We caught up with the father of wellness and skincare, Dr Murad, to reveal his secrets behind achieving everyone’s dream - beamingly beautiful healthy skin. From maintaing a healthy diet to getting enough sleep, reducing Cultural Stress and with a few extra secrets thrown in there, allow Dr Murad to show you the ropes when it comes to achieving perfect skin.
What should a healthy daily skincare ritual look like?
A daily regimen ideally includes cleansing, treating (with a serum) and moisturising. Using a moisturiser with SPF protection is a must do in the morning. This will protect your skin from free radical damage and environmental stress that could cause premature ageing and fine lines and wrinkles.
From your experience, what is the most common cause of aged skin?
Genetics, hormones and stress all play a part. However, most recently, with society’s extreme dependence on digital devices and ‘over-connected’ living, it’s not surprising to see a rise in stress levels and signs of this stress-induced ageing on the skin. The constant and pervasive stress of everyday life that has become a normal part of our society, is what I call Cultural Stress. Whether it’s a long commute, a never-ending to-do list, worries about your work or global conflict, it’s the unnecessary stress we put on ourselves in our attempt to live up to everyone’s expectations.
Through my years of research, I have discovered a strong link between Cultural Stress and the ageing process. Not only does it affect us visibly as signs of ageing on the skin and body, but also emotionally with increased feelings of isolation, lack of confidence and a lack of creativity.
What’s the best prevention for this?
Stress is an inevitable part of life; the key is how you handle it. Looking after our own self-care and personal wellbeing is important to help minimise the impact Cultural Stress has on our lives. This can be in different ways depending on the person. I might encourage to let go of the need to be perfect, to improve health at a fundamental level by eating hydrating foods and savouring sleep, or to embrace the power of movement.
We should also all remember who the most important person in the world is to us: it should be you! Try to take a few moments a day to do something you love. It will not only help you mentally, but physically as well. And taking 15 minutes a day away from our phones to connect with the world around us and making the time to make face-to-face connections with loved ones in our lives can reduce our stress levels and impact our emotional wellbeing as well as our skin.
Do you believe diet has a key part to play in skin care? Why?
Absolutely. When cell health is optimised, cells use water more efficiently and the body’s systems function better overall. This means we need to flood our cells with water.
Although eating junk food doesn’t cause spots, the healthier we are from the inside the healthier we look from the outside. Keep an eye on how your skin and body is affected when you’re bingeing on booze and junk and when you’re choosing healthier foods and drinks.
What about sleep – how does that affect our skin?
Sleep is when all of the systems of our body repair and regenerate themselves. Our skin detoxifies itself overnight from the exposure to environmental stress during the day such as pollution, so you wake to a well hydrated, plumper and more youthful-looking complexion. When you don’t sleep well you begin to see fine lines as the skin gets dehydrated, you may also notice dark circles under the eyes.
Our body gets set to rest when the sun goes down, but our time-compressed schedules don’t align. Sleep is the first thing we sacrifice from our schedule as daytime responsibilities stretch well into the night. And it shows upon waking as dark under-eye circles, dullness, dehydration, deep-set wrinkles and puffiness.
Do you have any unusual secrets about skin care that most people don’t know?
If you eat
your water, you won’t need to count your glasses. Replace at least one glass of water a day with one serving of raw fruits or vegetables; you will be able to stay hydrated significantly longer. Eating foods that are rich in structured water, especially raw fruits and vegetables, will not only help your body hold onto water longer, you’ll get the added boost of important antioxidants, fibre and other nutrients. By sticking to a healthy diet you’ll end up eating most of the water needed each day to stay well hydrated.
What are retinol and retin-a?
Retinol is one of the main forms of Vitamin A. It is an essential vitamin needed for new cell growth, and the health and maintenance of tissues and skin cells and plays an integral role in anti-ageing skin care. Vitamin A, otherwise known as retinol, is a retinoid. Retinoids include retinol, retinal, retinoic acid and are used in the treatment of many dermatological conditions such as inflammatory skin disorders, wrinkles, acne, and psoriasis.
Prescription only Retinol treatments are used topically and internally which may be used for acne treatments under the supervision of a Medical Practitioner. Examples: Retin A, Retinova, Roaccutane, Accutane.
Retinol is considered the gold standard for anti-ageing products, and for good reason. It dramatically improves all key signs of ageing, minimising the look of wrinkles and crow’s feet while lifting and firming skin. But the benefits go beyond anti-ageing: it visibly brightens dark circles, reduces dullness and even helps to fight acne.
The effects of retinol are seen at any age and will help optimise your skins health, so think of retinol as being not only a treatment but also as a maintenance product to keep your skin at its optimum best due to it improving skin cell turnover.
Retinol works in three ways: it exfoliates, aids in production of collagen and fights free radicals.
What’s your favourite thing in the Murad collection?
My products are like my children, I can’t choose a favourite!
Fancy getting your very own skincare facial pamper by Murad? Well you can. Come visit The Skin Wellness Clinic in The Locker Room at Balance Festival this year! Don't forget to check out their website too! More from the Journal