Your Summer Skin Survival Strategy with dr.NC & Vogue
As seen in VOGUE Australia, Jan 2023 issue.
Want to future-proof your skin against the harsh Australian sun? dr.NC founder Dr Natasha Cook explains the simple yet effective, Backed by Science solutions to combat the harsh Australian sun and weather. If humidity and heat normally nix your plans for perfect-looking skin, we’ve got a survival strategy in place.
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To determine the best skin saviours to get us through summer 2022-23, Vogue consulted the pros, and then spent a week road-testing our ultimate edit. Here’s what stood up to the elements.
TIP #1: WEAR SPF EVERY SINGLE DAY
According to Dr Natasha Cook, founder of Darlinghurst Dermatology, dr.NC skincare and The Face Bar laser clinic, it takes mere minutes for the Pac-Man-like enzymes activated by UV rays to destroy and digest your skin’s collagen and elastin levels, which leads to saggy, wrinkled and sallow skin.
“Summer sun is the single biggest culprit when it comes to damaging our skin cells’ DNA and causing metaplasia ie pre cancerous programming to the cellular DNA” Dr Cook tells Vogue.
“I liken UVA and UVB to fertiliser for the development of skin cancers. You must make SPF and antioxidants your daily skin religion.”
Hopefully, most of us already have rigorous daily SPF application habits in play.
For a daily protector, try the hydrating dr.NC Concentrated CC+ Cream SPF30, which has physical UVA and UVB blockers, 5% vitamin B3 aka niacinamide to protect and repair and a hint of tint.
TIP #2: DOUBLE CLEANSE
“I’m not a foaming cleanser fan,” states Cook. “It’s one of the single biggest culprits in creating skin diseases, so I recommend gentle cleansers, but going in twice when wearing more SPF and dealing with the high summer humidity.”
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TIP #3: ALWAYS MOISTURISE
Not as life-threatening, but annoying nevertheless, is humidity. On Australia’s west coast where the air is drier, moving into summer may result in seeking out a more hydrating, richer moisturiser, especially around the lips.
While, if you reside in east coast hubs such as Sydney or Brisbane where humidity is an issue, pairing back to a lighter lotion may feel more appealing. You might assume humidity exacerbates skin’s oiliness, but technically that’s not true, though it does have an occlusive effect. “And that contributes to breakouts if you’re an acne sufferer,” says Cook. “Salicylic acid will help minimise that.”
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TIP #4: ANTIOXIDANTS & CHEMICAL EXFOLIANTS ARE YOUR FRIENDS!
On the antioxidant side, experts agree summer is the time to add vitamin B3 aka niacinamide (daily) and vitamin C (at night, advises Cook, as it degrades in the sun) into your regimen, and if you’re wearing heavy sunscreens, double cleansing is a must.
"Adding an AHA or BHA serum to your regimen can also help prevent congestion and blocked follicles, as well as help even out skin tone. However, if you’re serious about pigmentation prevention, add in a weekly AHA/BHA peel like my Concentrated Micropeel and ensure you’re also applying vitamin B3 (niacinamide) and vitamin C daily."
“Using more than one antioxidant daily is better than one alone,” says Cook.
“B3 prevents DNA damage, protects the skin’s immune system from the sun, strengthens the barrier and assists with pigmentation prevention. Both vitamin B3 and vitamin C act as excellent antioxidants together. Adding a prescriptive vitamin A to your regimen a few nights a week will also help maintain even skin tone throughout summer.”
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