
If you have problems with breakouts, change your pillow case to avoid buildup of dead skin cells.
“You want to wash your pillowcase often,” says Mackenzie Neidigk, esthetician at The Med Spa at Hendrick. “You pick up all that debris during the day, and then you go home and lay down, and it rubs off on your pillow.”
The rule of thumb? Sleep on one side of the pillow, flip it over to sleep on the other side, then wash it.
To delay aging and maximize skin health, you want to avoid friction as much as possible in your daily habits.
“Pat dry,” Neidigk said. “That way you’re not pulling with your towel and creating wrinkles.”
Going one step further, consider sleeping on your back or on a silk pillowcase to avoid creases. Kamie Parks, MedSpa nurse practitioner, knows from experience.
“Once those lines start to form,” she says, “it’s a lot harder to get them to go away than it is to prevent them from coming in the first place.”
The best thing you can do for your skin without investment? Parks says, “Drink lots of water. I will say that’s a cheap and easy thing to do is keep it [skin] hydrated.”
Do-It-Yourself Skincare Regimen
While your skin does need attention, a complicated 10-step routine is not always necessary, according to local experts.
Everyone needs to cleanse and tone twice a day. Anything additional is up to you and your skincare needs. Someone with oily or acne prone skin will want to exfoliate and avoid heavy moisturizers.
“Exfoliate on a Monday to start off your week,” Neidigk said, “and then on Friday to clear up your week.”
Someone with dry or sensitive skin will still want to cleanse, tone and exfoliate, but may consider adding products that provide a little extra nourishment.
What is a must for everybody? Daily sunscreen. Not only does it protect the skin from cancer and signs of aging, it also keeps the skin from overworking to protect itself during the day.
“Reapply,” advises Neidigk. “Depending on the sunscreen, every 4-6 hours will do you good.”
Parks adds that SPF really counts. “A lot of people count their makeup having an SPF of 10 or 15 as a good sunscreen for their face and really it’s not. I’d say to have a minimum of at least a 30 to ideally maybe even a 50.”
Dr. Paras Ramolia of Abilene Dermatology agrees. He said the biggest mistake people make when it comes to overall skin health is skipping sunscreen in the winter and cloudy weather, even if you are staying indoors.
When to Schedule an Appointment
If have questions about your skincare, or you’re simply ready to move to the next level, arrange a personalized consultation.
“You would come in and tell me what your goal is for what you want your skin to be like,” Neidigk says. “So, we would set up a treatment plan.”
If you are ready to dive into the deep-end of skincare, a consultation helps you learn about heavier treatment options. Neidigk recommends starting with microdermabrasion, or chemical peels. Parks handles the medical grade treatments such as injections, in addition to laser treatments targeting signs of aging, acne scars and sun damage.
“A laser peel is like mowing the grass,” Parks said. “You’re basically shaving down the top of the skin, where a ProFractional is kind of like aerating your yard. You’re getting all these little micro holes so that it can kind of come together and get thicker and more full.”
On the more serious (i.e. cancer prevention) side of skincare, Ramolia says there isn’t a hard and fast rule about when or how often you should see your dermatologist. However, if you are worried or if something is bothersome to you, you should make an appointment for a visual exam. Especially if you have an “ugly duckling” spot that doesn’t look like the others.
After all, you only get one set of skin; might as well care for it properly.
Find out how to listen to the full MedSpa interview at abilenescene.com/free-gift.