Refining Beauty

Twin Cities cosmetic surgeons outline the spectrum of products and procedures available locally.

Refining Beauty
Randall Nelson

Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but when you’re the one looking at yourself in the mirror every day, it’s perfectly appropriate to think about refining and enhancing your own natural perfection.

A Spectrum of Services

From medical-grade skin care to laser surgery, here’s an overview of today’s most popular products and procedures, available at most Twin Cities cosmetic surgeons’ offices and medspas.

Medical-grade skin care and makeup

The Basics:

Designed to hydrate, smooth, and firm the skin, medical-grade skin care and makeup products are packed with a higher percentage of glycolic acid, hyaluronic acid, retinols, peptides, antioxidants, and other active ingredients than most drugstore and department brands. They’re available without a prescription at physicians’ offices and medspas.

The Brands:

Obagi, SkinCeuticals, Vivité, SkinMedica, Neostrata, Revision, Jane Iredale

Good to know:

Medical-grade makeup is a great way to streamline your beauty routine, as many of the products contain sunscreen.


“To restore volume and add moisture, we recommend ultra-rich SkinMedica Dermal Repair Cream, which contains high levels of lipid soluble antioxidants and vitamins C and E.”  Elizabeth Hagberg, MD, Skin Rejuvenation Clinic, P.A.


“For overall skin fitness and rejuvenation, the SkinActive program by Neostrata is a six-month, all-in-one skin fitness program for the face, neck, upper chest, and backs of the hands. We have had more than 1,000 patients on the program, and it appears to turn the clock back on the skin 10 to 15 years.”  Charles E. Crutchfield III, MD, Crutchfield dermatology



The Basics:

Derived from vitamin A, retinoid gels and creams promote rapid cell turnover, unclog pores, and reduce fine lines and hyperpigmentation. Available by prescription only, retinoids cost $75 for a 20-gram tube.

The Brands:

Retin-A, Atralin, Tazorac, Avage

Good to know:

Retinols, found in medical-grade skin care and makeup, are the non-prescription form of retinoids.


“Retinoids are huge. They’re the only skin care product that’s been documented to biologically change the collagen in the skin.”  Scott Ross, MD, Minneapolis Cosmetic & Laser Surgery


“With skin care and makeup you can buy in a store, the efficacy is limited. When you come to a clinic, we have more potential to help you.” Douglas L. Gervais, MD, Carillon Clinic