FIRST TIME PROBLEM SKIN APPOINTMENT
WHAT TO EXPECT & FAQs
Please call (630) 488-6334 for appointment availability or book online for our First Time Client Program Consultation Appointment.
Who needs to attend?
The client, and if a minor, a parent or guardian is required at all Skin Theory appointments. This is program-based clearing and requires consent for both home care and treatments over the course of the program.
Where do I go for the appointment and what do I do?
Skin Theory is located at 520 Hillside Avenue in Glen Ellyn, IL. Please plan to arrive at your scheduled appointment time. New clients will need to fill out paperwork for our files.
How does the acne program work?
Skin Theory takes a three-pronged approach to clearing problem skin.
The right home care for your acne type and your skin.
Beneficial supplements to aid in clearing for some acne types.
Lifestyle adjustments to aid clearing (you can still eat chocolate, but you are going to want to limit peanut butter).
Skin Theory clears problem skin using a program-based process. We increase frequency and/or strength of home care every two weeks depending on how the skin is clearing. 85% of successful clearing is done with daily home care routine completed twice a day. Daily home care prevents blemishes from forming while clearing existing blemishes. Clients come in every 2 weeks for an in-clinic treatment to help with clearing, and for acne, clear existing blemishes (that formed in the dermis 90 days before program start and are now popping up). In addition, Skin Theory strengthens your home care regime based on how you are clearing at these appointments. Approximately 12 weeks of clearing and prevention gets you clear.
Note: Skin theory uses products that contain gluten and synthetic tree nuts and dairy both in our treatments and homecare products. Skin Theory may use products that contain these ingredients or use products manufactured in a facility with these ingredients and they may be in the air in our clinic. Clients should be comfortable using or having these ingredients in both treatments and for home care.
Learn more about Skin Theory's clearing program.
Are doctors on staff?
Skin Theory is not a medical facility. For new clients who have already visited a dermatologist, they often ask, “What do you do differently to clear acne?” For new clients who have not seen a dermatologist, they often ask, “Why go to an acne specialist versus a dermatologist?” Below are some differences to help you in your decision.
Skin Theory is not a medical practice. We do not prescribe medications such as oral or topical antibiotics, controversial Accutane or other prescription medications used to treat acne. We take a healthier approach to clearing acne recommending healthy supplements for certain acne, lifestyle adjustments and the right actives and homecare protocol for your acne. With this approach, we have a 97% efficacy rate clearing acne.
We treat and give acne the time and guidance it requires to clear. We do not treat all acne the same or by grade. We treat based on type of acne.
Did you know there are all different types of acne? Some acne types require more chemical exfoliation, some acne requires more anti-bacterial action or anti-inflammatory action.Some acne types don’t do well on scrubs, some do. Some skin types don’t do well on scrubs, some do. Some acne gets aggravated by retinoids, others can’t clear without it. There is a fine art to clearing: part theory, part experience, part creative.
Unlike a dermatologist who grades your acne from across the room every few months, we spend a considerable amount of time evaluating each client’s skin type, baseline sensitivity, acne type, lesion type and clearing rate to determine the correct clearing protocol. This is the biggest difference and probably the reason efficacy rates for clearing acne in dermatology are low (except when prescribing Accutane which often requires multiple rounds and has shown a 75% efficacy rate).
What are your appointment hours?
Skin Theory's Summer business hours are as follows. Note that we are closed on Sundays and all bank holidays.
Monday - Thursday: 9:30am-6pm
What is the cost?
Home care products are required to clear. A client's first set of face products & supplements typically costs between $150-$200 depending on needs. If also clearing the back a separate / stronger product(s) are needed. Expect an additional $60-80 for the back. Some actives are in smaller bottles and we will replace these with stronger actives mid-way through. This can cost approximately $30-50. Most of the products last you quite a while. It typically takes about six, bi-weekly (every two weeks) treatments over a 12-16 week period of time to see results. Clients often see significant clearing around week 6. Initial first-time appointment is $90. Our acne treatment appointments are $70. Expect to do 6-8 treatments. Skin Theory accepts credit card, cash or check. Learn more.
How long will appointments take?
The consultation appointment is 75 minutes. Subsequent “acne treatment” appointments are 45-30 minutes. When you start to get clearer, treatments will take less time.
What is going to happen in the appointment?
Skin Theory will consult with you regarding your current situation and your prior treatments.
Review useful information regarding products and diet, medications etc.
Skin Theory will examine your acne and figure out acne type and approach to clear.
We will get an approximate count of your active acne.
Skin Theory will test your baseline sensitivity to determine strength of home care actives to clear.
We will take baseline pictures to determine percentage of clearing at future appointments.
You receive your first treatment to start clearing while home care instructions are written up for you.
Skin Theory will review home care clearing instructions/protocol and show you exactly how to use products.
What are the treatments like?
Skin Theory either does a very mild chemical peel on your skin or we do a gentle enzyme with steam. Sometimes a clearing mask, light therapy and high frequency. Generally speaking, neither of these are uncomfortable or will make your skin visibly peel. They are to supplement home care. Skin Theory then does extractions of current acne.
Do extractions hurt?
For most people, there is a slight discomfort but it’s very tolerable. Luckily not too many involve extractions.
Why do the extractions?
First, it’s the fastest way to get clear. Second, it allows Skin Theory to make better decisions on your adjustments to home care. Skin Theory is better able to identify what you need by how acne extracts (i.e., if you have closed comedones that are cement-like, Skin Theory would most likely bump up your anti-bacterial action to help soften and hence dissolve them).
Do I have to use your products?
Yes. Use of Skin Theory is required.
Do I have to get treatments?
Yes. That is the fastest way to get clear. Treatments give Skin Theory the chance to closely monitor your home care regime to help get you clear in the fastest time possible. Clients who skip appointments stall the clearing process as the initial home care is not strong enough to clear. During the 12-weeks program, Skin Theory strengthen home care every two weeks depending on how a client's skin is clearing.
Do we take insurance?
No, Skin Theory is unable to take traditional insurance. You can use your Health Spending Account (HSA), if applicable. Skin Theory charges your HSA like a credit card or debit card however you need to contact your HSA provider prior to your first appointment to discuss acceptance and if applicable.
Do we take credit cards? Do you take checks?
Yes, Skin Theory accepts Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express, along with checks.
What if I’m on other topical prescription products for my skin?
We require you to stop your prescription topical products. Clients can continue oral prescription medications, with the exception of Accutane. Clients who want to clear with us post-Accutane must wait 60 days.
Can I combine your regimen with another one that I have been on?
No. You will be required to stop any other products if you decide to do our program. If another regime was working well for you, you would not be coming to Skin Theory because your acne would be under control.
How long does it typically take to get clear?
If you do your home care exactly as Skin Theory details and come in every two weeks for a treatment you will most likely be clear in about 12-16 weeks. Some people might take a little longer depending on the nature of their acne.
Am I going to have to use these products forever?
You will need to do your home care to control your acne until you outgrow acne. No one knows when that is. There is no cure for acne. Even Accutane is not a cure. For most, it comes back. Many people are surprised by this fact. If there was a cure, there would be no need for different products and medications. This program and your post home care regime is a way to “control” acne. At Skin Theory, we like to compare your acne home care regime to wearing a retainer to keep your teeth straight post-braces.
Do you take clients that pick and have open wounds?
No, for safety, Skin Theory does not take client with open wounds. There is a difference between squeezing a pimple and picking. Clients must be free of open excoriated wounds from picking to start our clearing program.
Are you able to solve conditions due to picking?
No, we are not able to resolve picking. A picking disorder is not just squeezing a pimple. Picking clients almost never stay “clear” looking. We know this is difficult to understand. It is for us too. We have found parents are often disappointed that they do not “see” clearing during the program as the picking continues. And even when the skin is near perfect, if any small bump that that they can “feel” forms, the picking resumes. We recommend therapy, gloves and fake nails until the disorder is under control.
What is the youngest age that you take clients?
Skin Theory takes clients at whatever age they are breaking out. We adjust homecare based on age, sensitivity and what type of home care routine they can handle.
Do extractions make my face red? What about if I have a special event coming up?
Most get quite pink from extractions. So, you really need to plan ahead and make sure you do not have a special event within 24 hours of a treatment.
Is there anything that takes the post-blemish “hyper- pigmentation” redness away?
These are not scars. They are hyper-pigmentation from trauma. Your home care products and the bi-weekly treatments will help breakdown the post-trauma. Redness fades gradually.
What if I am pregnant?
Skin Theory can still treat you for acne, but first you will have to get a list from your doctor as to what ingredients they want you to avoid.
Do you treat scarring?
It depends on what you mean by scarring. If you have dark spots, then yes, those will be treated along with the acne. If you have pitted atrophy scars, then no, that can be treated by a medical doctor after 6 months clear using different modalities
Do you treat bumps on the arms and face, aka keratosis pilaris?
Yes, Skin Theory does treat this condition with good results.
Do you treat Redness /Rosacea?
Yes, Skin Theory has had wonderful success at clearing and suppressing Rosacea and redness.
Do you treat Perioral Dermatitis?
Yes, Skin Theory has had wonderful success at clearing and suppressing Perioral Dermatitis.
Do you treat folliculitis?
Certain types. Skin Theory successfully clears fungal folli (often seen on the face, chest, and back and mimics acne though does not respond to acne products). Skin Theory has also have had wonderful success clearing Barbae Folli which is “acne” from shaving.