My ZO to Skincare Combinations

My ZO to Skincare Combinations

by Michael Wong

My ZO to Skincare Combinations

By Geelda Raoofi

I stand by the ZO philosophy of skin because it emphasizes on how to prepare the skin before the use of products. Without this knowledge, you are not using the products in the way they are intended to be used. Let me share with you today what the ZO principles of skin health restoration is and how to make the most of your ZO products.

The principles of restoration include Correction (improving the epidermis), Stimulation (improving the dermis), and Bleaching & Blending (correcting pigmentation problems). The most important thing to start with is GSR (this stands for "Getting skin ready").

Prepping your skin will allow the ingredients to absorb properly. How do you do this? It's done by exfoliating the skin. You start with cleansing your skin with the gentle cleanser, followed by exfoliation, then the complexion renewal pads. ZO has a GSR kit for people who are just getting into this routine for the first time. They are all smaller sizes of the products, so you are able to try them out and get into that habit of GSR before buying the full sizes (or for when you are travelling).

This is the most important step in your entire skincare routine. Without this step, your products won't be as effective. It is the first essential step to restore skin to a healthy-looking state. Skincare "penetration" means an ingredient has made its way through the stratum corneum into the deeper layers of the skin. Making sure you apply your products in the correct order is also very important. It should always start with thinner products building up to thicker ones. SPF should always be applied in the very end of your routine (after moisturizer and before makeup).

Some studies have shown that tinted SPF actually does a better job at protecting the skin from UV rays compared to untinted (that is of course if the correct amount of product is being used). How you may ask? The iron oxides found in tinted sunscreens block both UV and blue light, making them more effective. Regardless of it being tinted SPF or not, it's always recommended to go for SPF 30 or higher, and the "two finger rule" should be used when determining how much you need (two milligrams of sunscreen per square centimeter of skin).

Back to the topic of absorption, there are a few things to keep in mind to get the most out of your skincare products. Make sure you aren't using too much product. Especially with medical grade skincare; a little goes a long way. Using too much product and rubbing it in too long (instead of patting it in) can also cause improper absorption due to pilling. Making sure the products are being applied in the proper order is also something to take into consideration, which I mentioned earlier on.

Exfoliation is number one when it comes to proper absorption. The exfoliating polish is okay to use for up to 3 times a week if you have dry skin. If you have oilier skin, you can use it more frequently. It is actually gentle enough to use daily! Just make sure to start off with less frequency and build it up to daily, observing your skin to see the reaction.

I feel lucky to be able to continuously advance my education on Dr. Obagi's holistic approach to skin health. At the ZO Symposium event this year, we were shown so many outstanding before and after photos of patients who came in wanting to get botox, filler, or a skin treatment but were put on a very specific regimen before taking the next step.

These days a lot of people look for shortcuts to achieving "good skin" without putting in the effort at home with a customized skincare regimen. I would say 50% of your results come from at home care, and the other 50% comes from the help of treatments. Those before and after photos from skincare alone proves that you need to prepare and care for your skin with the right products prior to coming in for a professional treatment.

Don't underestimate the power of these products when paired the right way to address your concerns. If you're unsure about what your skin needs, we are always here to help you one step at a time.

Here are some examples of ZO favorite clinical pairings with procedures:

  • Microneedling & firming serum accelerated
  • Clear and brilliant & 3 step peel
  • RF Microneedling & radical night repair & enzymatic peel
  • Neuromodulators & growth factor eye serum, illuminating AOX, wrinkle + texture repair
  • Fillers/biostimulators & firming serum, growth factor serum, wrinkle + texture repair
  • PRP injections & radical night repair & instant pore refiner

Whether you are new to ZO or have used some products before, keep in mind that you need to give your skin at least 6 weeks to tolerate and adjust. I hope this helps you learn a bit more about the importance of skincare and the principles of ZO skin health. Here's to having healthy, glowing skin all year round.