• Dr Kathryn Holmes

Shake off Winter

Spring has now sprung. Spring is the season of renewal, new life, and new energy. So it’s a good time to look at energising and revitalising your skin after the perils of dry cold winter weather.

Of course, the skin industry is continuing to explode with new treatments, new products, and bigger marketing presence, always pushing the “anti-ageing” message. It can be so confusing!

And we shouldn’t talk about “anti-ageing” as if there is something wrong with ageing. We don’t have much choice about growing older, and there is a lot to value about age. Many cultures in the world do much better than our western culture in valuing those who are older, recognising the vast amount of skills and knowledge they have accumulated over the years. Skills and knowledge acquired by navigating many challenges in life over many years.

BUT I digress! We can take advantage of all the knowledge we now have about skincare to ensure we have healthy, glowing, vibrant skin as we age.

How can we do this? Well, as always, it begins with sun protection, which is a big one in Australia. Think that little cap you’re wearing is protecting your face? It might be keeping the glare out of your eyes, but that’s about it. Broad-spectrum sunscreen is a must, hats with broad brims, along with removing yourself from the sun in the hottest times of the day as the weather warms up. (If you lived in Scotland you would appear years younger than when you are living in Australia. Sun destroys our collagen, resulting in early saggy, dull, lined skin, and higher rates of skin cancer.)

Home skincare is another area where new technology is exploding. Long gone are the days when you could say any claims made by creams or serums were just marketing hype. It is a confusing market, though, and many brands will promise all kinds of miracles with very little truth to back up their claims. Google is full of scams and rip-offs. Fake news! Find yourself a professional clinician you trust to educate you about what is real and what would benefit your skin the most.

From here, we head into the world of more active treatments. These can range from active facials, needling, injectable treatments (which should be used in a subtle, natural way - don’t get me started on that issue!), use of your own blood growth factors, lasers, radiofrequency devices, ultrasound devices, and so on, right up to surgical treatments.

The trouble is, of course, you need to know that a particular treatment is being recommended responsibly because it is right for you and your skin concerns.

Finding a clinician who is a member of one of our registered professional cosmetic colleges in Australia, like the Cosmetic Physicians College of Australasia (CPCA) will be a good start.

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