Sun Damage: Tanning Beds, Baby Oil, and Iodine {oh my!}

Is there a way to reverse all those years of damage we’ve done to ourselves?

Yes. Yes, there is.

Written by: Rebecca Brady, RN

There is always more than one way to get somewhere, and repairing your skin is no different. The first step I always recommend to my patients is to get started with a great skin care regime. I have seen and tried many product lines in the past, but nothing has been as effective as the OBAGI Nu-Derm system. OBAGI has medical grade products and consistently performs to repair sun damage and freckles, fine lines, wrinkles, tone, texture, and pore size. The best part is you don’t have to wait months and months to start seeing results. Most people can tell a significant difference in their skin within that first month of using it. I love it. My patients love it. It works.

Another option for correcting brown spots on your skin is a peel. There are many types to choose from. We have mild peels that you can do alongside microdermabrasion. These are typically done in a series and provide gradual improvement. This is ideal for people who want to avoid the heavier peels and major flaking. Of course, some of us want a more substantial effect, and should opt for a bigger peel. Either route, peels are great at uncovering deep damage and shedding dead skin that can make your face appear dull.

If it’s a laser you’re after, photo facial (also known as IPL) can treat a variety of skin conditions such as brown spots, freckles, broken capillaries, spider veins, and facial redness. An IPL photo facial delivers a bright blast of light through a hand-held device. It will pull the color up closer to the surface of the face and make your spots appear darker for about a week. Your skin will then shed and the discoloration should be gone or appear lighter. A series of 5 photo facials 3 weeks apart are recommended for the best results. Also, you will want to avoid any kind of tanning for at least 4 weeks prior to your treatments. The laser is attracted to color, so you want your skin to be as pale as possible to avoid any unwanted side effects. Many of my patients really like the IPL laser, because there is virtually no downtime. They can put makeup on right away and go back to work. This method is most often coupled with the OBAGI system and I’ve had amazing results when they are used simultaneously.

As you can see, there are so many combinations of treatments to correct sun damage. It really is up to you to decide what route you would like to take. I would be more than happy to help you tailor a plan that works for both your skin and your lifestyle!