Your most Googled skin queries, answered! Expert advice
You asked Google, we asked the experts. Dermatologist tips here, for free!
There’s nothing like Google search or an Instagram stalk before bed. But when your skin is acting up, the internet may not be the best place for answers. We saved you some beauty sleep by getting solutions straight from the experts.
“Is foundation bad for acne-prone skin?”
“There are many causes of acne, including excess oil production, blocked pores and bacteria,” says Dr Nomphelo Gantsho, a dermatologist at Cape Skin Doctor in Cape Town. “Unfortunately, some foundations can contribute to blockage and make acne worse, so try a water-based formula. Then make this your number one rule: never go to sleep without taking off your makeup, as it will clog your pores.”
We like NYX Total Control Drop Foundation (R219.95). Matte and lightweight, it allows you to build up coverage in areas that need it most.
“Does my dark complexion really need sunscreen?”
“Yes,” says Dr Gantsho. “In fact, I’ll let you in on a secret: sunscreen is the real fountain of youth. It protects against hyperpigmentation, wrinkles and dullness caused by the sun.” Look for a minimum of SPF30 and apply it throughout the year. “The sun’s rays are still damaging in winter.” TRY Lamelle Helase Photo-repair Cream SPF50 (R520), which oers sun protection and also aims to repair cells in the deeper layers of the skin.
“When should I start using wrinkle cream?”
As early as 20, say dermatologists. “Start with a vitamin C serum in the day and a retinol cream at night to stimulate your skin’s collagen and new cell production,” suggests Dr Gantsho. TRY Dermalogica Overnight Retinol Repair (R1 480).
Hyaluronic acid is also excellent. “Naturally found in the body, it keeps collagen synthesis up and helps your skin retain moisture,” she adds. We love Skinceuticals HA Intensi er (R1 550).
“Help! I have hyperpigmentation on my forehead, chin, nose and lip!”
“Hyperpigmentation can be caused by hormonal changes or the sun. It occurs when there’s an excess of melanin (the pigment that gives skin colour) and it forms deposits in your skin,” explains Dr Gantsho. Look out for products containing glycolic acid and salicylic acid which will help with the renewal of your skin cells and brighten up your tone. L’oréal Paris Revitalift Bright Reveal Brightening Peel Pads (R320).
Dr Gantsho adds, “Exfoliate regularly with home peels containing fruit acids. These help to smooth dark patches.” TRY The Body Shop Drops of Youth Liquid Peel (R225).
“How do I get rid of stretch marks?”
“Stretch marks occur when your body grows faster than your skin can keep up with. The breakdown of elastin fibres results in the lines you see,” says Dr Gantsho. Applying nourishing tissue oil helps to diminish the look of stretch marks. TRY Johnson’s Vita-rich Firming Body Oil (R109.99).
Other treatments include needling and microdermabrasion. “Needling entails piercing skin with fine pricks, causing trauma to the area. The resulting natural healing process promotes the production of new collagen and elastin,” she says. See an expert or DIY with the Environ Cosmetic Body ROLL-CIT (R1 700).
“Microdermabrasion involves applying fine crystals to exfoliate and promote new elastin and collagen,” she adds. Visit a pro at a skin clinic or a dermatologist.
You can also even things out temporarily with a self-tan.
“Dimples are cute, but not on my thighs. How can I get rid of the cellulite?”
Eat clean. “Fruits like papaya and mango, vegetables rich in vitamin A, and whole foods have been shown to help prevent and reduce tissue damage thanks to their high concentration of antioxidants, which stimulate collagen production. The more collagen, the firmer your skin and the less dimpled your thighs will look,” says Dr Gantsho. You could also massage the area while applying specialised products like Clarins Body Fit AntiCellulite Contouring Expert (R565), which increases circulation and reduces fluid buildup.
“Does facial hair grow fast if I shave it?”
“There is no evidence that shaving accelerates hair growth,” says Dr Gantsho. But if you want to stop shaving altogether, around six sessions of laser should yield permanent results. Expect to pay from R240 per session for your upper lip at a specialist like Deluxe Laser & Spa (deluxelaser.co.za).