A number of large, well-designed, scientific studies have demonstrated the usefulness of topical vitamin A analogues1. They can be found in a variety of formulas to reduce signs of aging caused by sun damage and improve fine lines and wrinkles. Prescription examples include Renova® and Tazorac®, and non-prescription Retinol is found in good percentages in many high-quality medical skincare lines.
These products are usually recommended to be applied before bed at night. Benefits can be seen after a number of weeks. Potential side effects can include skin irritation, dryness, and breakouts. The associated dryness can cause photosensitivity, so moisturizers and sunscreen should be used in combination with Vitamin A. Some form of retinoid is recommended for most skincare regimens as an ingredient in a good night cream, as it can help reduce photodamage and brown spots, help with acne, and reduce the appearance of fine lines, and is thought to be stimulating to skin cells, promoting the production of collagen and elastin.
Exposure to UV radiation increases the risk of skin cancer and promotes the appearance of lines, wrinkles, and uneven skin tone. Studies have shown that sunscreen application is associated with a lower risk of the most common forms of skin cancer2. While the evidence for other forms of skin cancer is less conclusive, most skincare physicians recommend sunscreen to reduce the overall UV exposure and incidence of sunburns, which studies suggest are associated with an increase in the risk of the most serious, life-threatening forms of skin cancer.
If you want to protect your skin from the ravages of aging and improve your skin’s health, use a high-quality sunscreen. It should be applied generously and re-applied frequently when you’re going to be exposed to the sun.
When building a good skincare plan, consider using skin stimulators for your nighttime routine. These compounds offer protection from a process known as oxidation. Oxidation is a chemical reaction that is integral to the aging process, occurring when the skin is exposed to stresses like pollutants, chemicals, UV radiation. The best-known antioxidant is vitamin C, but there are many compounds for which some evidence exists to suggest they have antioxidant effects.
Many of these compounds are naturally occurring and are derived from plants. Different skincare products incorporate several of these agents into their skin creams and can provide good research evidence suggesting efficacy.
Our practice does not endorse any specific skincare product or line. We offer different treatment choices and believe many products can be beneficial. Your choices should be tailored to your particular skincare needs and your budget.
Beyond the basics of a protective day cream, sunscreen, and a wrinkle-fighting stimulating cream for night, there are many ingredients that have some scientific support showing they can help treat many other specific cosmetic concerns. Examples of compounds that may have some benefit for these conditions include copper peptides and other amino acids, hyaluronic acid, hydroquinone, retinol, salicylic acid, and glycolic acid, rutin, niacinamide, azelaic acid, arbutin, ferulic acid, kojic acid, and DMAO, to name a few. Together these compounds are often referred to as “cosmeceuticals,” and there is research to suggest that they can improve the appearance of the skin and fight the signs of aging3. Cosmeceuticals remain largely unregulated or less regulated than drugs, and therefore it is probably advisable to use high-quality products from companies with a long track record in the industry. Our art is in carefully curating which of these many compounds will be best for your skincare goals.
Some examples of medical-grade skincare products that we offer at MCSC include:
- Clayton Shagal
Request Your Consultation
Book an appointment for a free skincare consultation at MCSC with our medical aesthetician or registered nurse, and take the first step toward a healthier, more glowing complexion. Request an appointment online or call
(905) 273-3045 (Mississauga) or
(416) 207-9090 (Toronto).
To help you prepare for your skincare consultation, we offer an online questionnaire that you can use to assess your skin and provide us with details in advance of your consultation. Click to complete the questionnaire.
Visit Our New Online Skincare Products Store!
Our online skincare products store carries top-of-the-line products for every skin type and skin concern. Shop for your favourite skincare products such as SkinMedica®, Obagi Medical®, eltraderm, and more when it’s convenient for you!
In keeping with the highest ethical standards, Dr. Weinberg does not endorse or lend his name to any specific product, medication, or device. The information on this page is meant to familiarize prospective patients with some of the commonly available treatments, products, and devices in use for specific issues and is intended for general educational purposes only. Decisions regarding treatments in a specific patient must be made in the context of a medical consultation.
1Clin Dermatol. 1996 Mar-Apr;14(2):207-15
2CMAJ. 2005 Aug 2; 173(3): 244–245
3Mo Med. 2011 Jan-Feb; 108(1): 60–63