1. Always use sunscreen
Did you know that about 90% of the skin changes we associate with ageing are due primarily to sun exposure? Every dermatologist and skin doctor will tell you that sunscreen is the best anti-ageing cream on the market.
2. Ensure the SPF is high
Sun Protection Factor (SPF) is a rating of time to sunburn, with versus without sunscreen. SPF 15+ means it takes 15x longer to burn with sunscreen on than without. If your burn time is 15 minutes, then 15×15 = 225 minutes or 3.75 hours. This doesn’t take into account sweating, accidently rubbing off your sunscreen, or not applying the recommended amounts (2mg/cm2).
UVB is the wavelength mostly responsible for skin cancer. SPF 15 blocks 93% of UVB, SPF 30 blocks 97% of UVB, and SPF 50 blocks 98% UVB.
The big difference between SPF 30 and 50 is in the amount of UVA block. UVA is responsible for the visible signs of ageing (blemishes, wrinkles, sagging skin, dull looking skin, volume loss). UVA is much more abundant compared to UVB. Being a much longer wavelength, it can penetrate glass and cloud cover.
In Australia, to advertise a sunscreen as ‘broad spectrum,’ the sunscreen must block UVA by at least one third of the SPF. Therefore the greater the SPF, the greater the UVA block and anti-ageing properties of the sunscreen.
3. Stop smoking
Smoking destroys your skin by reducing blood flow. It damages the tiny vessels that feed the skin and causes the constriction of these vessels. Good blood flow is essential to help remove waste, promote healing, and provide skin cells with the energy required for healthy growth.
4. Don’t pick or squeeze your skin
While it might feel satisfying to squeeze or pick a pimple, it’s in your skin’s best interests to refrain. Picking leads to scarring, which is common in conditions like acne or chickenpox. What squeezing does is provoke an already irritated area of skin, potentially spreading superficial infection by the pressure exerted.
It’s more beneficial to use the correct creams on your skin, and potentially even opt for a medical-grade chemical peel or LED light therapy. Discuss these options with one of our skin doctors to get the right advice and treatment plan for your skin.
5. Stay hydrated
The human body is composed of about 70-80% water. The water content of the body can be shifted between the inside of cells and vessels to a degree, depending on how hydrated you are. Generally, if you are dehydrated water is taken from inside the cells and redistributed to vessels to maintain blood volume. This means that cells become depleted in water, which will result in your skin looking parched.
You should drink about 1-2 litres of water per day, unless you have certain medical conditions and are fluid restricted. Remember, tea and coffee doesn’t count! Caffeine acts as a diuretic, which increases your urine output and can make you more dehydrated.
6. Avoid soap and other irritants
Even organic soaps and those with moisturiser added can irritate and dry out your skin. A non-soap cleanser is an ideal alternative. Be careful of scented products, as fragrance is a common cause of skin irritation.
7. Remove make-up as soon as possible
Make-up can be an irritant to skin and block pores, resulting in blemishes and uneven skin. Try high quality mineral make-up, as this will be less irritating and cause less congestion than oil-based make-up.
8. Use the right products for your skin
Medical director Dr Anthony Rixon believes great skin is as simple as ABC: topical Vitamin A, B and C.
Topical Vitamin A is the best topical preparation for stimulating cell turnover and removing old skin cells, giving you more radiant-looking skin. It can also improve pore size and active acne, as well as stimulating collagen. It even works to improve sun damage (solar keratosis).
There are different forms of Vitamin A and it is important to know that only a doctor can prescribe the most effective form of topical Vitamin A (Retinoic Acid). It is not suitable for some people (anyone who is pregnant or breast feeding, for example), so it is highly recommended you consult one of our skin doctors beforehand.
Vitamin B3 is an excellent anti-inflammatory, reducing redness, acne, and solar damage. It can help to improve sun damaged skin, and is additionally a great hydrator.
Topical Vitamin C is an excellent antioxidant and is effective in helping to lighten sun-related pigment and stimulate skin rejuvenation. People with acne may find their skin is aggravated by Vitamin C, however, so it’s important to have a thorough skin assessment done upfront.
9. Try a medical-grade peel or rejuvenation device
Skin rejuvenation is very important to skin health and ultimately results in better cosmetic outcomes. By stimulating more youthful collagen, your skin can respond better to other skin treatments.
Peels are generally done every 3-4 weeks and, depending on the peel, result in improvements in skin smoothness, complexion, pore size, acne, and hydration.
Energy devices range from radiofrequency micro-needling to skin tightening to laser genesis, for gentle rejuvenation and reduction in skin redness.
At Bass Coast, we only use medical-grade chemical peels that have strong scientific data backing their use. This means you always receive safe and effective treatment. Similarly, we only purchase energy devices and lasers from the most trusted brands in the industry, so you can again be assured of top quality results.
10. Consistency is the key to beautiful skin
Regular treatments that won’t break the bank are paramount to providing you with natural-looking skin you can be proud of for years to come. The combination of regular low-level treatments, occasional mid to high-level treatments, and your at-home skin care routine is the best way to achieve optimal results.
At Bass Coast, we believe great skin health is a journey, not an end point. We’re here to guide and support you every step of the way, and we’re truly excited to grow with you as your needs change over time.
Reach out to our friendly clinic to discover how we can help you to achieve your skin goals.