Complete Skin Care By Susan

Complete Skin Care By Susan

Specializing in Deep Pore Cleansing, Anti-Aging Facials, Microdermabrasion and Acid Peels for Anti-Aging, Pigment Disorders and Sun Damage. Specializing in Deep Pore Cleansing, Anti-Aging Facials, Microdermabrasion and Acid Peels for Ani-Aging, Pigment Disorders and sun damage.

Treatments include upper body, shoulder, face and scalp massage as well as a heated hand treatment and facial waxing.


The Princess Anne Garden Club

Eight beautiful homes at the Cavalier Residences and a luxury suite at the grand Cavalier Hotel will be open for the Historic Garden Week in Virginia Beach on Wednesday, May 1st. Online tickets available at 02/06/2017

How to Care for Problem Skin in the Winter

How to help your skin stay hydrated in the winter. As winter approaches, the battle for healthy skin begins. But you can minimize the toll the next few months will take on your skin by preparing now.


Complete Skin Care By Susan 06/23/2016

5 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Skip Sunscreen I'm always preaching to my family, friends and co-workers the benefits of

[09/28/15]   Water—what’s the big idea?

A friend of mine has had a face lift, Botox, and fillers because she wants to look younger, yet she constantly has a diet drink in her hand. The issue? Diet drinks especially caffeinated ones dehydrate you. The solution? Drink water—the pure kind—and drink enough of it to make your skin glow and have a younger appearance.

Let’s start with some basic facts. Around 60% of your body is comprised of water. It helps keep your organs functioning and your brain happy. The biggest organ in our body is our skin. If you fail to intake the recommended amount of water (13 cups a day for men and 9 cups a day for women), then your skin can appear cracked and dry. Water consumption promotes skin circulation and improves the texture and color of your skin.

A simple test to make sure you are hydrated enough is to gently pinch your skin. If it does not bounce back, you need more water. Drinking more water will plump up your skin cells and provide moisture and hydration to give you a youthful glow.

Believe it or not, about 20% of your fluid intake comes from food. If you are not the biggest fan of water, try increasing the amount of fruits and vegetables you eat and foods rich in Omega-3s. Try flax seed for a healthy dose of omega-3s, raw spinach for Vitamin A, and berries for Vitamin C in your smoothie. All three of these nutrients plus the juice in the berries will help make your skin look brighter and younger.

The most obvious culprit for dehydrating our bodies and our skin shows up around 6 pm after work. Too much alcohol is known to give us some horrible headaches several hours later, but is also known to accelerate the aging process. Alcohol can deplete your skin of vital nutrients such as vitamin A, which is needed for collagen production. If you know you are going to have a glass of wine that night, try drinking more water throughout the day and drinking water in between each glass of wine. The next day your skin should still look beautiful.

By drinking plenty of water, eating healthy foods you will be moisturizing from the inside out. Drink up…water that is.

[06/17/15]   Through the Decades…Your Changing Face

Let’s start with the decade of when you are in your 20’s. Your skin is the most cooperative during this decade as any other. Your skin has outgrown the teen pimples but you do not yet have the stress of hormonal imbalance. Your skin is also producing plenty of collagen thus keeping it supple and healthy looking. Basically in your 20’s, cleanse your skin with a mild cleanser especially before bedtime. According to Neal Schultz, a dermatologist in NYC, “being proactive about your anti-aging regimen can help delay the wrinkles written into your DNA by a decade or more”. What you do in your 20’s affects your future skin. Good advice: no smoking, no sunning (we do live at the beach so at least limit the time in the sun and wear a hat!) and wash your face before bedtime. In your 20’s is also the time to start vitamin A-derivative prescription, Retinoid for an exfoliating treatment, which continues to promote collagen production.

In your 30’s you will start to notice fine lines, wrinkles and discoloration due to sun damage. Choose a morning cleanser with AHA’s (Alpha hydroxyl acids) to promote exfoliation and a mild cleanser at night. After your morning cleanser, apply SPF 15 or 20+ with AVA/AVB protection and antioxidants, such as vitamin C. This helps to reduce inflammation and protects your skin from damaging free radicals. Start wearing an eye cream daily. If you have dark circles, use one with hydroquinone or vitamin C. If you have puffiness around your eyes choose an eye cream containing caffeine. At nighttime cleanse your face and apply a retinoid to address acne while staving off fine lines.

In your 40’s, you will begin to see the cumulative sun damage. You also are losing more collagen and elasticity. If you used a cleanser the night before you can skip the morning cleanser as it could strip your skin during the day. Continue to use your broad-spectrum moisturizer with SPF 15 or 20+. If you use a retinal at night and your skin won’t tolerate it every night, then it is okay to use every other night. Retinoid will reduce brown spots, increase exfoliation and promote collagen production.

In your 50’s – Most women in their 50’s will experience menopause and thus a steady decline of estrogen which causes a slow down of collagen production. The result is saggy and drier skin. Continue to use a gentle cleanser at night followed with a serum or cream containing peptides and an exfoliating treatment such as Retin A or Renova.

60’s and older – The skin changes you experienced in your 50’s continues through your 60’s and beyond. Even your skin, due to a decrease in circulation, takes on a lighter color. Sun exposure becomes more pronounced with brown spots. If you take care of your skin in your 20’s, 30’s, 40’s and 50’s, the better your skin will look in your 60’s and beyond. Continue to hydrate, use sunscreen year round and drink plenty of water. Regardless of a woman’s age a healthy diet, regular exercise, getting enough sleep and having a positive attitude to life can help keep your skin looking it’s best!

[04/03/15]   Sun Kissed Skin…Think Again!

In August of 2014, Thomas Leveritt, a famous photographer in Brooklyn, NY, asked people on the streets to look into an ultraviolet monitor. They saw a very different face under that light. Someone with seemingly perfect skin was covered in freckles. The reason? Skin damage.

The solution? Daily use of sunscreen with an SPF 15 or higher. Leveritt asked each individual to apply sunscreen to their faces. Under the ultraviolet light, the lotion showed up black! It is opaque in its reaction to the sun because it protects our skin and blocks the harmful ultraviolet rays.

According to, “…exposure to UV radiation is the number one cause of skin cancer, which is the most common type of cancer diagnosed in the United States.” There are two types of UV radiation: ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB). What is the difference? UVB rays are what cause the skin to burn. Think: “B” equals burning. UVA rays penetrate the skin more deeply and lead to age spots and wrinkles. Think: “A” equals aging. These rays can even pass through window glass and penetrate the deep layers of your skin.

With the arrival of warm weather and upcoming spring breaks, it is even more important to choose the right sunscreen. Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB radiation, is water resistant and has a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or higher. The higher the number, the greater the amount of protection. Most dermatologists recommend SPF 30 for the average person, since it blocks about 97 percent of UVB rays for up to 3 hours.

According to an article by Steven Q. Wang, Director of Dermatologic Surgery and Dermatology at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in Basking Ridge NJ, “The importance of using both UVB and UVA protection cannot be emphasized enough. For patients who really wish to know “how high should I go?” I suggest products with SPFs no lower than 30 and no higher than 50.” Wang also advises your sunscreen should have the following UVA-block ingredients: zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, avobenzone, ecamsule, and oxybenzone. These ingredients ensure that you have the most coverage possible. My personal favorite is Neutrogena Broad Spectrum sunscreen, but choose the best sunscreen for you, apply often and don’t skimp!

[03/23/15]   The Facts about Blading: The Real Truth

Ever heard your friends talk about going to get their face “bladed”? The new craze dermaplaning, commonly referred to as blading and less commonly known as epidermal leveling is not as scary as it may seem. In reality, it is a safe and gentle method of deeply exfoliating the skin and is suitable for all skin tones. It is a non-surgical skin rejuvenation treatment with no recovery time and no major side effects. Demaplaning is a good procedure for getting rid of unwanted hair and dead skin cells.

Dermaplaning uses a steel surgical blade called the “Epi-blade,” which is drawn across the face as though you are being shaved. The technique removes the top layers of damaged facial skin and also the fine vellus hairs known as “peach fuzz”. These hairs can trap in dirt and oils causing breakouts in your skin.

For best results, a licensed aesthetician or dermatologist should perform the 45-minute long treatment about once a month. Many people worry that their hair will come in darker, in a different pattern, and coarser, but it does none of these. According to Dr. Elizabeth Hale, a dermatologist in New York, “it’s a common misconception that hair will grow in darker and coarser [after blading]. Shaving does nothing to increase the density or quality of the hair. And with vellus hairs, you can’t do anything to change them. By nature they’re soft and fine, and shaving them won’t make them thicker and coarser.”

Beyond the appearance of having clear and glowing skin, dermaplaning reduces acne scarring, uneven pigmentation and fine line wrinkles. It allows for new skin to appear, brightening the complexion and rejuvenating skin tissue. For example, when men shave their face, they appear younger because the constant exfoliation (shaving) stimulates collagen. Blading creates the same appearance. To determine if blading is right for you, consult a licensed aesthetician that will recommend what the best skin care treatment is for you.

[01/07/15]   Vitamin C: A Powerful Antioxidant for your Health and your Skin

For years we have known that Vitamin C is good for your body. It improves your immune system, prevents inflammation, infections, viruses and even skin wrinkling.
Vitamin C is vital to the production of collagen, which gives your skin its elasticity. Over time collagen breaks down and wrinkles form. According to, “Vitamin C is an effective antioxidant. This means that it can also help you battle the signs of skin aging. Vitamin C also stimulates the production of collagen in your skin. Collagen is the protein responsible for making your skin supple. So if you wish to retain smooth and youthful skin then Vitamin C can help. Most fruits are good sources of Vitamin C so try to make fruits a staple addition to your everyday diet. Vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, tomato, brussel sprouts and cucumber are also good sources of this vitamin.”
Eating foods high in vitamin C or even taking a supplement can benefit your health, but using a vitamin C serum on your face plumps the skin leaving it more radiant and smooth. According to The Dr. Oz Show, “to specifically target signs of aging on your face, topical vitamin C is best. In fact, applying vitamin C to the skin can be 20 times more effective than taking it orally”.
When looking for a vitamin C that is right for you, it should contain between 3% and 10% of vitamin C and include ascorbic acid or L-ascorbic acid. Vitamin C is best applied in the morning after you exfoliate followed by a good moisturizer. It does not take the place of a good sunscreen but it can protect the skin from sun damage.
Spring is here. Keep your skin fresh and beautiful!

[10/22/14]   The Down Side of Radical

Did you know that your skin is your largest and fastest growing organ? It protects your internal organs and protects against outside elements such as heat, cold and pain. In other words, your skin warns you when something is damaging your skin.

One potential problem is free radicals. Free radicals are produced in your body as a result of oxidation. WedMD quoted researcher Jeffrey Blumberg, PhD professor of nutrition of Tuffs University in Boston, “Oxidation is a very natural process that happens during normal cellular functions.” Yet, there is a downside. “While the body metabolizes oxygen very efficiently 1% or 2% of cells get damaged in the process and turn into free radicals.”

In other words, free radicals are harmful molecules or atoms that are missing an electron. If we go back and think about high school chemistry, atoms need to be balanced or they are unstable. The same thing happens even if it is in your body. Since the molecules are trying to find their missing half, they end up breaking down collagen and damaging cells. It can lead to aging at a much faster process.

Healthy lifestyle changes can help prevent free radicals such as reducing sun exposure, quitting smoking, and eating antioxidant rich foods. Antioxidants fight free radicals and stop them from multiplying. Antioxidants are comprised of nutrients (vitamins and minerals) and enzymes (proteins) that protect cell in your skin by neutralizing external factors such as the sun. They are your guard and defense to free radicals.

Important natural antioxidants to add to your diet are Vitamins A, C, and E. Everyday foods such as sweet potatoes, carrots, and spinach are rich in Vitamin A; orange juice, papayas, strawberries, red and green peppers are rich in Vitamin C; and vegetable oils, nuts, seeds,

and olives are rich in Vitamin E. Including these foods in your everyday diet assist in skin repair and encourage cell and tissue growth. 09/23/2014

Refresh Your Skin This Fall

Refresh you skin for fall! Now that the summer is over, it’s time to take a good look at your skin. Even with good sunscreen, it’s easy to develop brown spots, discoloration, dullness and dehydrated skin after a summer of sun and fun. Autumn is a great time to refresh skin care routines and make healthy skin a top...

[07/08/14]   Real Men Get Facials

Su-Man Hsu mentioned in a July 2010 article, "The face is not another planet. Even men who are very fit, are fanatics about going to the gym, who care very much about the state of their bodies - even these men neglect their faces." So men, why do you neglect one of the first things that women notice?

There is a stigma in our society that facials and other spa treatments is a women’s realm. That is simply not true. Skin is skin—on everyone. Men and women are plagued with black heads on the bridge of their nose or the occasional white head that is simply embarrassing and aggravating. Men and women also can both be subjected to sunburns, wrinkles, and dry skin. For men, especially, the constant daily shaving can clog pores and cause irritation and dryness. And men—let’s face it—you probably are forgetting to wash that handsome face of yours each night. You may not see the dirt or clogged pores, but they are there.

To help ease your anxiety, let me walk you through a normal facial: A facial normally consists of a deep clean, exfoliation, extractions, a mask, and a moisturizer. Some facials include a glycolic peel or microdermabrasion. Both treatments enhance circulation and promote fresher and younger skin. Facials cleanse the skin and prevent anti-aging. As many of you have probably found out, your metabolism slows down when you age. Your skin’s metabolism slows down too. A facial can increase circulation, promote new skin, and decrease the onset of wrinkles.

Are you convinced yet? If not, you will be happy to hear that most facials conclude with a neck, head, and shoulder massage. After long hours at work, a facial can leave you more energized and relaxed!

[04/22/14]   May 11th is Mother's Day! Indulge your mom with a Signature Facial. She deserves it.

[03/24/14]   Peptides in Skin Care – Turn Back Time Naturally

Only a few short centuries ago, people began to realize the importance of cleanliness. Fast-forward to today and the number of bath and body works on the market is astonishing! Each year, a plethora of skin care products with varying ingredients all claiming to be the ‘best on the market’ appear on the shelves of all major department stores. With these many choices, how do could you possibly know which skin care product to buy? We are not hear to tell you which brand to buy because that would take a whole page just to list them, but we are here to tell you that an ingredient you should look for is peptides. This promising discovery has the power to repair your skin and helps those wrinkles be a little less noticeable.

Let’s start with some facts about our skin. In Biology 101, we learn our skin is mostly collagen, a structural protein. At around age 30, that beautiful and supple collagen begins to deplete due to the natural process of aging and too much sunlight and stress (yes, stress!). Why does this dreaded process happen? Sadly, our skin loses its elasticity, leaving thinner and more wrinkled skin.

Where do peptides fit into this picture? When collagen breaks down, short segments of three to five amino acids, the basic form of a protein, are left. This small chain of amino acids is known as a peptide. In the normal process of aging, these “mini proteins” send signals to collagen to form new collagen, promoting more youthful and radiant skin!

When perusing the skin care aisles, buy products that contain either a palmitoyl peptide such as Matrixyl or a peptide containing copper. Matrixyl is the most popular peptide for cosmetic use because its main goal is improving fine lines. Popular products such as Strivectin and Oil of Olay’s Regenerist contain Matrixyl. Copper peptide are known to reduce inflammation, regenerate your skin, and promote collagen production. Copper peptides are found in products such as Neova and Neutrogena’s Visibly Firm Night Cream.

Do not be upset when you do not see results from peptide-containing cream overnight. Results normally occur after four to twelve weeks because peptides take time to work deep into your skin. Do not give up though because the results will leave you more supple and beautiful skin!



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