Category Archives: how to

3 Essential Steps to Skin That’s Forever Young

Oh, hello Beautiful!

I recently wrote this article for my organization, DuPage Medical Group. Thought I’d share it with you.

Until next time, stay fabulous, my friends!


3 Essential Steps to Youthful Skin

By: Elizabeth Weiler, LE

TOPICS: SKIN HEALTH
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 Whether you’re beginning skin damage prevention in your 20s and 30s, or improving age-related changes and maintaining the condition of your skin in your 40s and beyond, the services at DMG Aesthetics can help you achieve and maintain radiant skin no matter your age.

Our licensed aesthetician, Elizabeth Weiler,offers her professional advice on how to sustain youthful skin by following the ladder metaphor, along with a helpful visual for planning and navigating results-oriented options for age management.

3 Essential Steps to Anti-Aging by Elizabeth Weiler MBA, LE, CAC, CLT

Step 1: Daily  

The first and most important step on the ladder for maintaining healthy and glowing skin year-round is daily use of the core four products.

The following products create a skincare routine that protects your skin from damage during the day and repairs damage at night. Without these core skincare products, your skin is highly vulnerable to environmental damage every day.

The Core Four

1. Sunscreen (SPF) – AM Only

No matter your age, it’s a good idea to apply sunscreen daily, even on cloudy days and days when you don’t plan to go outside. To streamline your routine in the morning, you may opt for a sunscreen that also moisturizes.

Revision Skincare’s Intellishade is a popular SPF product, which is an all-in-one anti-aging daily sunscreen and moisturizer. Another SPF option is ISDIN Eryfotona Actinica, which is a light-weight, easy to apply mineral sunscreen.

2. Antioxidants – AM (PM’s as indicated)

High quality, topical antioxidants can help protect your skin from environmental damage. Many formulas such as a vitamin C serum, are proven to visibly brighten, reduce redness and stimulate collagen in the skin.

Skinmedica’s Lumivive system is a great option for almost all skin types. It includes a nighttime antioxidant serum to stimulate mitochondria to repair damage as you sleep.

3. Growth Factors and Peptides – AM/PM

Once you turn 40, it is helpful to use a growth factor/peptide serum twice a day, which heals any accumulated skin damage over the years.

When it comes to growth factor and peptide serums, TNS® Essential Serum and Neocutis MicroSerum are both a great choice.

The TNS Essential Serum is popular due to its powerful, multi-tasking technology that includes a combination of antioxidants, peptides, HA plumping spheres, brightening Alpha Arbutin and the highest concentration of topical growth factors available.

Neocutis’ MicroSerum is an unrivaled blend of newly developed peptides that is proven to stimulate three different types of collagen to support the structure of the skin.

4. Retinol or Retinoids – PM Only

Step four, which typically starts at 30 years or older, is incorporating a retinol on a nightly basis.

Retinols and growth factor serums are well known for reducing fine lines, brightening, smoothing, restoring and repairing the skin.

One of the most popular retinols is SkinMedica’s Retinol .25 (for sensitive or dry skin) and SkinMedica’s Retinol .5 (for normal skin).

For recommendations on what skincare products you should be using, please schedule a consultation online or by calling your local DMG Aesthetics.

Step 2: Quarterly

In this step, photorejuvenation and/or a wrinkle-reducing treatment such as BOTOX Cosmetic is recommended at least three to four times a year. 

Photorejuvenation treatments can instantly help improve the quality of your skin with results lasting up to several years. The Forever Young BBL is a common quarterly photorejuvenation treatment.

The Forever Young BBL is a specialized light-based treatment that increases brightness, smoothness and evens skin tone. This BBL treatment not only improves and maintains your skin tone, but can also be used to rejuvenate the skin on the neck, chest, hands or any other area of the body.

A wrinkle-relaxing injection (neuromodulator), such as BOTOX Cosmetic, Dysport or Xeomin, works by relaxing the muscles that cause lines and wrinkles. For that reason, injections such as BOTOX can help prevent deep dermal creases, folds and wrinkles or prevent wrinkles you already have from deepening over time.

Wrinkle-relaxing injections are typically repeated every three to four months to maintain the effect, as recommended by the FDA.

Step 3: Annually

For men and women in their 40s and beyond, receiving a laser resurfacing treatment approximately one to two times per year can help reverse and prevent age-related changes in your skin.

An innovative laser treatment called the Halo™Laser is a popular choice. It is a dual-fractionated laser treatment that reduces enlarged pores, lines, wrinkles and mild acne scarring. It also treats visible sun damage as well as deeper sun damage we can’t see. The Halo™ laser is unique because of its low downtime and highly customizable settings that can be personalized for a wide variety of needs.   

For example, a lighter Halo™ treatment is ideal for those who want to maintain a youthful and radiant complexion. A more intense treatment is beneficial for those who have deep lines and textures. A Halo laser and BBL combination treatment is common for those with stubborn pigmentation, or those who want ‘wow’ results.

Finally, because we lose volume in our faces over time, treatments with an FDA filler can help to reverse deep dermal creases and the look of sagging skin, without surgery.

When it comes to filler injections, Sculptra Aesthetic or Juvederm Voluma XC are often recommended because of their long-lasting, lifting results. For a list of fillers we offer, please visit our non-surgical procedure page.

Start working towards your healthiest and most youthful-looking skin today by scheduling a consultation online, or by calling your local DMG Aesthetics

To schedule a consult with Elizabeth Weiler, call our Glen Ellyn DMGA location at 630-545-7840.

 

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Hydration Hacks: 3 ways to get more ‘Bang for your Buck’ from your Hydrating Serum

Everyone swears by hydrating serums, but when you jumped on the bandwagon, did feel just a smidge underwhelmed?  

Do you have a Hydrating Serum that’s just “eh”? Or, do you want to get more from your already-awesome hydrating serum (because, who doesn’t?!)? Read on for my Hydration Hacks and be sure to check out my tips for choosing the right Hydration serum Product below. 


The Product Pro’s 3 Top Hydration Hacks for getting the most out of your HA Serum:

1. Be Quick After Cleansing

Apply hydrating serums to damp skin. Think about it: if Hyaluronic Acid (HA) binds water to the skin to keep things hydrated, starting out with more water in the skin will get you ahead of the game.

It’s said that your skin will hold up to 8 TIMES more water when you apply product while water is still present in the skin. This means: don’t let the skin get “bone dry” after cleansing. Get your products on right away.

TheProductPro.wordpress.com

Don’t let this be your skin before putting your hydrating product on!


2. Missed the window? 

MIST to get the Most (out of your product).

If you absolutely must blow-dry your hair first, -or- if your skin feels super tight/ dry right after cleansing (regardless of how quickly you get to applying your products), try misting with a thermal spring water or hydration mist before (and after) your hydrating serum application.

This will turbo-boost your serum’s super power of hydration. You can even mist during the day to refresh makeup.

My all-time favorite mists:

La Roche Posay Thermal Spring Water

Glo Minerals Moist Hydration Mist

Avène Thermal Spring Water

Product Pro Approved: Rich in beneficial minerals like selenium and pH-perfect: I think these are the some of BEST mists out there

No mist within reach? Lightly dampen fingertips with water before/during application. This helps to increase the skin’s capacity (and the serum’s) to hold that valuable water/hydration in.


3. Don’t stop there.

^Speaking of holding water in, be sure to apply HA serums just before a moisturizer. You’ll realize the full benefits of HA only when you layer something creamy on top.

This means using it as the last step right before your day cream or night cream. Think of your HA like a Moisturizer-Super-Charger, pulling the moisture from your day or night cream into your skin and holding it in for you – helping you get hydrated and stay that way.

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Think of HA Serum and Moisturizer like^


But which product should you pick?

…A few notes on what to look for in your hydrating serum:

First off, make sure your serum features hyaluronic acid (HA). This water-loving ingredient binds water in the skin and helps you hold onto it, smoothing, and hydrating the skin without heaviness, greasiness or ‘goop’. It’s said that HA holds 1000 times it’s weight in water, which is what we would want in a humectant, moisturizer-super-charger.

You can find the most common derivative of it HA on an ingredient deck as “sodium hyaluronate“… this is a form that can get into the skin (has a lower molecular weight) which is good – because if we’re going to bother to use something, it better be able to get in, right?


My all-time fave hydrating Serum has 5 different forms of HA and even stimulates your skin to make its own HA: Read about SkinMedica HA5 Rejuvenating Hydrator here.

Check out some before-and-after photos that I took using my favorite HA Serum here.


Try these proven tricks and get more ‘bang for your buck’ out of your hydrating serum – and in the meantime, stay fabulous, my friends!

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10 Ways To Prepare For Your Laser Resurfacing Treatment

There are many different types of great resurfacing modalities and brands, and the treatment goes by many names. Fraxel, Fractionated (DOT) CO2, Erbium (Microlaserpeel or Arctic Peel, for example), and Halo (ablative and non-ablative fractional mix), are just a few of the great technologies available to resurface and ‘anti-age’.

These fantastic treatments can be performed at many levels for varying lengths of social downtime. Depending on the type and level of your treatment, some of the below guidelines may or may not apply to you. Read on for a few things that I go by when preparing a patient (or myself) for resurfacing, but always, ALWAYS follow the specific instructions given to you by your provider. 

Laser treatment reviews at theproductpro.wordpress.com

 


E’s Top Ten:

Preparing For Your Laser Resurfacing Treatment

1) Use a Retin A (generic: Tretinoin) in the months beforehand. Your provider can write you a prescription or dispense this out of the office. Your provider may ask you to stop using this anywhere from two weeks to a few days before your procedure.

2) Use a topical growth factor and/or peptide blend topical product. Using highly stabilized and potent healing serums like TNS Essential Serum, TNS Recovery Complex, or Neocutis Microserum will help to get your skin in gear for the healing process. The more prepared your skin is for treatment, the quicker your recovery will be, and you’ll likely have a more predictable -and potentially better- outcome.

3) Avoid Sun Exposure, and wear a broad spectrum SPF daily.

4) Keep your provider in the know. Let your provider know if you have any auto-immune or other health issues, allergies, or upcoming vacations (i.e., upcoming sun exposure, or if you’re not going to be around for follow ups, etc). Also be sure to let them know if you get cold sores.

5) If your provider wrote you a prescription for an anti-viral, begin this before treatment as directed. (Very important) Also fill any other prescriptions with plenty of time to spare before your treatment, in case you have any issues or hold-ups at the pharmacy.

6) If applicable, prepare your vinegar soak so it’s ready when you want it. Read more about that here.

7) Pick up any necessary post-care products. Your provider will recommend or give you products to use. DO NOT add or omit any products. Resist this urge!

8) Find or buy a zippered or button up-and-down top so you can remove it easily afterward. You may also want to locate your spare, cruddier pillow cases so when you hit the hay you won’t get ointment on your good linens.

9) Make your follow-up appointments. Your provider may want to see you multiple times during the healing process. These are important check-in’s to make sure you’re healing properly and answer any questions that come up. Making them in advance ensures you get the most convenient times for you.

10) Plan fun stuff to do at home while recovering. Have you been meaning to organize your closet but never have the time? Use your social downtime (no matter how short) to accomplish something great! Or, if it’s more your style, have yourself an 80’s movie marathon. :)


I hope some of these tips help as you plan your laser procedure! Remember to always, always follow the guidelines given to you by your provider, and prepare to enjoy your firming, smoothing, pore-reducing (and fabulous) results!

Until next time, stay fabulous my friends!

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Life Savers: The Best Products To Use After A Peel – For Dry and Mature Skin Types

If you’ve ever had a chemical peel (maybe you’re recovering from one now) you know that the days after the treatment can be interesting… From trying to apply makeup over dry, flaky skin to explaining to co-workers or significant others that no, you don’t have dried milk on your chin, and yes, this is supposed to be happening.

 

how to het through a chemical peel at theproductpro.wordpress.com

“No, I didn’t just have a chemical peel, did YOU?”

Besides trying to look as normal as possible, it’s very important to use gentle products that won’t irritate the skin -or worse for social scenarios- cause additional dryness. 

I thought I’d share my favorite moisturizer and recovery products to use post-procedure, but as always: be sure to follow the instructions given to you by your skin care professional or doctor, and always use plenty of SPF!


 

The Best Post-Peel Products for Dry or Mature Skin Types

Best Moisturizers after a Chemical Peel

“Water! …I mean, Moisturizer! …Must. Find. Moisturizer.”

Neocutis BioSerum  While I believe everyone should use a growth factor all the time, BioSerum is one of my favorites for drier skin conditions because of its elegantly milky consistency. Neocutis’ most potent blend of growth factors, this hylauronic acid (humectant) rich serum comforts and calms while speeding up the recovery process.

La Mer CRÈME DE LA MER While I myself am not aware of any data to support the efficacy of the seaweed based “Miracle Broth™” that makes this product so well-known, I can vouch for its protective, skin barrier qualities. Warm it between clean hands before applying on fragile skin (it spreads easier that way). Enjoy the experience as you smoothe this somewhat fragrant, decadent, oil-based Creme on to reinforce the skin’s barrier and prevent transepidermal water loss (TEWL).

SkinMedica Ceramide Treatment Cream Formulted with skinmedica’s famous (and proven) growth factors, this decadent -but not too heavy- cream heals, protects, and is also one of my favorites for daily winter anti-aging/moisturizing.

Obagi Hydrate Luxe This staple product should be in your cabinet right now! A more-emollient version of Obagi’s ultra-popular Hydrate formula, Hydrate Luxe contains the same fabulous ability to deliver moisture to the dermis consistently for 8 hours!

Dermalogica Barrier Repair I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: This unique anhydrous (waterless) moisturizer has just about saved my life in the days after exfoliation. Rich in protecting and barrier-reinforcing essential fatty acids, this moisturizer is a favorite of chemical peel clients and dry skin types alike.

BONUS: Thanks to its makeup primer consistency, it smoothes flawlessly over flaky skin, fine lines and pores to disguise and moisturize. It feels like satin, and elegantly ‘glues’ flakes and peelies down so you can go on with your day.

 

 

Dermalogica Barrier Repair at theproductpro.wordpress.com

Barrier Repair: part lipid-barrier-reinforcer and part makeup primer!

May the Post-Peel Force be With You! And be sure to watch for my next editions of Life Savers: The best post-peel products for Normal, Oily and Acne-Prone, and “Trouble Spots”. And until next time, stay fabulous my friends!

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Life Savers: The Best Products To Use After A Peel – for Oily and Acne-Prone Skin

If you’ve ever had a chemical peel (maybe you’re recovering from one now) you know that the days after the treatment can be interesting… From trying to apply makeup over dry, flaky skin to explaining to co-workers or significant others that no, you don’t have dried milk on your chin, and yes, this is supposed to be happening.

 

how to het through a chemical peel at theproductpro.wordpress.com

“No, I didn’t just have a chemical peel, did YOU?”

Besides trying to look as normal as possible, it’s very important to use gentle products that won’t irritate the skin -or worse for social scenarios- cause additional dryness. 

I thought I’d share my favorite moisturizer and recovery products to use post-procedure, but as always: be sure to follow the instructions given to you by your skin care professional or doctor, and always use plenty of SPF!


The Best Post-Peel Products for Oily or Acne-Prone Skin Types

LaRoche Posay Thermal Spring Water This versatile product is much more than a can of spray water. Rich in restoring elements like selenium, The water from the thermal springs in LaRoche Posay France has been used historically to treat burn victims, wounds, and critical skin disorders.. It’s neutral pH and delicate mister makes it a gentle refresher, toner, and a great way to set mineral make up, even on a daily basis.

Skinmedica TNS Recovery Complex This potent mixture of Human Growth Factors layers under moisturizers and makeup to accelerate the healing process. A light gel formula, it absorbs quickly for a clean finish. This product is also great to use daily for anti-aging, whether you are post procedure or not!

Skinmedica UltraSheer Moisturizer This oil-free, sheer moisturizer won’t cause breakouts, nor will it leave you feeling ‘eh’ in the moisturizing-department, as some lightweight moisturizers will. This potent formula absorbs quickly and boosts the skin’s ability to protect itself with multiple forms of Vitamin C and oil-soluble E (antioxidants).

No Break Out Zone: Ultra Sheer and Hydrate are perfect moisture for anyone who wants a matte, clean finish

No Break Out Zone: Ultra Sheer and Hydrate are perfect moisture for anyone who wants a matte, clean finish

Obagi Hydrate This go-to for clean-finish, medium-weight matte moisturizer is perf’ for all of you acne-prone beauties. In my many experiences over the years with Hydrate, I feel confident claiming that it will NOT break you out. I repeat: It will not make you break out.

It’s a great medium-weight, middle-of-the-road consistency moisturizer for oilier types that still need hydration. The unique time release formula actually releases moisture to the dermis -yep, way down there- consistently over the course of 8 hours! Read my old-school post on it here. 


May the Force be With You! And be sure to watch for my next editions of Life Savers: The best post-peel products for All Skin Types, Dry and Mature, and “Trouble Spots”. And until next time, stay fabulous my friends!

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Life Savers: The Best Products To Use After A Peel – For All Skin Types

If you’ve ever had a chemical peel (maybe you’re recovering from one now) you know that the days after the treatment can be interesting… From trying to apply makeup over dry, flaky skin to explaining to co-workers or significant others that no, you don’t have dried milk on your chin, and yes, this is supposed to be happening.

 

how to het through a chemical peel at theproductpro.wordpress.com

“No, I didn’t just have a chemical peel, did YOU?”

Besides trying to look as normal as possible, it’s very important to use gentle products that won’t irritate the skin -or worse for social scenarios- cause additional dryness. 

I thought I’d share my favorite moisturizer and recovery products to use post-procedure, but as always: be sure to follow the instructions given to you by your skin care professional or doctor, and always use plenty of SPF!


Best for All Skin Types:

Dermalogica Barrier Repair This anhydrous (waterless) moisturizer has just about saved my life in the days after exfoliation. It smoothes over any skin type to disguise and moisturize dry skin, and feels like satin! It also delivers a powerful punch of lasting comfort and healing thanks to it’s UltraCalming™ Complex formulation.  A great product to include in your skin care ‘wardrobe’, this lipid-barrier-reinforcer is a marvelous makeup primer as well!

Dermalogica Barrier Repair at theproductpro.wordpress.com

Just had a peel? Meet your new best friend.

Skinmedica TNS Recovery Complex This potent mixture of Human Growth Factors layers under moisturizers and makeup to accelerate the healing process. A light gel formula, it absorbs quickly for a clean finish. This product is also great to use daily for anti-aging, whether you are post procedure or not!

I *heart* TNS Recovery Complex!

LaRoche Posay Thermal Spring Water This versatile product is much more than a can of spray water. Rich in restoring elements like selenium, The water from the thermal springs in LaRoche Posay France has been used historically to treat burn victims, wounds, and critical skin disorders.. It’s neutral pH and delicate mist application make it a gentle refresher, toner, and a great way to set mineral make up, even on a daily basis.

Neocutis BioSerum Neocutis’ most potent blend of growth factors, this serum comforts and calms while speeding up the recovery process. With a slightly more milky consistency than TNS recovery complex, this serum might be a good choice if you normally lean towards the dryer side. I recommend using a growth factor as part of a daily regimen for anti-aging (also see TNS Recovery, above).

Obagi Hydrate This go-to for clean-finish, matte moisturizer is perf’ for all skin types. Easy to layer over serums or under SPF, Obagi Hydrate is a great one-size-fits-all and easy to incorporate into existing regimens. The unique time release formula actually releases moisture to the dermis -yep, way down there- consistently over the course of 8 hours! Read my old-school post on it here. 


 

May the Force be With You! And be sure to watch for my next editions of Life Savers: The best post-peel products for Dry and Mature, Oily and Acne-Prone, and “Trouble Spots”. And until next time, stay fabulous my friends!

 


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5 Things to AVOID after a Chemical Peel Treatment

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This is one of my favorite Birthday Cards ever!

Despite some really awesome (in my opinion!) post-care instruction sheets,  every once in a while we’ll get a phone call from a post-peel patient in distress. These clients, no matter how aesthetically-seasoned, occasionally forget the warnings of their providers, or maybe could have underestimated some post-peel sensitivity (maybe just a bit.) Here are 5 things to surely avoid that are sometimes forgotten in the days after a chemical peel:

(-and please always follow the instructions given to you by your skincare office-)

1) Over-moisturizing:

If you over-moisturize, you can make the peeling skin too soft, which can  cause it to come off before it’s ready. This can leave the fresh, baby-like skin underneath exposed and possibly compromised. An additional disadvantage of over-moisturizing includes possibly s-l-o-w-i-n-g the peeling stage… and if you’ve ever had a peel, you know that nobody wants that!! Use just enough moisturizer to make you feel comfortable.

2) Hair-removal:

This includes laser-hair removal on any peeled area (you’ll want to follow your skin-care office’s specific instructions, but I wouldn’t treat someone with laser for at least 10-14 days).  Waxing and shaving are also off-limits because they can remove the skin, so be sure to avoid both. If you have to, simply tweeze.

3) Picking!!:

This one is easier said than done FOR SURE. Its hard not to pick off any little flakes that might be staring back at you in the mirror. But, try to remember that the flakey dead statum-corneum is actually protecting skin that isn’t necessarily ready to be exposed yet. So, even though its annoying…hands off!

4) Excessive Sweating:

Depending on the strength of the treatment, some peels will cause the top layer of skin to get crispy or tight like a thin plastic-wrap… and this could trap sweat underneath the skin. A little bit usually doesn’t cause an issue, but if you visit your usual hot yoga class, you might end up looking like a freshly waxed car after a rain.  Sweat gets trapped under the skin and forms little pockets that look just like those little beads of water… but these droplets don’t wipe off… Yikes!

If this happens, don’t panic- they only look alarming, and aren’t harmful. Give your skin care expert a call and ask how they recommend handling it.

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Yup, it kinda looks like this…

  5) Vacation-Related Activities:

You’ll want to avoid several activities that I like to classify under: ‘Things you’d likely do on Vacay’. These things include Sun Exposure, Swimming (keeping skin wet for extended periods of time AND Chlorine) and having treatments like Facials.- yes, even the ‘natural’ ones.

Remember that we want to treat the skin as if it’s very sensitive in the days after a peel, even if it feels or looks normal. Folllow your provider’s recommendations for post-care and continued treatments, and play it safe with products, sun, and picking, even if it’s tough. Your skin will thank you!!!

Here’s a great link to a super-compliant, 5 Star non-picker friend who’s documented her experience: check it out!

And always be sure to play by the rules for less irritation and great results from your exfoliation!

Happy Peeling!

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La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water… for all kinds of hotness!

Drug-Store Shout Out!

Thought I’d share one of my faves for comforting the skin post-laser, post-chemical peel, or to refresh and cool when you are just feeling HOT! (Although we know you’re always hot! :))
La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water, seen here for $13.
We used to carry this at the plastic surgery institute I worked for. We loved it! The company tells us that it has a pretty neutral pH, (great as a toner) and it’s rich in Selenium, which is to help skin heal faster! Pick it up the next time you’re in need… saw this at Walgreens.

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