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April 18 2014

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3 posts tagged "Retin A"

Retin-A Redux

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This column features weekly tips and advice from a revolving cast of industry leaders, on hand to discuss your beauty dilemmas, from blemishes to Botox. To submit a question, e-mail celia
_ellenberg@condenast.com.

A friend of mine with impeccable skin recently told me that she uses Retin-A—not for acne control but for its antiaging benefits. Is this safe—and does it work?

Retin-A (Tretinoin) is a drug commonly used for acne. However, it has been also used for the treatment of wrinkles and photo-aging. This is actually the only drug for which there has been solid evidence that it works on the molecular level. Several clinical studies showed that Retin-A can help reduce wrinkles, exfoliate the skin, and redistribute melanin, resulting in lighter skin. However, it can irritate the skin and cause redness and skin flaking, particularly in women with sensitive skin. Thus, for those with sensitive skin, other forms of topical vitamin A like retinol or retinyl palmitate are recommended. Retinol is a less potent form of vitamin A and it is found in many cosmetic products—the over-the-counter cousins of Retin-A.

Dr. Marko Lens is a consultant plastic and reconstructive surgeon and an internationally renowned expert in the field of skin cancer and skin aging. A fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons, Dr. Lens works out of his own private practice in London, where his extensive research into the process of skin aging led him to create Zelens, a range of advanced cosmeceuticals that utilize potent plant-derived ingredients spiked with biotechnological actives.

Photo: Courtesy of OrthoNeutrogena

Don’t Pick Your Skin; Pick An Acne Wash

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This column features weekly tips and advice from a revolving cast of industry leaders, on hand to discuss your beauty dilemmas, from blemishes to Botox. To submit a question, e-mail celia_ ellenberg@condenast.com.

I sometimes get blackheads in “inopportune places,” like inside my nostril, on my lip line, or in my ear and they don’t seem to go away. Why is this happening and what can I do to prevent it from persisting?

Blackheads or the more medically correct term comedone, develop when a skin pore becomes clogged or blocked by bacteria, sebum, and dead skin cells. While they commonly form in the T-zone of the face where most sebaceous glands are located, they can essentially form anywhere and treatment is not always easy: unfortunately, you cannot simply wash them away. The most important thing to avoid is picking your skin. Instead, begin by changing your routine. Acne therapy is designed to prevent tomorrow’s breakout, so it’s good to start by adding a cleanser with a little glycolic or salicylic acid. This will unstick the glue between your skin cells and help to loosen the blackheads. If that doesn’t work. you may need to see your dermatologist to begin using a prescription medication like Retin-A or Tazorac. Finally, mild chemical peels and mechanical extraction (done by a professional, not your fingertips) can make all the difference in achieving clear skin.

A member of the American Academy of Dermatology and an Associate Clinical Professor of Dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital, Debra J. Wattenberg has a cosmetic dermatology practice in New York City, where she specializes in antiaging cosmetic procedures, as well as the prevention and early detection of skin cancer. In addition to making regular television appearances as a skincare expert, she has served as a consultant to some of the leading cosmetic companies in the world, including Procter & Gamble’s Dove advisory council, Medicis, Allergan, and La Roche-Posay.

Photo: Courtesy of Dermalogica

Dr. Murad Breaks Down Cystic Acne

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This column features weekly tips and advice from a revolving cast of industry leaders, on hand to discuss your beauty dilemmas, from blemishes to Botox. The following query was culled from a private stock, but we’ll be accepting readers’ questions soon.

I have cystic acne and have tried everything to get rid of it (short of Accutane) but no dice. I’ve resolved that covering up the scars is the only way to go but need a good medicated tint cover-up that won’t clog my pores and make me break out even more. Any suggestions?

There are multiple causes for cystic acne. If after using all topical products, topical medications like antibiotics and Retin A, and internal antibiotics and internal supplements with zinc, vitamin C, and purifying herbs like yellow dock and burdock root, with no improvement, I recommend that you review options with your physician and request a hormone evaluation as well.

A board-certified dermatologist with a private practice in El Segundo, California, Dr. Howard Murad is a trained pharmacist and an associate clinical professor of medicine (dermatology) at UCLA. With insights derived from treating a patient base of over 50,000 people, he developed his eponymous line of skincare products and has authored two books on the topics of aging and cellulite, respectively.

Photo: Andrew O’Toole / Retna