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How to Tame Rosacea’s Redness at Home and with the Dermatologist

For rosacea patients, flare-ups can a familiar yet frequent annoyance, undermining not only a person’s self-confidence but also causing significant discomfort. Luckily, modern dermatology has made managing the condition easier than ever. Consider adding these at-home and professional options to your ongoing treatment plan and tame your rosacea!

Healing at Home from Rosacea

The first step to putting your rosacea in maintenance mode is to understand precisely what triggers a flare up. Identifying triggers can be somewhat of a challenge – while there may be a hereditary component to the condition, triggers are different from patient to patient. While some may develop the characteristic flushing after spending time outside, others may be triggered by what they ate or drank. Keeping track of what does (and what doesn’t) lead to an outbreak is critical to minimizing your discomfort and keeping rosacea under control.

Being gentle with your skincare regimen is another vital step to managing rosacea. This goes beyond how you care for your skin (keep scrubbing to a minimum) to the kinds of products you should be using. Oil-free and hypoallergenic moisturizer can help limit the effect of environmental triggers while gently cleansers can help keep skin clear without triggering a flareup. For make-up wearers, the concept of “less is more” is important to keep in mind as fragrance-free and mineral-based powders can minimize skin irritation.

Finally, home care should always include an emergency plan in the event of flare-up. While there is no magic cream that can immediately treat a rosacea outbreak, keeping ice packs and other skin soothers can help the redness dissipate more quickly and provide cooling relief.

Getting Professional Rosacea Care

For some, a home maintenance routine may not be enough to alleviate the symptoms and discomfort caused by rosacea. Visiting an experienced dermatologist can open the door to a number of more invasive yet more permanent rosacea management treatments.

Like any other dermatological condition, determining the best treatment often requires an in-depth evaluation of your skin, medical history and current rosacea management plan. For individuals who experience mild to moderate flare-ups yet have their condition well managed, a dermatologist may recommend adding a prescription cream and facial wash to help support ongoing efforts.

In more serious instances where patients are experiencing near constant redness, laser rejuvenation procedures such as intense pulsed light therapy, photodynamic therapy, or pulsed dye lasers may be recommended. While these procedures offer a similar end goal – decreasing redness and discoloration from the targeted areas – they each offer a different technique for getting there.

Chemical Peels

The chemical peel exfoliates and removes the uppermost layers of skin so that less blemished or damaged skin emerges. The process also triggers collagen production and skin cell renewal. It’s critical to follow a chemical peel for rosacea with the treatment regimen carefully prescribed by your doctor. Dr. Dononfrio will customize the chemical peel’s intensity to your skin’s sensitivity. The TCA peel is the most intense, and flaking can follow any chemical peel.

IPL PhotoFacial

The IPL photofacial sends high-energy light waves to the pigmentation and blood vessels causing rosacea, destroying them. These are replaced by healthy new skin cells that help create a more even skin tone. As with the chemical peels, Dr. Donofrio customizes your IPL photofacial so that it achieves the best outcome without damaging your skin.

You’ll discuss your options with her at your consultation.

Learn More at Aria Derm Spa of Madison, Connecticut

You shouldn’t have to manage your rosacea alone. In Madison, Dr. Donofrio is a valuable resource in your journey to a healthful life with rosacea. She has treated rosacea patients of all ages, ethnicities, and complications. To explore your treatment options and create a maintenance plan that works for you, call 203-421-6674 today and schedule your consultation. We look forward to meeting you!

Get that Celebrity Glow with Jennifer Aniston’s Top Skincare Secrets

When People Magazine put Jennifer Aniston on the cover as the World’s Most Beautiful Woman in 2016, most didn’t realize she was 48 years old at the time. In picture after picture, her glowing, seemingly uncreased skin never lets her down. 

Of course, Aniston emphasizes all the skin health habits our doctors want us to follow—plenty of rest, fruit-and-veggie diet, constant sunscreen—but she also admits to seeking the high-power interventions dermatologists offer, too. 

The first is Clear and Brilliant laser treatments. “I love Clear and Brilliant laser treatments,” she explains. “It’s a great refresher, and there’s very little downtime.” This “fractional” laser treatment stimulates the skin to grow a healthy new layer. It’s non-ablative, which means it heats up your skin without destroying it, a feature that prompted Aniston to quip, “it won’t make you look like a peeled tomato” to InStyle.  Clear and Brilliant is minimally invasive and works on all skin types for people of all ages. It’s best for those who want to begin to treat wrinkles, discoloration, and uneven skin texture with the most gentle techniques. 

H2 The Sauna Cure

Aniston also thinks the warmth and right light wavelength available in the infrared sauna contributes to her perpetual glow. 

In 2017, she told Shape, “It’s such a game-changer in terms of your skin detoxification and cell rejuvenation. So that I do a couple times a week right after I do the gym. I’ve noticed a real change in my energy, and my sleep, and my skin.”

The infrared sauna’s radiant, penetrating heat stimulates robust blood flow, delivering oxygen and nutrients to every cell. That sallow complexion that comes with age results in part from insufficient blood supply. The sauna warms your core temperature first, forcing you to sweat from your center to the outside, pushing toxins through your pores. The infrared sauna is so powerful, in fact, those suffering from severe skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis often buy one for home use. 

It’s not just the heat that makes the infrared sauna a health promoter, however. Many studies have confirmed that the infrared band of light boosts collagen production, lowers inflammation and diminishes acne. Short, concentrated wavelengths of natural light, free of UV radiation and chemicals, reduce oxidative stress (toxins) and increase circulation. While most of us cannot afford an infrared sauna in our homes, getting treatments from clinics that offer them can be reasonable. 


H2 Sunday is Funday . . . For the Face

Aniston also encourages women to create their own spa at home. “Sunday is my spa day,” she told Shape in 2017, “I usually do a little mini-facial time where I just give myself a good scrub, use a mask,” and leave lotion on overnight. Of course, as the spokesperson for Aveeno, she must promote their products, but there are many effective masks, scrubs, and lotions available. Here at Aria Derm Spa, we recommend the line that will most improve the individual client’s issues. 

Keeping your skin glowing when you balance in-office treatments with pampering, home care. Call Aria Derm Spa at 203-421-6674 or leave us a message via our online form to ask your questions about the best treatments for your skin.

How to Treat Summer Sun’s Skin Damage in the Fall

Memories of summertime vacations aren’t the only thing we carry into fall. The sun’s powerful UVA and UVB rays are most intense during the summer when we’re outdoors enjoying the weather. Even if you’re slathering on sunblock every time you head outside, you can still end up with damaged skin cell by the end of summer. As the weather starts to cool and dry out, these damaged cells can continue to deteriorate and ultimately impact the health and look of your skin. 

To help patients treat skin damage caused by intense summer sunshine, our dermatologist in Madison has curated a list of at-home and professional treatments for total skin rejuvenation.

Start Fresh with Skin Rejuvenation

Sun damage affects the skin in several different ways. Extended exposure to UV rays causes upper layer skin cells to burn.UV damage can also penetrate to deeper layers of your skin, disrupting the cells’ production of important proteins that facilitate skin healing. As damage accumulates over the years, it can cause skin to lose volume and elasticity and accelerate the aging process. 

To interrupt this cycle of summer skin damage, our dermatologist recommends starting the fall season with professional rejuvenation treatments like chemical peels or microdermabrasion. Over the years, these classic skin therapies have helped countless patients kickstart healing skin growth and improve complexion. These procedures remove layers of dead or damaged skin cells and reveal healthy new skin just below the surface. As skin rejuvenation treatments can vary in intensity, these options can be easily personalized to patients with different degrees of skin damage. 

Even Skin Tone and Remove Blemishes with Laser Treatment

Unfortunately, not all sun damage can be easily reversed with a mild chemical peel. Years of accumulated dead skin and discoloration can sometimes require a stronger treatment. In these cases, our experienced dermatologist may recommend laser facial rejuvenation to remove more of the damaged outer layer of skin and stimulate the skin’s natural healing processes. 

Options like Fraxel skin resurfacing and IPL photofacial therapy target wrinkles and hyperpigmentation by targeting specific areas of skin and stimulating collagen production – a key regenerative protein. The resulting collagen development reverses signs of skin damage and leaves patients with a more youthful, radiant appearance.

Evaluate Your Skincare Routine

The transition from summer to fall weather can be especially taxing on skin. As the weather dries out and gets colder, skin damaged by sun exposure during the summer is more susceptible to dehydration and can have difficulty retaining moisture. Regardless of which rejuvenation treatments you are considering,, be sure to add moisturizing products to your daily and nighttime skincare regimen to protect vulnerable skin. 

Great skincare might start at your dermatologist’s office, but it is maintained at home. Updating your skincare routine as the seasons change and after professional treatments can extend treatment results and preserve your skin’s health. 

To learn more about reversing sun damage and protecting your skin, contact Aria DermSpa in Madison today.  You can receive information about your options for treating sun damage and a personalized skincare plan by calling 203-421-6674 and scheduling your consultation.

3 Reasons to Keep Your Chemical Peels to the Shady Fall Season

After a long summer spent outside, resetting facial skin is often a high priority item for our patients. Of the available facial rejuvenation treatment options, chemical peels are among the most popular and widely requested. While it might seem like a great option to pursue between trips or excursions, there’s a few reasons to consider waiting until after summer is over before starting facial rejuvenation with chemical peels. 

More time for uninterrupted treatment 

Not all patients have the same chemical peel experience. Depending on the condition of their skin and long-term objectives, it can take multiple sessions spaced about a month apart in order to reach the desired results. For many, the summer months are jam-packed. Kids are out of school, vacations have been long planned, and spontaneous gatherings or short getaways can quickly fill up a calendar and make it difficult to schedule cosmetic treatments – even minimally invasive ones. Waiting until after Labor Day to plan your first chemical peel can help prevent double booking and ensure you have plenty of time to schedule any necessary follow-up procedures. 

Less sun means better recovery

One of the reasons behind the popularity of chemical peels is how personalized treatment can be. Different blemishes, wrinkles and scars respond best to different types of chemical peels, each of which vary in intensity. The high degree of personalization and variation in intensity can also require different recovery times. Similar to planning for multiple treatment sessions, patients need to be able to recover in peace – a task that can be difficult when you’re running off to your next vacation. 

Regardless of the type of chemical peel you get, post-treatment skin is very sensitive and vulnerable to damage. Successful recovery also requires that patients avoid spending too much time outside in the sun.  Cooling temperatures and rainy weather means patients are more likely to stay inside, making fall the perfect time to undergo chemical peel.  

Great preparation for winter months

While glowing golden skin may be a trademark of summer, your tan may not show the sun damage you’ve been exposed to on sunny days. As the temperature changes and the air loses its moisture, skin begins to dry out, making dead skin cells and fine lines more noticeable. For those of us who are or have started showing signs of aging, this change in skin texture can accentuate the look of getting older. 

Starting the fall with fresh, rejuvenated skin is a great way to keep skin (and you!) looking younger. During the procedure, the dead, dying and damaged skin cells from the upper layers of your skin are removed to reveal healthy new skin below. As your skin heals, blemishes and scarring appear less noticeable, leaving you with great looking skin that’s ready for the winter.

Schedule Your Chemical Peel at Aria DermSpa

Fall might be a few months away, but its never too early to start planning ahead for beautiful skin. At Aria DermSpa, we pride ourselves on helping patients create long-term strategies that protect and enhance their skin’s health and appearance. Discover the benefits of post-summer facial rejuvenation by scheduling your cosmetic chemical peel consultation today!

10 Ways to Revamp Your Skincare Routine For Summer

Great skin year-round starts with a robust at-home skincare regimen. While its good practice to update your routine at the transition between seasons, the switch from spring to summer is an especially important time to refresh your routine. Long days outside in the sun, humid weather and dry heat can all compromise different aspects of your skin. Without proper care, these external factors can accelerate the aging process, leaving you looking older than you really are. 

Luckily, you can protect your skin this summer by including these easy tips into your skincare routine. 

Protect Yourself with SPF

Summer often mean long days spent outside. While this may sound like the perfect summer weekend, extended sun exposure can lead to lasting skin damage, causing the aging process to accelerate. This can also increase a person’s risk of developing skin cancer. To protect your skin and prevent aging, invest and use sunscreen or lotion with an SPF greater than 30. 

Stay Covered

Sunscreen is one step towards preventing skin cancer and sun damage. Another technique to include this summer is to keep skin covered with a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses. While these may not offer the same coverage as a sunscreen, they’ll certainly protect the more vulnerable parts of your face. Planning on spending a long day at the beach? Keep skin covered with a lightweight skim cover to help reduce the chances of sunburn and lasting sun damage.

Stay Hydrated with Serums and Gels

While the terms may be used interchangeably, there is a difference between staying moisturized and being hydrated. During the winter, there tends to be a focus on moisturizing to keep water locked in cells. Once the weather starts to warm up, skin cells can become dehydrated, causing them to shrivel. This causes fine lines and blemishes to appear more prominently and may accelerate the overall appearance of aging. To prevent this, we recommend switching heavy oils and creams with serums or gels – these are lightweight and can help skin stay clear and well hydrated.

Drink plenty of water

In addition to hydrating skin from the outside, upping your water intake during the summer is another vital step in keeping skin looking its best. Hot weather combined with AC units at full power can quickly dry skin out. Drinking plenty of water and eating lots of fruits and vegetables with high water content can be the perfect solution to staying hydrated.

Don’t Forget the Lips

When it comes to hydration and protection from the sun, the lips are often the most neglected. However, the thin skin of your smile makes this part of the face more susceptible to drying out and becoming dehydrated. Protect your lips by using a lip balm with SPF and reapply regularly.  

Don’t Over Exfoliate

As weather warms, we inevitably sweat more. This can make is especially tempting at the end of each day to deep clean our skin with heavy exfoliants. However, this tempting option can often have the reverse effect on skin, making it create more sebum or oil and increasing the likelihood of outbreaks. To help minimize potential pimples, we recommend keeping exfoliation to at most twice a week

Focus on Your Eyes

Like your lips, the skin around your eyes is thin and vulnerable to sun and environmental factors. A lightweight, antioxidant rich eye cream can help protect skin and keep your eyes looking bright every day.

Stay Dry with Matte, Lightweight Makeup

Heavy foundation can irritate skin on a hot day and melt off, making women feel less than stellar in their appearance. Keep makeup in place and skin comfortable by switching to matte powder or lightweight, tinted moisturizer instead. 

Switch to Cool Showers

After a long day outside, cool showers can feel fantastic. Even better, they can help keep skin clear and minimize excess sweating by helping cool down your body’s internal temperature. 

Get the Pros Involved

In some cases, it’s best to start with a clean slate. Certain professional treatments like microdermabrasion and chemical peel can be excellent treatments for refreshing skin before the summer is fully underway.  

Start Your Journey at Aria DermSpa

At Aria DermSpa, we know great skin. Discover the right techniques for your skin type and upgrade your skincare routine by starting with a visit to our specialist, Dr. Lisa Donofrio. Beginning with your first consultation, our experienced dermatologist will guide you through your treatment options and help you craft the right at home routine for you. Get started today by calling (203) 421-6674.

3 Low Downtime Cosmetic Treatments to Get You Back In The Summer Sun Fast

No matter your age, everyone looks forward to the summer season. Beyond planning beach side vacations or family reunions, many patients find the downtime that comes with summer to be the perfect opportunity to finally undergo long-awaited cosmetic treatment. However, few want to spend this precious time off work and gorgeous weather stuck indoors recovering from serious cosmetic surgeries or procedures. Fortunately, there are many low downtime, minimally invasive cosmetic treatments that make it easy to enhance your looks between summer plans.

Looking for Subtle Facial Rejuvenation? Consider Microneedling

Skin rejuvenation procedures are a highly recommended treatment with any change in seasons. However, certain treatments like laser therapy and stronger chemical peels can require that patients avoid the sun for several days following their procedure. Less invasive rejuvenation treatments like microneedling offer men and women a less invasive alternative. 

During this treatment, tiny needles are used to create microtraumas along the surface of your skin. The tiny resulting pinpricks are enough to trigger your body’s natural skin regeneration and collagen production processes. This not only restores skin from the inside out, but gives patients the added benefit of long-lasting results.

Add Volume with Dermal Fillers

Not all patients need facial rejuvenation to enhance their summer glow. For some, dermal fillers offer the perfect facial enhancement without needing any recovery time. Whereas some treatments can make skin sensitive to the sun, dermal fillers are among the few cosmetic treatments that do not react negatively to intense sun exposure – making it the ideal last-minute treatment before your big vacation. 

Thanks to extensive innovation in non-surgical treatments, patients that choose to enhance their looks with dermal fillers can receive extremely personalized care. Many available dermal fillers are designed to address different areas of the face that have lost substantial collagen, ensuring the results are subtle and natural looking. As most dermal fillers last between four to nine months, most patients come in early in the season for treatment and can enjoy their results all summer long.  

Tone Your Beach Body with Non-Surgical Body Contouring

Summer is peak beach season, meaning body sculpting treatments are always in high demand in the weeks leading up to long-planned vacations. While some may turn to liposuction or abdominoplasty to help tighten their figure, non-surgical body contouring treatments like CoolSculpting offer an excellent alternative. This minimally invasive treatment is an especially valuable option for helping patients add definition to their figure before heading to the beach.

 With CoolSculpting, patients can target and literally freeze stubborn pockets of fat, which are then metabolized out of the body naturally. As the treatment uses external applicators to administer treatment, CoolSculpting is completely non-surgical – making downtime virtually non-existent.  Want to tighten skin instead? Be sure to ask your specialist about ThermiTight. This non-invasive procedure used radiofrequency to help trigger your body’s natural collagen production and reduce skin laxity (sagging).

Get off the Sidelines of Summer at Aria DermSpa

Enjoy your summer feeling and looking your absolute best. Explore other low downtime cosmetic treatments at Aria DermSpa by calling our practice and scheduling your visit with Dr. Donofrio. Together, we’ll help you enhance your looks subtly and without having to sacrifice time in recovery. 

How to Prevent Summer Sun Spots

avoid sunspots

avoid sunspots

Sunspots, technically called solar lentigines, are caused when skin is exposed to the sun and show up as flat brown spots that are often mistaken for freckles or moles. Though sunspots can occur any time during the year, they are more common during the summer months due to the increased intensity of the sun and increased outdoor activity for the season. Sunspots can prematurely age the skin, and it’s likely that if you have gotten enough exposure to cause these spots, your skin is also developing other symptoms like wrinkling. Though sunspots are not technically dangerous, they can mimic cancerous lesions, and it can often be difficult to tell the difference between a harmless sunspot and potentially cancerous tissue. So how do you prevent sun spots without completely avoiding the sun this summer?

How Can You Avoid Sun Spots This Summer?

The best way to avoid sunspots is to stay out of the sun during the peak hours of the early to late afternoon. Try to schedule outdoor events for the morning or early evening hours to avoid the strongest rays of the sun. If you do need to spend time outdoors during these times, wear a hat and sunglasses, and consider carrying an umbrella or having some other form of shade. Regardless of the time you go outside, you should wear an SPF of at least 30 every day. Even if the day is cloudy, some UV rays will still come through and can damage your skin. In addition to your face, apply SPF to your neck and other exposed skin on your arms, hands, legs, and shoulders. Though all sun damage is not preventable, you can minimize it by taking these easy steps.

Keeping the skin cool after sun exposure may also reduce melanin activity and prevent some sun spots from forming. If you’ve been out in the sun and your skin feels overheated, apply a cold, wet washcloth, an ice pack, or a cooling mask to bring the temperature down. Not only does this help your skin, but it also feels amazing! You should continue to use your skin care products that contain retinol or AHA acids. Some individuals make the mistake of discontinuing these during the summer months because they make their skin more sensitive to the sun. However, if you are diligent about SPF and limiting your sun exposure, these can be powerful tools in preventing sun spots all season long.

How Can You Treat Sun Spots You Already Have?

It’s likely that you already have some sun spots on your face, neck, and chest. These will get darker each time they are exposed to sunlight. If you want to reduce the appearance of the sunspots you have, Aria DermSpa has some effective options. Skin rejuvenation treatments like chemical peels and microneedling can help trigger the skin’s healing process, stimulate collagen, and remove outer layers of skin that show the most damage from the sun. Intense Pulsed Light Therapy (IPL) and laser resurfacing treatments can also help reduce numerous signs of aging including sun spots and reveal younger, more supple skin. When you meet with the knowledgeable staff at Aria DermSpa, you can find out about the numerous treatments available to treat various signs of aging and unveil glowing skin.

Scheduling a Consultation with Aria

Not sure which treatment would be best for you or interested in learning more about what’s available? When you schedule a consultation with the staff at Aria, you can find out more about all that’s available. Many of these treatments can be used on areas of the body other than the face as well. If you have other areas of concern, such as fine lines and wrinkles, excess fat under the chin, or pockets of fat that do not respond to diet or exercise, other treatments may be suggested as well.

Looking forward to the summer months but concerned about what the rays will do your skin? Keep up with SPF and your normal skincare routine during the summer months and try to stay out of the sun during the hottest hours of the day. However, if you do find you have developed sunspots, there are ways to reduce their appearance. Contact Aria DermSpa today for more information!

Skincare Mistakes That Lead to Sun Damage

From premature aging to skin cancer, we all know that sun damage can wreak havoc on our skin. But did you know that some tried and true skincare habits might be doing your skin more harm than good? If you do any of the following, it might be time to revisit your skincare regimen.

Only lathering up when its sunny outside

Why wear sunscreen when it’s overcast or cloudy outside? UV rays can still reach your skin when skies are grey, causing untold damage when you’re least expecting it. To help protect your skin, wear sunscreen whenever you know you’ll be spending time outdoors. If you’re planning on hitting the slopes or sand, make sure to pack extra sunscreen – these vistas can cause even more sun damage as they reflect the sun’s rays.

While a higher SPF sunscreen is a good start to protecting your skin, it’s not the end all be all to blocking UV rays. Wearing a hat, bringing a lightweight cover-up and sunglasses can not only be fashionable but also highly effective in protecting your entire body. On the parts that aren’t covered, don’t forget to keep applying sunscreen throughout the day!

Don’t forget your lips and neck!

Unlike the skin on your hands and face, the skin on your lips is much thinner and more susceptible to damage. When the weather warms (and throughout the year), be sure to drink plenty of water and invest in a lip balm with sunscreen.

Like your lips, the skin on your neck is more delicate than skin elsewhere on your body and is often overlooked by routine skincare regimens. However, the thinner skin here is also more likely to show the first signs of sagging caused by both aging and sun damage. With that in mind, be sure to pay as much attention to the care you give your neck as you do to the rest of your face. Use a high SPF sunblock and reapply regularly if you’re sweating or swimming. Be

Spending too much time in direct sunlight

After being cooped up all winter, it can be especially tempting to spend every waking moment enjoying the warm weather. However, spending tons of time during the hottest parts of the day won’t quite get you the golden tan you’ve been craving. Sun exposure without the relief of shade or sun protection can leave skin vulnerable to burns and other skin damage. Instead of trying to literally soak up the sun’s rays, time your outdoor excursions before 10 a.m. and after 4 p.m. – the hottest parts of the day.

Over-exfoliating at night

As the days get hotter, its only natural that we start to get hotter faster. Daily scrubs and exfoliants might seem like the ideal solution for getting rid of daily grime, but when it comes to protecting your skin from sun damage, this can actually be more damaging. Exfoliating more than a few days a week exposes new skin to sun damage, which can accelerate your risk of sunburn and premature aging.

Enjoy the Sunshine Worry-free

At Aria DermSpa, our goal is to help patients enjoy beautiful skin year-round and year after year. With spring just around the corner, be sure to schedule your dermatology appointment with Dr. Donofrio and get your warm weather skin routine ready.


How to Gift Cosmetic Dermatology for the Holidays

It’s the season of giving. Not only are we celebrating with family, we’re celebrating family and friends for the joy they bring to our lives every day. Finding the right way to express your appreciation can be challenging. Rather than waste money with a less than personal trinket, gift cosmetic dermatology. This is a gift you know they’ll appreciate and will improve their self-confidence.

Why Cosmetic Dermatology is the Best Gift

The choice to undergo cosmetic dermatology is personal and often underrated. For some, the decision takes a backseat to other expenses or treatments for their loved ones. Giving the gift of cosmetic dermatology is giving your close friends the opportunity to treat and spend precious time on their own health and care.

Top Treatments

If you are choosing to gift cosmetic dermatology to a close friend, chances are you’ve heard of their skin concerns and struggles with finding the perfect solution. Regardless of how well you know the patient, we recommend that the patient receiving the gift selects their gift during a consultation, so that there are no unwelcome surprises. While this may take away the element of surprise, it will ensure they receive the treatment they want and need. Among the most popular gifts at Aria DermSpa are:

BOTOX® and Dysport

Perfect as a proactive treatment or to help stall future deepening of wrinkles, injectables like BOTOX® and Dysport are excellent anti-aging solutions suitable for nearly all patients. As a gift, sessions can be given as one-time treatment or as a bundle of sessions. As injectables provide the most benefits when they are completed over a series of treatment sessions, Dr. Donofrio recommends bundling to provide your loved one with long lasting results that make a difference.

While BOTOX® and Dysport are very similar, there are significant differences that make each treatment ideal for different candidates. When you gift these injectables, our Madison, CT dermatologist will work with the recipient to ensure the correct treatment for their concerns.

Dermal Fillers

From increasing lip volume to restoring sunken cheeks, dermal fillers are an excellent option appreciated by patients of all ages. As a non-invasive cosmetic treatment, dermal fillers are a uniquely valuable gift as sessions are short enough to fit in a lunch break or between errands. Furthermore, the discreet results are perfect for patients who are worried about making drastic changes to their appearance.

As there are a number of different dermal filler options available, treatments can be specifically tailored to each individual’s needs. After gifting dermal filler injections, we’ll work with your loved one to identify which formula will most successfully help them reach their goals.  At Aria DermSpa, patients can choose from Restylane®, Juvéderm®, and Belotero.

Rejuvenation Procedures

Skin rejuvenation treatments are also excellent gift options. While many skin rejuvenation treatments are a bit more invasive than other cosmetic dermatology procedures, these advanced options yield long-lasting results that noticeably turn back the hands of time. At Aria DermSpa, our state-of-art practice offers a full suite of treatment options. Some of the most popular rejuvenation procedures our patients choose include:

  • Chemical peels
  • Microdermabrasion
  • Microneedling
  • PRP Facial Rejuvenation
  • Laser Resurfacing
  • Intense Pulsed Light Therapy

Give the Gift of Self-Care

Nearly everyone appreciates the value of self-care and few have the time to indulge. This year give loved ones the gift of self-love through cosmetic dermatology procedures. To learn more about gifting treatments and selecting the right one for friends and family, call Dr. Donofrio at (203) 421-6674.


Unmasking Melasma: What You Need to Know

While the name may sound concerning, melasma is more of an unsightly inconvenience than a serious health concern. Melasma causes greyish brown or brown patches that appear on skin commonly exposed to the sun. Common places where the patches develop include the forehead, cheeks, nose, beneath the eyes, chin, arms, neck, and back. Uniquely, these spots develop in symmetrical pairs – if a spot appears on your right cheekbone, chances are another will follow shortly in the same area of your left cheekbone. Here’s what you need to know about this skin condition, its cause, and how to best treat it.

What Causes Melasma?

So far, there is no definitive cause of melasma – that is to say, being out in the sun will not immediately cause the development of the characteristic patches across your face. However, recent studies by researchers and dermatologists have suggested that certain factors can increase the likelihood of developing melasma. These include sun exposure, genetics, ethnicity, stress, and even thyroid function.

Additionally, it has been noted that hormonal changes and fluctuations are prevailing risk factors for melasma. While the condition can occur in any patient, an estimated 90% of patients with the condition are women. Furthermore, changes to estrogen and progesterone levels like those associated with oral contraceptives, pregnancy, and hormone therapy have been tied to the development of melasma in patients. For this reason, melasma is also called chloasma, or the “mask of pregnancy.”

What is the Difference Between Melasma, Age Spots and Freckles?

Age spots, freckles, and melasma may all seem very similar but can be differentiated from one another rather easily. Each of these blemishes is a form of hyperpigmentation stemming from the over-production of melanin. However, there are significant differences between what triggers the hyperpigmentation associated with each blemish.

In individuals with melasma, the development of patches comes as the result of hormonal changes, genetic predisposition, or sun exposure and are more common among patients with darker skin tones.

In contrast, freckles have a more circular, tan appearance and are more common in patients of lighter skin tones. Melanin production, in the case of freckles, is more so triggered by sun exposure rather than hormones, making it possible for very young children to develop the condition.

On the other hand, age spots are flat and oval-shaped, taking a tan, brown, and even black shade. While they may develop on young adults, age spots are more common among older patients who have had years of sun exposure.

What are My Treatment Options?

While melasma is a purely cosmetic condition, the sudden development of patches can be concerning for many patients. For some, especially pigmented blemishes can be difficult to cover with makeup and can undermine the individual’s self-confidence. Luckily, new techniques and advanced dermatology treatment solutions have made it possible for patients with melasma to overcome their condition and restore smooth, even tone to their skin. Some of the most popular solutions for melasma include:

Topical Treatment

Considered the gold standard in melasma treatment, topical treatment with professional creams is one of the first treatments recommended. Usually, these topical creams are compounds made with hydroquinone, tretinoin, and a corticosteroid to better even skin tone.


For patients who are not candidates for topical treatment, other options exist that are highly effective in treating melasma. Microdermabrasion is another quick, outpatient solution that has long been used to address hyperpigmentation in delicate areas without the use of chemicals or creams. As a result, many melasma patients have found this solution as an excellent solution for not only treating blemishes but also rejuvenating skin into a healthier appearance.

Chemical Peel

Much like microdermabrasion, chemical peels have successfully been used by our Madison dermatologist to address hyperpigmentation across the face. Under this procedure, different chemicals are used to remove the dead and damaged top layers of skin. This stimulates important cell rejuvenation as well as collagen production, helping reset skin health.

Laser Treatment

Fractional laser skin resurfacing has emerged in the last decade as another option for patients looking to clear their appearance of spots as well as fine lines. Under this minimally invasive treatment, the laser operates at specific wavelengths to target hyperpigmentation and other skin flaws within a treatment area, leaving the surrounding tissue unharmed.

Ready to Tackle Your Blemishes? Call our Madison, CT Team Today!

While melasma may be unsightly, there are easily accessible, minimally invasive options for rejuvenating your appearance and restoring your self-confidence. To learn more about this condition and your treatment options, call Aria Dermspa at 203-421-6674 today to schedule your consultation.