Individual brown spots or "liver spots" on the hands from age or sun respond well to the Diolite laser and body peels. Your dermatologist can assess whether you need both or a combination of these treatments.
Laser Resurfacing for Hands
For very sun-damaged and aged skin, consider microdermabrasion or laser resurfacing. This is a mini sand-blaster that polishes the skin surface painlessly. According to Palestine, "The skin may appear slightly flushed or wind burned for a few hours and usually you need several treatment sessions."
Laser resurfacing has been revolutionized by the Erbium laser. (Erbium is the type of wavelength used.) This delivers "dramatic rejuvenation" but requires more down time.
"Discolorations and wrinkles are removed or greatly improved and the skin is tighter and smoother," says Palestine. Expect a local anesthetic and then reddish hands for a week, pinkish hands for a month.
The Body Peel
For fast healing, the body peel is probably the most appealing option. This is a special chemical peel for non-facial skin, usually used on hands, neck and chest.
"Expect pink and scaly skin for a few hours to a few days, requiring moisturizer and sun protection but not the raw-red aftereffect of laser," says Palestine.
Lipo-injection for Hands
Remember starring at your grandmother's hands when you were very young? If your hands have that bony, veiny appearance, as you get older, consider lipo-injection. Yes. Fat transplants.
"We can move fat from the hips, buttocks or other areas by a minor procedure under local anesthetic. The skin of the hand is numbed and the fat is injected beneath the skin for an instantaneous improvement. Any mild bruising or swelling at the tiny injection sites subsides within a few days," explains Palestine.
Dr. Palestine starts injecting the fat at the wrist and then manipulates and massages it to fill the hollows of the hand.
Moisturizing and Sun Protection for Hands
Keep a tube of moisturizer in your purse, in your car, in your home, at work. It's a wonderful ritual to stop for a moment to nurture your hands. Moisturizing will pay off for a long, long time.
Start with products in drug stores or department stores that have the weaker strength ingredients and then move up to the products from dermatologist offices, with higher strengths.
Look for new skin rejuvenation creams designed for aging hands. These use stronger ingredients than department-store moisturizers and are distributed only through dermatologist offices.
Now go love those fingers, wrists, nails and palms. Make a special effort this month. Soon you will show off your hands and nails instead of hide them.