Dermatologist Dendy Engelman loves baths, overnight masks and SPF


We talked with nationally-acclaimed dermatological surgeon, Dr. Dendy Engelman about how she takes care of her skin and what she wants all women to know about theirs. As one of the city’s rising-star dermatologists, she gets sent products from tons of different brands to try in hopes she’ll recommend them to patients and friends. Here, the beautiful (inside and out) doc shares with us what she uses to keep her own skin flawless. Given that Engelman’s complexion is her own best advertisement, we’re taking note that she believes in a double-washing routine at night and using SPF in powder form for easy re-application.


What’s your general philosophy when it comes to your skincare routine?

I have two rules when it comes to my skincare routine. One, it is never too early to use an eye cream. The skin around the eyes is the thinnest and most sensitive area on the body. It is the earliest at showing sings for aging and therefore needs to be need to keep it hydrated. Two, never sleep with makeup on.


Can you walk us through your morning and evening beauty routine?


img_9303I start with Derm Institute’s Youth Alchemy eye cream ($250)for my first layer of moisture around my eyes. Then, I use CE Ferulic by Skinceuticals, ($163) every morning to give my skin extra protection against the strong summer sun. Just five drops in the morning helps to boost UV protection – in addition to my daily and anti-pollution shield, Elizabeth Arden Prevage City Smart + DNA Enzyme Complex™ + Anti-Pollution + Antioxidant Broad Spectrum SPF 50 Hydrating Shield ($68). I also love Colorescience Sunforgettable Brush-On Suncreen ($64) block for re-application during the day. I have terrible seasonal allergies and will get pretty significant under eye circles as a result. I lean on Cover FX Custom Cover Drops ($44) to help camouflage these away. I add some lipstick and I am ready for the day. With all this, I am done in about 20-30 minutes!



In the evening, it is about removing the day’s grime and gunk. I follow a double-cleansing ritual. Step one involves removing the day’s cream, make-up, and dirt with a nutrient-rich towelette, like Cetaphil Cleansing Wipes ($7), to erase every trace of eye makeup with a liquid remover. Next, I use a gentle oil cleanser and lukewarm water, this is to get rid of bacteria and sebum. I use an oil-based cleanser first like Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Replenishing Cleansing Oil ($36) and then an exfoliating cleanser like Cure Natural Aqua Gel ($30) which is a water-based chemical peel. It’s gentle enough for even the most sensitive skin. Then, I move on to my serum like Derm Institute’s Youth Alchemy concentrate ($600) with antioxidants and growth factors that help prevent and correct fine lines and wrinkles and improved skin texture and tone. I follow with Skinceuticals retinol ($60) or prescription retinoid – these vitamin A derivatives are the ultimate multi-tasker. They help build collagen, correct fine lines and wrinkles, improve discoloration, reverse sun-induced damage. Skin can lose a lot of water while you sleep, so I like to use hydrating products that are specifically formulated for overnight use like Derm-Institute Anti-Oxidant Hydration Gel Masque ($120) or Elizabeth Arden Overnight Mask ($88). I dedicate another 20 minutes to making sure my skin is prepped for bed.


What are some of your favorite skincare and makeup products right now?


I am a big fan of Elizabeth Arden and Derm Institute. Both companies offer great quality products that help repair, nourish and protect my skin. I love their masks to hydrate and nourish my skin.

As for makeup, I love Tom Ford Lipstick in Indian Rose ($53), Elizabeth Arden lipstick in Nude 43 ($25) and  Chanel Levres Scintillants lip gloss in #119 ($30). My go-to for foundation is Cle de Peau radiant fluid foundation ($125), Cover FX Custom Cover Drops and Givenchy Teint Couture concealer ($36).

I also just started using LUMIONskin Oxygen Mist ($24) to set my makeup and spray as a refresher throughout the day. It contains Hypocholorus acid which eliminates bacteria that may be sitting on the skin. Plus, it is 100% all natural.


What inspired you to go into a skincare profession?


dendy-headshotEver since my father, who is a physician, took my 10th grade chemistry class to the hospital, I knew I wanted to be a doctor. In medical school, I was drawn to dermatology because I loved being able to see the disease you are treating. Once in dermatology residency, I found myself drawn to all of the procedures that our specialty has to offer— lasers, Mohs surgery, injectables, etcetera, so I did a fellowship in Procedural Dermatology and here I am!


What’s one thing you want all women to know about their skin?


Sunscreen is key! Prevention and protection is the best way to ensure healthy, graceful aging. Apply a lot more than you think and reapply throughout the day. UVA/UVB rays increase photoaging, burn the skin and can lead to skin cancer.



What’s your favorite thing about working as a dermatologic surgeon?


My absolute favorite thing is my ability to treat skin cancers and reconstruct the surgical defect in the same day. Patients come to me with a cancer and I am able to remove it, ensure clear margins by evaluating the tumor microscopically and repair them back to normal all in one day. It is wonderful to be able to become skin cancer free and repaired in a matter of hours!





Your Pre and Post-Gym Skincare Gameplan


We all know that a consistent workout routine can do wonders for your physical health and mental wellbeing. But there is a potential downside: Breakouts. Having to keep your newly sculpted back or shoulders under wraps because of a sprinkling of blemishes is a total bummer, so we talked with the  experts to get their tips on how to keep your workout from wreaking havoc on your skin.


Lesson 1: Gently cleanse skin after a workout to keep pores clean


You probably already know that working out with your makeup on can lead to clogged pores and breakouts, but it’s also key to cleanse after you sweat, too. To avoid over-stripping and irritating skin with over washing, reach for a gentle cleanser. New York Facial plastic surgeon Dr. Dara Liotta says that one of the biggest mistakes she sees women make is using too-harsh products, especially on sensitive post-workout skin. “They think that if they have acne on their face or body that is must be because their skin is oily, and they use over-the-counter products that are not appropriate for them,” Dr. Liotta explains. “When the skin is over-dried, or stripped of natural oils, it actually causes the oil glands to hypertrophy, or get larger, and produce more oil, and cause more issues.”


Glowbiotics body cleanser

For post-gym gentle cleansers, Dr. Liotta suggests IXXI Essenxiel Velvety Cleansing Milk or MyBody Clean Routine.


Lesson 2: Give sensitive post-workout skin a “cool-down” period


After your gentle cleanse, it’s best to hold off on applying any other products. “When you increase your metabolism the oil glands have a natural desire to secrete,” says New York dermatologist Dr. Dennis Gross. “Skin has yet to equilibrate so putting anything on right away may block the pores.”  Wait for your skin to cool to room temperature, then apply your favorite serums and sunscreens.


Vita Liberata's SPF plus moisturizer
Vita Liberata’s SPF plus moisturizer

On days when you can just barley squeeze in a workout and you’re in a rush (hey, life happens), Park Avenue Skin Solutions founder, Lauren Abramowitz, PA-C, recommends applying oil-free moisturizer and makeup.

We like SkinMedica’s Oil Free Moisturizer for post-workout, non-comedogenic hydration or Vita Liberata’s Neroli and Argan Milk SPF 50 for hydration and SPF in one.


Lesson 3: Prevent body acne with breathable clothing, a high ponytail and post-gym exfoliation


The culprit behind your bacne? It may be your sports bra. “The rubbing causes irritation of the pores, and then they become inflamed, trapping oil and debris,” says Dr. Liotta. Breathable clothing can help wick away sweat, stopping breakouts in their tracks.


A smart hairstyle can also help: “Wear hair up in a ponytail and bring along a headband to prevent strands from falling across your face,” says Dr. Gross, who explains that hair products containing oils and silicones can drip onto the hairline and back, clogging pores and causing acne.


Post-workout, try to shower in asap. “It is always a good idea to shower right after the gym as bacteria can develop from sweat and trap dirt and oil in the glands,” adds Dr. Gross. Aim to exfoliate once a week to ensure that dead skin cells aren’t clogging pores. “Washing with formulas that have benzoyl peroxide, salicylic and lactic acid will all help with oil control and breakouts.”



Lesson 4: Think beyond breakouts


Keeping blemishes at bay is important, but beautiful skin is also radiant, well-hydrated and even toned. All the experts recommend drinking lots of water to help keep skin hydrated and dewy looking. “There is a difference between moisturizing your skin—by applying products that affect the outer layers of skin—and hydrating your skin from within,” says Dr. Liotta. And on top of lots of water, Aesthetic Medicine Practitioner Abramowitz adds that electrolytes (such as potassium, magnesium and calcium) are also helpful for preventing dehydration. You can make sure you’re getting enough of them in vitamin form or through foods such as avocado, spinach, dark leafy greens, beans and nuts, and whole grains, says Abramowitz, a yoga enthusiast.


Rosacea can also be worsened by exercise thanks to the circulation of blood that rushes to your face causing inflammation through vasodilatation. To help calm skin, Abramowitz recommends using cold compresses and scheduling Intense Pulse Light treatments (such as Lumecca) which help break down the vascular component of acne rosacea, decreasing the inflammation that causes the redness and flareups.


Dr. Gross also recommends rotating between high impact and low impact workouts to slow down signs of aging. He says many of his patients who run a lot suffer from premature skin laxity and wrinkles. “If a woman’s foot strikes the surface, the force of her body weight bounces back off the ground and up into her body. I believe this jostling not only can damage joints but can cause collagen breakdown,” he explains. The health benefits of running are numerous, so don’t quit running altogether (especially if its what you love to do) but consider giving your skin a break by alternating exercises like yoga and meditation into your routine. (It’s good for you body, too, to mix up your fitness routine.) “They can help to reduce stress and alleviate facial tension,” says Gross.