When we’re young we think we’re invincible. Many of us likely spent hours outdoors – poolside, at the beach, or playing sports – without so much as a thought of donning sun protection. While the impact of this is not immediate, years later the effects of sun damage begin to appear. This can be in the form of brown spots, discoloration and an aged appearance.

If this is the case for you, how might I help return your skin to optimum health and restore a youthful appearance? In a nutshell: Antioxidants.

Visual Signs: Aging

Skin damage and aging occur when oxidative stressors like the sun penetrate skin cells where they break down collagen and impact the DNA structure of the cell. Over time, as damage occurs, the cell is more likely to replicate it – the damaged cells multiply.

If your skin is wearing the signs of aging induced by overexposure to the sun, we should focus on boosting the skin’s antioxidant defenses, as these typically decrease with age. This can be achieved through diet, as well as topicals.

Antioxidants are vital in fighting the signs of aging, internally and externally. Getting these nutrients naturally from super foods is always the best option, but supplements and topicals applied to the skin also provide benefits.

In the Treatment Room

Topicals rich in antioxidants will help firm, tone, tighten, refine lines, and give skin an overall glow. Active corrective ingredients like ascorbic acid, tocopherols, retinoids, and L-lactic acid, will also help stimulate the regeneration process.

In the treatment room, we can help restore the skin and get you started on the right track with antioxidant-rich treatments beginning with the Pumpkin Cleanser, followed by a mist of the Berry Wine Lotion, which contains Shea butter, resveratrol and raspberry.

To exfoliate, reduce keratinocytes, stimulate cell turnover, and infuse the skin with antioxidants, we can use the Mint Papaya Enzyme followed by a salicylic formula like the Italian Herbal Peel. We can finish with an antioxidant mask like the Grape Seed Parfait Mask or Chocolate Antioxidant Mask, C-Peptide Complex, Drop of Essence, growth factors and the eZinc or Daytime Defense SPF30.

Home Care

We may continue the re-youth program between treatments by sending you home with a good cleanser, the C-Peptide Complex, a retinol serum like ChronoPeptide A, RED Method PM Retinol Redux or Retinol Supreme, and a deep-sea formula with thermos thermophilus ferment, like Sea Gems.

Vitamin C will work well to improve skin elasticity, decrease wrinkles by stimulating collagen synthesis, boost the skin’s immune system, and repair damages caused by the sun’s harmful rays.

While the best defense for sun-related skin damage is prevention, the reality is most of us have some degree of sun damage. While we can’t jump in a time machine to reverse the harmful effects, we can do the next best thing to correct, rebuild and protect our skin from future damage.

Question: How do you help your clients repair sun-related aging?

@Rhonda Allison