What Are the Best Preventative Treatments?

I am 23 years old and am keen to maintain my skin. I wear factor 50 sunscreen every day, mixed in with vitamin C powder, which I reapply. I have started using Green Cream (0.6% retinol). I also eat healithy and always try to wear a hat and sunglasses. Because prevention is the best cure I am interested in trying to find some good preventative treatments. I have looked into buying a slendertone, to improve facial circulation, and IPL and mesotherapy. Can you advise?

Doctor Answers 5

Prevention of skin aging

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It sounds as though you are on the right track.  As others have mentioned its important to keep applying sunblock frequently.

Since damage of your skin collagen by the UV light of the sun is a major factor in aging some attempt to maintain and build new collagen in your skin is important as you become older.

The exfoliation provided by retinoids and Retin-A is helpful.  Micro-dermabrasion treatments can also help stimulate collagen production.

An effective and yet simple treatment to stimulate deep collagen production is non-ablative fractional erbium laser resurfacing.  Because  this technique is non-ablative there is no  significant recovery required.  There are many wavelenths of Erbium that do non- ablative fractional erbium laser resurfacing including 1540, 1450, in 1585.

Surface pigment and dry skin caused by sun damage and aging changes can also be effectively treated with IPL.

Be sure to consult a board certified doctor with laser experience and do not have these procedures done in a Spa.

For more information please read the following link.

Emily...you must treat your genes nicely in order to keep your skin youthful and attractive...

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while sunscreen probably helps, you need to reapply it every 2 hours and the amount to get the full benefit is staggering...most people use too little...therefore hats, sunglasses and appropriate clothing are the most important preventive measures...don't smoke, stay healthy, exercise appropriately, and the rest will follow...the idea that diet and antioxidants are critical is probably not true...see the wonderful editorial by Dr. James Watson...Nobel Prize winner for his work elaborating the structure of DNA in a recent scientific journal...Open Biology January, 2013...his hypothesis is that antioxidants may lead to cancer...should not dismiss his ideas...a leading light in the field of medicine...don't waste your money on hype lacking legitimate scientific underpinnings

Ken Landow, MD
Las Vegas Dermatologist

Best Preventative Treatments for Maintaining Healthy Skin

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There are several simple and inexpensive things that can be done to help keep skin healthy and beautiful:

1.  Minimize sun exposure

2.  Hat, sunglasses, protective activewear, and sunscreen when out in the sun

3.  Use a moisturizer with SPF 25 or 30 -- every day

4.  Avoid smoking

5.  Choose a healthy diet with plenty of anti-oxidants


Mark J. Lucarelli, MD
Madison Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Best way to prevent wrinkles

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You are wise to start early to prevent skin damage before it occurs.  It sounds like you are on the right path already.  Sunscreen is probably the most important preventative measure next to physical blocks (hats) and sun avoidance.  Although don’t get fooled into putting sunscreen on only in the morning and thinking you are covered throughout the entire day.  Sunscreen needs to be reapplied-as frequently as every 2 hours if you are out in intense sun for an extended period of time. 

Another good topical option is Retin-A cream.  This is a vitamin A derivative that can limit collagen breakdown of the skin.  Regular use of Retin-A will decrease the amount of collagenase, an enzyme that breaks down collagen, leading to more collagen.  Retin-A also increases cell turn over and increased new collagen production.  Retin-A (not to be confused the weaker over the counter retinol) is only available by prescription.  You will need to see you plastic surgeon or dermatologist to obtain this.  This medicine can be irritating to the skin and make you more sensitive to the sun so be certain to wear a sunscreen.

In addition to the above be sure to drink plenty of water, eat a balance diet, avoid smoking and get ample sleep.


Jill Hessler, MD
Palo Alto Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Preventive "Treatments" for good skin

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Besides using sunscreen every day and avoiding too much direct sun exposure, there ARE several things you can do, even without spending a lot of time and money such as laser, peels, creams, etc.

Don't overlook the importance of nutrition (fish, fresh vegetables, fruit to name a few), hydration(recommended daily intake of 8, 8oz. of water), vitamins and SLEEP.  Many people are sleep deprived and this takes its toll on your skin as well as your overall well being.

So, eat, drink and sleep for younger looking skin!

~ Dr. Gregory Diehl

Gregory Diehl, MD, FACS
Long Island Plastic Surgeon

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.