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The Grades of Aging

By: Sam Dhatt, MD
Posted: June 29, 2009, from the July 2009 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
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Professional care. Professional care should include facials that are full of antioxidants, vitamin C treatments that help protect the skin from sun damage and moisturizing masks with penetrating antioxidants. Gentle scrubs or enzyme treatments should be used as the deep cleansers in these clients’ facials.

Home care. Home care should include an enzyme cleanser for natural exfoliation, a moisturizing and antioxidant-rich sunscreen for protection in the morning, and an antioxidant-rich moisturizer for overnight. The home care treatment product for the eyes should contain antioxidants and be moisturizing in the evening. A gentle scrub one time per week will keep the keratin normalized and allow for the penetration of ingredients.

Start this client on mineral makeup now and provide education about the damage the sun can do to the skin throughout time.

Grade 1

A hint of fine lines around eyes, only in movement areas; firm skin with good elasticity. This client’s skin is still in great shape, but it is not as bright and supple as Grade 0 skin. The treatment principle is still prevention, but it is very important to keep the skin in its current condition. Only light exfoliation is needed, not aggressive treatments.

Professional care. Professional care for these clients includes facials full of antioxidants and hyaluronic acid, a master moisturizing ingredient. Vitamin C treatments should be used, as well as hydrating masks to maintain balance and optimal skin health. A low percentage acid resurfacer every three to four months (20–30% lactic acid at a 3.0 pH), or a light microdermabrasion to encourage glow and good cell turnover can also be performed, as long as there is no irritation or adverse effects. Higher acid resurfacing treatments are unnecessary at this grade and should be saved for when the client truly needs a stronger professional treatment program.