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Resisting the Hands of Time

How did we get to November? I sit here in my skin clinic in Needham Market, and I wonder where the last year has gone…

I know many of us feel that way about our age. We feel young and look young, but under the surface, no matter how hard we try, our skin will be ageing. It’s not necessarily a problem; if you look after your skin and treat it with respect, you will be rewarded with healthy looking skin for longer. But it’s always worth knowing what’s going on at a deeper level, so that you know how to treat and care for your skin at different stages of life. I’m fascinated with all aspects of skin health and care, and so I thought it would be good to share my knowledge with you, too! Skincare basics You may already know that skin has three layers, the epidermis, dermis and hypodermis. The outer layer, the epidermis, renews itself every four to six weeks or so, and that’s the layer that gets removed in treatments such as Dermaplaning, microdermabrasion and some chemical peels - by which time it’s already dead skin cells. The dermis is the next layer, lying between the epidermis and hypodermis. The dermis is the thickest layer, containing the collagen and elastin that provide strength and flexibility. The hypodermis provides structural support and is mainly made from fat.

How does skin age? There are two types of aging, one that we have some control over and one that we don’t. Intrinsic ageing is something you can thank your parents for as it’s generically determined. External ageing is something we do have a certain amount of control over, and is affected by things like too much sun, smoking and generally not taking too much care of our skin (I know that none of my lovely clients are guilty of that!) Slowing down the biological clock So, what can you do? The biological clock won’t stop for anybody, so we must make changes at the external level that minimise the damage. Of course, you know I’m going to say it; wearing a good sunscreen is the number one thing you can do to stop your skin from prematurely ageing. A SPF 30 or above, all year round, please. Skincare heroes that help with ageing are anything containing retinol (or vitamin A) which is a popular ingredient in good-quality skin products for this very reason. Retinol is known to improve collagen production and skin texture. Antioxidants are generally very good for anti-ageing too, they help to ‘mop up’ the free radicals that damage your skin and other cells, caused by factors like pollution smoking and sun damage. You can find them in skincare, in supplements, and in a healthy diet. You can look after your skin from the inside by eating well - a good diet that includes fresh fruit and vegetables, and not too much sugar will help, as does regular exercise (see September’s blog for more details). Treatments that keep your skin looking younger Of course, we all need a little help as time catches up with our skin, so there are plenty of options available at my clinic in Suffolk that will give you a helping hand in pushing back the clock! Non-invasive treatments that work beautifully include microneedling, which plumps the skin with new collagen. Laser treatments can lift and help to reduce wrinkles and fine lines, while chemical peels (like the Alumier MD range) give your skin a brighter, fresher look, sloughing away old skin cells and revitalising your complexion. Of course, there’s also the wonderful Alumier MD skincare range which I am a complete devotee of. This range covers all types of skin and uses the best in modern skincare and good-quality ingredients to keep your skin looking and feeling great no matter what its biological age…If you want to make sure that you’re nourishing and protecting your skin properly, just book a consultation with me or get in touch and ask me anything - you know me, I love to talk skincare!

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