Obagi (Medical grade skincare)

Most people would like to prevent skin ageing which causes pigmentation, wrinkles, decreased elasticity and depletion of collagen. 80 % of premature ageing to our skin comes from UV exposure. Of course diet, smoking, stress and hormonal changes also play important roles. When free radicals hit the skin they cause an oxidative stress reaction, this is higher in areas of pollution. What do you think is causing your skin to age the most ? Amount of sun exposure ? Your skin type ? genetics ?

If you are ever suspicious of a mole then check it using the ABCD approach. A – asymmetry, B – border, C – colour and D – diameter.

Production of melanin is a protective action. Melanocytes produce the natural pigment in our skin called melanin but they have a control centre which responds to uv, stress, hormones etc and may be overactive.

Fibroblasts produce collagen, elastin and GAGS. They could be inactive when photo damaged.

Keratinocytes produce protein, they start at the lower basal layer of the skin and work up to the stratum corneum, this is known as the skin cycle and as we age it becomes slower, causing our skin to look dull.

In healthy skin we have a thinner stratum corneum. We have properly regulated melanocytes, active fibroblasts and a strong network of elastin fibres. Botox is great but not a one stop fix, good skin care is the basis. You cannot wall paper the walls without plastering first.

Who is suitable for the Nu Derm System?

Anyone with pigmentation or melasma. The system can treat superficial and deep pigmentation. It will also treat fine lines and wrinkles, acne , acne with pigmentation and people who require general skin rejuvination. The Nu-derm system is not good for rosacea patients. Obagi penetrates all layers of the skin, improving skin turnover, increasing collagen and eradicating melanin production.

How does Vitamin A work and why is it so important in effective skin care?

Tretinoin (retinoic acid) repairs DNA, increases collagen, accelerates healing and repairs and regulates skin cells. It comes in three different strengths 0.025,0.05 or 0.1 which is the strongest form of Vitamin A.

Tretinoin can also be used for acne vulgaris as it reduces sebum and oil concentration which blocks penetration of other products. If the patient is using Benzo then they should apply this in the morning and then the tretinoin in the evening.

Retinol reduces and prevents fine lines and helps clear break outs, it improves skin tone and texture. It comes in either 0.5 or 1.0 depending on what the patient can tolerate and why they need it.

What is Hydroquinone?

Hydroquinone inhibits pigmentation it can help to lighten dark spots, melasma, freckles and sun spots. The patient must patch test by applying a small amount to unbroken skin for 24 hours. If the patient requires an alternative then they can choose the NU Derm FX range (non prescription) which contains Arbutin instead of hydroquinone which is more gentle but can take longer for results. The ‘Clear’ and the ‘Blender’ which contain either the hydroquinone or the arbutin get mixed with the Vitamin A (tretinoin or retinol) during the programme.

There are two types of kits , normal to dry or normal to oily. In the normal to oily kit the exfoderm (exfoliator) contains glycolic acid which is slightly stronger than the phytic acid used in the normal to dry exfoliator in order to get through the oilier surface and allow for deeper product penetration.

The NU DERM system can take 12 – 24 weeks for best results. You can expect the following throughout your time line;

Weeks 1-6 – redness, dryness, itching

Weeks 7-12 – inflammation subsides, improvements in fine wrinkling and pore size, skin feels firmer.

Weeks 13 – 24 – maximum improvement achieved, healthy glow, maintenance required.