AM Regimen

First Step: Cleanse & Tone

Cleansers

Ideally a cleanser should remove impurities and make-up without damaging the skin, as well as controlling the sebum production. Reducing sebum production is of paramount importance, particularly in oily skin as sebum reduces the efficacy of topical agents and may increase the rate of complications following procedures.

For normal or dry skin a light cream cleanser or lotion is needed preferably with a moisturising formula to gently cleanse the skin and leave it smoothly textured. A good combination would be hydroxy acids which remove dead skin cells, along with soothing and hydrating botanical extracts such as chamomile, aloe or organic sweet orange oil.

For sensitive skin including post laser resurfacing, microdermabrasion, or chemical peels, a non-irritating, moisturising, fragrance-free, non-allergenic and emollient containing cleanser is recommended.

Toners

Is a toner necessary?

If makeup use is heavy or face feels oily, a toner can remove any last traces of debris and balance skin. Toners can also smooth skin, lightly hydrate, and provide antioxidant protection as well as improving the penetration of treatment creams and serums that follow its application.

Tip: After cleansing, moisten cotton pad with your chosen toner and smooth over entire face. Reapply on areas of concern, or problematic skin (e.g. acne, hyperpigmentation).

Second Step: Antioxidant Treatment

As the outermost organ exposed directly to the pro-oxidative environment, the skin is equipped with an elaborate system of antioxidant substances and enzymes, including a network of redox-active antioxidants. The endogenous antioxidant capacity of the skin is a major determinant in its response to oxidative stress-mediated damage. Normal aging process, as well as environmental stress, can deplete the epidermis of protective antioxidants. Thus, antioxidants constitute an important group of pharmacological agents capable of preventing the occurrence and reducing the severity of UV-induced skin damage and skin aging.

Although there are many known antioxidant substances, their efficacy is limited if they fail to penetrate skin. A systematic study of endogenous antioxidants resulted first in a topical formulation of l -ascorbic acid which was maximized for chemical stability, concentration, availability, and subsequent photoprotection for skin. Addition of a-tocopherol (Vitamin E) improved stability and photoprotection, demonstrating the interacting balance achieved by combination antioxidants. Investigation of plant phenolic antioxidants revealed that ferulic acid improved the stability of the antioxidant formulation of l-ascorbic acid and a-tocopherol (CEFer) as well as its photoprotective properties.

SkinCeuticals has combined Vitamin C, E and Ferulic Acid along with Sodium Hyaluronate in one formulation. C E Ferulic is one of the best antioxidants available as it has been shown to deliver up to 90% of antioxidant protection.

Another excellent antioxidant is SkinCeuticals’ Phloretin CF which prevents thymine dimmers, DNA mutations and protects against the range of reactive oxygen species (ROS) on the skin. Phloretin CF comes as a gel or serum. They both provide the same broad-range efficacy.

Third Step: Hydrate, Calm or Correct

For aging and dry skin we use SkinCeutical’s Retexturing Activator, formulated with water soluble substances such as urea, filaggrin, and amino acids that make up the natural moisturizing factor (NMF) of the skin. Retexturing Activator provides mild exfoliation by reinforcing and hydrating the skin’s barrier whilst resurfacing the skin and leaving it smoother. Dr S. Foutsizoglou also uses Retexturing Activator in all skin types and ages, for at least two weeks, in order to prime the skin prior to chemical peels.

For normal /combination or dry skin we would recommend the Dermal Repair Cream by SkinMedica which hydrates and replenishes dry skin with antioxidants (i.e. Vitamin C & E) and hyaluronic acid. It is also good for aging and problematic skin as it reduces the appearance of age spots and conditions and firms the skin.

For the thinning appearance of the mature skin caused by intrinsic aging processes such as glycation the A.G.E INTERRUPTER by SkinCeuticals is advised.

For soothing and hydrating the skin you could use Neostrata Ultra daytime Smoothing Cream for normal or sensitive skin or Neostrata Oil free Lotion or Re-Nutriv ACE by SkinTech for oily or acne skin.

Fourth Step: Moisturize

Experience has taught us that the most effective moisturising formulae should combine moisture binding agents (e.g. hyaluronic acid, panthenol) with mild exfoliating agents which help the skin get rid of the dead cells, allow young cells to surface, and enhance the penetration of the moisturizer. In addition, preventing transepidermal loss by using hydrophilic waxes as seen in OXYNERGY Paris products can provide long-lasting moisture.

Fifth Step: Sun protection

We cannot stress enough the paramount importance of skin protection from UV radiation which can have catastrophic effects in the overexposed skin.

Ultraviolet radiation is composed of electromagnetic energy with wavelength from 400nm to 200nm. The UV spectrum is divided into UVA (400-315nm), UVB (315-290nm) and UVC (290-200nm). UVA radiation is responsible for actinic (ageing) damage to the skin and can act as co-carcinogen with UVB radiation. UVB radiation is responsible for sunburn and can induce skin cancer. The oncogenic effect occurs as a result of photochemical damage to epidermal cell DNA, damage to DNA repair mechanisms and suppression of cell-mediated immunity. UVC radiation is highly carcinogenic, but is mostly absorbed by the ozone-rich stratosphere. However with ozone depletion, UVC radiation may become a more important factor in skin cancer in the future.

Use of sunscreens for skin photoprotection prevents the penetration of harmful UV rays into skin and should be part of all skin care regimes. Antioxidants exert protective effects from inside skin and, because they stimulate cellular defense mechanisms, remain active for several days. Since sunscreens and antioxidants work by different mechanisms, they should be used as complimentary to each other.

For more information please book an appointment to see our specialist doctors and discuss your skin needs and concerns. The consultation is free. If you decide to go ahead with one of our skin care regimes, then with your first purchase of the recommended cosmeceuticals you will receive Dr Sotirios Foutsizoglou’s book ‘Skin Aging and the role of Cosmeceuticals in Anti-Aging Medicine’.