As the saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” This is particularly true when it comes to my own skincare philosophy, which is all about taking a preventative approach rather than a reactive one. A simple and effective regime combined with consistency is key to optimal skin health. When it comes to caring for your skin, it’s never too early – or too late – to start.
Preventive skincare takes a proactive attitude. The opposite of skincare repair (which responds to issues and concerns, usually resulting from years of ongoing damage), preventative skincare is predominantly concerned with protecting the skin as early as possible and delaying accelerated ageing. Rather than reaching for the latest “miracle-in-a-bottle”, preventative skincare is about instilling the fundamentals of optimal skin health into your daily routine. Remember good results take time and patience but your future skin will thank you. Below are my tips for folding a preventative philosophy into your approach.
Wear SPF every day
SPF is paramount to preventing sun damage and accelerated ageing! Damage caused by UV exposure is responsible for up to 80% of skin ageing (including lines, wrinkles, dark spots and hyperpigmentation). This makes sunscreen the most accessible anti-ageing product on the market. By using a broad-spectrum SPF (of at least 30) every day, we can really protect ourselves from this major contributor to cell degeneration.
Follow a simple routine
While there are infinite products available and more being launched daily, I always recommend starting with a simple routine that is straightforward enough to follow every day without fail. The fundamentals are a cleanser, moisturiser and SPF, along with regular exfoliation 2-3 times a week. From there, add on any extras, like serums and masks, that are manageable for your time and financial investments and your lifestyle.
Find products that work and stick to them
With constant innovations and clever new ingredients, I can see the appeal in wanting to try them all. But frequently switching between different products – or using too many active ingredients – can actually damage your skin’s barrier. Find a few that really work for you and stick to them – consistency is key. A few key ingredients such as SPF, Vitamin C, AHAs, BHAs and retinol are great preventive measures for a well-rounded regime.
Eat a healthy, balanced diet
There is only so many topical treatments can do. Ensuring that you’re eating a fresh, varied diet high in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory foods (green leafy vegetables, fatty fish, nuts, olive oil, berries, green tea) will do wonders for your complexion. Try to limit your intake of alcohol and exposure to cigarette smoke, refined sugars and fried foods and aim for 8 glasses of water a day.