African Marula Oil - Once considered sacred, the Marula tree was linked to fertility and happy marriage in ancient times. It is a highly anti-inflammatory plant oil rich in Omega 9, essential fatty acids, amino acids, as well as Vitamins C and E. It is known for its antioxidant, regenerating, rehydrating and reparative properties.
AHA (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) - Alpha hydroxy acids are a group of natural and synthetic ingredients that, when properly formulated, can exfoliate the uppermost layers of skin. Stimulates cell turnover and rejuvenation.
Antioxidants – These natural ingredients powerfully help skin resist the effects of free radicals that damage and prematurely age it. It is believed that some antioxidants may hold the key to stimulating fibroblast activity designed to repair the dermis
Arbutin – Arbutin is extracted from the Bearberry Plant. When applied topically, it inhibits tyrosinase and thus prevents the formation of melanin. It can inhibit the negative effects of UV-radiation thanks to its sun protection properties. It also evens out skin tone, diminishes the appearance of dark spots and is highly effective in treating acne scars. And is safe for all skin types
Bearberry Plant – Made from the leaves of the Bearberry Plant, this extract is used to lighten age spots, freckles, skin discolorations, sun spots, and even out blotchy skin tone to create a more uniform, brighter complexion. It's also packed with antioxidants and is known to have natural sun protective benefits for the skin.
Breakthrough Medicine - Breakthrough medicine treats people and patients like individuals who have their own special needs. It brilliantly brings together the personal one-on-one commitment we got from the medical community decades ago coupled with the cutting-edge technology of today.
Caprylic/Capric Triglycerides - Caprylic triglyceride, used in cosmetics for over 50 years, is usually made from combining coconut oil with glycerin. It is considered a superb emollient and skin replenishing ingredient used to help smooth skin and works as an antioxidant. It also binds other ingredients together, and can work as a preservative to make active ingredients in skincare last longer.
Ceramides - Ceramides are lipids that help form the skin's barrier so it can retain moisture. Ceramides also help the skin protect against environmental aggressors like irritants and pollution. Without the proper ratio of ceramides, skin's barrier can become compromised, leading to dryness, itching and irritation. The decline in this layer has been shown to accelerate the appearance of wrinkles and age spots.
ECM - Normal aging and photoaging of the skin are chronic processes that progress gradually. The Extracellular Matrix (ECM), constituting over 70% of the skin, is the central hub for repair and regeneration of the skin. As such, the ECM is the area where changes related to photodamage are most evident.
Encapsulation – Encapsulation enables actives to be delivered to skin in potent concentrations without causing irritation. There are many instances of use for “encapsulation”. Mine is top secret!
Filaggrin - Filaggrin is a major structural protein found in the stratum corneum of the epidermis. Variations in the filaggrin gene are a significant risk factor for the development of atopic dermatitis (allergic irritation of the skin).
GAGs - Glycosaminoglycans are the ultimate cell regenerators. These marine-derived complex proteins help rebuild collagen and increase skin’s elasticity
Ginger Root Extract - Ginger has been used medicinally in Asian, Indian and Arabic herbal traditions since ancient times. It contains an enzyme called Zingibain known for its ability to suppress flare-ups, decrease oxidative stress and inhibit the production of free radicals that can further damage skin. Ginger is also a powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidants which means it can help inhibit harmful free radicals that cause skin damage and aging
Grapeseed Oil - Grapeseed oil, a by-product of winemaking once the grapes are pressed and the seeds are left over, contains high levels of linoleic acid, an Omega-6 fatty acid that can help control acne by decreasing clogged pores. It also has anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and anti-oxidant properties. Rich in fatty acids it helps increase skin’s moisture levels by reducing trans-epidermal water loss.
Hexylresorcinol – It is a type of phenolic lipid, that can be found naturally in whole grain wheat and rye. It is known to function as a skin-brightening agent. It also possesses antioxidant, as well as astringent properties, and can help create a more even skin tone. By providing antioxidant protection, Hexylresorcinol helps neutralize free radicals in the environment and therefore, protects skin from premature aging signs.
Homeostasis – From the Greek words “same” and “steady”, Homeostasis is the self-regulating process by which biological systems tend to maintain stability while adjusting to conditions that are optimal for its health and well-being.
Hyaluronate - Also known as Hyaluronic Acid and Sodium Hyaluronate. Naturally produced by the body, hyaluronic acid is abundant in our skin. It is what makes our skin plump. Its main function is to retain water and keep our skin, joints, and tissues well lubricated and functioning. In the skin it is the bulk of the skin dermis and acts as our barrier from environment toxins and infection. It is an essential ingredient for smooth firm skin.
Jojoba Esters - The amazing moisturizing properties of this unique seed oil have been known through the ages. Early Native Americans and the Indians who inhabited northwestern Mexico used the seeds and their oil for making a coffee-like beverage, as a medicine, dietary supplement and an appetite suppressant when food was scarce. But probably the most lasting use has been for skin and scalp. It is an extremely efficient moisturizer that does not block the pores. It is also great for conditioning and soothing skin.
Kojic Acid - Derived from mushrooms and other fungi, it quickly brightens, evens skin tone, and reduce the look of fine lines by boosting collagen and elastin production.
Leveling Up – When engaging in a skincare practice, every person starts from their own baseline. In my Private Practice skincare, I have designed step-wise concentration and ingredient differentiation that are a stepladder to success – the right products in the right concentrations at the right time in the right sequence. Each dose builds on one another to enhance and advance your results as skin transforms and can tolerate greater activity. From intro gentle to strongest and most advanced; sensitive to most damaged. You never build up immunity. Or reach a plateau. As your skin progresses and improves you may move up to the next level.
Macha Green Tea – Matcha is a special type of green tea: a precious, jewel-green powder that is whisked with hot water in a bowl to make a frothy beverage that is the focus of the Japanese tea ceremony. Matcha is the only form of tea in which the whole leaf is consumed, and because it is made from top-quality leaves that are treated with great care, it delivers more of the healthful elements of green tea than other forms. In addition to providing trace minerals and vitamins (A, B-complex, C, E, and K), Matcha is rich in catechin polyphenols - compounds with high antioxidant activity. These compounds offer protection against the aging process.
Malachite - A blue-green semiprecious stone, Malachite crystal has long been prized for its ability to detoxify the skin. It also contains copper, which stimulates collagen production, ultimately improving the skin's elasticity and reducing the appearance of wrinkles for an overall youthful complexion. It also provides skin with nourishing trace elements such as zinc, copper, selenium, and manganese. These elements act as antioxidants that target free radicals.
Mango Butter – Known as the “Apple of the Tropics” because it’s rich in beta carotene, essential fatty acids and skin-loving vitamins A and E. An emollient with healing and regenerative properties, it is ideal for helping to treat dry skin and protecting it from future dryness. The better hydrated the skin is, the better protected it is. The better protected it is – the flatter the aging curve. Simple as that.
Matrikines - Matrikines and Matrikine-like peptides help promote skin rejuvenation and collagen synthesis and are frequently used in skincare products due to their small molecular size and ease of penetration.
Medical Quality Skincare - Medical quality skin care contains purely sourced ingredients from quality medical suppliers. The ingredients have scientific and clinical data to back their claims of results, and generally actually will accomplish the expected results with consistent use. Medical products adhere to a higher standard of purity and safety. A chemist, biochemist, pharmacist or medical doctor oversees the process of creation, manufacturing and distribution of the products to ensure your safety of use. For these reasons, these products are NOT sold as cosmetics in mainstream stores but may be sold in medical spas or offices. The products do truly improve the quality of the skin with consistent use.
Melanosomes – Melanosomes are the melanin- containing pigment granules that provide tissues with color and photoprotection
Minerals – Minerals such as Biotin, Niacin, Selenium, Magnesium, Copper and Zinc help protect skin from oxidative stress that can lead to premature again. Several minerals such as Magnesium help maintain moisture levels.
NMF (Natural Moisturizing Factor) - Natural moisturizing factor is a collection of naturally occurring amino acids and humectants that are byproducts of the structural protein filaggrin. Your skin is able to take those byproducts and recycle them in order to create NMF. Your skin then uses that NMF – which is located within cells in the stratum corneum, or the outermost layer of the epidermis – to regulate its moisture content. In other words, the job of your NMF is to draw in water from the air to the skin, keeping it hydrated. Natural moisturizing factor also plays a defensive role, helping to create a barrier so that harmful microorganisms cannot penetrate your skin.
Oat Kernel Extract – Extracted from oil kernels, it contains active components like tocopherols, phytosterols, phospholipids, Linoleic (Omega-6), Oleic (Omega-9), Palmitic and Stearic acids extremely beneficial for their anti-inflammatory and anti-irritant properties. It moisturizes and nourishes the skin, improves elasticity and smoothness and calms and soothes itchy skin. It is also known for its ability to repair UVA-UVB damage. Oat Kernel Oil is non-comedogenic so no worries about breakouts.
Oleic, Palmitic, Linoleic Acids – Known as Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs), these vital ingredients cannot be manufactured by the body. They are essential for maintaining a healthier stratum corneum, the outermost layer of the skin, critical for protecting skin again infection. They decrease trans-epidermal water loss and are antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory.
Opuntia Oil – Also known as Prickly Pear, this luxury oil helps heal acne and prevent future breakouts. It is also valued for its ability to soothe irritation and stimulate collagen production, restore elasticity, and prevent premature wrinkle formation. I love it for the way it brightens dark under-eye circles, calms redness, helps relieve sunburn, and brightens and evens complexion
Parabens - A family of preservatives that help prevent microbial contamination. Parabens have been used in cosmetics for many years to maintain product freshness and keep them free of potentially harmful bacteria as well as ensure a useful longer shelf life. Without an effective preservative system, many cosmetics can be susceptible to contamination that can occur during daily use. That said, Parabens have been designated as questionable ingredients that can cause side-effects and for that reason I have eliminated them from all of my formulas.
pH - pH describes how acidic or alkaline an aqueous solution is. A pH below 7 is considered acidic and one with a pH greater than 7 is alkaline. pH is an important factor regarding the benefits of Glycolic Acid. The normal skin pH is about 4.8, which means the skin is “acid balanced.” Acid products need to be in their acidic state to work their best. Acidic products with a pH of 2.5 to 3.5 cause a natural exfoliation in the outer layer of skin. The lower the pH and the higher the free acid concentration and the greater the exfoliation level. This a delicate difficult balance to achieve and every skin has its own optimum level. There is no one size fits all here. But after 27 years of work with my clients and patients I am able to share an optimal approach.
PHA (Polyhydroxy Acids) - Polyhydroxy acids have been called the next generation of AHAs. This group includes acids such as gluconolactone, galactose and lactobionic. Not only do they exfoliate skin in a manner similar to AHAs, PHAs also possess antioxidant properties, so they can help protect skin against free radical damage. PHAs provide additional humectant and moisturizing benefits, too. These are much better tolerated for delicate sensitive skin and skin of color. My products are all inclusive.
Phthalates - Phthalates are a class of chemicals used in fragrance that do not contribute a scent, like musks, essential oils or plant essences do, but rather act as solvents and carriers for those chemicals that create the scent in a fragrance. Phthalates have been shown to cause negative healthy impacts in humans and I have eliminated these ingredients from my formulas.
Retinol – Retinoids are a large family of compounds derived from Vitamin A. They are one of the most powerful and effective skincare ingredients proven to help fight acne, reduce wrinkles, stimulate collagen, and promote cellular turnover. They're also known to even out skin tone and increase circulation in the skin. Not all retinoids are the same. Medical-grade Retinol (Tretinoin) has the most scientific data for improving wrinkles and skin texture. However, it is too harsh in its pure prescription form for most complexions. Most off-the-shelf products don’t contain enough of the correct stable form of retinol or high enough concentrations to effect any significant change in skin. And because retinoids have been known to cause redness and dryness among the newly initiated, I recommend they be introduced to skin in the right level. But once you start you will never go back! Your skin will look smooth, glowy and fresh day after day. Retinoids achieve the most impactful results when paired with the necessary vitamins and other active ingredients. That’s why I’ve taken the fuss out of the equation and carefully designed a regimen for success based on your skin’s needs and condition.
Skin kind – My personal guarantee that you get the right ingredients, the right concentrations, in the right sequence. Uniquely prescribed for you. So you can feel 100% confident your Private Practice Skincare recommendation is perfectly safe, non-irritating and non-allergenic for all Genders, Skin Types and Colors.
Sodium Hyaluronate - see Hyaluronate
Sun Protection Factor. Most commonly referred to as SPF, it is a number designated by the FDA that identifies a product’s ability to protect the skin from sunburn or to protect the skin from turning pink or red when exposed to sun. Since sunburn results from UVB exposure, not UVA radiation, SPF is primarily a measure of UVB protection. At this time, there is no numbering system to indicate the level of protection a sunscreen can provide from UVA radiation, which affects the deeper layers of skin.
Tachyphylaxis – In medical terms, tachyphylaxis (pronounced takefi-lakses) refers to the diminishing response to successive doses of a drug so as to render it less effective. Because my Private Practice Skincare is based on the premise of “Leveling Up” – increasing concentrations of ingredients as skin is able to tolerate higher levels, skin does not reach Tachyphylaxis. I also recommend “change up” routines such as taking the weekend off to “fool” your skin from tolerance. My “skin kind” approach is your assurance that you have the right products, the right levels and right sequence uniquely prescribed for you. I want these products to be effective forever, filling your own skin’s capabilities.
Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate - Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate is a stable form of vitamin C that has been modified to be soluble in oil or lipids. Studies indicate that it not only penetrates the epidermis, the uppermost layer of skin, but also the dermis, which is the deepest layer of skin. In fact, it penetrates the skin faster and deeper than any other form of vitamin C. It provides potent antioxidant protection, brightening benefits and boosts collagen production. It is 50x more effectively absorbed than the commonly used ascorbic acid.
The Ripple Effect – This is my own personal philosophy. I’ve always wanted to give back and make the world a better place through meaningful changes. As an aesthetic plastic surgeon, either through reconstructive or cosmetic surgery, I make small but truly impactful changes in people’s lives. These small changes inspire other changes -either emotionally or physically. For me, that’s The Ripple Effect.
Tocopherol - Tocopherol acetate is an abundant form of Vitamin E with potent antioxidant properties. It helps neutralize free radicals to protect skin against visible signs of aging.
Tolerance – In medical terms, tolerance refers to the constant need for larger doses of a drug required to produce the same effect. Over time the skin adjusts to the product and eventually the effect plateaus and a more potent cream may be needed.
Tyrosinase - Tyrosinase is a copper-containing enzyme present in plant and animal tissues that catalyzes the production of melanin and other pigments from tyrosine by oxidation. It is found inside melanosomes which are synthesized in the skin melanocytes.
Vitamin C - Vitamin C, ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin. Unlike most mammals, humans do not have the ability to make their own vitamin C. Therefore, we must obtain it through internally or topically. Vitamin C is required for the synthesis of Collagen, an important structural component of skin. Vitamin C is also a highly effective antioxidant. Vitamin C also helps promote healing and minimizes hyper pigmentation by reducing melanin production. Researchers also attribute Vitamin C to helping reverse existing damage deep within the skin and may also give the skin a boost in natural resistance to UVA/UVB damage. In addition, Vitamin C helps regenerate Vitamin E in the skin, enabling it to sustain its antioxidant protection. Because Vitamin C is unstable, it is not very effective in skincare products. Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate is the effective stable form of Vitamin C for skincare use.
Vitamin D – Most often linked to bone health, Vitamin D is a fat-soluble Vitamin that has been shown to help prevent skin aging. It is crucial for skin protection, helps skin growth, repair and metabolism. Sunlight is a crucial source of Vitamin D but in as much as I strongly recommend limiting sun exposure – especially when applying Retinoids – the additional topical supplementation of it in skin products is extremely helpful.
Vitamin E - (Tocopheryl Acetate) - Considered an antioxidant superstar. Vitamin E is a lipid-soluble vitamin (meaning it likes fat better than water) that when applied topically to skin provides significant antioxidant protection against ultraviolet rays. It helps combat free radical damage and protects against the adverse effects of oxidative stress including photo-aging. Vitamin E also enhances moisturization and minimizes cell damage.
Vitamin F - (Linoleic Acid) - An essential fatty acid (EFA) which has emollient, water binding, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties for skin. This is a rare and precious Vitamin not often found in significant concentrations in traditional, off-the-shelf skincare serums.
Vitamin K – One of the best ingredients for healing and repairing skin especially when paired with other anti-aging actives like Retinol. It helps reduce inflammation, calm redness and fade dark circles by increasing circulation and reducing fluid retention. It also helps strengthen and increase skin’s resiliency. This is another precious vitamin rarely found in drugstore or cosmetic versus medical skincare.