How to Exfoliate Your Skin

Written by Nicole Hackett, Master Esthetician


Exfoliating is crucial to having nice skin and slowing down the aging process. By exfoliating your skin, you are removing the top layer of dead skin cells and this will help to speed up your cell turnover which slows down as you age. This will let your new skin come in. Exfoliating your skin also allows your other skin care products to penetrate deeper and will help lighten and brighten your complexion.

Ideally, you want to exfoliate 2-3x week, but this can be varied, depending on your skin type. If you over exfoliate, you can cause more oil production, so it’s important to see your esthetician to know exactly how and when you should be exfoliating.

There are two types of exfoliation, mechanical and chemical. Mechanical can use either a tool, like the Clarisonic brush, or a face scrub with beads that physically removes the dead skin.

Chemicals, on the other hand, use ingredients to shed the dead skin. Common chemical exfoliant ingredients are salicylic acid, glycolic acid, and lactic acid. You can find chemical exfoliants in different products like face washes, peel pads, serums, etc.

Mechanical exfoliants can be a bit harsh on the skin, so if you have sensitive skin, I would stay clear of mechanical exfoliators, but it really depends on your preferences and skin type. You can also combine both mechanical and chemical exfoliators.


If you have any questions regarding your skin concerns, call us at 703-406-2444 to schedule your complimentary, private consultation with one of our Master Estheticians!

What Can Growth Factors Do For Your Skin?

In case you didn’t know, growth factors are the next big thing in the skincare industry and they are taking anti-aging products to a whole new level. Growth factors occur in our body naturally but as we age, we start to decrease our production of growth factors.

But not to worry, there are now products available that will help replenish growth factors. They are one of the best active ingredients you can add to your skincare routine for total skin rejuvenation because they promote collagen and elastin growth at the cellular level. They take care of all your skin care concerns at once, from fine lines and wrinkles, to lack of firmness and pigmentation. You can add growth factors to any skin care routine and really boost your results. Plus, they are great for all skin types!

Since they are working with your cells to create more collagen and elastin, they help to maintain and enhance your results from any cosmetic procedures you may have done and keep your skin smooth and firm. If you want a healthy, youthful complexion don’t wait and start adding growth factors into your regimen!

One of our favorite skincare products with growth factors is the TNS Recovery Complex from SkinMedica. It has the highest concentration of a patented growth factor blend, with over 380 growth factors and is also formulated with antioxidants, soluble collagen, cytokines and matrix proteins.

We also offer the HydraFacial at our office which has different booster options depending on your skin care concerns including the CTGF (Connective Tissue Growth Factor) booster that we can add to any of our treatments. The unique tips on the HydraFacial allows the serums to penetrate deeper into your skin. You will leave the office glowing – trust us!

Have other questions about your skincare routine? Call us at 703-406-2444 to schedule your complimentary, private consultation with our estheticians. We’d be happy to answer any questions you may have!

VI Peel Combination Therapies - Berman Cosmetic Surgery

VI Peel Combination Therapies

Written by Nicole Hackett, Master Esthetician


VI Peel is an excellent chemical peel that is suitable for ALL skin types! Many people fear chemical peels because of how painful they think it might be… however, the VI Peel is virtually pain free because it has powerful numbing agents in the solution. These are specifically designed treatments to target concerns including anti-aging, hyperpigmentation, acne prone skin and acne scarring. After you receive your VI Peel, we give you detailed at-home care instructions — and you will see your results in as little as 7 days!

How and when should  you incorporate VI Peel with other skin care treatments?

  • Botox: you can get your Botox the day after you get your VI Peel
  • Fillers: you can get dermal fillers the same day as the VI Peel just be sure to get the fillers first
  • Mega Peel Microdermabrasion: same day beforeyour VI Peel
  • HydraFacial: 1-2 weeks before or after your VI Peel
  • SkinPen Microneedling: 2-4 weeks before or after your VI Peel
  • PicoSure Laser Facial: 4-8 weeks afteryour VI Peel (FYI- a VI Peel prior to your PicoSure treatment preps your skin to get you the best results)

Now that Fall is around the corner, it’s a great time to start booking your appointments and get your peel on!

If you have any questions regarding your skin concerns or you’re not sure what route you should go, call us at 703-406-2444 to schedule your complimentary, private consultation with one of our Master Estheticians!

Malia - Berman Cosmetic Surgery & Skin Care Center Blog

What Is Milia?

Written by Nicole Hackett, Master Esthetician

Do you have little white bumps on your face that look like whiteheads, but nothing comes out when you try to pop them? If that is the case, you probably have Milia. These tiny white or yellow cysts occur when keratin becomes trapped beneath the surface of the skin and then hardens.

Milia is not painful and doesn’t cause any long-term damage. However, Milia cannot be popped and you should see your esthetician to have them extracted. If you are experiencing Milia around your eyes, you may be using a cream or lotion that is too heavy for your skin, which is causing sebum and dead skin to get trapped under the skin.

As we age our skin starts to lose its natural ability to exfoliate. In order to prevent Milia from forming, you should regularly exfoliate your skin and use a retinol serum. A chemical exfoliant will help to remove dead skin from the surface and retinol will encourage your cell turnover rate and bring new skin to the surface.

If you have questions or need your Milia extracted, call us at 703-406-2444 to schedule your complimentary, private consultation with one of our Master Estheticians! 

How to Take Care of Your Skin After a Facial

Written by Nicole Hackett, Master Esthetician

Maintenance and consistency are critical after you get a facial, or any other treatment for your skin such as lasers, peels, microneedling, Botox, fillers, etc. If you truly want to be preventative and have good skin health, you need to have a good at-home regimen. One facial a year is just not going to cut it. You can have great products, but to see results you need to use them on a regular basis. Miracles don’t happen overnight. Getting on a good skincare routine can be hard at first, but it’s important to make time and add it into your daily routine. Once you get in the swing of things, it just becomes habit.

These are the essentials that I believe everyone should be using:

  • First, you want to be using a good cleanser and ideally not something you can find at the drugstore. You want something with high-quality ingredients that is going to clean your skin, get rid of makeup/dirt and not strip your skin – which can make it dry and flaky. You should be cleaning you face 2x day, but if that’s too much for you, then I recommend cleansing at night.
  • Second, I recommend exfoliating at least 1-3x week. There are different ways to exfoliate the skin, either mechanical exfoliation or chemical exfoliation. Exfoliating your skin is going to remove the dead skin cells on the surface of your skin and help to increase your cell turnover rate, which slows down the older we get. It will help prevent fine lines and wrinkles from forming and help to control blackheads.
  • In addition, everyone can benefit from a good quality vitamin C serum. Vitamin C helps to lighten and brighten your skin tone, it also helps to protect skin from the visible impacts of pollution, promotes collagen production, improves hydration and keeps your skin looking younger, longer!
  • Keeping your skin moisturized is very important for anti-aging, as the drier our skin is, the more noticeable fine lines and wrinkles are. There are tons of different moisturizers out there, but hyaluronic acid is an ingredient that all skin types can benefit from. Hyaluronic acid is extremely moisturizing, holding 1000 x its weight in water and locking in moisture from the air. It is best used after you apply your serums because it is made with larger molecules and it will help to penetrate your serums deeper into your skin.
  • Now the number one anti-aging product you should be using is SPF, and you should be using it EVERYDAY, even if its cloudy and rainy outside. The sun is the number one cause of aging and we are constantly being exposed to UVB and UVA rays. Even indoors, the fluorescent lights are emitting rays and when we are driving the rays are penetrating even stronger through the glass. If you are going to be outdoors for long periods of time it is important to reapply every two hours. Use a good sun screen with SPF 30 or higher and make sure it says broad spectrum.

To maximize your results from skin care treatments, it is vital to be using good skin care products at home and that you use them consistently.

Want to chat more about our options for healthy, glowing skin? Call us at 703-406-2444 to schedule your complimentary, private consultation with one of our Master Estheticians – we’d be happy to help you find the right products for your skin!

Do I Really Need to Wear Sunscreen Everyday?

Written by Nicole Hackett, Master Esthetician

Most people only think about putting on sunscreen when they are on vacation at the beach or out by the pool, but really you should be applying sunscreen Every. Single. Day. Rain or shine. If you want to protect yourself from skin cancer (which is the most common type of cancer), sun damage and overall aging, you need to be wearing SPF daily.

The sun is the number one cause of aging… it causes fine lines and wrinkles, pigmentation issues, and uneven tone and texture to the skin. Everyone likes to have a nice tan color to their skin, but in the long run you will regret it. Plus, nowadays there are so many different ways to get a nice glow, including spray tanning, tanning lotions, gels, sprays, etc. It is very easy to tell when someone has spent their life out in the sun with no protection. Their skin tends to have a leathery texture, and they often appear older than they truly are.

Wondering about the winter months? The same rule still applies! There are two kinds of ultraviolet rays that are emitted by the sun, UVB and UVA rays. UVB rays cause sunburns and are obviously more intense in the summer months. However, when you are in areas with snow, sand and water, you are increasing your chance of getting a sunburn because they reflect the rays from the sun. UVA rays cause aging of the skin penetrate deeper into your skin, and they have the same intensity year-round. Whenever you are out in daylight, you are being exposed to UVA rays, and they penetrate even stronger through glass – meaning every time you are in your car, you should be wearing SPF. And even while indoors, florescent lights are emitting rays!

Sunscreen is the number one anti-aging product you can own. We recommend that you use a broad-spectrum SPF that protects from both UVB and UVA rays, SPF 30 or higher, water resistant (especially if you will be outdoors) and reapply every 2 hours if you will be outside for long periods of time. Not only should you be wearing SPF when outside, but you should try to stay in the shade when possible, wear sunglasses with UV protection, and hats to protect your face from the sun.

Dr. Berman’s skincare line has a great tinted sunscreen that we highly recommend. It has SPF 50, UVB and UVA protection, a light coverage tint that blends with almost all skin tones for a healthy touch of color, and can be worn alone or as a makeup primer. Not only does it protect your skin from the sun, it also provides hydration and antioxidant benefits to the skin including green tea polyphenols, vitamins C + E, and CoQ10 which are great ingredients post-procedure for laser facials and chemical peels as it will help to bring down any redness and heal the skin faster. Our clients rave about this sunscreen and how creamy and smooth it goes on to their skin. This sunscreen is by far one of our best sellers!

There is truly no safe way to tan. Every time you tan, you are damaging your skin. As this damage builds, you are speeding up the fine lines, wrinkles and pigmentation in your skin and increasing your risk for all types of skin cancer. So, it’s time to ditch all of the tanning oils and tanning beds and time to get on board with SPF. If there is one skin care product we could recommend it would be sunscreen — 100%!

Want to chat more about our options for healthy, glowing skin? Call us at 703-406-2444 to schedule your complimentary, private consultation with one of our Master Estheticians – we’d be happy to help you find the right products for your skin!

Lotions Vs. Creams - Which is Better for Your Skin - Berman Cosmetic Surgery Blog

Lotions Vs. Creams – Which is Better for Your Skin?

Written by Nicole Hackett, Master Esthetician


There are a plethora of moisturizers on the market, but how do you know which one is best for your skin? Well, we have the answer!

The difference between lotions and creams is the way they are made. Lotions tend to be water-based and creams are more oil-rich, which makes them thicker.

Lotions absorb quickly, are light on the skin and hydrate without feeling heavy. Lotions are great for daily use and for those who have normal to oily skin. In the summer, if you’re feeling especially oily or if you live in a humid area, lotions would be best for your skin because they are water-based and won’t clog your pores.

Creams, on the other hand, are heavier and best for those who have dry skin. In addition, if you are getting chemical peels or laser treatments done, you should be using a cream post-treatment to protect the barrier of the skin and help lock in moisture. In the winter months, our skin tends to become drier, so adding in a nightly cream can definitely help.

In short, people that have dry skin would benefit from a cream and people with normal or oily skin should opt for a lotion. However, you should always  listen to what your skin is telling you. If you are feeling extra dry, that’s your body telling you it needs more moisture and vice versa.

We have everything from Dr.Berman’s Ultra Lite Cream to Obagi’s Moisture Rich-Cream. Call us at 703-406-2444 to schedule your complimentary, private consultation with one of our Master Estheticians – we’d be happy to help you find the right products for your skin!

Product Spotlight: Vitamin C Pro-Collagen Brightening Serum

Dr. Berman’s Vitamin C Serum is an excellent preventative skin care product with high performance ingredients and potent antioxidants. This serum will help to brighten, firm, and improve the skins texture and tone. In addition, it helps fight free radicals and improves the appearance of aging (supports collagen production) and photo-damaged skin. All skin types can benefit from this lightweight, high-potency, non-irritating serum. We love this product and we know you will too!

View our entire medical-grade skincare line here!

Featured Product: Ultra Hydrating Serum - Berman Cosmetic Surgery & Skincare Center

Featured Product: Ultra Hydrating Serum

Our Ultra Hydrating Serum is a must have for everyone! This Hyaluronic Acid serum is wonderful for all skin types and all ages. It doesn’t clog pores and is extremely hydrating. With the cold weather, everyone can benefit from a little extra hydration. You can also apply it to other dry skin areas and use it as often as you need. Use alone or add it to your favorite cream/serum for enhanced hydration. With each drop, skin appears brighter, firmer and rejuvenated – who doesn’t want that?!

How our Estheticians recommend adding this product into your daily regimen:

Morning Routine:

  • Cleanse skin
  • Apply your favorite daytime serum (let sit for 1-2 mins.)
  • Apply hylauroinc acid serum (this will help your other serums penetrate deeper into the skin and also hold in moisture)
  • Apply moisturizer with SPF 30+

Evening Routine:

  • Cleanse skin
  • Apply eye cream
  • Apply serum and/or retinol
  • Apply hyaluronic acid serum
  • Wake up with plump, hydrated, glowing skin!

Have questions for our team? Contact us at 703-406-2444 to schedule a complimentary skincare consultation with our Estheticians! 






Advantages of Sculpsure over Liposuction or a Tummy Tuck - Berman Cosmetic Surgery Blog

Common Non-Invasive Cosmetic Procedures: How They Work and How Long They Last

There are now some great non-invasive procedures available these days, providing long-lasting results with minimally discomfort or downtime. Below are a few of my favorites:


  1. FOR THE FACE: My favorite by far, is the Picosure laser. This laser is a true game changer. It is not super well known, because it is a very expensive laser for the doctor to purchase and therefore is not in a lot of physician offices. You are not likely to find this in a medispa either.What makes this Picosure Laser so special is that because it fires 1,000 faster than other lasers, it can do a facial resurfacing with NO DOWNTIME. This means that you can significantly improve the irregular coloration in your face, neck, chest and hands, with just 3 treatments, spaced a month apart. And again, with absolutely no downtime. .Also, because the Picosure fires so quickly, there is little inflammation – meaning it can be used in skin types 1-4 with little risk of hyper-pigmentation. It will also stimulate your own collagen and elastic production, which will help diminish fine lines and wrinkles.

    How long do results last? This will vary from person to person. The most important thing is to use a good sun block (which we offer in the office) and good skin care after your treatment (also offered in our office). Good skin care that is pharmaceutical grade and can only be found in a doctor’s office, will continue with minor exfoliation and collagen stimulation. It can last a year or several years, depending on your genetics and how well you care for your skin.

  2. FOR THE BODY: Sculpsure is the most popular (and its competitor Coolsculpt) for spot reductions of fat in a completely non-invasive way.  Both of these techniques will destroy fat cells (Sculpsure through heat and Coolsculpt from freezing, which I feel has more complications) and these fat cells are permanently destroyed. They will not come back. However, it is important to work on better dieting and exercising to decrease your overall body fat. If, on the other hand, you eat poorly and put on fat, those remaining fat cells will expand in size and you will look larger. Thus, the total number of fat cells is reduced forever, however, there is no “free lunch” and you still have to look after yourself.
  3. LASER TATTOO REMOVAL: The Picosure laser is the very best tattoo removal laser that exists. It fires 1,000 faster than other lasers to vibrate away the tattoo pigment. You will need half the number of treatments with the Picosure laser than you will need with other lasers. I have seen pure black tattoos disappear after only 3 treatments. This laser rarely causes ghosting. It is also the only laser that removes blue pigments.
  4. LASER HAIR REMOVAL: With our Cynosure Elite laser, hair removal is permanent, unlike the less expensive lasers frequently found in medispas. However, when your hormone environment changes such as with pregnancy or menopause, you can get stimulation of dormant hair follicles. Most people will need 5-9 treatments to eliminate most or all of their hair. It should be noted that no laser treatments will work on white or blond hair or very fair hair.