I Zoom Called With A Dermatologist To Find Out All Of Our Burning Skincare Questions

What you've wanted to know, explained.


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Sometimes skincare can be over whelming. With so many products, hacks, tips etc all over the internet, it can be hard to remember what works for you and where you should go with your skincare routine.

Have you ever just wanted to sit down with a skincare expert and gotten all of their information? Well, you’re in luck! We were lucky enough to chat with Dr Alexis Granite, consultant dermatologist with CeraVe about all things skincare.

From TikTok trends to the intimidation of retinol, Dr Alexis covered it all, grab a cuppa and enjoy her expert tips!

We started with the question on everybody’s lips, when should we start with retinol?

Dr Alexis said, “For most dermatologists, Retinol is one of our favourite ingredients. The earlier you can start the better, and it helps with skin turnover, preventing fine lines, preventing pigmentation. If you are prone to spots it can really help with spots, so I think it’s worth a go.

“What you can do is start every other night and gradually work up to every night. Usually, the way that my clients do it is they cleanse their skin, retinol goes on first, then moisturising serum like hyaluronic acid next, and then finish it off with a moisturiser.

“It does make you a little more sensitive to sunlight, but as long as you’re wearing a high factor spf [it should help]. If you’re doing a typical cleanse in the morning that should be enough to wash it all off and start over basically.”

Okay, retinol sorted. But when it comes to cleansing, how many times is enough? Double cleansing has taken over on skincare TikTok over the past few years, we asked Dr Alexis her thoughts,

“I’m not a big fan of double cleansing,” she said.

“Unless you’re wearing a tonne of makeup and you really need to get it off, you certainly can, but in that case I would always start with a balm or a cream cleanser and then use a foaming cleanser to finish it off. I wouldn’t do two rounds of a strong foaming cleanser because I think it’s just too stripping there’s no real need for that. But truthfully my preference would be to try use a makeup remover or micellar water first and then do your cleanser,” she continued.

A lot of products out there are marketed as ‘anti-ageing’, but when should people start reaching for them?

Dr Alexis said, “In your 20s you still have quite the ability to produce collagen so you can get by with very little in order to maintain healthier skin. Obviously when you get to your 30s and beyond, that changes a bit. I think when you’re in your 20s in my mind it’s all about setting up really good habits and a really good routine and then starting gradually with those preventative type products like Vitamin C and retinol but I don’t think you have to go into a whole regime that’s targeted at anti-ageing.”

When it comes to skincare trends, something we see a lot is a hefty nighttime routine. Celebs and skincare gurus often film themselves enjoying a multiple step routine that leaves their skin looking glazed before they head to bed, but not everyone has the time to be grabbing rollers and masks every evening.

So how long should our night routine really be?

“If you love a long routine then by all means you certainly can and if you want to do an LED mask and a guasha and that’s part of your ritual then I think there’s no harm in doing that, but you don’t have to do that to have healthy clear skin,” Dr Alexis explained.

“If you are going to do a mix of high price point and low price point products I would always invest more into the actives and those get more important as you get older. If you’re using too many actives or products, the truth is they can interact with each other and you’re not getting the best results from each of those ingredients and also it can risk causing more irritation.

“I would say at most two serums maybe or a serum and an oil and your moisturiser. In terms of leave on products I wouldn’t be layering more than two or three at any given time.”

After mentioning products that interact badly, we had to ask about the two we’ve heard a lot about, Vitamin C and retinol.

“It’s more that they can cause irritation if they are put on together, so using them separately is absolutely fine. And you don’t have to worry so much that you haven’t fully washed off your retinol and then you’re applying your Vitamin C in the morning, I think as long as you’re not layering them right on top of each other and they’re not coming in together at the same exact time, that’s where you can run into irritation issues,” Dr Alexis said.

“They don’t cancel each other out it’s more just if you’re using a pretty strong retinol and a pretty high concentration vitamin c you are risking causing irritation if you put them on together. Plus, generally the idea of a Vitamin C is an antioxidant, so that’s generally best used in the morning. Retinol is more of an evening ingredient because it’s slightly inactivated by UV light so they tend to work well together but at different times of the day,” she added.



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