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BBL, or BroadBand Light, is an effective non-invasive treatment to fight hyperpigmentation, acne and signs of aging. It’s basically a Swiss Army knife solution to a variety of skin issues!

Also known as a photofacial, BBL uses high intensity pulses of light to improve the appearance of brown (freckles, sun damage, age spots) and red (vascular legions, rosacea, rosy cheeks, poikiloderma) spots. BBL can also treat acne by targeting acne-causing bacteria, and improve the appearance of uneven skin texture, reduce pore size and tighten skin. This corrective laser treatment requires little downtime and is a quick and easy.

How does BBL work?

BroadBand Light gently heats the top layers of the skin, targeting areas of extra pigmentation to stimulate skin cell regeneration and collagen production. The photothermal energy reduces unwanted melanin (which produces pigmented lesions and discoloration) and eliminates fine vessels that cause redness. Excess pigment subsequently rises to the surface and sloughs off one to two weeks after the treatment. In addition to improving overall skin tone and smoothness, BBL helps improve skin elasticity and firmness.

BBL treatments are easily customizable because BBL operates on a large range of wavelengths. As medical professionals, we’re able to deliver precise pulses of light to the area being treated, enabling us to use BBL to effectively treat patients with different skin types and issues. Any area of the body can be treated with BBL. The most common areas we treat are the face, neck, backs of hands, chest and shoulders/upper arms, as these tend to be the areas of the skin that experience the most sun damage.

We can also use a different BBL filter to emit a blue light wavelength that has antibacterial effects on the “P acnes” microbe, which could be the cause of your breakouts (it’s nice to have something to blame by name, isn’t it?).

What does BBL treatment feel like?

We’ll apply a cold gel to the treatment area before BBL treatment, which is fairly painless. You’ll need to wear protective eyewear — this is a powerful ray of light therapy, after all! You should expect to feel a slight warming sensation at the very least, and a sharp rubber band snap at the most (that’s the result of the BroadBand Light absorbing into the targeted areas — pretty cool, right?). Our patients tell us that it’s not too uncomfortable.

That doesn’t sound so bad. How many treatments do I need?

You’ll need to consult with your Skin Pharm provider, but best results often require a series of BBL treatments. Fortunately, you don’t need to carve out much time in your schedule for BBL, as treatment sessions last about 20 minutes (plan for a little longer if we’re targeting larger areas of the body). Depending on the severity of the hyperpigmentation and skin discoloration, you may need one to three sessions every two to three weeks to achieve desired results. Other skin issues, such as poikiloderma, a type of sun damage that results in red colored pigmentation on the skin, can be improved with one treatment.

Sounds great. How long does it take to heal from BBL?

Patients love BBL because, in addition to the quick appointment, there is very little downtime after treatment. Your Skin Pharm provider will apply moisturizer and SPF post treatment, and most patients can apply makeup, return to work immediately and resume normal activities, although your skin may be a little sensitive and pink post-treatment (this shouldn’t last for more than a day or two) and is easily covered up. You may experience darkening of the targeted areas on your skin after your appointment, but this is temporary as these spots will fade or flake off in the next week or two. Expect to see smoother, even-toned skin and reduced visible signs of sun damage and aging.

For best results, avoid sun exposure three weeks before and after BBL treatment, and don’t forget your SPF! At Skin Pharm, we will NOT perform a BBL treatment on tanned skin, so if you show up to your appointment with recent unprotected sun exposure, we’ll unfortunately have to turn you away. Also, you may get a friendly lecture about why SPF is so important.

What are you waiting for? Email or call (615) 582-6726 to book your appointment today!

How did I get into nursing?

From the time I was probably 4 or 5 years old, I knew I wanted to be a nurse (well, in addition to owning a Taco Bell because I thought, how cool would that be, mom?!).

I have always loved the feeling of taking care of someone and luckily for me, science and anatomy classes were my jam. After graduating with my Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Belmont University, I began working in the hospital setting, thriving in an Intensive Care Unit setting in both the Surgical ICU and Pediatric ICU. My love for nursing and my desire to further my education led me back to Belmont to earn my Master of Science as a Family Nurse Practitioner. I graduated from Belmont in December 2017, passed my board examination, and have been at Skin Pharm ever since.

How did I end up at Skin Pharm?

Maegan had just opened Skin Pharm in January 2017, and while I was in graduate school, I reached out to see if I could do some of my clinical hours at Skin Pharm. THANK GOODNESS she said “yes!” My grandfather owned his own practice in medical dermatology until he retired, and I knew going into a field specializing in aesthetic dermatology was an absolute dream. It’s the perfect career with a combination of nerdy research paired with a beautiful aesthetic. After completing my clinical hours — and with the birth of Maegan’s precious son Eli coming soon — I was asked to stay on as a nurse practitioner for the Skin Pharm team. Talk about dreams coming true! I am so blessed to be a part of the Skin Pharm family.

What do I like to do when I’m not at Skin Pharm?

When I’m not at work you can find me with my husband Cody and our amazing dog Weller (he’s part Australian Shepherd/part poodle …  seriously, this brand is awesome), and our soon to be SON who is due June 1st, although I guess we’ll see when he is actually going to make his arrival! We love to travel everywhere. Cody is a bit of a national parks junkie, so our trips are normally spent somewhere between snowshoeing 10 miles one day and me hitting the spa the next.

What do I wish I’d done when I was younger to take better care of my skin?

I wish I wouldn’t have believed people when they said Cetaphil and Retin-A were going to cure my acne, because there are seriously so many other products that are amazing at creating a clear complexion that won’t make your face feel like it’s falling off (if you know, you know). Also, the tanning bed. What was I thinking?! My prom dress would have looked just fine if I was three shades lighter.

What would I like to continue to learn?

Cosmetic dermatology is an ever-evolving career path. I love the research involved in my job. Ever notice how the aesthetic scene seems to take social media by storm? There are updated research articles, new injecting methods, and unlimited amount of data that we study daily to provide you the best services possible. At Skin Pharm, our continuing education is limitless so we can provide you with the safest and most up to date practices.

What do I hope for my patients?

I hope that when you come to see me, you feel heard and understood. Whether your concerns are skin care, procedures, and/or naturally focused injectables, I’m your girl. I’ll listen to your needs, tailor treatments specifically to you, and watch your self-confidence rise. I hope you leave me feeling that all of your questions were answered, needs were met, and that you’re just as excited as I am for your next visit.

 

Did you wait until the last minute to tackle your holiday gift list? Don’t worry — we’ve got you!

For Your BFF: Skin Pharm Get Ready to Glow Gift Set

What’s better than a mask that reduces breakouts and clears complexions? Using a mask while you bask in the glow of the signature Skin Pharm candle, of course! Our Get Ready to Glow Gift Set is the perfect gift for your BFF who needs a little TLC. The Skin Pharm Charcoal Mask is suitable for all skin types as it gently removes oils, impurities and other toxins (yuck) from your skin.

We just can’t get enough of our Skin Pharm You Glow Girl Candle. You’ll recognize the light yet complex floral scent that we’re obsessed with in the office — now everyone can take it home! A luxurious blend of Italian bergamot, golden amber, cedarwood, jasmine, California orange, mahogany and santal, this candle helps create a relaxing environment, which is ideal for masking.

For Your Yoga Buddy: Skin Pharm Stay Hydrated Gift Set

Show your workout buddy how much you really love them with the Skin Pharm Stay Hydrated Gift Set that comes with our stylish Skin Pharm Water Bottle and one of our top-selling products, Skin Pharm Youth Serum. We say it over and over again, but it’s SO important to hydrate your skin from the inside, which means drinking water throughout the day. Hydrating is way more fun with our Skin Pharm Water Bottle, which combines minimal design with maximum convenience, keeping drinks hot for up to six hours and cold for an entire day. The bottle comes with a removable infuser to brew tea and is made with bamboo, metal and BPA-free plastic. Youth Serum works for all skin types to hydrate and plump skin. This light yet incredibly hydrating serum is great to apply pre- or post-workout.

For Your Significant Other: Skin Pharm Clarifying Pads

You keep telling us how much you love our Skin Pharm Clarifying Pads, and how your other half keeps stealing them from you. We won’t judge if you’ve been hiding your Clarifying Pads from your S.O., but ’tis the season to be generous, so perhaps it’s time to buy him/her their own jar! Clarifying Pads are suitable for all skin types and work their magic by delivering a gentle microchemical peel to exfoliate skin, treat hyperpigmentation, clear acne and erase dullness. Because, the couple that fights dull skin together stays together, right?

For Yourself: SPF!

Your future self will thank you for wearing your SPF every day. We always say it’s the most important thing you can put on your face because it protects your skin from multiple factors known to cause premature aging. Start 2020 off strong with your favorite Skin Pharm SPF — we have three formulas to suit every skin type. Skin Pharm Clear Defense SPF 45 is ideal for acne-prone, combination or oily skin and is a non-tinted, instantly absorbing formula. The Skin Pharm Sheer Defense SPF is also great for acne-prone, sensitive, combination or oily skin, and has a sheer universal tint for extra coverage. Our Skin Pharm 100% Mineral Tinted SPF is ideal for dry, sensitive normal or combination skin and provides 100% mineral-blocking protection with a light universal tint.

Got questions? Give us a call at (615) 582-6726 and one of our Skin Pharm elves will help you out!

 

You planned ahead this year and made sure you booked your appointment for fillers and microneedling so you’d be extra glowing for all those holiday parties, yay! But you didn’t plan on the combination of cold temperatures, dry air from the heat being on overdrive, late nights, and one too many glasses of bubbly wreaking havoc on your skin. If you wake up feeling less than fabulous, here are some tips to get you back on track.

Help! Everything feels dry.

Did you wake up feeling like a raisin today? We know the feeling. Cold air carries less moisture than warm air, and cranking up the heater isn’t helping, either — all that dry air can cause skin irritation ranging from redness and flaking to cracking, chapping and even bleeding. Gross, we know. Add alcohol — which increases inflammation in the skin and can cause blood vessels to dilate, leading to redness — and you’ve set yourself up for one rough morning. Fortunately, that rough morning can be avoided with a bit of preparation.

You can combat the dry air by sleeping with a humidifier and by adding ultra moisturizing products to your skincare routine, such as our Skin Pharm Biotherapy Cream. This skin lifesaver is packed with intensely moisturizing ingredients that work together to repair your skin’s barrier function, combating dryness, restoring firmness and visibly reducing signs of aging, all while you sleep.

For days — or nights — when you need some extra TLC, we recommend Epionce’s Enriched Firming Mask. Powered by botanical ingredients that nourish stressed-out skin with a proprietary blend of barrier lipids, this mask calms visible redness and irritation. This mask works as a quick 10-minute refresher in the AM and is gentle enough to wear all night (we love it for long flights and car rides, too!).

We tend to drink less water in the winter, so be sure to stay hydrated throughout the day. Drinking water not only directly hydrates your skin, but is helps flush toxins out of your body and can improve symptoms of skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis.

Help! I’m broken out like a teenager.

Dry winter air can actually cause your skin to produce more sebum, leading to breakouts. Another major culprit is going to bed without washing your makeup off your face, which is just really bad for your skin (and your pillowcase). For normal to oily skin, we recommend Skin Pharm Papaya Enzyme Cleanser, a deep cleanser with salicylic acid (a godsend for acne-prone folks). Normal to dry skin types should opt for Skin Pharm Gentle Soothing Cleanser, which strips all your makeup and impurities while soothing skin with rich botanical extracts.

All skin types will benefit from one of our best-sellers, our Skin Pharm Clarifying Pads, which deliver a gentle, microchemical peel to exfoliate skin, clear acne and prevent future breakouts. Sensitive skin types may only need to use the pads two to three times a week, while oiler types can tolerate daily use.

If you’re in need of a stronger peel, we’re big fans of our Light Refresh Peel, a simple, non-invasive treatment that reduces pore size and treats uneven skin tone and blemishes. A series of peels not only improves any sun damage left over from the summer, but can smooth rough texture, fine lines and wrinkles. Chemical peels also stimulate collagen production underneath the skin, improving the overall appearance of your skin. Peels are quick and easy and require minimal recovery — they can be done on your lunch break — so you’ll be refreshed and glowing for those holiday parties in no time!

Curious what products and treatments are best for your? Call us at (615) 582-6726 and schedule a consultation today!

 

 

While sunscreens are the number-one product you should be using, medical research has told us that the runner-up is retinoids. Unlike other skincare ingredients, there is over 30 years of research on the safety and efficacy of retinoid use for improving skin health. 

Retinoids. What are they?

One of the most common questions we get is, “What is the difference between a retinoid and a retinol?”

First, let’s discuss the difference between the terms retinoids, retinols and retinoic acid. The term “retinoids” refers to topical treatments formulated from vitamin A. Retinoids were originally developed as an acne treatment in the 1970s. Further research revealed that retinoids were a promising treatment to treat the visible effects of aging as they fight pigmentation and keratoses (sun spots or age spots). A retinoid is a general term referring to compounds that are recognized by the same receptors in the skin.

A retinol is a cosmetic retinoid. Retinoic acid is a retinoid, but retinol is not the same as retinoic acid. Retinol is not classified as a drug and is available over-the-counter. Retinoic acid, on the other hand, is sold as a prescription drug. The generic name is Tretinoin and brand names are Refissa and Retin-A. Retinoic acid is more active than retinols when comparing activity. 

How do Retinoids work?

Basically, we use retinoids to help slow the signs of the aging process. Retinoids increase skin cell turnover and stimulate the production of new blood vessels, improving overall skin tone. They also increase the production of elastin and collagen, smoothing fine lines and wrinkles. In addition to fading pigmentation, sun spots and age spots, retinoids can also soften scaly, rough patches of skin.

On a more clinical level, retinoids regulate keratin synthesis and sebaceous gland activity, which is why retinoids are great for acne patients. They also manage proliferation and terminal differentiation of fibroblasts, which are the cells in the skin that make collagen and elastin (translation: this makes skin smoother). Our skin has more fibroblasts when we’re younger — hence that smooth baby skin — but retinoids actually make more fibroblasts, resulting in more collagen and elastin!

Sounds great. What are the side effects?

Depending on the strength of the product you’re using — particularly prescription formulas — retinoids can cause dry and irritated skin. The higher the power of the retinoid, the greater the increase in irritation. Consult with your Skin Pharm provider to determine the best treatment plan for your skin.

I’m in. What should I use?

The strongest retinoid products are available in prescription and some over-the-counter (OTC) options, but many patients cannot tolerate the redness, burning and peeling enough to stick to a treatment routine. There is research to support that retinol, which is the strongest of the OTC retinoids, can create underlying molecular changes in the skin like retinoids do, resulting in a significant reduction of wrinkles after 12 weeks of use. Since OTC retinol contains less retinoic acid than prescription treatments, you get great results without extreme side effects.

Our Skin Pharm Retinol Drops™ were created to refine pores, reduce the appearance of wrinkles and dark spots, and improve overall skin texture. This lightweight yet powerful nightly treatment for aging skin addresses concerns such as hyperpigmentation, loss of firmness, free radical damage, dark spots, melasma, fine lines and wrinkles. Retinol, bisabolol, and vitamin C give your skin that healthy Skin Pharm glow, while vitamin E and sea whip extract calm the skin. We recommend using Retinol Drops two to three times a week in the evening (avoiding the eye area). Increase frequency as tolerated or directed by your Skin Pharm provider.

Skin Pharm Retinol Drops Opened

 

Anything else I should know?

If you’re wondering why you don’t need to use retinoids every night, it’s because retinoids are a fat lipid, meaning they dissolve in our skin and stay there for days. We recommend alternating and taking a day off in between. If it’s easier to remember to use every evening, that’s fine, but be sure to use a lower strength to avoid irritation.

You’ll need to consistently use products containing retinoids for roughly three to six months before you’ll see results. While retinoids are superpower skin savers, they’re also an exercise in patience. Retinoids also increase sensitivity to sunlight, so be sure to wear your SPF every day.

 

Questions? Email consultations@skinpharm.co for a free consultation.

 

People often ask me how I manage to take care of my skin with two young children. I’ll be honest with you — it can be challenging some days — and especially some nights — but it’s a lot easier once you find the products that work for you and stick to a routine. I’ve been diligent about this since my 20s, so I thought I’d share some tips on how you can take care of your skin, no matter your age.

 

If You’re In Your 20s …

Lucky you. Now’s the time to really focus on preventive care – don’t leave the house without applying your broad spectrum SPF. We’re currently loving broad spectrum SPFs with hyaluronic acid like 100% Mineral Tinted SPF by Skin Pharm. Use a skin cream that’s rich in antioxidants, which prevent damage by limiting the production of free radicals. Try Skin Pharm Glow Factor. If you’re still dealing with breakouts, use an acne treatment like Skin Pharm’s Clarifying Pads.

It’s not too early to start using Botox as part of your preventive skin care regime, as Botox combats wrinkles caused by muscle movements. While you probably don’t need filler for deep lines or wrinkles, filler is great for enhancing your lips if you want to plump them up a bit. Schedule regular chemical peels every 1-3 months to keep your skin bright and smooth.

 

If You’re In Your 30s …

Add on to the routine above by integrating a retinol product in the evening to help increase skin cell turnover rate. We’re big fans of our hand-picked retinol products because they have additional brightening benefits. Be sure to add retinols in gradually as they can initially cause some irritation as your skin adjusts – start with once a week, and work your way up to every other day as your skin tolerates it (and be sure to keep that SPF on – your skin will be more sensitive to sunlight).  Also add an eye cream – try Neocutis Lumiere – to protect and prevent wrinkles on the delicate skin around the eye area.

Keep up the regular Botox appointments – every three to six months – to combat fixed lines, and consider filler for exaggerated lines that may have formed around the mouth – aka “smile lines.” In order to aggressively fight signs of aging and improve overall skin appearance, consider adding collagen-boosting treatments every few months, such as laser therapy or microneedling.

 

If You’re In Your 40s …

Enhance your previous routine by adding peptides and growth factor serums, which help with further fine-line correction. We swear by Skin Pharm Youth Serum. Continue Botox treatments, adding the lower face area (especially around the mouth) to manipulate those aforementioned smile lines that can turn downward as we age.

Filler is great for those increasingly exaggerated lines forming, and for the hollowing areas under your eyes or around your temples. Schedule a resurfacing peel every 1-3 months to treat pigment, lines and wrinkles.

 

If You’re In Your 50s …

Adding on to the above, you may need to increase filler treatments for exaggerated lines and hollowing areas, and also for regaining structure — especially in the apples of your cheeks — and to provide an overall lift to the lower face. For a more intensive non-surgical skin rejuvenation treatment, try a fractional resurfacing treatment such as a C02 laser, which can soften wrinkles, tighten skin and improve overall texture.

 

I hope that helps! If you’re confused about what order to put your products on, the general rule of thumb is to apply the thinnest product on first, working your way up to the thickest product, with the exception of a retinol cream, which usually goes on first. Feel free to ask any questions about skin care and the procedures we offer by emailing us at info@skinpharm.co.

Skin Pharm Clarifying Pads

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