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Dermatologist or independent consultant: Who do you trust with your skincare?

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By: Dr. Corey Hartman, Skin Wellness Dermatology

When it comes to whether you should buy your skincare products from an independent consultant or a dermatologist, there are a few factors you should probably take into consideration. While an independent consultant may very well want the best for your skin, the fact is, they don’t always have the extensive training and experience of a board-certified dermatologist. 

Four questions to ask yourself before buying skincare products from an independent consultant

When an independent consultant approaches you, be sure to ask yourself these four questions before putting your skincare needs in their hands.

Does my consultant really want to help me reach my skincare goals? 

Many independent consultants work to recruit people to their team: people that don’t have any expertise. You want to make sure they’re not just trying to sell you a product, but truly motivated to help you figure out what’s best for your skin. 

These products are developed by doctors, but are they really as good as those dispensed at a physician’s office? 

Yes, many of their products are “developed by doctors,” but that doesn’t exactly mean they’re as good as those that you have to see a doctor to access. These products are still sold by non-professionals, so they don’t always have the knowledge base to comment on ingredients. They also don’t have access to the ingredients that are as effective and proven by science. 

Are these before and after photos realistic? 

When deciding on which products to purchase from an independent consultant, you might come across some before and after photos. But any trained eye can look at some of these pictures and tell that they’re just not accurate. They may be using the skincare line they’re promoting, but don’t ignore any laser, Botox, or filler that may be present in those “after” pictures.

Is this the most cost-effective way to reach my skincare goals? 

The truth is, a lot of times, these products are more expensive than those dispensed by a physician. In countless instances, I’ve helped patients access more effective products for even half the price. Whether we decide to go with over-the-counter products or look at more generic-type brands, it’s my job to give you options and help you find the right products that fit within your price point. 

What it means to be a board-certified dermatologist

Becoming a board-certified dermatologist isn’t easy. It requires many years of education, including four years of college, four years in medical school, a one-year internship, and a minimum 3-year dermatology residency program. Before earning this certification, one must also complete between 12,000-16,000 hours of patient care. 

This means, before even becoming certified, your dermatologist has received extensive training and gained invaluable experience. When you see a board-certified dermatologist, you know that they have the knowledge, skills, and experience to help you reach your goals. 

As a dermatologist, my priority is always going to be your skin, but essentially, it’s just important to be in the hands of someone you trust.  

Learn more about the benefits of seeing a board-certified dermatologist from Skin Wellness Dermatology in Birmingham, AL

At Skin Wellness Dermatology of Alabama, we offer cutting-edge skincare and dermatology services to our patients in the Greater Birmingham area, including Hoover and Homewood. At our offices in Birmingham & Chelsea, AL, our certified dermatologists are here to listen to your concerns and offer the individualized, high level of patient care you seek. We believe in making care accessible and affordable, and we will go out of our way to accommodate your visit. Give us a call today at 205-871-7332.