Happy New Year everyone! Now that we are in a new year and a new decade I thought I would write a post that would kill two birds with one stone…first, this post will answer the question I receive most from readers and the general public regarding skin care and second, it will take you behind the scenes and show you the products and skin care techniques I use to combat my issues.

But first, I want to ask you a question…how are those New Year’s resolutions coming along? Do you even make resolutions or are you like me and break those commitments about two months into the New Year? I only have one resolution and it has been the same every year for the past five years…I only promise that I will continue to take good care of myself. Some days are better than others and I am able to work out, take my vitamins and minerals, eat healthy, and drink plenty of water. Other days…I can’t accomplish any of those listed above and Taco Bell is for dinner (hey, don’t laugh! I love Taco Bell)!

About six months ago I consulted with a skin care specialist because I noticed that my skin was aging more rapidly every year after I turned 40 years old. Damage I had done to my skin 20 years ago or more along with the natural aging process were beginning to peek out. Sun damage, poor eating habits, bad skin care products and too much coffee and soda when I was younger (and more stupid) had finally decided to reek havoc on my face and even the amazing skin care products I use now were no longer enough.

(Photos are "before" pictures taken prior to first IPL Treatment):

My skin specialist suggested I have a series of Intense Pulse Light Treatments (IPL) for a period of 6 months to see if they would reverse the effects of the sun damage and combat some of the aging aspects of my genetics (i.e., wine stain – thanks Gran)!

IPL’s are laser treatments that are non-ablative (meaning it does not damage the surface of the skin). IPL’s soften fine lines and wrinkles, reduce redness (broken capillaries/rosacea), remove sun damage (dark age spots) and acne scars, minimize large pores and remove other blemishes. It is a safe and quick treatment that a skin specialist (dermatologist, nurse practitioner or med spa professional) should administer and because it does not damage the skin surface, several treatments are sometimes needed to see the desired effect.

(Photo taken during first IPL Treatment)

CAUTION: Please do your research on the establishment/doctor/professional prior to booking an IPL appointment.

I was told to take ibuprofen prior to my treatment and to arrive at my appointment completely clean faced (no makeup or skin care products). My nurse went through an extensive question and answer session with me, which included medical history and my expectations pertaining to my IPL treatment. I wanted to remove sun damage, wine stains (hereditary from my Gran), broken capillaries around my nose, diminish crow’s feet/wrinkles and to make my skin feel smoother and look brighter.

I was informed that my series of IPL treatments (6 in all given once a month or every 6 weeks) could help with all of my concerns and that I would see immediate results. I was also told that my skin would feel like it was sunburned and that I should take care to stay out of the sun for at least two weeks and that I could resume using my normal skin care. I was given strict instructions to use sunscreen at all times and that I should wear a big floppy hat for the first two weeks after my treatment when I was outside (like walking the dog).

My skin care specialist and certified nurse practitioner applied a numbing cream all over my face and let that sit on my skin for approximately 15 minutes. The cream was removed, eye protection was placed and then the laser treatment began. Now, I am a pretty sensitive girl (eye brow plucking/waxing hurts) and this laser did feel like little needles were being poked into my face. I wasn’t screaming in pain, but it was uncomfortable.

(Photo above is of numbing cream applied all over face prior to first IPL Treatment)

(Photo above shows laser and tube with cold air - first IPL Treatment)

The specialist concentrated the laser on deep age spots and around my nose area where I have broken capillaries. The treatment lasted approximately 15 minutes and a tube of cold air was blowing on my face during the laser treatment. When that cold air was shut off after the IPL was complete, I immediately felt a slight burning sensation. However, the ibuprofen helped immensely with swelling and pain reduction.

Within a few hours I began to see tiny brown “scabs” all over my face where the laser burned. Eventually, I looked as if I had wet coffee grounds all over my face. These scabs healed and fell off over a course of 14 days leaving my skin very smooth and glowing. Also, resuming my normal skin care regime helped with the healing process.

(Photos below taken after second IPL treatment - instant redness/sunburn feeling)

(Photos below taken 2nd day after second IPL Treatment - brown scab spots)

I am on my 5th IPL treatment and I have been told that many women continue to get IPL’s every 8 to 10 weeks or as needed. I am extremely happy with my results. However, my hereditary “wine stain” is still visible, but faded. My deep brown age spots are totally gone and my broken capillaries around my nose are 85% gone as well. The crow’s feet around my eyes are gone and my mild rosacea on my cheeks and chin area is gone. My skin is very smooth and glowing and I take care to apply sunscreen now every single day regardless of the weather outside. It is also important for me to point out that each of my IPL Treatments get stronger - first treatment was mild and my last treatment will be more intense in order to achieve my desired effect.

IPL treatments range in cost and if you live in San Diego County, I receive my IPL treatments at the Optique Del Mar Skin Rejuvenation center located off Del Mar Heights Road.

(Photo below is "after" 5 IPL Treatments taken Jan. 2010 - minimal foundation used - brown age spots, rosacea, fine lines, wrinkles, broken capillaries are gone or are fading)

Here is a list of my personal/professional skin care products:

Jan Marini Age Intervention Line: I use the Jan Marini line as my morning skin care line used everyday.

*Beginning with Jan Marini’s BioGlycolic Cleanser to remove dirt, oil and makeup.

*C-ESTA Serum is applied first to my face/neck and I wait approximately 5 minutes between product applications to ensure proper skin absorption.

*Age Intervention Enlighten Cream is applied next to my cheeks/nose/chin area (where I would usually have rosacea).

*Age Intervention Peptide Cream follows applied to my face/neck.

*Age Intervention Eye Cream is stippled gently under eye area and orbital bone.

*Age Intervention Moisturizing Cream is then applied all over my face/neck.

*Antioxidant Sunscreen is applied as the final step all over my face/neck/ears.

Recently, I was sent the Jan Marini Age Intervention Prime as gratis to use personally and professionally. I have since tested this product on several of my clients and on myself and I love this new primer. It goes on smooth, fills in the fine lines and wrinkles, absorbs quickly and preps the skin to receive all types of makeup (cream, powder or liquid).

Jan Marini's product line has made a major difference in the texture of my skin. I no longer feel dry or flaky and I do not need to apply heavy makeup to cover skin issues because this line has cured many of my problems.

Jan Marini has a very extensive line of skin care products for all ages and skin types. Please log on to to review the Age Intervention product line and order product or to find a retailer/doctor’s office nearest your area.

At night prior to bed I remove my eye makeup using MAC Wipes, cleanse with Jan Marini’s BioGlycolic Cleanser and then I use the SAMPAR line of skin care for overnight repair. SAMPAR's line can be used day, night or as a 28-day treatment for stubborn skin issues.

*After cleansing I spray my skin lightly with SAMPAR’s Skin Quenching Mist, which has essences of rose, chamomile, geranium, mint and orange blossom. It boosts my skin’s natural defense system and prepares my skin to receive other products.

*Next, I use SAMPAR’s Nocturnal Lifting Mask all over my face/neck avoiding the eye area. This mask is unique in that you wear it overnight and remove it in the morning. I have found that my wrinkles are less visible with this product.

*Then, I use SAMPAR’s Prodigal Pen, which is a roller pen containing essential oils that rapidly diminish blemishes, I apply this product when I find that I need extra help during certain times of the month.

*Last, I apply SAMPAR’s Eye Rule all around my eye area and orbital bone. This product rehydrates and repairs the eye area.

SAMPAR's line of premium, high-quality products can be purchased at many finer retail establishments or on their website at

I have found that the combination of these two exceptional skin care lines has helped to keep my skin feeling young, healthy, protected and has aided in the healing processes after my IPL Treatments. Also, because of major climate change, weather conditions or traveling, these products will remain a part of my skin care regime always. They are my fountains of youth! Many of the products I have listed above are also part of my skin care that I use on my professional clients. Many of my clients request these two lines and so I keep my kit well stocked with both of these lines.


Use the back of your hand as a palette for all your skin care and rub the excess product into your hands that you did not use on your face! The hands are so neglected and they are exposed to so much sun daily (like when you grip your steering wheel while driving in your car). Combat the signs of aging on your hands as well as your face by simply dabbing a pea sized amount of each of your skin care products (one pump) on the back of your hand first (like a palette) and then apply the product with your fingertips. Your hands will thank you and will never give away your age!