Skin Myths Busted By Benjamin J Boudreaux M.D. on January 19, 2017


With all the products out there, it is easy to make mistakes in daily skin care regimens. Take a look at the advice from the skin care professionals of Northshore Plastic Surgery. Tami and Katie sat down together to come up with four common misconceptions regarding products that play an important role in skin care. These women are a powerhouse of knowledge and have been educating patients on skin care for years. Owing to their vast amount of experience, Tami and Katie are highly educated on skin care products and their delivery systems. 


#1 “It’s cloudy, I don’t need sunscreen”

People think when the sun isn’t out and it’s a cloudy or rainy day they don’t need sunscreen.  UVB (burning) rays fluctuate and are not out when you don’t see the rays; however, the UVA rays do not fluctuate and are at the same intensity every day, rain or shine.  The UVA (aging) rays are the longer, more damaging rays that cause hyperpigmentation, lines, wrinkles, and break down collagen. The fact is, we need to apply sunscreen daily with the correct ingredients primarily zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide.  Another misconception is relying primarily on SPF numbers instead of looking at the ingredients.  SPF numbers rate the ingredients that protect us from a sunburn, (UVB rays).  If you are concerned with the sun’s “aging” rays, make certain that your sunscreen has a high level of zinc and/or titanium.  We recommend Elta MD and SkinMedica sunscreen, both have 8% - 10% of Zinc Oxide and will provide maximum protection to your skin!


#2 “Vitamin A isn’t that important”

Vitamin A, commonly known as Retin-A/retinol, is undeniably the best topical cream available to reverse sun damage and rejuvenate your skin. It works at the cellular level to improve your skin's health and appearance. Vitamin A increases skin-cell turnover, thickens the layer of skin below the outer protective layer, stimulates the cells that produce collagen and increases blood flow to your skin; many people tend to misuse this product.  Consistency is key! Most people sparingly use this product when in fact, it should be used every night to every other night. We recommend patients to begin with a pea size amount to their full face (avoiding the eye area) three times a week. Once your skin gets acclimated, you can add another night. Continue to do this until you are using your Vitamin A nightly, which is the goal. Most tretinoins and some retinols can cause irritation, redness and inflammation. SkinMedica retinol and Skin Better Science Alpha-ret, which we sell here at NPS, have anti-inflammatory ingredients and are hydrating. With proper use of this product, your skin will look soft and smooth without the irritation.

#3 “Always use a moisturizer”

There are many factors that should be considered when applying a moisturizer to the face; the concentration of the product itself is the number one thing to look for when considering a moisturizer. Ingredients like vitamin’s A (Retin A), C and E are easily absorbed into the skin; while other ingredients have large molecules that simply do not penetrate the layers of skin to “make a difference”. Many people believe that when they are dry they need to apply more moisture; this is not the case. Applying a moisturizer or hydrator to the face when it is dry and flaking can cause pores to clog. When the condition of the skin is not at a “healthy state” it will not allow penetration for any ingredient. Exfoliation is key!! Removing excess oil and dead skin cells will allow for better product penetration and the life of the moisturizer/hydrator to last on the skin. Heavy moisturizers can clog pores, cause breakouts and “smother” the skin. Use a moisturizer that is ideal for your skin concerns and skin type. Don’t forget, Hydrators help with dehydrated skin! Our SkinMedica HA 5 has a combination of five different strands of Hyaluronic acid (HA) that not only diminishes fine lines, it also has a lasting change on the production of our own HA in the skin!! It is also known as a “topical filler” or “sip of water for your skin.” We have an array of moisturizing products that ensure optimal results for every skin type, condition and age.

#4 “I don’t need a facewash”

To cleanse or not to cleanse? This seems to be an ongoing question in skincare. Some may think it does not really matter what you cleanse with or when you cleanse; However, when you apply your topical products at night and then again in the morning without cleansing, you could be decreasing the efficacy of your morning routine. When using a Retin-A or Retinol, it is advised that you cleanse your face in the morning. Nightly cleansing is more common for people because they want to “wash the day away”. Makeup, facial oils, touching your face, toxins, dirt, the list of things your skin comes in contact with is endless. Washing twice daily is advised for all skin types. Using the right cleanser is very important. Exfoliating cleansers should be used as directed for your skin type and condition. Over exfoliation can strip the skin of its natural oil, causing the body to over produce oil or become very dry and irritated. We offer a variety of cleansers for all skin types.

If you have questions or concerns regarding your skin care regimen or want to learn about our medical strength skin care lines, please call and make an appointment with Tami or Katie today! 

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Dr. Boudreaux and Dr. Claiborne are committed to providing the very highest standard of care with a friendly, down-to-earth approach. Northshore Plastic Surgery has been voted a top doctor on the Northshore, New Orleans and is affiliated with prestigious organizations, including:

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