There is no doubt we have had a really hot summer which is great when you are holidaying abroad or even better on a staycation. For many, it would have been impossible to avoid sun exposure due to activities like cycling and horse riding, where you simply couldn’t cover up enough. Maybe you chose not to cover up and were lapping up the rays on the beach.
Too much sun exposure leads to sun-damaged skin and can leave us looking weathered. Fine lines and wrinkles, sunspots and uneven skin tone. Not to fear, Autumn is here! Autumn and winter is the best time to improve your skin condition.
What can you do this autumn to improve your skin?
Now is the time to crank up on your retinol and home acid use (like AHA and BHA), to get that skin turning over and give you lovely baby soft skin. Increasing the strength and frequency of your retinol as you can tolerate. Not using retinol? This is the best time to start. With retinol, we start on the lowest percentage and slowly build up the frequency. AHA (alpha hydroxy acids) exfoliate dead skin cells and increases cell turnover. They firm and strengthen ageing skin. AHAs are lactic acid and glycolic acid. Salicylic acid is the only BHA (beta hydroxy acid). Derived from aspirin, it is an exfoliant with anti-inflammatory properties. It is also oil-soluble, meaning it can penetrate pores to exfoliate dead skin cells and target excess sebum build-up effectively.
If you suffer from pigmentation, introduce products that control melanin production. Look for ingredients like White shitake mushroom that helps break down existing pigment and B-White and Liquorice root extract that prevents the overproduction of pigment. Vitamin C (L-ascorbic acid) is also a very important addition to help brighten your complexion and strengthen your skin cells.
Increase your chemical resurfacing treatments like chemical peels. A chemical peel is a professional exfoliation treatment to leave you with a soother, more radiant and revitalised appearance. This is the time to increase the frequency up to every 3-4 weeks and increase the depth of the resurfacing. This might sound scary, but with the gradual build-up, there is minimal downtime. My patients find it relaxing and love receiving compliments about their skin.
It is also the ideal time for laser and IPL treatments!
Is your skin prone to dryness? Then you know that it will get worse in the winter months. Here’s some tips to prevent this:
- Ramp up your moisturising products.
- Look for a rich or heavier moisturiser and add in products that help lock in moisture and restore barrier function.
- If you are going for hyaluronic acid, make sure it is a low molecular weight form so that it doesn’t leave you feeling sticky.
- Don’t forget to CONTINUE using daily sun protection (above SPF30) in the autumn and winter months to protect your skin from further damage. There is more UV exposure than you might think in the cooler months.
If this sounds very foreign to you, why not book an appointment with me, Dr Roxi, at Fountain of Youth, Salisbury, to discuss how you can improve your skin’s condition.