As a woman in my late 40’s, I worry about aging just like every other woman. I understand that “black don’t crack”, but it can wane from stress, the natural aging process and be negatively affected by weather like the sun. I just want to help it along a little and realize I am not alone.
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Many black women suffer from hyperpigmentation or Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH). PIH is skin darkening and discoloration that are produced unevenly in spots or patchves. This occurs because cells that normally produce brown pigment (melanin) evenly across your skin jump into overdrive and produce too much of it.
While PIH is not directly related to aging, it is a big concern for many woman my age. It’s right up there with anti-aging and want to discuss both since they are equally important in keeping our skin looking and feeling beautiful. Black women want smoother and firmer skin too, so we have the top anti-aging (and hyperpigmentation) treatments that will be the hottest and the best to try in 2017.
At-Home Microdermabrasion Treatment
We love at-home beauty products. For one, they tend to be way much less expensive to going to the doc or a pricey salon and secondly, they allow us to perform them in the privacy of our own homes whenever we need to. Microdermabrasions are being touted as instant face-lifts and quite popular now. Here’s the science behind it:
“if you remove or break up the stratum corneum, the body interprets that as a mild injury and rushes to replace the lost skin cells with new and healthy ones. In the first hour after treatment, this causes mild edema (swelling) and erythema (redness). Depending on the individual, these side effects can last anywhere from an hour to two days.
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This process has a few beneficial effects. With the stratum corneum gone, the skin’s surface is improved. The healing process brings with it newer skin cells that look and feel smoother.” How Stuff Works
Removing the stratum corneum allows medicinal medicines and lotions to work better as they have access to lower levels of the skin. They also help with dark spots and fine lines. Now, you can go to a salon to get this done but great at-home products like the Essential Skin Solutions Perfect Skin Brushing System or the PMD Personal Microderm Pro will save you a lot of money and time.
Chemical peels are nothing new, but they are big beauty treatment to try in 2017. For one thing, at-home options are not only plentiful but safe and more women are finding them useful for eradicating the upper layer of skin and revealing the undamaged layer hidden below. These peels have a combination of glycolic, lactic, alpha and beta hydroxyl acids and the at-home products are not as strong at the in-office peels and safer. Here are two popular one:
StriVectinLABS 5-Minute Weekly Glycolic Peel
Ole HenriksenPOWER Peel PRO-strength Microdermabrasion/AHA Peel System
Some people feel nothing while others may feel a mild to severe tingling dependent upon the type of peel being applied. Not everyone experiences skin peeling afterward but it it can occur from several days to weeks depending upon the type of peel and one’s skin type.
Lasers for Hyperpigmentation
Many black women suffer from hyperpigmentation and as one who does, I understand the discomfort it creates when sharing your blotched skin to the world. Well, there’s something new on the horizon for us as newer technologies over the last 2 years have brought about remarkable options like lasers. Very similar to tattoo-removal lasers, these like the Regenlite neglects to use heat (which triggers our skin to create scar tissue) and actually coaxes skin cells to make collagen that’s soft, pliable and has little to no downtime.
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New York City dermatologist Neil Sadick explains “Tattoo-removal lasers are very good at targeting and eliminating pigment, so using them on hyperpigmentation is a natural next step, [and] We’re running a large study and amassing evidence that three of these lasers—PicoSure, Enlighten, and PicoWay—remove diffuse hyperpigmentation in a very effective, very gentle way in just one session.
Basically, this is huge for black woman suffering from hyperpigmentation and age spots!
What to look forward to in 2018
XAF5 (under-eye bag reduction)
Everyone’s talking about XAF5 as the newest breakthrough for removing fat pods under the eyes without surgery. XAF5 is a molecule (traditionally used in Glaucoma medicine) that binds to fat cells under the skin and forces them to slowly release fatty acids. The fat pads began to diminish and the smaller the fat cells, the less bagging there is.
“When study participants applied the XAF5 ointment once a day for 10 weeks, they saw significant improvement in the appearance of their eyelids and overall facial attractiveness,” says Deanne Robinson, MD, clinical instructor of dermatology at Yale University School of Medicine. New Beauty
XAF5 Ointment topical cream is expected to be available sometime in 2018.
We know beauty is only skin deep but if you are ready for your outer beauty to mirror the inner, these anti-aging treatments may be something to try in the near future. I’m game for the at-home Microdermabrasion Treatment or the at-home chemical peel but I would LOVE to know if you’ve tried either and what you thought. Share below!!