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Skin Care Regimen

Face Cleansing

The first step in good, basic skin care is finding the right face cleansing regimen for your skin.  The goal of facial cleansing is to remove dead skin cells, oil, dirt, make-up. After good facial cleansing, your skin pores should be unclogged from debris and skin should be prepared for the next step to: 1. Rehydrate 2. Enrich and 3. Protect.

Essentially, good facial cleansing is a balance of removing the bad stuff, while retaining the good stuff (protective barrier).  In the past (especially for acne prone skin), the emphasis was on removing bad stuff through abrasive exfoliation and drying out the skin.  We now know that this can result in skin damage, discomfort, and sometimes skin will compensate by making even more oil, resulting in a vicious cycle of dry skin → oily skin and clogged pore → acne → dry skin.


When to use an oil-based cleanser, water-based cleanser, or both?

If you have regular or oily skin, but do not use heavy make-up, then a water-based cleanser alone should be sufficient.  Cost-effective foam facial cleansers that we recommend are Neutrogena Fresh Foaming Cleanser, or CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser, and they are widely available.  Foam-based facial cleanser is recommended because they don’t rely on sulfates which can also break down the “good” natural skin barrier.

An oil-based cleanser is more helpful in removing oil-based make-up and dirt, but it is not as effective at unclogging the pores.  It can also leave some residue on the skin. So if you tend to wear a lot of make-up, you should use an oil-based cleanser first, followed by water-based foam cleanser to remove remaining residue.

A few times a week, an exfoliating skin cleanser should be used to perform deeper cleaning and remove dead skin.  Alpha hydroxy acid are a group of compounds best known to be exfoliants that reduce wrinkles and fine lines while stimulating collagen build-up and other restorative changes in the supportive layers of the skin.  Among the alpha hydroxy acids, glycolic acid is likely the best known compound for skin exfoliation because of its small size and better penetration within the skin. However, with so many skin care lines now containing some form of exfoliants (citric acid, lactic acid, or glycolic acid) as well as mechanical exfoliation available (microderm, hydrafacial, brush-devices), you can easily over-exfoliate your skin, resulting in constant red and sensitive skin. To avoid this, we recommend using this cleanser no more than 2-3 times a week, and use the gentle foam facial cleanser for the other times. Also make sure to use sunscreen as exfoliated skin can be more sun sensitive.


Essence, Serum, and Moisturizer

There was a time when facial lotion was all we knew.  But over 200 years ago, women in Japan were using “beauty water” or essence as we now call it, which contained extracts from various botanicals, herbs, yeasts, seaweed, algae, and other secret ingredients.  They were known to make the skin feel soft, plump, and glow in natural light. Fast forward to today, there is a plethora of popular skin care regimens based on their origin. The K-beauty regimen emphasizes a complex, disciplined approach of multiple steps of cleansing, restoration, and protection, which can add up to 10-steps for its daily skin regimen.  The J-beauty Japanese regimen is comparatively simpler with the focus on key traditional formulas and essence. The French beauty regimen is even simpler yet and more naturalistic in its approach. Its focus is on restoring the natural skin with most of the regimen consisting of three steps – micellar water for cleansing (less chemical or irritant than conventional cleansers), toner to restore the natural slightly acidic skin environment (which also promotes good skin bacteria), and moisturizer to add a layer of protection.  Frequent cleaning to disrupt the natural environment is discouraged.


Our Recommended Skin Care Line

Over the years, our patients have asked us for recommendations in skin care.  After researching several physician-dispensed skin care options, we decided on a select skin care regimen created by NeoCutis based on efficacy, simplicity, cost factor, and brand reputation.


Neo Cleanse Exfoliating Skin Cleanser

9.9% glycolic acid based exfoliating skin cleanser without any additive.  Use for 2-3 days a week followed by gentle foam based facial cleanser for the other days of the week as we described above.

Moisturizer – Journée

One-step anti-aging skin care combining skin revitalization, anti-oxidant care, sun-protection, and hydration


NeoCutis’ patented ingredient “Processed Skin Cell Proteins” PSP®️  consists of a blend of protein and polypeptide including human growth factor and cytokines designed to nourish and stimulate your skin to revitalize.  Studies have shown benefits of this blend, in which, 6 month twice a day application has shown 25-33% improvement of wrinkles around the mouth and eyes, and restorative changes of the skin under the microscope.

  • Anti-oxidant:  Blend of Green Tea extract, Vitamins C and E. Addition of melanin for further protective role against photo damage.
  • Protection:  SPF 30 UVA/UVB protection with Zinc Oxide and Octinoxate.


Hyaluronic acid in topical cream helps retain water.  As a large, charged molecule, it may not penetrate the skin (for that you need injection treatment with fillers like Restylane or Juvederm), it stays on the surface of skin and holds onto the hydration.

Hyalis Hydrating Serum

Concentrated hyaluronic acid serum designed to hydrate and retain water for the skin.



Microfirm Neck & Décolleté

Specifically formulated to rejuvenate signs of wrinkles and damages on the delicate skin of the neck and décolleté.

Under The Eyes


Rejuvenating eye cream designed specifically for the delicate eye area.  Emphasis is on re-hydration of skin and reduced puffiness.



Dr. Sang W. Kim

Harvard Trained, Double Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon

Sang W Kim, MD is a double board-certified facial plastic surgeon who specializes in cosmetic and reconstructive facial plastic surgery, nasal/sinus surgery, and hair restoration surgery.

I was working in Central New York and had an upcoming event and needed to get 2 areas of Dystport done. They were able to accommodate my schedule( as it was short notice) Dr. Kim’s entire staff was so friendly and welcoming!! During the procedure , even Nurse Dan held my hand and kept me smiling the whole time!! I was incredibly impressed with Dr Kim as he made sure he took the time to explain the process as well as not “ being rushed” something I have experienced with previous Doctors. I live in Florida but will be seeing Dr Kim from now on, and will be recommending their office to my fellow New Yorkers! It’s been almost 2 weeks since my appointment and the results are amazing!!! So happy! Thank you so much Dr Kim, Mary and the rest of the staff !

- michele goodwin

Dr. Kim is a world-class facial plastic surgeon. I’ve been to the top surgeons in the country from Beverly Hills to Miami and I found Dr. Kim to be superior. His face and neck lift were flawless and so natural that no one could tell I had anything done, but everyone said I looked ten years younger. As Syracuse is a discreet location, I would highly recommend anyone who wants a top notch face and neck lift to fly in. His bedside manner is as fantastic as his work. I can’t recommend Dr. Kim enough. I think he is the best Facial plastic surgeon in the country.

- Shelly Cohen

I am very happy with Dr. Kim and all of his staff. Not only did I have a surgical procedure done but I also go there every week for allergy shots and they couldn't be nicer. And Dr. Kim is awesome - - great bedside manner! I highly recommend them!!!

- Sheila Guenette

57 years old and wanted to start my new path in life retired...not looking tired! I did extensive research and sought out 5 surgeon recommendations. I was extremely impressed with Dr. Sang Kim for several reasons: 1 - He specialized in and only performs /neck surgeries, 2 - Dr. Kim is younger and probably more newly established, but there was no doubt that he is a perfectionist and a professional in his field, 3 - He is patient and really listens. I felt confident and trusted that he was giving me his best recommendation for my concerns, 4 - He didn't try to push unnecessary or extra procedures, 5 - I was impressed by how obvious it was that Dr. Kim's administrative and medical staff liked him and respected his work. But most of all, I am extremely satisfied with the results of my face lift!

- Shannon F

I can't say enough good things about Dr. Kim. He is the most patient, professional, and personable physician I have ever had the pleasure of seeing. Instead of being rushed through the practice, every member of his staff made me feel welcome and important from the moment I walked through the door. He wouldn't perform a single procedure on me until he fully answered every minute question I had (all of which he eloquently and candidly answered); you can tell that his formal training was exceptional. His bedside manner and skilled technique easily make him one of the best kept secrets in Syracuse. I have referred numerous friends to him who have also, in turn, referred their friends. Make the consult and see for yourself... you won't be disappointed!

- Deanna Hillman

Dr. Kim and his staff were incredible. I had a face lift done this past summer and I was treated with dignity and respect by everyone. Dr. Kim is an exceptional surgeon and one of the nicest and kindest doctors I have ever met. I had a wonderful experience and I would highly recommend Dr. Kim and his entire staff. I recently went back to Dr. Kim for injections. Again my experience was wonderful. He explains everything he is going to do and what to expect. I didn't bruise and I love the fact that he doesn't overdo. He and his staff are just incredible. If I could give more than 5 stars I would.

- Debbie Ely

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