All posts in Dr. Irwin’s answer to reader’s question

Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- Chest Wrinkles

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Reader’s Question

What to do about chest wrinkles?? I have them and don’t want them!

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

Chest wrinkles are a common problem for many women. We often forget to take care of this part of our body in our younger years and it ends up wrinkling before our face. Treatment for chest wrinkles varies on the depth of the wrinkles. The older you are the deeper the wrinkles usually, and the depth determines the options to some extent. Furthermore, the location of the chest wrinkles (between the breasts or out towards the shoulders) determines which treatments are best.

First, unfortunately products (creams) do very little for this area, but try the Vivite Vibrance Decollete Therapy product. It’s the most effective one I’ve seen so far. You should also sunscreen or double sunscreen this area every day, unless it’s covered by clothing, to prevent future sun damage and wrinkles.

Secondly, is your chest sun damaged? Do you have a lot of brown spots and a leathery look that also needs to be addressed with lasers? The Fraxel Dual is particularly nice for chest with lots of pigment.

Thirdly, are these partly sleep lines from your sleeping position at night? If so, try to change your sleep positions – not always easy!! Maybe you need a new mattress?

And fourthly, some combination of lasers will almost always be needed to correct damaged skin (removes wrinkles and red or brown sun spots) and help you achieve smoother, younger looking skin. For some, injectable treatments will be needed to add some volume back as well.

See Dr. Irwin’s Tips to Get a Great Laser Treatment: http://www.skintour.com/consumer-focus/tips-on-getting-a-great-laser-photorejuvenation-treatment

Dr. Irwin

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Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- The Best Treatments For Pigmentation

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Reader’s Question

I’ve pigmentation on my face. May i know what the best treatment for pigmentation.

Ziwa

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

How I wish there was a simple answer to this question and I know you and millions of other women would like one too. To answer, please remember that there are many different causes of pigment on the face and you must know the cause (your diagnosis) because it’s the only way that treatment will be effective. So…….. do you have melasma (more horrnonal and pregnancy), sun damage spots (lentingines) or blotches, more raised brown growths (seborrheic keratoses), certain medications or spots that are post acne or after other rashes/ irritations?? And then there are some rarer internal causes like adrenal gland problems. Some women have 2 or 3 of these problems together. Most causes of pigmentation are light/sun activated. Notice I didn’t say just sun – but natural LIGHT!!

Once you know what you have, then it’s easier for you and your dermatologist to figure out treatment. “Bleaching creams,” for example, can help some pigment problems but do nothing or very little for others problems. ALL treatment plans for pigmentation require sun and light protection and I really recommend double layering your sunscreen. The first one should contain zinc oxide 10% or higher. There are some nice tinted ones now. See SkinTour.com under products for examples. The second layer depends on how much you are outdoors. If you are indoors, a mineral pigment makeup is good or even a tinted moisturizer or makeup with an SPF 15 or higher could be fine.

I hope this will at least get you started. Good luck to you!

Dr. Irwin

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Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- Oil Seed Problems

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Reader’s Question

Hey Dr Irwin! I have had severe oil seed problems on my face and was wondering if there are any products or to take any special care or attention while cleansing? or exfoliating? I have a combination face and and i have large pores around my inner cheeks and nose. Hope you can give me some advice ! I am deprived of help!

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

Yes – excess oil is a problem for many women. Our oil production is controlled mostly by our hormones so it’s a tough problem to fix! Here are some hints. Try some of the products for teens that are drying and contain salicylic acid like the washes and light lotions with 2% sal acid. (Risa – can you add product links?) Also, the vitamin a gels like Retin A/tretinoin gel will help keep the pores clean and be somewhat drying. Be sure you’re not putting any oil back onto your face with products. Try the SkinCeuticals Vitamin B5 gel if you need moisture. Check all your products – they should say noncomedogenic on them. Also, stick with the powder makeups and blotting papers (Shiseido makes a good one). Link to my favorite oil control products: http://www.skintour.com/oil-control-and-acne-care-products

Dr. Irwin

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Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- Dark Patches

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Reader’s Question

I have dark patches around my smiling line. I have tried so many products yet not effective. What shall i do?

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

If you have tried several drugstore remedies without any improvement, it’s time to see your dermatologist! It could be melasma or sun damage or something else, and there are lasers or peels or prescription creams which may work, but all start with going to see a dermatologist. See: http://www.skintour.com/trusted-experts

Dr. Irwin

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Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- Glycolic Acid

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Reader’s Question

I’ve got uneven skin tone. The skin of my neck, butt, knees, elbows are way darker than my original olive tone. One aesthetician told me use an 15-20% glycolic acid lotion but since I can’t buy online I need a product from drug store. Which drug store product is good? What’s your advice for my problem?
thanks

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

Often, in a situation like this, it’s good to start with the more gentle version of the product and see how that works first. These are not prescription items. You could try the glycolic lotion 10% but you will need to use it for 8 weeks to see if it helps. If you get irritated with it, stop like product like it states on the label. If you’re not better then, you need to see a dermatologist. Higher strength glycolics can be irritating  and may make pigment problems worse. See more about color and texture issues http://www.skintour.com/guide-to-cosmetic-areas/color-and-texture-issues.

Dr. Irwin

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Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- Professional Help For Acne

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Reader’s Question

Hi Dr.Brandith,
My name is Katrin, I’m 26 years old and for the past years I have suffered a lot of ance, I been to many dermatologists, the first dermatologist sent me Accutane I have it for two years, after 3 months to take Accutane my skin was God and I had nothing of acne. my Dr. told me that after the two years of drinking accutane I would never suffer again with acne, I went back to another doctor and they send me again Accutane, but I do not want to take this medicine because it is bad, I’m writing to you because I need help and some advice , what you can recommend me??
thanks

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

Dear Katrin.
I’m so sorry but your problem is way too complicated for an email response. You clearly have suffered quite a bit with this and seen several dermatologists. I would highly recommend the Mayo Clinic in either Arizona or Minnesota. They both have excellent dermatology departments. An academic center (at a University) would be better in your situation. Look for the University nearest to you and make an appointment with the Dermatology department. Or see my list of the best derms in the US: http://www.skintour.com/trusted-experts/your-regional-guide-to-excellent-cosmetic-dermatologists

Dr. Irwin

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Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- The Problems Behind Yoga, Sweating, Acne & Vitamin A

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Reader’s Question

For the past seven months I’ve been practicing Bikram yoga 4-5 times a week, I love the practice but experience acne in the areas that most of the sweat occurs. I keep a very strict clean diet and have started taking Vitamin A, C, D, E, B-complex and Zinc in hopes of clearing my skin. The problem I’m having now is Vitamin A [I think] is interfering with my periods [late last month and this month]. Is there anything else you recommend me doing, should I stop Vitamin A to get my periods back on track?

Thank you!

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

These are all good questions. Your period change could be due to many things. It makes sense to me to try stopping the vitamin A first (and never take more than 5,000 iu a day anyway). If your periods aren’t normal in a month or two though, please see your doctor.

Remember that acne is primarily due to hormones. I wish acne could be cured with diet but unfortunately even good changes don’t help much. It’s great that you’re making the healthy choices for lots of other reasons though! In my opinion, all that heat and sweating on top of your normal hormones will make it difficult to control the acne. Could you do Bikram yoga 1-2 times a week and regular yoga on the other days? If you don’t clear up when you change your yoga, please see your dermatologist.

Just like you need a balance of different foods for healthy eating, you need a balance of different exercise for healthy muscles and joints. A regimen of yoga 2-3 times a week alternating with a mix of some walking, running, swimming, pilates (whatever you like best) …… etc. would be better than yoga 4-5 times a week over the long run. Hope this helps.

Dr. Irwin

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Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- When Acne Products Do Not Work

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Reader’s Question

I’ve been battling acne for almost 8 years now. It’s been getting worse. I have acne prone, oily, sensitive skin. I’ve tried everything from drugstore to proactiv to murad to burtsbees. Nothing has worked for me. I’ve stuck out each regimen for the recommended time and each time, my skin is filled with pimples and later, acne scars. I’m traumatized at how my skin’s behaving. I have been to a dermatologist who just prescribed benzoyl peroxide and tazorac both of which my skin is sensitive too. I’m about to try birth control pills but Do you have any recommendations of what I should do? Thank you

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

I would recommend getting a second opinion from another dermatologist. If you have true cystic or pustular acne with scarring, you are a candidate for Accutane. A 6 month course of Accutane (or it’s generic form) dosed at approximately 1 mg/kg of lean body weight will cure this type of acne 80-90% of the time. I really think discussing this with your dermatologist is important. Our office and other good offices follow the FDA recommended iPledge guidelines to the letter. When you call to make your appointment to discuss this, please make sure that the office has the iPledge program in place. Also you can learn more here: http://www.skintour.com/in-depth/acne. I hope this helps.

Dr. Irwin

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Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- Kathy Dallas Kd-12 Cream

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Reader’s Question

i have recently brought a kathy dallas kd-12 cream.. i am having doubts about using it because i cant find any reviews online about it. can u please tell me your opinion about it.

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

I’m sorry but I’m not familiar with that brand cream, so cannot advise about it. However, here is a link to the antioxidant, anti-aging and repair creams I have tried and absolutely recommend: http://www.skintour.com/anti-aging-and-wrinkle-repair. Good luck!

Dr. Irwin

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Beauty Questions? Ask Dr. Irwin
- Can Tumeric Powder Remove Hair?

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Reader’s Question

I m 19 year girl my docter advised me to use acnestar soap to reduce pimples after using that i had small dark hairs in my upper lip my family advised me to rub it off wlth turmeric power the hair is gone but i notice dark stains like moustache naked What shall i do to get rid off it

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Dr. Irwin’s Answer

Wow – that’s one I’ve never heard – about rubbing tumeric powder on the skin to remove hair. I love tumeric to cook with but I really wouldn’t advise rubbing it on your skin because it will stain it. That sounds like exactly what happened. Basically it should come off within a couple of weeks as it’s just the cells of the outer dead layer (stratum corneum) that are stained. Please do NOT over scrub this trying to get it off. It will cause irritation which could cause more pigment to develop. Just very gently use a wash cloth on it every 2-3 days and it should gradually lighten. If it doesn’t, see a dermatologist please.

Dr. Irwin

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