To find out how they do it, we grilled doctors about their own skin-care routines. Turns out, most of them rely on the same six tricks. Read on, and steal their secrets.
They swear by good old-fashioned petroleum jelly
Of all the products doctors try, the one they keep coming back to has been around for more than a century: Vaseline Petroleum Jelly ($3.49). “Remember the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding, where the dad used Windex to cure everything? Vaseline is like that!” says Mona Gohara, MD, a dermatologist in Danbury, Connecticut, and an assistant clinical professor at the Yale University Department of Dermatology.
“It’s great for dry winter cuticles and cold sores,” she explains. Jessie Cheung, MD, associate director of cosmetic dermatology at the New York University School of Medicine, uses the slippery stuff as an overnight treatment to heal chapped lips. And Heidi Waldorf, MD, a dermatologist in New York City, relies on it to keep her feet soft in winter.
“I grease my feet with Vaseline before I put on socks when I exercise,” she says. “I don’t get those calluses that need to be scraped off during a pedicure.”
If we had a dollar for every dermatologist who mentioned that she used a skin-care product with vitamin C, we could buy an orange grove! The antioxidant boosts skin’s ability to protect itself and is a key ingredient needed to manufacture the collagen that keeps complexions plump and smooth.
Lisa A. Zdinak, MD, chief surgeon at Precision Aesthetics in New York City, says applying an over-the-counter serum with vitamin C every morning before you moisturize can make a huge difference.
“I can tell when my patients are using it, because their skin looks 10 years younger after only a week,” she says of her favorite serum, Ultraceuticals C-10 Serum ($93). Another good one to try: Obagi Medical Products Professional-C Serum 10% ($65).