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Way Beyond the Basics,
The Cutting Edge

Topical Vitamin C

There are several brands which claim effectiveness in getting the vitamin C delivered to the dermis, where it needs to be present for and perhaps even stimulates the creation of collagen, which in turn plumps out the heavy wrinkles. Vitamin C also seems to smoothe the skin texture and even out hyperpigmentation, when used consistently.

The premier brands run $75-$115 and ounce. One ounce will last some 3 months, applied once a day on clean, dry skin. For dry or sensitive skins, there is a cream form which has the same concentration of active ingredient but in a more moisturizing base. For around the eyes, there are less concentrated formulas.

Topical C can be drying for some people, so be sure to moisturize over it.

SkinCeuticals and Cellex-C are the originals (formerly the same company) in delivering the proper percentage of l-ascorbic acid to the skin in the proper pH.

C-Esta, from Jan Marini, and using her patented DAE ComplexTM, also has a devoted following.

After 8 months of using Cellex-C on only one side of the face (left, in the picture). Note appearance of firmness of tissue, tightness of skin, evenness of pigmentation, reduction of heavy nasolabial fold:

The same subject under UV light. Note visible lessening of obvious sun damage.

Topical Vitamin A

Physicians have been prescribing Retin-A for some time, and Jan Marini's Factor A+ and MD Formulations' Vit-A-Plus are the esthetician's version of that formula, "plus" glycolic acid to enhance the delivery and effects. These products do not have the irritation and peeling associated with Retin-A but do have positive benefits in prevention and diminution of sun damage. This means help for dryness/dehydration, uneven pigmentation, small wrinkles and fine lines, and leathery texture. Sothys has a very effective retinol cream, available in two strengths.

Growth Factor

This is a combination of natural proteins and polypeptides which are meant to replace those lost to the aging process. These factors were isolated after it was noted that babies operated on in utero before a certain point in gestation were born without scars. Growth Factor creams are said to stimulate the cells' own renewal mechanism, promoting a smoother, better toned, more hydrated skin, with less tendency to wrinkles and fine lines. Jan Marini has Growth Factor products.

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