Monthly Archives: June 2016

I have to have it…..

Have you heard of the Kylie lip kits? They are a lip gloss and lip liner package designed by Kylie Jenner and they are super hard to get in your hands. They are only available online and every time the site restocks they sell out within minutes. You have to know exactly when they restock and be available to buy right then if you want one. So they must be amazing, right? I’m not a Kylie Jenner super fan, I don’t need another $40 lipstick. I wasn’t super excited about the shades BUT I felt I had to have one. I had to know what all the hype was about. I wanted to feel that success of getting something other people couldn’t, being a winner having the best lip product out there. So I fell for it, I bought her app, I was notified when they restocked and I bought one. Pathetic? Or way cool for a 32 year old? Don’t answer that rhetorical question. That’s how the world of beauty products works. Everyone wants a Louis, not a knock off. Everyone wants Oreo cookies not the knock off chocolate sandwich cookie. But why? Could you tell the difference in a blind folded taste test? Maybe not. It’s called marketing and it is made to train you what’s great and what’s not. On the other hand, a Louis Voutton purse is made with higher quality leather than its knock off so in some instances you pay for what you get. How then in the world of skincare do we know if we are getting what we pay for (spending more money to get a product that works) or are we paying for a name brand that’s been marketed into our heads as changing our skin but is the same as dollar general brand lotion behind the label? I don’t know if I have a good answer because quite frankly I love my Kylie lip kit. And I don’t know if it’s because the world convinced me to love it before I even had it on my lips or if I really love it, but I want it in every color. Either way I feel like it is my job to steer my uneducated patients towards products that will change their skin. It is my job as your skin care expert when you come to see me for your skin to make sure you know which products to use and where to get them. That’s the reason we sell skin care products at Johnson Dermatology. That’s the easiest way to help you deciefer through the sea of choices, just hand you what you need. So above all else know that you are always welcome to walk through our doors and talk to somebody about our products and which ones will or won’t work for you needs. We are here for you. But until that time here are a few tricks to help you decide what to get and what not to get.

  1. Some of my favorite brands are Jane Iredale, SkinMedica, Elta MD, Vanicream, Cetaphil and Cerave.
  2. Never buy a product that costs more than $300. Unless your money grows off trees in the back yard and in that case, what’s your address?
  3. Avoid products that have more than 10 ingredients (Shelly taught me this and I live by it, LIVE BY IT)
  4. Sunscreen every morning and Retinol everynight-bottom line must haves.
  5. Avoid fragrances, colors, additives and the so called “froo froo” products.
  6. Natural isn’t always better. I LOVE coconut oil. It has anti-inflammatory properties and it is very moisturizing. But here lately I have had so many patients that have found out they are allergic to it! It’s causing rash even though it is a natural oil. Don’t think just because organic is on the label that it can’t cause you problems.
  7. Question yours and your sellers motives. Why are you buying this product? Is someone selling it to you to make money off you? Is someone recommending it because it worked for them? Did you see the commercial? Did your dermatologist recommend it? Think about these things because sometimes it saves you from a bad impulse buy.
  8. Does it promise overnight results? This always deters me from a product. Anyone that knows skin knows your skin cells only turn over every 28 days therefore to produce real results you should give a product 3 months to work.
  9. First do no harm. If a make-up has talc in it it could flare your acnes. If your soap has a heavy fragrance in it it could cause eczema or backne. Only buy gentle products, simplicity is usually the ticket.
  10. Nothing harsh. If it burns when you put it on probably a bad idea, if it feels like sandpaper on your skin, not okay. People often want to “feel it working” but this could often be causing problems for you skin. An example would be alcohol based toners that burn when you apply them, they can be very drying to the skin and cause rashes, redness and irritation.

Hope these tips help you out next time you are at the beauty counter, hope next time you are at OUR beauty counter because we have actual dermatologist in the building recommending our products it isn’t just some bogus label that says “dermatologist recommended” just sayin’….. This week is the last week of June otherwise known as Acne Awareness Month so make sure you are following us on instagram and snapchat because everyday we are posting before and after photos and live video of tips, tricks and procedures. JDermatology is how you find us on both outlets. See you there!

XOXO, Nina

P.S. I found a Jane Iredale lip liner and color that copy cats the Kylie lip kit I got and it’s much more comfortable on the lips plus WAY easier to get your hands on…. I will snap it and IG it this week!


Wedding Week

June is acne awareness month and coincidentally, it’s also wedding season. This weekend I will be heading to NYC for my sweet dear cousin’s wedding. As a tribute to her celebration, this week’s blog is dedicated to her. I love you Jackie and I am excited to welcome Matt to the family. I know you will be an absolutely stunning bride but just to help you out in the derm department here are your do’s and don’ts for your skin the week of your wedding!

  1. Do use HA5. I generally tell patients they need to give skincare products 3 months before they decide if they are “working” because our skin cells only turn over every 28 days. At this point we don’t have time for that so use HA5, it has immediate (within 15 minutes) plumping of the skin. It will help with redness, fine lines, dullness and those sleepy eyelids. So use it before the wedding as your super moisturizer and then keep using it because over time it will make you more collagen!
  2. Do wear sunscreen and don’t forget it on your lips! Nobody wants tan lines, sunburn or chapped lips on the big day. And might as well add a floppy hat, sunglasses and sunsmart clothes to that order because you’re my cousin and I said so.
  3. Don’t go get a facial where you’ve never had one. New products that could cause a reaction or could irritate your skin aren’t a good idea this week. If you get a rash or irritation it will be much harder to treat then it is to just prevent!
  4. Do treat acne ASAP at a dermatologist. It’s too late for a lot of the effective medications but if you have an emergency pimple we can inject it with a little steroid or laser it with the pulsed dye laser to get the red out. If you are acne prone consider a blu-u light treatment. It’s quick and painless. Go twice this week and sit under a blu-u light for about 16 minutes. That will kill all the P. acnes (the bacteria associated with acne) and decrease the inflammation. This will calm down your acne and prevent additional acne.
  5. Do moisturize your hair, nails and skin. Don’t go swim in a chlorine pool this week and let your hair dry and frizz. Try a leave in conditioner or condition as soon as you get done swimming. Don’t forget to moisturize your nails and cuticles. This will help prevent unwanted breaks and hangnails and promote a healthy beautiful nail for that famous ring photo! And please don’t let them push back or cut your cuticles when you have your nails done this week-cuticles are there to protect and prevent damaged nails and infection. Obviously if your skin dries out this week it could look dull, wrinkled and aged. Not to mention could crack which could introduce infection and we just don’t want to go down that path. I like a big jar of vaseline or try a jar of Cetaphil or Vanicream or even some olive oil if you want to celebrate our Maltese roots.
  6. Don’t go get fillers and procedures. That was a last month or at least last week idea. Anywhere a needle goes there is the possibility a bruise can be left behind. Although bruising is unlikely, chances are you will get one because that’s how fate treats us \and explaining a bruise on your face at a wedding can get interesting.


Hope this helps anyone that has a big social event this weekend. If you have any skin emergency needs you know where I am. Come by the clinic and let us fix you up! Happy acne awareness month everyone!

“You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.” -Dr. Seuss