Micro-Decisions & Skin Care: A Plastic Surgeon Explains How They're Connected
Ever hear the saying "Watch the pennies, and the dollars will take care of themselves?" Well, I thought about that idiom quite a bit when listening back to my conversation with Lara Devgan, M.D., MPH, FACS, board-certified plastic surgeon, skin care expert, and founder of Dr. Lara Devgan Medical Grade Skincare. She's on our beauty podcast, Clean Beauty School, this week chatting about her beauty philosophy, how to keep skin looking younger for longer, and what ingredients actually deliver the results you want (according to loads of research, too).
But one of the most memorable pieces of advice (in an episode loaded with quality sound bites) is how big changes come only when you focus on the small stuff.
How micro-decisions change your skin
"You can't rely on your dentist twice a year to clean your teeth—you have to brush your teeth and floss every day," she says, noting that it is the same with skin care: "The power of many tiny daily interventions cannot be underestimated."
She goes on to explain that your daily habits—even the things you may not really even have on your radar—are the foundation of good skin. "I would argue that it's those many thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, millions of interventions and micro decisions—those make us who we are and affect what our skin is going to look like," she says.
Want some examples of what she means by this? "Are you going out in the sun every single day without sunscreen? Are you sleeping right on your face and etching positional wrinkles into your face? Are you taking the extra five seconds to use a vitamin C serum or retinol? If you do all those things, you're going to end up in a better place [than those who do big treatments once or twice a year]."
If the oral care or financial care metaphors mentioned previously didn't hit home, I have one more: She also compares it to your diet. "I get asked this question a lot, and it's an impossible question to answer. The question is, 'What is the one product or ingredient I should use?'" she says. "But that's not how skin care works, in the same way you would never ask a nutritionist 'What is the one food I should eat?' No! You eat a well-balanced diet."
If this beauty philosophy resonates with you, I think you'll really enjoy the below episode. Tune in to learn more.
Alexandra Engler is the beauty director at mindbodygreen and host of the beauty podcast Clean Beauty School. Previously, she's held beauty roles at Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, SELF, and Cosmopolitan; her byline has appeared in Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and Allure.com. In her current role, she covers all the latest trends in the clean and natural beauty space, as well as lifestyle topics, such as travel. She received her journalism degree from Marquette University, graduating first in the department. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.