Looking after your skin can seem challenging due to an overwhelming range of products, treatments, lasers, and facials promoted everywhere. We have put together a list of ways to help you protect and improve your skin to preserve the youthful appearance that we all desire.
How to improve your skin:
Facial aesthetic treatments are non-surgical treatments, which include injectables, topical medical-grade skincare products, and more.
Facial and under-eye injectables with hyaluronate gel fillers such as Restylane and Juvederm are used for improving facial and tear trough volume. Anti-wrinkle Botox and moisturizing liquid gel ProfHilo injectables combine to promote a healthy youthful appearance. Sculptra injections promote natural deep volume and improve a haggard tired look. The goal is to reduce signs of ageing and give a natural and fresh look to your face without undergoing invasive surgical treatments.
Ageing jowls can be treated with Ultherapy, which is FDA approved as a non-surgical facelift. Ultherapy uses ultrasound with visualisation (MFU-V) energy that focuses on the deep layers of the skin without disrupting the skin’s surface. After treatment, the body repairs itself by stimulating the production of new collagen and elastin, creating a sculpted and lifting effect.
Botox (botulinum toxin) anti-wrinkle treatment is widely used to ease the muscles in your face by flattening out lines and wrinkles such as frown lines and crow´s feet. Although Botox lasts between 3-6 months, the lines and wrinkles reappear less severely over time. Botox has other benefits and can treat chronic migraines, severe underarm sweating, sweaty palms, and many more medical indications.
ProfHilo is known as liquid moisturiser injectable and gives a very natural healthy skin appearance, done as a repeated treatment every 4 to 6 months.
Another option for glowing healthy skin is Tretinoin. Tretinoin is a prescription-only cream, applied to the skin at night, which stimulates deep collagen. Gradually over time, Tretinoin will help improve skin quality and maintain healthy-looking skin. Tretinoin is only used under the direction of a doctor, such as our Dermatologists, and is time tested.
Improving your diet and avoiding sugar and processed foods is equally pivotal. Aim to add lean protein, fresh fruit and vegetables, minerals, vitamins and antioxidants to your diet. Always aim to have loads of colours on your plate to diversify your meals. Keep alcohol to a minimum as it also dehydrates the skin which causes premature wrinkles in future.
Keep yourself hydrated
Drinking water is excellent for your overall health, but it’s also great for your skin.
It’s not only enough to drink water but add hydration to your skin through your skincare products. Toners and serums with hyaluronic acid are great for attracting water to the skin, which keeps it from feeling dehydrated. A great addition would be a humidifier, especially if the air in your home or office is dry.
Get at least 8 hours of sleep
Undoubtedly, getting enough sleep is vital for good health, and it’s no different for your skin. Studies have shown sleep deprivation affects skin appearance and increases the look of wrinkles, puffiness and dark circles, among other unappealing signs. Your skin will indicate if you’re getting adequate sleep or not. Aim for eight hours of continuous sleep, and it will pay off for your overall complexion.
Improving these skin conditions
Creating an effective skincare routine is the first step to dealing with any skin related issues. It is essential to cleanse the skin in the morning and evening for at least 60 seconds. Start with a gentle, non-exfoliating cleanser that doesn’t strip your skin of its natural oils. The second step to creating an essential skincare routine is to add a good quality toner. Toners help restore the skin’s PH balance, protect skin from environmental factors, remove oil and makeup residue, and hydrate the skin. Afterwards, we suggest using an emollient moisturiser labelled oil-free and non-comedogenic, which is less likely to create blackheads and whiteheads that clog pores. Finally, it is vital to incorporate a broad-spectrum sunscreen into your routine, SPF 50 or 50+. Broad-spectrum means against UVA and UVB.
This is the delicate English Rose pink skin but can occur in all skin colour ranges. It affects your skin with redness and your eyes with blepharitis which makes them look red-rimmed. There is no specific cure for rosacea as it is genetic, but you can take measures to ease and treat your symptoms, making your life more tolerable, your skin and eyes more comfortable, and your appearance less “red-faced” and eyes less “red-rimmed”.
Depending on what triggers your rosacea, you should:
Wear sunscreen with at least SPF 50 every day.
Avoid heat, sunlight or humid conditions.
Cover your face in cold weather.
Use skincare intended for sensitive skin.
Avoid alcohol, hot drinks, caffeine, cheese and spicy food.
Large pores in older people
Large pores are genetically determined. However, other elements can affect the visibility of your pores, such as an overproduction of sebum. Using special skin cleansers and medical prescription creams or tablets can help avoid worsening large pores.
With ageing skin, the pore becomes less elastic, hence the pore appears larger. Unfortunately, once the pore has stretched, it cannot go back to its original state. One solution to minimising the appearance of large pores is to cleanse your skin every morning and evening, exfoliate twice a week, minimise sun exposure and wear a broad-spectrum sun protection factor, SPF 50 or 50+.
Melasma is the condition of discoloured, light or dark brown patches on your skin, particularly on your face. Melasma is usually darker than your skin colour, flat, painless and appears in both men and women. For some women, melasma caused by pregnancy or birth control pills may disappear after giving birth or stopping contraception, but as we age the melasma tend to persist and rapidly reactivate with minor sun exposure. At Clinica London, our dermatologists may prescribe specific steroid and tretinoin containing creams to help lighten the affected areas or recommend laser.
How to protect skin:
Use sunscreen every day
The most crucial step to your routine is incorporating sunscreen to your routine. Sunscreens are moisturisers with UV filters that protect your skin from the harmful UVA and UVB rays caused by the sun. Starting at a young age will develop a habit and, most importantly, will keep wrinkles and skin damage away. Sunscreens also help in preventing skin cancers. Always apply your sunscreen as the last step of your routine and reapply every 2 hours, especially when outdoors.
Tips for protecting skin from the harmful rays of the sun:
- Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen as they protect skin from both UVA and UVB rays with an SPF 50 or 50+.
- Avoid exposure during peak hours of the sun’s intensity (between 11 am and 4 pm).
- Wear sunscreen daily in all weather conditions including cloudy days, whether outside or indoors.
- Reapply your sunscreen after two hours, especially when active outdoors and in summer.
- Never ever use sunbeds. Ever!
- Apply moisturisers.
- Moisturising is crucial to healthy skin. Like brushing your teeth, moisturising your skin is just as pivotal. Moisturisers assist your skin in feeling and looking healthy. If your skin is oily or acne-prone, your skin still needs moisture. We suggest using an emollient moisturiser labelled oil-free and non-comedogenic, which is less likely to create blackheads and whiteheads that clog pores. Remember to clean your skin and remove makeup, especially before bed, before applying a moisturiser.
- Avoid smoking. Smoking is strongly linked with premature skin ageing and wrinkles, delayed wound healing, and increased infections, as well as several skin disorders such as discolouration, lax waxy skin, fine lip and facial lines. Smoking equally damages collagen and elastin, which makes your skin firm and strong, thus weakening your natural skin defences.
Things to remember- Skin Cancer
Always self-check the skin for any new moles/ changes in moles/ unusual ‘new’ brown marks. Also, try to avoid stress as lots of evidence shows stress makes certain skin conditions worse. Add extra protection from the sun by wearing a wide brim hat, UV protective sunglasses and tightly woven clothing to keep the sun rays away.
Clinica London’s Consultant Dermatologists
Dr Angela Tewari is at Clinica London every Wednesday and alternate week Thursday evenings.
Dr Jennifer Crawley is at Clinica London every Monday and at other times by special request.