What’s going on with men and “red necks?”

Dr. Irwin, I am a male, late 50's, with redness around the lower part of my neck. In summertime it turns bright red with lines(?) I was looking for product or procedure to reduce/eliminate. Overall, I am in pretty good health, eating right and exercising. It is clearly visible when wearing collared shirt. Thanks for any advice. Bob

This is actually where the term “red neck” came from because it is literally a red neck associated with sun exposure and outdoor occupuations and lifestyles.   Men suffer from it more than women because they wear their hair shorter generally, play more outdoor sports (in the past :)), work outdoors more,  and sunscreen less. 

Bottom line:  This is sun damage.   The first step is to prevent more sun damage by wearing a high zinc containing sunscreen every day from now on –  it’s light exposure, not sun per se, that causes the damage.    UVA goes through window glass in cars and offices. 

Secondly and sadly, no skincare product is going to really make a difference on this.  The small blood vessels in the skin have enlarged (telangectiasias) and sometimes the color is mottled brown plus red (poikiloderma).   A laser is needed.  These lasers are gentle, don’t break the skin and feel like a rubber band snap when you are treated.   The two best are a high powered IPL (don’t go a a spa for this) or a pulsed dye laser like the Candela.  More on these lasers.

Hope this helps,  Dr. I

Dr. Brandith Irwin, MD

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