We recently spoke to a well-known dermatologist.
Increasingly, he’s been seeing clients with skin complaints such as itching, redness, scarring, acne, flakiness etc. Often, this is due to allergies and damage to the skin’s natural barrier caused by long-term misuse of skincare products.
If you think about it, different products contain different ingredients, many of which are synthetic. It takes time for our skin to adapt to each one of them.
But the modern day woman is exposed to the temptation of new products being launched at lightning speed and suffers from an ultra short attention span. Once a jar of moisturiser is finished (and I’m being generous here), she moves on to try the next trending item.
As a result, our skin is repeatedly abused by new stressors. No wonder it’s suffering.
The solution is simple - simplify your skincare routine.
However, this is easier said than done.
Think about this. Many women slather multiple potions on their skin each day:
Cleanser, toner, essence, face serum, eye serum, eye cream, sunscreen, makeup primer, foundation, powder, blusher etc.. And this is only in the morning!
At night, we might use additional items like makeup remover, night creams, masks etc.
Imagine spending hundreds or even thousands on all of that.
Would you simply chuck them side because the doc says so? That is why, most women would respond by saying,
“But I’ve invested so much on these precious products!”
And that’s why, we’re going to share an alternative solution that will make you think about your skincare regime from a whole new light.
Read on to find out more.
Did you know?
The human skin comprises 3 main layers with more than 20 sub-layers of cells in between.
This means that serums and creams would need to do the following in order to have any effects:
1. Penetrate all those layers of skin
2. Be delivered in the correct dosage
3. Be applied in the correct sequence
This, in itself, is challenging. To complicate matters, we layer multiple products on our skin, creating further barriers and blocking the active ingredients from getting to where they need to be.
Truth be told, most of it is wasted. This is why topical products often produce disappointing results.
Introducing a different approach - wellness foods
Wellness foods are foods made to achieve specific health and beauty functions. For example, skincare foods could have brightening and anti-acne effects, while haircare foods could have volumising and hair loss reduction effects.
The concept of wellness foods has been around in Asia for more than a decade. It originates from the philosophies of traditional oriental medicine:
- Every part of our body works in synergy with the rest and
- We are what we eat.
For example, if our liver isn’t healthy, this will show up on our skin as a yellow cast. And if our diet is lacking the iron mineral, our skin will look dull and pale.
Therefore, to achieve radiant, beautiful skin that lasts, we cannot simply rely on serums and creams. We must go deeper and nourish our bodies with the correct nutrients.
Let’s illustrate this with the example of skin whitening.
Now before we move on, let’s make this clear: skin whitening is a misleading concept and we do not endorse it. The use of this word is merely for the sake of simplicity.
Our genes determine the base colour of our skin and there is no product that can give you fairer skin than what you were born with.
Therefore, the goal of skin whitening products is to fade dark spots caused by sun damage and other stressor, and restore the clear, even-toned skin that we once had.
Two of the most common active ingredients found in whitening products are niacinamide and kojic acid.
How do they work?
Deep within our skin exists a cell called melanocytes. These melanocytes are our pigment factories and they produce melanin - the pigment that gives our skin colour.
All of us are born with different baseline amounts of melanin and that’s why we have different skin colours.
However, when external stressors such as UV rays are present, our bodies may go into overdrive and produce more melanin. This process is controlled by a signaller who lives inside our pigment factory - tyrosinase.
Whenever tyrosinase gets stimulated by UV rays, it’ll tell the factory to produce a ton of melanin. The excess melanin is then transported from the factory to our skin’s surface by a logistics guy called melanosomes. The melanin will then appear on our skin as dark spots.
In plain English, the process looks something like this:
UV rays stimulate the signaller → Signaller tells factory to produce lots of pigment → passes the pigment to logistics guy → drops off the pigment at final location (your skin’s surface)
Niacinamide works by inhibiting melanocytes from transferring the pigment to the skin’s surface. It disrupts the logistics chain. In other words, niacinamide targets Step 4 of this process chain.
Kojic acid, on the other hand, targets Stage 2 - the instructions given by tyrosinase to our pigment factories. Instead of telling it to go into overdrive, it tells the pigment factory to work less. As a result, less pigment is produced.
In contrast, wellness foods are able to target the root of the problem - Stage 1. One such example is Lumina, which comprises a unique yeast extract that has been clinically shown to suppress the gene expression of Tyrosinase. i.e. Lumina tells our body to produce fewer Tyrosinase enzymes.
Instead of superficially preventing the transfer of dark spots, it's able to go deep down to our DNA level and stop the over-production of melanin at its core.
And that is why the results you get from eating the right foods is so much more potent than simply applying skincare products.
Furthermore, whitening serums and creams are applied only on our face. Therefore, its benefits are limited to the skin on our face. In contrast, wellness foods regulate our entire body and help us to achieve brighter and even-toned skin on our neck, arms, legs, and back as well.
Ain’t that efficient?
So does this mean that topical skincare products are useless? No.
Topical skincare products are useful in achieving a quick fix. When your skin’s been exposed to harsh elements and you’ve got a special event, serums and facial masks can deliver quick results.
However, a complete reliance on topical products cannot give us the significant, long-lasting beauty effects that we desire. They need to be combined with dietary solutions and that’s where wellness foods fill the gap.
At Innerpur, we recommend a balance of 30% topical and 70% oral consumption of skincare foods.
Be gentle to your skin and adopt a simple routine - cleanse, moisturize, and use sunscreen. Then let food take care of the rest.