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UV Radiation and DNA Damage: The Science of Healthy Skin

We all know that unprotected sun exposure is never a good thing for your skin. But do you know exactly how deep UV damage runs in the skin and what long-term implications it can have on the health and appearance of your complexion. We sit down with ZO expert clinician and founder of Clinic 1.6, Dr Raul Cetto to explore the science behind UV radiation and its effects on the skin.

DNA, skin DNA, uv radiation, DNA damage, skincare healthy skin

•  How exactly does UV radiation affect our skin?

Dr Cetto: Regular exposure to UV radiation essentially causes chronic inflammation of the skin. Inflammation weakens the skins immunity and impedes cell function – in particular it reduces Langerhan cell count. The  Langerhan cells belong to the skin immune system and help to remove pathogens and repair mutated cells. Regular exposure to UV rays mutates our DNA and because our defence is hampered, the skin is unable to repair these mutated cells. The results of this can include discolouration, sensitivity, accelerated skin ageing and, potentially, skin cancer. All of these problems result from DNA mutations which disturb the cells’ normal functionality.

• So, we can attribute all of our skin woes to sun damage?

Dr CettoDNA mutations caused by UV radiation can cause many types of cells to function abnormally or develop in a mutated form. Discolouration can occur due to abnormally functioning melanocytes, or due to the present of their mutated forms. Dryness and roughness can be caused by dysfunctional keratinocytes making abnormally hard keratin and allowing increased water loss. Sensitivity is caused by barrier function disruption and reduced cell turnover. Redness can occur due to due to injured blood vessels and a leathery texture can develop due to dysfunctional collagen and elastin, which also causes deep folds and wrinkles in later years. Most importantly, mutation of the DNA of the cells in the skin is how skin cancers develop.

• Can the damage be repaired?

Dr Cetto: Once damaged by UV radiation, the DNA in skin cells  will affect normal skin function negatively. This damage can be limited by increasing your tolerance to UV radiation with ZO’s sun protection, formulated with melanin which enhances skin’s ability  to renew itself and the proper use of sunscreen. The new technologies found in the ZO range, for example in Daily Power Defense, can help repair damaged DNA and restore normal cellular function.

How can you incorporate DNA repair in your daily skincare routine?

Pile on the Antioxidants

daily power defense, uv radiation, DNA damage, DNA repair

The skin’s repair capacity and barrier function can be reinforced by using product rich in antioxidants, DNA repair enzymes, fractionated lipids, and anti-inflammatories. Agents that repair elastin, collagen and keratin should also be used to improve regeneration.  Our award-winning skin restorer Daily Power Defense stimulates collagen production and uses a blend of powerful enzymes that encourages cellular activity to aid DNA repair and offset damage caused by pollutants.

Get Serious About SPF

All sunscreens, regardless of the labelled SPF, can protect your skin for a maximum of 90 minutes. After that, they wipe away, disintegrate or get removed through perspiration. Therefore, you should be strict about reapplying your SPF every two hours and avoid exposure all together when the sun is at its most intense.

Daily-Sheer-spf50, sun protection, DNA damage

Water and perspiration resistant, Daily Sheer SPF 50 delivers powerful protection during outdoor activities. Formulated with skin hydrators and natural nourishing ingredients, Daily Sheer does not only guard your complexion from the harmful UVB/UVA rays but also prevents dryness and supports the natural moisture balance of the skin.

 

 

4 Ways to Get Rid of Dark Circles That Actually Work

dark circles under the eyes, panda

Dark circles under the eyes don’t really look cute on anyone except pandas. If you look tired and rundown all the time because of those pesky purple bags under your eyes—we’ve got you covered. Here’s everything you need to know about under-eye bags and how to get rid of them:

What causes dark circles under your eyes?

  • Agedark circles under eyes, age

As we get older, our blood circulation deteriorates and the collagen in our skin depletes, which causes blood vessels under the eyes to show through more prominently.

  • Genetics

dark circles under the eyes, genetics, DNA

Dark circles under the eyes often run within a family and can also be down to skin type. People with olive skin are more susceptible to hyperpigmentation under the eyes because their skin has more melanin. Those with very fair and thin complexions are also likely to get visible dark circles because dilated blood vessels appear more visible under thin, pale skin.

  • Sun damage

dark circles under the eyes, sun damage

The skin beneath the eyes is 40% thinner than the rest of the face which makes it especially prone to sun-induced damage and hyperpigmentation.

What can do you to prevent dark circles?

Stay hydrated

dark circles under the eyes hydration

When your body is dehydrated, it desperately tries to retain water, causing your eyes to swell and under-eye circles to become more visible. Make sure you drink eight to ten 8-ounce servings of water per day to keep your eyes clear and sparkling and the skin beneath them tight and plump.

Get enough sleep

dark circles under the eyes, sleep

It’s called “beauty sleep” for a reason. Your body recovers and repairs itself while you sleep and that leads to a long list of benefits for your health and appearance. If you skimp on sleep regularly, you are likely to end up with a drab, sallow and lifeless complexion.

Watch your diet

dark circles under the eyes, salt, snacks

If you want to keep your skin healthy, plump and wrinkle-free, it’s important to pay attention to what you eat and drink. Too much, salt, refined carbohydrates and alcohol dehydrate your skin and make dark circles beneath them look worse.

Sunscreen is your skin’s best friend

dark circles under the eyes, sun protection, sunscreen

Sun damage accounts for about 80% of visible signs of ageing and the thin skin under the eyes is especially prone to hyperpigmentation and fine lines. To protect your eyes (and the skin around them) from the sun’s harmful rays, apply sunscreen with SPF of at least 15 all year round and wear sunglasses that can filter out UV radiation.

Skincare

If the dark circles under your eyes are getting bigger than your friends’ circle despite your efforts to maximise your beauty sleep and eat a skin-friendly diet, maybe it’s time to rethink your skincare routine:

  1. The Quick Fixer

Hydrafirm Eye Brightening Repair Creme, dark circles under the eyes

Hydrafirm is specifically designed to help minimise all signs of ageing around the eyes. You will get visibly smoother and firmer skin after just one application. Packed with vitamin A, proteins and enzymes, Hydrafirm stimulates the production of collagen to restore skin elasticity and immediately softens the appearance of dark circles under eyes.

  1. The Antioxidant Superhero

ossential c-bright serum, dark circles under the eyes, antioxidant

Ossential C-Bright Serum Plus provides a potent dose of 10% pure vitamin C that brightens and re-textures the skin. Vitamin E and co-enzyme Q-10 protect your skin from free radical damage and prevent new pigment formation.

  1. The Night Time Solution

Ossential Advanced Radical Night Repair, dark circles under the eyes

Ossential Advanced Radical Night Repair contains 1% retinol that targets sun-induced damage and pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles. Formulated with vitamins C, A and E as well as plant stem cell skin protectors, Advanced Radical Night Repair improves skin brightness, improves skin texture and elasticity and protect the skin from future damage.

5 DIY Skincare Myths Debunked

DIY skincare recipes are all over the internet, boasting to miraculously solve skin problems with simple, cheap, available in your home ingredients. But is it really possible to banish acne with baking soda? Here the 5 most popular DIY skincare myths and the truth behind each one:

1. Lemon Juice

DIY skincare, lemon juice

Myth: Lemon juice clears up dark spots and brightens the skin.

Reality: The pH of the products you use is crucial for maintaining a healthy complexion. The natural pH of the skin is between 4.5 and 6.5.  Lemons have a pH of 2 which means they are highly acidic. Lemon juice will disturb the natural pH levels of your skin and damage its protective barrier. If you use it in your skincare routine regularly, you risk getting a chemical burn or developing hyperpigmentation. Lemons contain psoralen – a chemical that that makes your skin extremely sensitive to light and susceptible to photodamage.

2. Raw eggs

DIY egg mask

Myth: Egg masks reduce fine lines and tighten the skin.

Reality: The texture of raw eggs can clog your pores and trigger breakouts. If you are using egg whites, there’s also the risk of salmonella. Salmonella bacteria can get into your body through microscopic abrasions of the skin, so keep the eggs away from your face and make an omelette instead.

3. Baking soda

DIY skincare, baking soda exfoliation

Myth: Exfoliating with baking soda can remove acne scars, relief sunburns and soothe skin rashes.

Reality: Baking soda is not only ineffective but actually damaging to your skin.  A mix of baking soda and water has a pH of 8 which means it is alkaline. Alkaline products are extremely drying and damage the skin’s acid mantle. Baking soda disrupts the activity of enzymes in the upper layers of your skin which affects the healthy functioning of your skin cells. The worst part is that damage caused by alkaline products is cumulative – the longer you use them, the more harm they do.

4. Coconut oil

DIY skincare, coconut oil

Myth: Coconut oil is antibacterial and can help reduce acne. 

Reality: Coconut oil rose to fame in skincare blogs and magazines when studies showed that lauric acid may effectively fight against P acne bacteria. What beauty magazines and DIY gurus forget to mention is that the studies used purified acid, not the 50% mix of lauric and fatty acids which coconut oil contains. The truth is that coconut oil is highly comedogenic and far from being antibacterial. It is full of things bacteria feed on (lipids and caprylic acid) and its thick texture will clog your pores and make acne breakouts worse. 

5. Sugar

DIY skincare, sugar

Myth: Sugar scrubs remove dead skin cells and clean clogged pores.

Reality: Sugar crystals have uneven, jarred edges that will leave microscopic cuts on the top layer of your epidermis and disrupt the skin’s lipid barrier. Naturally, this will make your skin vulnerable to dryness, flakiness and irritation.

How to get rid of dark eye circles

Dark under eye circles are a common problem for most skin types. Sometimes it seems that no matter how much sleep we get, we still look tired and aged because of dark circles!

dark under eye circles

Why do we get dark under eye circles?

The skin around your eyes is the thinnest on the body. This thin skin is more susceptible to environmental abuse and sun exposure, and is one of the first places signs of ageing such as crows’ feet, puffiness and dark circles occur.  This skin is also prone to dryness, which can make these signs of aging more visible.

Dark circles under the eyes are the result of this, as well factors like genetics, whether your skin is fair, and if you have naturally thin skin.

How to get rid of dark circles under eyes

ZO Medical Hydrafirm Eye Brightening Repair Crème has been specially formulated to help treat signs of ageing around the eyes, such as dark under eye circles.  It contains the skin brightening Vitamin C, which is used to treat the pigmentations on the area. It also works to increase collagen production, to combat thin skin around the eyes. This can reduce the appearance of dark circles due to underlying blood vessels.

Vitamin A is also an active ingredient, which combined with biomimetic proteins encourages natural collagen production and skin elasticity. And the exclusive blend of bioengineered plant stem cells give the skin antioxidants and manage inflammation to protect your skin from any further signs of ageing.

Finally, it’s packed with caffeine, enzymatic vasodilators and coenzyme A. These work to reduce the signs of puffiness and the appearance of dark circles.

The powerful combination of ingredients in Hydrafirm work together to rapidly improve the skin around your eyes. Use only a pea size amount for the entire under eye area in the morning and evening – and blend in gently with fingertips. This product absorbs quickly and can be used year round.

To help avoid further damage to the eyes, be gentle with your eyes. Never pull, tug or rub the skin as it is so delicate. And of course always wear sun protection!

UV Light and Tanning: Is the Sun Making Your Skin Age Faster

Getting older is an inevitable part of life but looking visibly older doesn’t have to be. Ageing skin is generally due to external environmental factors, particularly exposure to the sun and harmful UV light. These  factors not only accelerate, but change the process of ageing for the skin, damaging and make it vulnerable to blemishes and skin diseases.

uv light

UV Light

Skin damage caused by the sun and UV light is generally located in the most sun-exposed parts of the body. In women, it is especially common on the face, hands and decolletage, while for men, on the back.

Photo-ageing is a particular state of skin ageing caused by chronic damage from UV rays and sun exposure. The latter, in the long run, causes long-term damage to the DNA of skin cells, as well as contributing to biological ageing.

The harmful habit of tanning whether on a sunbed or by the beach, repeated over time, will damage collagen in the skin and ultimately speed up the ageing process, resulting in:

  • deep wrinkles
  • loss of elasticity
  • dry and rough skin
  • the presence of dilated capillaries on the cheeks, nose and ears
  • dark spots
  • flaking
  • actinic keratosis
  • skin cancer

The most common signs of sun damage include solar lentigo, wrinkles and loss of elasticity, hemangiomas and seborrheic keratoses (brown, black or light tan growth on the face, chest, shoulders or back).

ZO Skin Health and Medical offer solutions to prevent and treat the visible signs of UV light sun damage:

TREAT
 Brightamax Brightenex C-Bright Restoracalm

ZO Medical Brightamax

ZO Medical Brightenex1 Image

c-bright_small

restoracalm_small

PREVENT
 Oclipse-C Oclipse Sun Spray 50 Oclipse
Sunscreen + Primer
 Oclipse Smart Tone
ZO Medical Oclipse-CZO Oclipse Sun SprayZO Oclipse Sunscreen Primer spf30ZO Oclipse Smart Tone

 

 

 

Is Your Smartphone Damaging Your Skin?

There is constant discussion on whether smartphones are detrimental to your emotional and mental health but smartphones could also be harmful to your skin health. Other than the spread of bacteria when you place your phone on your skin, new studies suggest that the HEV light emitted from your phone could cause premature ageing.

HEV light damage

What is HEV Light?

HEV light is short for high energy visible light. It appears blue in colour and is very close to UV light on the electromagnetic spectrum. You are exposed to it from the sun’s rays and from everyday technological gadgets. Mobile phones, computer screens and laptops all produce HEV light.

How Does it Damage the Skin?

It is still not known what exact effect this light has on the skin. However, in susceptible individuals, prolonged chronic exposure to HEV and UV light can lead to non-specific discolouration.  The electromagnetic spectrum can affect the intracellular minerals and their movement out and into the cells. This may lead to cellular dysfunctions.

Dr Obagi explains, “with chronic and long exposure the light from cell phones can cause damage to the texture of the skin. In my experience, I have been able to tell which hand a patient holds their phone in, as the skin takes on a dull, almost dirty texture, which has not been induced by the sun.”

HEV light damage

Ways to Combat HEV Light Damage

Dr Obagi insists that a DNA repairing agent and an antioxidant are necessary to encourage skin’s defence mechanisms against HEV light damage.

“I recommend ZO Skin Health Ossential Daily Power Defense as it uses DNA repair enzymes to enhance your skin’s recovery capabilities, regulate cellular functions and increases skin tolerance and immunity to UV radiation. Skin needs to be encouraged to defend itself. The special enzymes attach directly to your own DNA molecules and repair oxidative damage. It contains time-released retinol, enzymes and antioxidants to repair damaged cells and protect against future damage.

A new breakthrough: Liposhield HEV Melanin

Melanin occurs naturally in the human body. Melanocytes release it into the skin as the first line of defence against exposure to harmful light waves.  Liposhield HEV Melanin is a novel, patent pending ingredient. It is the first cosmetic ingredient designed to protect the skin from damaging high energy visible light.

Liposhield HEV Melanin is a fractionated melanin designed to be used topically as an additional defence. It shields the skin from high energy blue/violet visible light (HEV) that may induce premature ageing. Red visible light is deemed to have beneficial effects, and Liposhield HEV Melanin is tailored so that red light can be transmitted to the skin.HEV light damage

Dr Zein Obagi elaborates; “we have been able to successfully incorporate this breakthrough ingredient into a novel formulation while maintaining its efficacy. ZO Skin Health Oclipse® Smart Tone Broad Spectrum SPF50 is a highly advanced broad spectrum SPF 50 sunscreen designed to blend into almost any skin tone. Patented, customisable colour beads utilising a comprehensive UVA/UVB photostable sun protection system helps provide daily protection from damaging ultra violet rays, while fractionated melanin helps shield against HEV light damage. The addition of Vitamin C helps to achieve an even-toned complexion by inhibiting pigment formation, and we have enriched the formulation with skin conditioners to improve skin texture.”

The ZO Skin Health Oclipse® Smart Tone Broad Spectrum SPF50 also helps prevent future oxidative stress with DNA repair and protection. It also minimises the irritants that can cause skin redness. It has an exclusive 12-hour time release antioxidant system to help guard against photo-damage. What’s more, the sunscreen restores hydration with skin conditioners that aid in strengthening the skin barrier.

Dr Obagi believes “that this novel ingredient represents the future of sun protection.”

Always at the cutting edge of science and innovation, Oclipse® Smart Tone Broad Spectrum SPF50 first launched 5 years ago with this patented and unique ingredient and in 2017 has introduced a new sunscreen the Oclipse® Daily Sheer SPF 50. This is the next step in sun protection shielding skin from HEV light damage, providing broad-spectrum UV protection but also formulated to be recreational-friendly. A non-greasy, perspiration and water-resistant sunscreen that blends seamlessly into the skin as a sheer matte finish. Swim and sweat this summer without worrying about your sunscreen washing away!

ZO Symposium

Wigmore Medical are holding their fifth annual ZO Symposium at FACE 2017. This is a unique forum for industry leaders, including Dr Zein Obagi, to introduce their latest research, breakthroughs and advances in the science of skin care and health.

The ZO Symposium allows us to highlight all the latest products, techniques and results from the 2017 ZO Skin Health range. We are a brand that is consistently developing to the needs of the modern day patient and with that, a selection of new products have been launched in 2017.

The science and history of ZO Skin Health is always important to remember and who better than to tell us all about the range than Dr Zein Obagi himself.

ZO symposium

What Can you Expect From This Symposium?

  • Leading Speakers
  • Skincare expertise
  • New Product launches
  • Treatment Options
  • Advanced Techniques
  • Live demonstrations
  • Product offers
  • Networking opportunity
ZO Symposium Schedule
Time
Topic
Speaker(s)
09.30 – 11.00The latest advances in skin science and skin health restorationDr Zein Obagi
11.30 – 12.30Rozatrol and the clinical trialsDr Rachael Eckel
12.30 – 13.00Old Dog New Tricks: How to get the most out of the existing productsDr Rachael Eckel

 

14.30 – 15.30ZO Portfolio Expansion: Cellulite Control, Pore Refiner, Sheer Tone and Oclipse-C (Gen 2)Dr Rachel Eckel
15.30 – 16.15Spotlight on AcneDr Kannan Athreya
16.15 – 17.00Tackling Hyper-Pigmentation with a focus on MelasmaDr Anamica Prasad
17.00 – 17.30Q&A With PanelDr Rachael Eckel, Dr Kannan Athreya, Dr Anamica Prasad, Dr John Tanqueray

To attend the ZO Symposium please register your interest by emailing events@wigmoremedical.com and you will then receive instructions on which FACE pass to purchase to gain access to this exclusive event.

Hyperpigmentation treatment advice

Hyperpigmentation is when an area of the skin darkens due to the overproduction of the skin pigment; melanin. Some examples of hyperpigmentation are freckles, sun spots, age spots, under-eye dark circles and melasma. It is relatively common and usually a harmless condition. However, for some, it may be an aesthetic annoyance as it can affect any part of the body including the face, neck and hands.

hyerpigmentation before and after

What Causes Hyperpigmentation?

There are various causes of hyperpigmentation from overexposure to the sun, picking at the skin and certain medications such as antibiotics, hormone treatments, and anti-seizure drugs. Although, for some, it could simply be a hereditary condition.

How Do You Treat It?

Dr Zein Obagi has created innovative programmes to improve the appearance of pigmentation on the skin.

Programme
Benefits
Products
ZO® Multi-Therapy Hydroquinone System
  • Recommended as a starting point for treating melasma. Ideal for moderate to severe hyperpigmentation, especially melasma.
  • Treats severely dry, dull, rough and leathery textured skin to help soften skin and restore a smooth, healthy glow.
  • Improves skin with visible sun spots and sun damage.
  • Using this system 4-6 weeks before office procedures, and for 12 weeks afterwards will improve and deliver longer lasting results.
  • Can use this system to improve the overall quality, health, and appearance of the skin.
ZO® Non-Hydroquinone Hyperpigmentation System
  • Ideal for the treatment of skin conditions either when hydroquinone treatment is completed or not advised.
  • Can also use this as a healthy maintenance system.
  • Use after completing a course of hydroquinone for 4-5 months to prolong results.
  • Ideal for when skin bleaching is not desired.
  • Treats uneven skin colours and tones.
  • Tackles skin texture and provides anti-ageing benefits to restore skin.
3-Step Peel™
For Professional Use Only
  • This potent stimulating peel provides longer lasting benefits beyond the temporary superficial improvements seen with ordinary peels.
  • Peeling is mild, with minimal downtime.
  • Designed for acne, melasma, sun damage, fine lines, texture roughness, large pores and dullness.
  • Promotes softer, smoother skin.
ZO® Controlled Depth Peel™
For Professional Use Only
  • Used to medically treat various skin conditions including acne, wrinkles, fine lines, skin pigmentation disorders and sun damage.
  • Controlled absorption and penetration
  • Easily mixed with TCA
  • Excellent anti-inflammatory properties
  • ZO® Controlled Depth Peel™ Base
  • ZO® Controlled Depth Peel™ Cleanse

Incredible Results

Click through the images below to see just a few examples of the amazing results ZO protocols can give you.

 

Product Spotlight: SPF

Photoageing is one of the biggest causes of premature ageing leading to an increase in fine lines, wrinkles, loss of elasticity and pigmentation. Sun damage is cumulative, the damage over the years from daily exposure to UV rays is not always externally visible. Early pigmentation damage occurs within the deeper layers of the skin and becomes more apparent on the surface as we age. The skin loses its ability to repair itself, prohibiting the breakdown and production of collagen, as well as the elasticity of the skin weakening, resulting in leathery and wrinkled skin.

With options for every skin type and lifestyle, ZO Skin Health’s sunscreens provide protection from the harmful effects of the sun while also improving the health of your skin.

Oclipse® Smart Tone SPF 50

  • The combination of UVA and UVB sunscreens offer broad spectrum, photostable sun protection
  • Fractionated melanin goes an extra step to shield against damaging high energy visible (HEV) light
  • Fractionated Melanin provides 6-8 hours of protection rather than the regular 1hr 45 minutes.
  • Fortified with vitamin C to inhibit pigment formation
  • Sheer tint that can be worn alone or as a makeup primer
  • Patented colour bursting beads release a subtle hint of customisable colour and radiance for a healthy glow that compliments any skin tone
  • Anti-redness inhibitors
  • Restores hydration with skin conditioners and skin barrier replenishers to skin stays youthful, soft and smooth

Key Ingredients

  • Avobenzone 3%: Provides UVA protection
  • Homosalate 10%, Octisalate 5%, Octocrylene 10%: Provide primarily UVB protection
  • Fractionated Melanin: Designed to shield the skin from high energy visible (HEV) light
  • Iron Oxides and Mica: Pressure-release colour system for customisable skin tone
  • Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate: Pigmentation inhibition
  • Tocopheryl Acetate, Ascorbic Acid, Retinyl Palmitate: 12-hour time release antioxidant complex fights against free radical damage

Oclipse® Sun Spray SPF 50 

  • Broad-Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 50 for Face & Body. Protects the skin from UVB, UVA and HEV exposure
  • Retains SPF for up to 80 minutes of water exposure
  • Exclusive 12-hour time release antioxidant system helps protect the skin from reactive oxidative species
  • Provides anti-irritant and soothing benefits to help reduce redness and discomfort
  • Helps restore hydration and enhance the natural skin barrier to prevent dehydration from daily environmental exposure
  • Breakthrough one touch, all angle spray system provides uniform, even coverage for the entire face and boy with a non-greasy, weightless feel

Key ingredients

  • Octocrylene 10% (UVB), Octisalates 5% (UVB), Homosalate 15% (UVB), Avobenzone 3%(UVA): Provide broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection
  • Fractionated Melanin: Designed to shield the skin from high-energy visible light (HEV)
  • Panthenyl Triacetate, Ethyl Linoleate, Tocopherol: Provides DNA protection

Oclipse® Sunscreen Primer SPF 30

  • Provides daily multi-defence protection from UVA, UVB and high-energy visible (HEV) light
  • Exclusive 12-hour time release vitamin antioxidant system guards against photo-damage
  • DNA protection and repair
  • Helps minimise inflammation
  • Restores hydration and enhances skin barrier
  • Provides additional support to restore lipids and enhances skin barrier function
  • Helps to smooth the skin and diminish the appearance of fine lines

oclipse-sunscreen-primer-spf30Key Ingredients

  • Titanium Dioxide (8.2%): Broad spectrum sunscreen (UVA/UVB) protection
  • Fractionated Melanin: Designed to shield the skin from high-energy visible light (HEV)
  • Helianthus Annus Seed Oil, Ethyl Ferulate, Rosmarinus Officinalis Lef Extract, Disodium Urine Phosphate: Helps provide DNA protection

The Most Common Skin Condition and How to Prevent It

We asked some of our ZO skin health professionals what is the most common skin problem that they encounter in their clinics. The answer may surprise you…it’s sun damage. Yes, many dermatologists have expressed how sun damage and the multiple consequences it has on the skin is a primary issue for many patients. So we thought we’d give you some tips on how to prevent it.

What is Photodamage?

Photodamage also known as sun damage or photo-ageing is a skin condition that can affect any skin type. It develops when the skin is exposed to an overwhelming amount of harmful UV rays from sun exposure. It commonly begins to occur as young as two or three years old however it is still undetectable at this stage.  As a person grows older, and thus experience more sun exposure the damage caused becomes clinically significant. Pigmentation, wrinkling and loss of elasticity become more apparent.

It is imperative that early signs of photodamage be recognised and treated as this will help to avoid development of more severe and clinically challenging types of sun damage. Regrettably, the early stages of photodamage such as tanning, freckles, and lentigines are often ignored and treatment is only sought out when the condition becomes more severe, for instance when actinic keratoses and skin cancers appear.

Addressing Photodamage

The ideal way to tackle photodamage is to prevent it ever from occurring. This requires going beyond basic sun protection, and incorporating Dr Zein Obagi’s Key Principles of Skin Health Restoration:photodamage

  1. Avoid tanning entirely

Tanned skin is actually a display of DNA damage as well as a multitude of other unhealthy skin changes. These can have a significant negative consequence over time. Consequently, you should try to avoid excessive sun exposure. Wearing protective clothing such as hats, long-sleeved tops, and trouser as well as avoiding outdoor activities during peak time (between 10am-4pm) is advised.

  1. Do not rely on sunscreens alone

Regardless of how high a level of SPF you have in your sunscreen; it inevitably comes off after only one to two hours. So you must reapply it frequently throughout the day. Additionally, even if you do consistently apply sunscreen, research has demonstrated that people do not actually apply enough. So make sure to use plenty of sunscreen and don’t forget to cover everywhere; including the ears, hands, back of the knees and feet.

  1. Implement a daily skincare routine to ensure optimum skin protection

Following a skincare program that provides stabilisation of the epidermis (outer layer of skin) and the dermis (inner layer of skin) will increase the skin’s ability to repair and renew itself. To promote and enhance the skin’s barrier function, use a suitable concentration of retinol and AHAs daily. Always apply sunscreen after these active ingredients.  In addition, the skin should be supplied with a formulation that consists of 4-6 types of antioxidants for DNA protection and to stimulate skin repair.

Product Recommendation

 ZO Skin Health’s Oclipse® Smart Tone SPF50 is a highly advanced, SPF 50 sunscreen with broad-spectrum UVA/UVB and HEV protection.  In addition, it is formulated to inhibit pigmentation. Furthermore, it has a sophisticated 12-hour time-release antioxidant complex to guard against photodamage. Plus, this sunscreen doubles as a sheer tint primer. Comprised of customisable colour-bursting beads to release a subtle tint for the appearance of a radiant and healthy glow.


Source: Body Language