4 Ways to Prevent (and Repair) Sun Damage
By Kaitlyn Hunter, MedSpa Nurse Practitioner
Let’s talk sun damage today. People are always coming in and asking me if sun damage is treatable. Yes, of course it’s treatable, but guess what? It’s also preventable!
Understanding the damage
When you come into our MedSpa, the first thing we’re going to do is have you wash your face with a high-quality rinse. We’ll then take a series of photos in our Visia Facial Analysis System.
Visia has over 200,000 people in its database. It uses this technology to compare your face to every individual within one year of your date of birth. You then get a comparison score and a baseline analysis of your skin.
We use these photos throughout your treatment so you can see exactly how your skin improves after a series of peels or BBL. Overtime, you’ll see the changes and know the money you’re investing in your skin is paying off.
Looking at the picture above, we see all of the brown spots on my face before I started a quality skincare regime (products and services). Each brown spot is superficial sun damage on top of the skin – this is what you’ll see looking in the mirror.
This is the damage that is deeper in the skin, the one you can’t see in the mirror…yet. As we age, this deeper damage surfaces and becomes visible as “age spots”. These are the larger brown spots that you see on:
- Around the temples and forehead
- Hands and arms
If you don’t have these age spots, chances are you’ve noticed them on your parents or grandparents.
So, how do we prevent and correct sun damage?
1. Wear sunscreen
One of the easiest ways to prevent sun damage is wearing sunscreen. Sunscreen needs to be worn every single day and it has to be reapplied even if it’s cloudy out. Sun rays can still come through and reach your skin. Everyone – yes, guys too – needs to wear sunscreen.
If you are going to be out at the beach or at the pool on vacation, you also need to have additional protection like a hat or umbrella. Don’t just sit out and bake yourself in the sun, because you are going to get new sun spots and new sun damage.
Recommendation: Check out Elta MD, one of the best suncare lines available.
2. Try combination peels
When we’re talking about ways to treat sun damage, we can use a variety of combination peels, some of the most popular treatments. We have a variety of peels and a lot of them are very good at targeting pigment. Our peels are good on the face, neck, chest, and hands – all of the areas that get the most sun exposure.
With peels, downtime can be anywhere from about 3-10 days, it just depends on how much sun damage you have and how strong of a peel we need to do. Usually, a series of peels are best. Why? Well, it takes 30, 40, even 50 years to accumulate that sun damage. One peel isn’t going to be a magical eraser for all of the sun damage that’s on your skin.
Recommendation: Try a stimulator “lunchtime” peel to get a feel for deeper peels before committing to them. Watch our chemical peel video for more information.
3. Go deeper with BBL
One of the other ways we can treat this damage is called BBL Anti-Aging, aka BroadBand Light. It’s one of the most advanced forms of IPL, which is intense pulsed light. This treatment uses light waves that target melanin in your skin.
With BBL, the first step is to apply clear, ultrasound jelly all over your face. The BBL devices pulses light into your skin so the melanin in the sunspots and freckles heats up and is destroyed. All the sun damage will just flake off your skin in 5-7 days. Like peels, a series will give you the best results.
Recommendation: Check out our resources on BBL for anti-aging, and schedule a free consultation to determine what will work for your skin type.
4. Explore our new Halo
We also have a new treatment coming this fall called Halo. It’s wonderful for targeting the deeper pigment that is really deep in your skin and very stubborn. Treatment often requires about 5-7 days of downtime, but makeup can be worn on day 2.
If you are concerned about sun damage that you have or the potential for future sun damage, there are a variety of options available to you. If you have any questions or would like to book a free Visia consultation, please call us at 513-791-9474.