dr sapna crop

What products or types of products are a “must” for every teen’s skincare regimen?
Products that are a “must” include a cleanser specifically designed for the face—these tend to be more gentle than those for the body. A facial moisturizer containing sunscreen is vital every day, even on cloudy days. An exfoliator, either a micro granular scrub or a wash containing salicylic acid should be used once or twice a week to remove dead skin cells and improve texture and tone. A weekly pore strip to clean pores and remove blackheads is also a useful addition to any regimen.

Many teens are just beginning to learn the importance of caring for their skin – why do you think it’s important to develop good skincare habits early on and what’s your advice for maintaining a healthy, consistent skincare routine?
It is important to start a good skin care regimen early to help prevent future skin problems. Using a daily sunscreen will help prevent signs of aging and skin cancers later in life. Using oil-free, non-comedogenic products, exfoliating and using a weekly pore strip can help prevent problems with acne that so many teens are prone to. It is also important to incorporate good skin care with a healthy diet and drinking plenty of water.

 What’s your advice for girls who may struggle with acne-prone or problem skin?
For acne-prone skin, make sure you always use products that are labeled non-comedogenic. This means they don’t contain any ingredients that will clog pores and worsen acne. Incorporating a salicylic acid wash daily can help keep pores unplugged and is also antibacterial. If the acne is spreading, cystic or not responding to over-the-counter products, see a dermatologist for a prescription topical cream or pills.

Any quick tips for banishing blemishes?
Using a spot treatment containing benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid or tea tree oil can help to dry out a blemish. Be sure not to pick as that can cause scarring. If the lesion is deep and inflamed, a cool compress can help to shrink swelling.

“To me more money equals better a product, but are expensive face washes, moisturizers and masks really superior to drugstore products? Is it worth the splurge?” – Helen, 17, AL
The most important thing in skincare is the ingredients. Drugstore brands many times have more research and better ingredients than expensive lines. Many times you are paying for the packaging with expensive brands, but not getting anything more than something that will cost much less at the drugstore. I tend to recommend mainly drugstore brands to my patients.