Photo Credits: Shutterstock | Model Used for Illustrative Purpose Only
Ask any dermatologist or plastic surgeon when the best time of year is to do a laser (of any kind) and I guarantee you the answer will be a resounding, “WINTER!”
During the winter months, generally, skin is less exposed to the sun, which can easily undo what a laser just fixed. That’s not to say that the sun isn’t out and doing damage unto your skin from December through April, but it’s just that people are less likely to spend time in the sun (unprotected).
No matter what type of laser you opt for this winter, taking care of your skin post-procedure is just as important as taking care of your skin every day.
Skin that has been "lasered" is sensitive, easily irritated and compromised. Washing the skin with cleansers that are harsh and stripping, like those that are acid-based or exfoliating, can actually damage your skin. You’ll want to keep your skin as clean as possible, which may mean limiting makeup (ask your doctor when you can start wearing makeup again and which formulas are best for you) and the use of your regular skin care products, especially those with ingredients like acids and retinoids.
If your skin is red and swollen after you’ve been treated, make sure to apply cold compresses and ice packs to the area, as this will help mitigate some of the inflammation. Sleeping in an elevated position with an extra pillow or two can help, too.
Colleyville, TX facial plastic surgeon Yadro Ducic, MD says what’s most important is moisture preservation. “Simple products like Aquaphor and various other occlusive moisturizers are all adequate,” he adds. A lack of moisture post-treatment can cause the skin to scab and may even delay (and in some cases compromise) the healing process. Torrance, CA plastic surgeon Linda Swanson, MD has patients use EltaMD Barrier Renewal Complex ($45) to help replenish moisture in their skin.
“Two weeks after the laser, patients are ready for manual skin exfoliation,” says Dr. Swanson. “I find that dermaplaning works well to help get all the additional transitional skin off and create a non-flaky appearance.”
Sun protection is of the utmost importance because skin is vulnerable in the healing phase. Failure to wear a good SPF can cause the treated skin to actually become more damaged than it was pre-treatment and also for dark spots to form. We like Bare Republic Mineral Face Sunscreen ($15), which protects against both UVA and UVB rays and offers an SPF of 30.
The first time I heard about Baby Foot I was mesmerized and grossed out at the same time. Considering the fact that I am constantly plagued by dry, cracked heels and always on a mission to find a cream or balm that could quench their thirst, I had to do some digging to find out what Baby Foot was really all about. Boy was I glad I found it.
The original version, which is probably what you’re most familiar with, is a pair of presoaked exfoliatingbooties that you slip your feet into and let the acid-rich concoction work its magic over the course of one hour. While there’s no immediate difference in the way your feet look or feel, about three to five days after wearing the booties the skin on your feet starts to shed—and I mean shed as in layer upon layer of like a snake molting—to eventually reveal the softest, freshest, prettiest heels you ever did see.
Being a devoted fan of Baby Foot (I try and exfoliate my feet with it every few months, but need to plan accordingly because this is one treatment that you don’t want to do when you know you have to wear open toe shoes to an important event) I was beyond excited to learn that the brand had launched a sister product, Baby Foot Moisturizing Foot Mask ($15).
More of a hydrating treatment than an exfoliating one, like the cult-classic original (which has been on the market for more than 20 years and is the best-selling foot product in Japan), these serum-soaked booties (slip them on your feet for about 20 minutes and let them work their magic; once you remove them, rub any remaining product into your feet) transform dry, parched heels into super soft feet. Best when used after the original Baby Foot, this is the perfect post-treatment complementary way to hydrate and heal.
Chock-full of collagen, hyaluronic acid and 14 different natural extracts ranging from chamomile and sage to lemon and ivy, the new Moisturizing Foot Mask is actually the first new product release from the brand since making its U.S. debut back in 2012. So now you have the complete range of feet perfecting disposable booties, an exfoliating one to renew and a hydrating to moisturize. Quote honestly, the perfect pair!