This post is sponsored by Schrader Facial Plastic Surgery. All opinions are my own.
I don’t know about most of you, but I have to admit I’m rather lazy about my skincare routine. Even though long gone are the occasional, college late nights that would overwhelm me into hitting the pillow before washing up: only to wake up with black-mascara-crusted eyes. Except now, what prevents me from sticking to a proper skincare ritual are the needs of my kids, which obviously always come first, followed by my husband’s, and then finally mine. (Maybe, unless there’s laundry to do, then the needs of laundry come before my skincare ritual can commence.)
Plus there are just so many options out there now. A plethora of expensive and inexpensive creams with complicated ingredients that you should have went to medical school to understand. Beauty-enhancement trends that are changing faster than you can click your mouse, and new high-tech procedures that frankly, surprise me.
In a nutshell, I’m thoroughly disgruntled by the fact that I probably don’t do what’s right for my skin; what to try and what to avoid. Do I know if I’m following the right steps in my every day skin care maintenance? Sure washing, moisturizing are important, but should the focus be on exfoliating and if so, how often? Are new skincare procedures important? If so, which ones?
It seems even with all sorts of information readily available, people still have unanswered questions, and by people, I mean me. Which is why I decided to ask a double board certified surgeon and facial plastic physician, Dr. Nicole Schrader of Schrader Plastic Surgery located in Princeton, New Jersey to tell Whimsical Thinkers readers about new industry developments, and what she thinks is important when it comes to skincare rituals.
We meet on a sunny August day at her office in Princeton. Dr. Schrader is youthful looking with stunning brown eyes and long thin bronze brown hair. The beauty Gods have bestowed her with the type of cheekbones and jawline poets of the past were bewitched by. She also has perfectly defined upper arms, that I obviously want to ask if are the byproduct of being in surgery rooms for hours, holding surgical scissors; but I know better.
Instead I ask: what do you think is essential to do for you skin?
“A day starts with a good wash,” says Dr. Schrader. “Everybody should wash their face twice a day in the morning and in the evening.”
Instantly, I pat myself on the back, because this step I follow consistently. Unless, as mentioned before kids or husband or laundry get in the way.
“The important ingredients to look out for are glycolic and lactic acid,” says Dr. Schrader. [Glycolic acid is a naturally occurring substance, that when used in skincare products offers many benefits to the skin, from rejuvenating to moisturizing]. “Cleopatra used to bathe herself in donkey milk to keep her skin pristine white without any blemishes,” says Dr. Schrader.
Great! I make a mental note to find myself a donkey immediately.
“I wash my face twice a day and I’m rigid about it. I moisturize my skin afterwards and then I put sunscreen on,” continues Dr. Schrader. “For exfoliating, I do a vitamin C scrub. Iit has grains in it. I use it four/five times a week in the shower. I use it on my face and chest. You want to use exfoliation because constant shedding and cell turnover preserves the skin. If you have layers of keratin on your skin, you can use the most beautiful cream, but it won’t penetrate.”
Forget the donkey, I think to myself. The road is clearly marked to the drugstore for that vitamin C-grain-infused scrub. That would justify the amount of money I spent on that expensive must-have moisturizer, which will finally penetrate through my keratin-packed pores.
“It’s also nice to do a facial to exfoliate the skin in a deeper way with microdermabrasion or a peel. Everybody should have one every three/four months,” adds Dr. Schrader. And I fall deep into depression, because I never get those!
“For skin care creams hydration is important. Hydration with vitamin C or also glycolic acid. So what you have in a wash can also be a good byproduct in the cream,” continues Dr. Schrader.
Check, check and more checks for myself. Here, I can’t help but feel ridiculously proud that my expensive moisturizer cream has all of those ingredients in it.
Next follows a lesson in skin care 101 that I perk up for.
“I would highly recommend anybody over 40 use RetinAI©,” says Dr. Schrader, “it increases cell turnover; meaning it sheds the old skin cells and gives room for fresher newer skin cells to come to the surface. There are three similar products RetinAI©, Retinaldehyde and retinol. Retinaldehyde and RetinAI© are pre-products to retinol, so they are usually less aggressive. Some of them are really mild. The problem sometimes with these products is that they are over the counter, and you don’t know the concentration. It might be mentioned in the label, but you don’t know if it’s an active component. The right percentage depends on how sensitive your skin is. That’s something you should rely on a skin specialist to tell you. There are products that are more reliable and your physician should be able to figure out which one would work best for you.” *
Phew, thanks my lucky stars that I have Dr. Schrader to tell me that!
“A lot depends on the type of skin you have and what is important for your skin type. Always best to check with your skincare professional. Sunscreen is essential. When considering your routine it should be the wash, the cream and then sunscreen. At least 50 SPF. You’ll be surprised how many people don’t do this.”
I wonder if I should tell her now that I’m one of those people? Instead I ask:
What is the most frequently asked service at the office?
“Right now it’s Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) for hair loss and skin care,” says Dr. Schrader. PRP is a new treatment in regenerative plastic surgery and dermatology for encouraging hair growth and promoting soft tissue-healing. It is commonly used for joint injury, tendonitis, shoulder, knee injections. Orthopedic physicians have been using it for years,” says Dr. Schrader “and we are using it now for hair loss. We are seeing really great results. It actually grows back hair. Not in everybody, of course, a lot of it is genetic, but generally clients are very happy with the results.”
According to Medical News Today the way PRP works is:
“A small blood sample is taken from the person being treated and put into a centrifuge that spins at high speed. This process separates platelets from other blood components. The concentration of platelets is then injected into the area of the person’s body that needs to be treated.”
What else is it used for?
“We are also using it for scar treatment, says Dr. Schrader. “I’ve also used it for acne scarring for somebody who has had bad adult acne all their life and it’s gotten worse. So it’s not only for the young generation, but for people in their 50s, 60s who are going through an issue. We use PRP to stimulate healing.”
This is all very valuable information for my father who has been suffering from hair loss since forever. I make a mental note to email him the article, and to all those other poor souls who suffer from the same condition.
What if you have both acne and wrinkles?
RetinAI© treats both
What about repairing sins of the past? What if you are 60 years old and you haven’t done anything? Or you are going through cancer or hair loss or anything that makes you think that skincare shouldn’t be on your radar? Or you are young and you think you have years ahead of you to take care of your skin, what’s one more day of not doing it? What if laundry is preventing you from washing your face?
“At least start with regularly washing your face, maybe add a moisturizer, sunscreen, you’ll be amazed how good you’ll feel about yourself,” shares Dr. Schrader.
It’s remarkable how true that statement really is. Even though I’m lazy most days, some days, when the household is quiet and all the chores are done, I actually look forward to washing my face, because it makes me feel good about myself.
Why did you get into the skin care business?
“I like to help people feel beautiful! It’s really special to me when a woman or a man walks out of my spa feeling more confident about themselves. It makes me feel proud.”