Repairing Summer Skin – Part 1

The sun is setting sooner, the nights are getting cooler, we’re back to work, back to school, and back to our everyday schedules….it all must mean one thing: the dogs days of summer are over!  Now we’re looking in the mirror seeing all the damage we did to our skin while basking in the warm sun at the beach for the last three months.  The dullness, the dryness, the uneven skin tone, pigmentation, and all those dreaded signs of aging – wrinkles, laxity, etc.

With the Holidays fast approaching its time to repair that damage and get that luminous skin back before the parties start to roll in.  But how do I do that you ask?  Imperfections such as sun spots, scars, fine lines and blemishes often only affect the top layers of skin, so by removing those layers we help to remove those imperfections.  With those layers gone we can deliver antioxidants, peptides, and nutrients into the dermal layer where the live cells are found that are able to cause a change in your skin quickly and more effectively.  Microdermabrasion and Chemical Peels are deep resurfacing treatments that do just that.  Read on to find out more about them.


Microdermabrasion is a gentle mechanical resurfacing treatment that uses aluminum oxide crystals and a machine to remove the top layer of skin.  This treatment removes the dead skin cells that build up on the surface of your skin which cause that dull, lackluster look and prevent the beneficial ingredients from your products from getting deeper into the skin.  The skin interprets the removal of this top layer of skin as an injury and quickly sends new healthy cells to replace the lost ones.  During this process the skins visible imperfections such as sun damage, fine lines, and blemishes are diminished and the beneficial ingredients from your products are able to penetrate more effectively.  Repeat treatments influence the way the lower layers of skin grow and remove deeper imperfections over time.  So expect to have this treatment done in a series anywhere from 7-21 days apart.

Light Chemical Peels

There are many different types of peel options, but all of them essentially do the same thing, like Microdermabrasion they erase skin imperfections by removing layers of damaged skin.  Peels are a less abrasive method than microdermabrasion but a much more active one.  Enzyme peels are my favorite, but are the mildest of the options.  Enzymes eat away at the cells to remove them; imagine a little pac man munching away on that top layer.  Many Enzymes come from Fruits (Papaya, Pumpkin, and Pineapple are a few) so this is often a great option for clients who are looking for organic treatments.  AHA Peels, or Alpha Hydroxy Acids, include Lactic, Glycolic, Malic and Tartaric Peels.  AHA’s dissolve the glue that hold the cells together to remove that top layer.  Your skin care goals and needs, skin sensitivity, and lifestyle, will determine on which Peel is best for you.  These light chemical peels may cause light peeling or flaking that could last anywhere from 3-5 days, but because they are mild, like Microdermabrasion, will typically require more than one treatment to achieve the desired result.

Medium/Deep Peels

You’ve done Microdermabrasion, you’ve done Light Peels and you still haven’t seen the results your want? It might be time to try something stronger.  TCA Peels, or Trichloroacetic Acid, is a stronger peel that will penetrate deeper and cause more drastic results.  With a TCA Peel expect at least a week of down time, as your face will begin to shed the skin 1-3 days post peel and the intense peeling often last 3-5 days.  For some, one TCA peel is enough, for others they will do two or three every 1 to 3 months apart.  A Jessners Peel, which is a blend of Lactic Acid, Salicylic Acid, and Resorcinol, can also deliver similar results, or be combined with a TCA or AHA peel to achieve a deeper peel.

To determine the best resurfacing treatment for yourself you should speak with a skin care professional to discuss your skin concerns, skin care history, daily skin care regimen and current lifestyle.