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Cosmeceuticals and at-home devices: What’s hot, what’s not?


Dr. Joel Schlessinger outlines the benefits for practices and patients alike for carrying certain product lines (and not others) in the office.

Cosmetic surgery and dermatology practices that don’t offer cosmeceuticals and hand-held devices should consider it, according to Joel Schlessinger, M.D.

“They can benefit patients and the practice and allow for a better, ongoing relationship between the dermatologist and their patients, where the patient knows exactly what to use rather than guessing at the pharmacy,” says Dr. Schlessinger, a dermatologist, cosmetic surgeon and president of LovelySkin.com.

Dr. Schlessinger presented his experiences with cosmeceuticals and hand-held devices yesterday at the 11th annual Vegas Cosmetic Surgery and Aesthetic Dermatology multispecialty aesthetic symposium in Las Vegas.

His best-selling cosmeceutical? The Obagi NuDerm system.

“Given the fact that it acts as an elegant framework for Retin-A and contains 4% hydroquinone, it is my 'go-to' product,” Dr. Schlessinger says. “One up-and-coming product we are seeing a huge amount of interest in is Teoxane [Teoxane Laboratories], which is the first topical hyaluronic acid preparation that is actually crosslinked. This makes a huge difference and the combination of this with their new growth factor product, Alphaeon Revitalizing Serum, makes it a significant force in cosmeceuticals.”

The hand-held device market is also offering exciting options. Dr. Schlessinger says he is particularly intrigued by the NuFace devices.

“This is an interchangeable platform, where we have the ability to offer blue light, red light and microcurrent treatments - all in one. The larger device even has an attachment for the eyes and lips!” he says.

Other winners in the hand-held device category: the Clarisonic (Pacific Bioscience Laboratories) line of tools, particularly the Opal for the eyes, and innovative options for at-home pedicure, such as the Clarisonic Pedi Sonic Foot System. Dr. Schlessinger gives a thumbs up to Iluminage (Iluminage Beauty) for its light-based hair removal device (Iluminage Touch) and the company’s at-home laser for skin tightening (Iluminage Skin Smoothing Laser).

Not all at-home devices are making the cut, however.

“As much as I would love to say that the red light device group is catching on, I don't see it happening. We need to clarify how much, if any, benefit comes to the patient. While there are many studies that show improvements in petri dishes, the actual results we see in person are less impressive,” Dr. Schlessinger says.

Dr. Schlessinger and his son, Daniel, have invented and launched FixMySkin 1% Hydrocortisone Healing Balm.

“We recently repackaged it and it has passed prolonged stability testing for over four years without any issues…. It comes in two sizes, lip and body, and has proven a major assist for dermatologists who are tired of having callbacks from pharmacies for $120-plus cost for generic desonide. It works great on cracked fingers, Accutane lips and other parts of the body, as well,” Dr. Schlessinger says.

Disclosure: Dr. Schlessinger sells all these products at his practice; is an investor in Alphaeon; and owns FixMySkin.

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