Dr. Michelle Copeland Talks Skin Care Essentials and Work
Skincare-news.com, February 13, 2008

Dr. Copeland participates in a Q&A with Skincare-news.com

World-renowned, Harvard-trained plastic surgeon, biochemist and bestselling author, Dr. Michelle Copeland has been sharing her skin care secrets with celebrities for years. And now, thankfully and happily, she's sharing it with our readers. Get the scoop on attaining beautiful skin and learn more about this skin care guru.

SCN: Your new book, The Beautiful Skin Workout: Eight Weeks to the Smoothest, Healthiest Skin of Your Life, discusses the five exercises of CEAMP (cleanse, exfoliate, activate, moisturize and protect) and provides 10 commandments for beautiful skin. It sounds great - please tell us more!


Dr. Copeland: We have the power to erase 90% of our skin flaws in eight weeks by following this plan. No matter what your age or how you've treated your skin before, you can transform your exterior surface simply by adhering to my recommendations. The heart of the beautiful skin workout is the five exercises known as CEAMP. It all begins with cleansing, which sets the tone for the rest of the program. Ideally you'd go through the full five steps of the program twice a day every day. Each step has a specific effect, from increasing your skin's health to eliminating wrinkles.

The Ten Commandments for beautiful skin are ten rules to follow to improve your skin. Incorporating these 10 rules into your life will help you to see significant improvements in your skin and overall well-being. These Ten Commandments focus on the things you can do both internally and externally to achieve beautiful, healthy skin.

SCN: What's a major skin care myth people should never follow?

Dr. Copeland: Using a bar of soap to wash your face, no matter how moisturizing the soap claims to be. The act of saponification - turning cleansing ingredients into bar form - results in a solid that is more drying to the skin than liquid counterparts. The chemical reaction that stabilizes a bar's components makes it alkaline, but the skin functions optimally in a slightly acidic environment.


SCN: What are the latest treatments offered at your practice for common skin care concerns?


Dr. Copeland: Combination non-ablative skin treatments to even out skin discolorations and pigmentation, tighten pores and the skins surface, stimulate collagen and decrease fine lines, wrinkles and acne.

We also offer Thermage, a non-invasive treatment can tighten skin from head to toe, renew facial contours and stimulate your body to make healthier collagen - the building block that provides structure to your skin. The procedure uses radiofrequency technology called ThermaCool that has been clinically proven to tighten and gently lift skin to smooth out wrinkles and renew facial contours. Thermage requires no downtime from normal activities. And unlike laser treatments, Thermage can be performed on patients of all skin types.


SCN: What are some facts that would surprise our readers regarding new treatments, dermatology or skin care as a whole?

Dr. Copeland: It's possible to make your skin worse with skin care. There are many products on the market that include ingredients that can be harmful to your skin and many that claim to be natural but include harmful dyes and skin irritants. It's important as a consumer to do your homework and look for products that contain ingredients that don't contain harmful dyes and irritants and have been allergy tested.

In terms of new treatments in dermatology, in the future topicals will replace some in-office procedures such as scar reduction.

SCN: How does your unique expertise in biochemistry inform your work?

Dr. Copeland: My background in biochemistry - working with peptides, proteins and connective tissue - allows me to understand the skin at the cellular level. I have developed techniques for non-ablative rejuvenation that more effectively and more rapidly smooth and tighten skin. So there is no flaking, peeling or downtime.


SNC: What do you love about your work?

Dr. Copeland: There are so many things I love about my job: smoothing a noticeable bump in a woman's nose, thereby increasing her self-confidence, or giving a man some motivation to continue with his newly adopted healthy lifestyle by erasing his persistent love handles. This gives me great satisfaction. Being able to be of service to people and help them take control of their lives and look better and feel healthier is why I do what I do.


SCN: What would you like readers to know about your work?

Dr. Copeland: Even though I'm a plastic surgeon, I spend my days doing more than working with scalpels and cannulas in the operating room. I'm equally concerned with the quality of the skin itself, not just the ways I can shape it. I can't give a woman the firm, smooth lifted face she wants if the tissue I have to work with is dull, crepey, dry and discolored. As much as I pull and lift, if the texture and quality of skin aren't addressed, the result of any procedure isn't going to make the person appear youthful and vibrant.


SCN: If you were stranded on an island, what are three skin care products you couldn't (and others shouldn't!) live without?

Dr. Copeland: Sunblock would be my first choice. Simply put, sun is the single most powerful factor responsible for aging skin. Solar radiation doesn't just change skin pigmentation; it penetrates deeply, disrupting and weakening collagen and elastin (another layer that holds skin together), adversely affecting cellular turnover. Sunlight also breaks superficial blood vessels and triggers the release of free radicals - destructive molecules that change cellular DNA and can lead to pre-cancerous changes in the skin. All skin types and tones must apply an SPF-rich lotion to the skin daily. Using a sunblock with Zinc Oxide, which is considered a physical barrier to sunlight, is good and it's also a powerful antioxidant.

A good cleanser is a must. Cleansing your face daily is extremely important. The surface of your face and body is home to millions of bacteria. Of course some types of bacteria are good and beneficial, but the ones that aren't can make their way through tiny cracks in the tissue. They work themselves inside your body where they can start an infection.

Daily use of a product with antioxidants such as Vitamin C, E or green tea is crucial. These antioxidants help to keep the skin clear, healthy and nourished. Some moisturizers and serums now contain these antioxidants.

SCN: What exciting skin care innovations do you envision in the next five to 10 years?

Dr. Copeland: In the next ten years, we're going to learn how to reverse the aging process in a healthy manner and arrest negative cellular development leading to more products on the market that don't just treat skin concerns but correct and reverse.

SCN: If consumers are going to splurge on a skin care product, what type of product would deliver the most bang for their buck?

Dr. Copeland: My Rewind products definitely deliver the most bang for the buck. Rewind Age Defying Cream contains 13 potent anti-aging ingredients that work together to stimulate cell renewal and reverse the signs of aging and has been clinically tested.

Rewind Eye Formula contains 11 anti-aging ingredients that work to reduce lines, puffiness and dark circles around the delicate eye area.

Rewind Reparative Night Serum is patent pending and contains powerful antioxidants to protect the skin from signs of excess sun exposure, as well as inhibits free radical damage, boosts collagen production and brightens and evens the skin tone all while you sleep.

My latest at-home miracle is Rewind Advanced Wrinkle Defense contains 12 anti-wrinkle ingredients that work together to diminish those difficult and stubborn deep lines and wrinkles that even injections cannot erase. Used in combination this gives any customer a powerful arsenal of products to turn back the clock and rejuvenate the skin.