How much sunscreen do you use on your face? A dab or two on your cheeks and forehead? A nickel-sized blob? I have often read that experts recommend using one tablespoon on the face and two tablespoons for the body. Last week while I was making Linzer cookies, I was measuring out butter and one tablespoon looked like a pretty big lump to apply to my face. It got me thinking. I know that butter is 100% fat so perhaps a creamy lotion would absorb more easily. I squeezed out a tablespoon of my favorite sunscreen and dumped it on a saucer. As you can see from the photo, its quite an impressive puddle of cream.
Check it out! Eight days after my lunch date with an IPL laser, my skin looks wonderful, even without make-up. Its smooth, with a youthful type of radience and even rosy skin tone. Gone are the enlarged pores and it even seems firmer. I really love the results and they were worth the healing time. However IPL is not something that should be done right before a big event like a wedding or a highschool reunion. I would schedule it at least two weeks before a special day for a maximum glow. Although the recommendations are to resume normal skin care ( eg Retin A, chemical sunscreens) within three days, I had a few red spots so I waited a week. I just started back on my Retin A and had no problems. … Continue Reading… →
By Day 4 I decided to use a Buff Puff to remove the freckle debris. I can see clear signs of improvement in the skin.
It looks poreless and feels very soft. There are a few red areas of irritation which I can easily cover with a dab of concealer. IPL is recommended for early signs of aging and I can now see why. I have been using Retin-A for more than five months and a YAG laser to burn off larger freckles. The heavy lifting done, the IPL laser was able to gently but effectively refine my skin.
The next morning I was happy to see the red splotches were gone, but now there were a shower of tiny brown spots on my nose and cheeks. These are exploded freckles and areas of discoloration. ( See photo)
I know this means that my skin will have a pinker more even color, but at this point its disconcerting. They are supposed to fall off in a day or two.
While the after effects of the IPL laser is far less severe than a traditional laser, I wonder if the concept of “lunchtime laser” has been ovesold. I don’t know where you work, but I think my colleagues and clients would notice my new spots and splotches. Next time I am going to have this type of anti-aging procedure … Continue Reading… →
I’m really happy with my Retin-A treatd skin but I’ve become greedy. I asked my anti-aging guru, Dr Marmur of Mount Sinai, for micro-dermabrasion and she suggested the IPL laser — aka “the lunchtime laser”. Unlike the industrial strength CO2 laser, the IPL is non-ablative which means that it does not remove whole layers of skin. This makes healing much easier and faster.
Using bursts of light of different wave lengths, the IPL laser can remove freckles, brown patches, redness, and enlarged pores. As an extra bonus, IPL produces a bit of tightening for a more youthful contour. It is especially effective for signs of sun aging when you’re in your 30’s and 40’s.
I was told to stop using Retin- A three days before the procedure. One hour before my appointment, I applied lidocaine cream to numb the area. Remembering my first painful laser exerience, I literally frosted my face with the numbing cream. Dr Marmur covered my eyes … Continue Reading… →
Waterproof/ Water-resistant- Unlike fragrance-free or alcohol free which are pretty self explanatory, waterproof/water resistant is a bit more complex. Even an industrial strength sunscreen will not be able to deliver on its promise if its washed off by perspiration or a dip in a pool. So waterproof/water resistant ( and its cousin sweatproof) means that this sunscreen will have some staying power on the skin. However its ability to withstand moisture is not permanent- which is why the usual recommendation is to reapply sunscreen every few hours.
Bottom Line: waterproof/water resistant is an important feature if you’re using sunscreen around a pool or beach or in hot weather. When its cool and dry, water resistance is not a key factor– but remember as long as there is sunlight, even in winter, you need a daily sunscreen.
#6. SPF — This is the big Kahuna of sunscreen terms. Seeing “SPF” on a package gives you confidence in a product- maybe too much confidence.
Here’s how it works: SPF stands for “sun protection factor”. An SPF 15 means that you can stay in the sun 15X longer without burning. If you start burning after 10 minutes of sun exposure, then a 15 SPF means you can spend 10 x 15 =150 minutes in the sun without burning. But this sounds better than it is.
Many factors affect how much sun protection you actually have in real time– how much you use, if you’re near water or sands which reflects light, as well as heat, humidity and time of year. To me the most interesting things I learned is an SPF 30 is not twice as good a 15 SPF. Who knew?
I think that the best way to view an SPF is as proof that this product has actually been … Continue Reading… →
Chemical/Physical Sunscreen — Chemical sunscreens ( like Parsol) absorb UV rays before they can damage skin cells. Physical sunscreens such as zinc oxide stay on the skin’s surface and reflect UV radiation away from the body. But wait, there’s more.
Most chemical sunscreens such as Homosalate and methoxycinnamate ( that trips lightly off the tongue) protect against UVB rays. However there are a two chemcial sunscreens Parsol( Avobenzone) and Mexoryl which protect against UV A rays. This is why most sunscreens have so many active ingredients– no one ingredient can do it all.
Physical sunblocks are made of minerals such as zinc ocide and titanium dioxide that can block both UV A and UVB rays. However, how well they work depends on the formulation. The thick, white zinc oxide paste is highly effective, but certainly not something you can use all over the body. Micronized forms of these mineral sunscreens look fine but … Continue Reading… →