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Skin Management


Your skin protects you from harmful pathogens, pads your bones, muscles and internal organs, and regulates your internal temperature. Skin also plays a social function. When people see you, they see your skin first. Because your skin works so hard for you, it is important that you know how to take care of it. Eating a healthy diet, minimizing stress and protecting it from the sun are just a few of the precautions you should take to maintain your skin’s health and beauty.

In addition to other procedures designed to care for the skin, chemical peels improve signs of aging, skin pigmentation and poor skin texture. These treatments are especially effective on skin problems such as:

  • Acne
  • Wrinkles
  • Lines
  • Diminished skin tone

Skin care products available from our Nonsurgical Med Spa include SkinCeuticals® and Obagi medical products.

Exfoliation: How much is too much?

Exfoliation is the process of removing dead cells from the epidermis, or outermost layer of skin. Exfoliation can be performed 2 ways, either manually or chemically. Manual exfoliation is achieved with something mildly abrasive, like a washcloth or a scrub containing microbeads. Chemical exfoliation uses ingredients to encourage shedding of dead skin cells, like a retinol cream, alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) or beta hydroxy acid (BHA).

As we age, the turnover rate of our dead skin cells and production of new skin cells slows down. Exfoliation is essential in encouraging new cell growth and removing dead skin cells that lead to a dull complexion. However, many people get carried away with exfoliating their skin, and that can actually do more harm than good.

Over-exfoliation goes beyond the dead surface skin cells and can actually harm the healthy living skin cells. Those suffering from acne frequently over-exfoliate, hoping to remove blemishes and allow their anti-acne skin care products to be better absorbed. In reality, over-exfoliation often leads to more acne, as removing the protective barrier of living cells leads to more oil production and breakouts. It also opens up the skin to exposure of unhealthy bacteria, which can cause infection.

Those hoping to reveal younger, healthier-looking skin by exfoliating can actually end up looking older. Instead of smoother, glowing skin, skin can look dry, red and irritated.

So what is a good balance? A very safe form of daily exfoliation is the use of a mechanical facial cleansing brush, such as Clarisonic®, with a nonabrasive cleanser. This allows the use of a chemical exfoliant for aging skin or acne to be used without over-irritation. A mild chemical peel or dermaplaning can be performed by a licensed esthetician no more than once a month to encourage healthy skin cell turnover. Facial “scrubs” should contain microbeads, or jojoba beads and not ground up seeds and nutshells. They can scratch the face and cause painful irritation. A loofah should never be used on the face, and should be used with a very light pressure when used on the body.

With a little caution and a light touch, you can reveal beautiful, healthy skin.

Questions? Our aesthetic team offers complimentary consultations. We have all the products and services to help you achieve your healthy skin goals.

Skin care

The plastic surgery team at The University of Kansas Health System strongly believes a quality skin care regimen not only enhances and protects your skin’s appearance but prevents future issues. That’s why clinicians here uphold the philosophy SkinCeuticals® built its products around. The effects of aging, along with harsh environmental factors, greatly impact your skin’s health and surface appearance. We recommend a regimen that will promote your overall skin health while helping you look and feel your best.

Reasons to consider SkinCeuticals products

Advanced medical skin care products are optimized for health and beauty. The revolutionary antioxidant formulations in SkinCeuticals continue to be skin care leaders, and with the science to back them up. By adding a protective element, these products not only prevent your skin from harmful elements, they rejuvenate them at the same time.

Skin care products treat:

  • Signs of aging
  • Environmental effects
  • Acne scarring

Anyone looking for an advanced skin care regimen can benefit from the SkinCeuticals. Our plastic surgery team can guide you along the right path by specifically selecting which products will work best for your skin type and situation.

Professional SkinCeuticals treatments

To truly benefit from a skin care treatment, you will want to combine your customized at-home regimen with in-office treatments targeted at specific problem areas.

  • Professional peels (chemical peels) are the most effective way to restore and maintain your skin’s health, but when pared with SkinCeuticals home care regimen you are achieving the most optimal results possible.
  • Facial treatments provided by SkinCeuticals are pharmaceutical-grade products customized by your physician to suit your unique skin needs. Enhancing, protecting and rejuvenating are key components to consider when taking on such an advanced at-home skin care regimen. After several uses you will begin to see smoother and more even toned skin.

As with any in-office procedure and at-home treatment, your regimen is unique to your situation. Your plastic surgeon will prescribe the perfect combination of topical creams and may advise you to discontinue using other cosmetic product so you receive the full benefits of the skin care regimen.

Contact us to learn more about the skin care products we offer

To learn more about how you might benefit from SkinCeuticals products and treatments, or if you have questions about what combinations we offer, contact our plastic surgery team. Our plastic surgeons are experienced in these highly advanced skin care procedures and are ready to guide you through your decision-making process.

Obagi medical products now available

Obagi® Medical Products have grown incredibly since being launched by Dr. Zien Obagi and other leading experts in 1988. Obagi Medical Products started as a pharmaceutical company that developed and manufactured medical prescription skin care systems. Dr. Obagi and his team wanted to fill the gap and provide products that were pharmaceutical strength, yet available without a prescription. Over the years, Obagi has expanded its retail line and can be found in 35 countries worldwide.

The focal point of the Obagi Systems is to prevent and improve common skin disorders such as hyperpigmentation, acne, sun damage, rosacea, wrinkles, scarring and uneven skin tone. Always committed to success, Obagi has been rated the No. 1 brand of physician-dispensed products in the United States. Obagi and its users credit its success to the prescription-strength formulations and company stipulations to only allow physicians, such as dermatologists, plastic surgeons, medical spas and highly trained skin care specialists, to sell Obagi products. Obagi manufactures a few products available by prescription only; however, the full line utilizes the same technology, and many products, such as Professional C Serum 20%, offer similar results.

Obagi specializes in providing aggressive dermatologic treatments that work to remove issues associated with the skin, such as sun damage, scarring, wrinkles, fine lines and flushing. As seen on Fox News, the Obagi Blue Peel® is a highly popular treatment used in medical spas and dermatologists' offices today. For those looking for an alternative to in-office procedures, Obagi Nu-Derm® Exfoderm® Forte provides an exfoliation with alpha hydroxy acids that helps to diminish these common signs of aging.

Tretinoin® and hydroquinone are 2 of the main active ingredients found in the Obagi skin care products. Tretinoin is the acid form of vitamin A used by dermatologists to treat wrinkles and acne and to increase collagen and elastin productivity. Tretinoin works by increasing cellular turnover, which smooths and softens the skin and improves the skin's overall appearance. Hydroquinone is an ingredient used topically to lighten or bleach areas of hyperpigmentation in the skin. Hydroquinone reduces hyperpigmentation by decreasing the formation of melanin. Hydroquinone treats freckles, age spots, chloasma and melasma, skin conditions from which many consumers often suffer.

Obagi products work particularly well on mature or adult skin types because Obagi focuses on aged skin. As we age, our skin's cell turnover rate, collagen and elastin production begin to slow. Over time, our skin experiences damage from many sources, including internal and external sources. As this damage occurs, our healthy skin starts to break down and the degradation of collagen continues and wrinkles and sagging begin to show. Obagi products, such as ELASTIderm® Eye Cream, Obagi Hydrate Moisturizers, and C-Exfoliating Day Lotion SPF 12, have been shown to transform and affect aged skin and help restore it to a younger healthy appearance.