Skin care: Keeping your skin youthful and healthy

Dr Tom  
Web chats tv

Now, thanks to a better understanding of how the skin ages, making major improvements to the appearance of the skin no longer means getting a face-lift. Research conducted by Clinique has revealed that UV exposure, skin irritation and dehydration all cause weakening of the skin’s natural repair mechanisms and aggravate the arrival of wrinkles. But all is not lost as now an assortment of age-assaulting ingredients are available, which can restore skin's youthful texture, reduce existing lines and even help prevent the onslaught of new ones. The idea is to start early with the preventative measures available.

Dr Tom currently heads Clinique Skin Biology Lab, a research group that studies the aging process and biology of skin, whilst Jan is a well-known consumer expert on TV and radio, who has presented shows on both Channel 4 and ITV. Dr Tom joined us to offer his expert advice by answering all your questions about keeping your skin youthful and healthy while Jan was on hand to discuss the revolutionary results of a new skin survey.


Dr Tom and Jan


The latest research in skin dermatology is that excessive sugar consumption in our diets can lead to toxic by products in our skin.

Dr Tom and Jan


Jan says: That's correct we did a nation wide consumer survey asking people in depth questions about their diet. We also asked them to describe their skin. The findings suggest that people who happen to have a low intake of sweet things seem to find their skin appears more youthful.


Bobby wants to know: "Aging is a natural process - why are we tampering with it?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Ageing is a natural process but the consumption of processed sugars is not natural and that will cause premature ageing or unnatural ageing.



Cathy wants to know: "Do you need to cleanse, tone and moisturise or are there more modern approaches to skincare?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: You always need to cleanse, clarify and moisturise which are the three steps. I have replaced toning with clarifying because it further cleans the surface of the skin (exfoliate).



Marissa wants to know: "Do you need to spend a lot of money to get a good moisturiser or are the cheaper versions just as good?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: You don't need to spend a great deal of money but good skin care is worth investing in. Clinique uses dermatologically tested products so we know that they are safe and effective.



Sharon wants to know: "What foods would we surprised to learn contain a lot of sugar?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Jan says: You would be surprised to learn that a lot of savoury foods contain a lot of sugar. Some ready meals contain sugars for example. It is important to look at the label...




Tom says: ...As Jan said I think you need to look at the label of the product to see if there are any hidden sugars and for further reference there is the lab report which is available at any of our counters across the UK.



Brenda wants to know: "How much does what you eat affect your body? How much sugar is too much sugar?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Hi Brenda! Your body is greatly influenced with what you take into it and recently studies have shown that the average consumer is taking in twice as much sugar as is required. Anything more than 10 teaspoons of added sugars should be avoided. That's a lot of labels to read!



Rae wants to know: "How much effect does stress have on the skin? When I'm stressed out over an important date my skin always seems to break out!"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: I am very stressed right now my skin is in very bad shape! Recent studies have shown clearly that mental stress can influence your skin's function. So keep cool!



Jane wants to know: "I am 16 and although both my parents have good skin, I constantly have spots. Help!"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Tell me Jane if its a few spots you can see then try some over the counter remedies and we have some great product for spots at the Clinique counter. If it's more severe talk to your doctor and ask to see a dermatologist. Many people have spots and it is usually a passing phase.


Dr Tom and Jan


Jan says: Very few! 77% didn't know at all and therefore wont be taking it into account with their lifestyle/eating habits.


Preeti wants to know: "Can eating chocolate really give you spots? "

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Recent studies have shown that there is no effect of eating chocolate so enjoy!




... Jan added: It seems that people often eat chocolate when they are stressed e.g. at certain times of the month and that is also a time when you are likely to get more spots.



Donna wants to know: "I am on a low fat diet but have read that low fat foods are often high in sugar. Is this true?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: You still need to check the label, as low fat does not necessarily mean low sugar.



Natalie wants to know: "Are scented sunscreens harmful for sensitive skin?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: You may be sensitive to that scent so be careful and apply on a small test site first. Otherwise use an unscented sunscreen.



Denise wants to know: "Does sunscreen expire? "

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Yes! Yes! Yes! Check the label they have expiry dates!



Kate wants to know: "Is limited sun exposure good for acne?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Yes limited sun exposure can be good for acne but I would not advise it. Use anti acne products first because the sun can cause further damage to your skin.



Natalie wants to know: "What foods are better for your skin in the summer months?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: No specific foods are better in the summer months, although I would advise keeping hydrated by drinking plenty of water and eating a balanced diet.



Nora wants to know: "Do people with dark skin really need to put on sunscreen?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Sun light causes damage on all skin so everyone should use sunscreen when they go out in the sun.


Dr Tom and Jan


Jan says: This was Wales interestingly more people in Wales felt they had skin which made them look younger than in their years than any other region in the UK and you may be surprised to know they reported a diet that appears to be relatively low in sugars.


Jamie wants to know: "What are the chief causes of wrinkles? "

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Sunlight, sunlight and sunlight! So keep using sunscreen! But other things contribute such as mental stress and diet.



Shauna wants to know: "What SPF should I use in my moisturiser?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: You should use as high SPF as you can find. 15 is probably sufficient.



Shauna wants to know: "My nose has been peeling constantly for months now, no matter how much I put moisturisers on it, it continues to peel. What might it be?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: I would say maybe you want to talk to your doctor and see what he thinks.



Sarah wants to know: "Does fruit juice dehydrate skin?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Not as far as I know although I would be careful of fruit juice with excessive sugar and drinking too much of it. Because excessive sugar has been shown to damage skin.



Samantha wants to know: "Should I squeeze or leave my spots?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: You should not squeeze it but gently remove it with a hot wet face cloth. If you squeeze it it can become infected or inflamed and that may lead to scarring.



Carla wants to know: "What are the top five danger foods for our skin?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: I don't know what the top five danger foods for the skin are but, you should avoid sunlight, tobacco, alcohol and overall poor diet otherwise enjoy eating.



Brenna wants to know: "They say that you should change your shampoo every now and again – is this the same for skin products? "

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Once you have found a set of products that you are happy with and that suit your skin then you should stick with them.



Kate wants to know: "How can our readers de-AGE their diets? Should they follow the Atkins for example?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: You can de-age your diet by reducing your intake of excessive sugar and eating a more, well balanced diet. Jan says: Aim for natural foods and try to choose foods that have been as little processed as possible.



Bobby wants to know: "What about bread? Doesn't this have excessive levels of sugars as well in many instances?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Again check the label on the bread and see if it contains sugar and keep that in mind in your overall diet. But in general bread is a carbohydrate and too much is not a good thing.



Karen wants to know: "Is it possible to turn-around the effects of too much sugar on the skin?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: Yes, the skin has a great ability to repair itself and if you switch to a healthier diet it will recuperate.



Dave wants to know: "will it be ever possible to reverse the process of aging genetically or is this just science fiction and if yes when will i be able to sign up"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: As soon as I come up with a cure I'll let you know and if you come up with a cure, I'm first on the list!



Dave wants to know: "is it possible to make your skin look visibly younger in 7 days time"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: With cosmetic changes you can make it look visibly younger, however that does not mean it is younger. We would suggest that all good things in life take longer and by practising good healthy habits and skin care you will maintain younger skin.



Ben wants to know: "Is drinking coffee bad for the skin?"

Dr Tom and Jan said:


Tom says: It is, if you put a lot of sugar in it!




Thanks to everyone we hoped you enjoyed it and learned something useful from it.

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