Skin Care

By Amy Sciaretto

Pro-active skin care isn’t just about using the right products. It’s about being informed and researching what’s best for you. If you have a hunger for information about your skin, we’re recommending a few tomes to feed your mind and your brain. Leave the chick lit in your beach bag and get cracking on some serious reading.

The Beauty Prescription: The Complete Formula for Looking and Feeling Beautiful
Authors: Debra Luftman, MD and Eva Ritvo, MD

What It’s About: Beauty isn’t only skin deep. Beauty is a state of mind, too. Beverly Hills-based dermatologist Luftman and South Beach dwelling psychiatrist Ritvo co-author this book on how to be pretty on the inside and out.

Key Passage: Early on, the good doctors recommend pulling yourself up by your bra straps and offer this mantra: “A faith lift has nothing to do with religion or surgery. It’s about believing in your ability to do the things that make you as beautiful as you can be.”

Why You Should Read It: It’s the quintessential guidebook on brains and beauty that make you the fabulous (and fabulous looking) goddess that you are. Sure, it’s a bit “self-help” in its tone, but it’s a celebration of the inner you! The doctors don’t just spew generic advice; they compare and contrast physical and mental constructs, all the while doling out advice on plastic surgery procedures, how to dissect marketing terms on cosmetic products and other assorted practical tips, such as real-life beauty stories, beauty boosters (quick fixes and suggestions), beauty busters (myths be damned) and beauty pearls of wisdom.

Available at www.thebeautyprescription.com, www.amazon.com and www.BN.com and select bookstores.

Plastic Makes Perfect
The Complete Cosmetic Beauty Guide
Author: Wendy Lewis

What It’s About: Plastic surgery, ladies. Cosmetic procedures are as common as a cold in 2008 and Lewis, the UK’s leading authority and consultant on such treatments, breaks them all down: face, breast, belly, botox, you name it!

Key Passage: Any of them! If you are considering going under the knife, this book has must-read status!

Lewis compartmentalizes information and examines the pros, the cons, recovery periods, side effects and mental toll that a surgery can have on the patient. Knowing is half the battle and Lewis isn’t sparing with her information. She lets you know what skin will be cut around eye muscles for an eyelid lift, when it is best to go under the knife (financially and emotionally) and provides FDA status for injectables. No cosmetic surgery stone is left unturned by the thorough author. Moles, pores, non-perky nipples, laser rejuvenation of the skin? Yep, they’re all in here. Lewis’ tone is at once educational, witty and personal.

Why You Should Read It: Who hasn’t seen the before-and-after shots of plastic surgery gone wrong? You don’t want to be one of those unfortunate souls!

Available at www.amazon.com.

Ageless Face, Ageless Mind
Erase Wrinkles & Rejuvenate the Brain
Author: Nicholas Perricone, MD

What It’s About: In a nutshell, accelerated aging and how to stop it. Perricone, who burst onto the skincare scene with his “cosmecutical” products which are scientifically engineered to make you look better, verbally wages war on AGEs (Advanced Glycosylation End Products), pesky agers that cause wrinkles. We know, it sounds like a lot of scientific (read: boring) jargon and yes, there are a lot of textbook’y chapters, but Perricone deftly outlines a program in easy-to-read lingo.

Key Passage: The book’s thesis is reiterated throughout: “Ageless Face, Ageless Mind teaches you how to holistically reverse the visible damage to skin in the form of wrinkles, sagging and loss of tone, as well as the invisible internal damage in all internal systems.” The book hones in on sort of a fountain of youth for the skin.

Why You Should Read It: For the woman who wants to understand how to prevent her skin from aging and prefers a multi-step regimen on maintaining a healthy inside and out, this is required reading. Based on scientific facts, it is less “girly” than The Beauty Prescription, but the information it espouses is just as valuable.

Available at www.amazon.com and select Barnes & Noble locations.

Originally published September 2008
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