Struggling with your skin? While your skin health is influenced by your genetics, your daily skincare habits and environment, there are good skincare practices you can adopt to improve your skin health. Dr Vera Toh answers a few commonly asked questions about skin health, to help you achieve your skin goals.
What are your top tips to get good skin?
“Having a simple and effective skincare routine that you’re consistent with is important,” says Dr Vera. A routine doesn’t have to be complicated. In fact, keeping your skincare routine to a few steps could make it easier to stick to, especially after a long day. Start with a gentle cleanser, toner, and a light moisturiser. “It can be easy to lapse when you’re tired or busy, but do make an effort to be diligent with your regime.”
“Secondly, make sure you put on proper sunscreen during the day. You may not think it’s important, but we have a lot of sun exposure in Singapore,” advises Dr Vera. Excessive sun exposure can lead to wrinkles and lines, and also increase your risk for skin cancer.
How do I prevent acne?
“Unfortunately, your genetics and certain medical problems may influence how prone you are to acne,” shares Dr Vera. “Even so, practising these good habits can help you with managing acne or preventing it from worsening.”
These are a few skincare habits you can adopt, to manage your acne:
- Cleanse your face twice a day. “This will help to remove dirt products that could cause acne.”
- Ensure you have adequate sun protection. “I can’t over-emphasise the importance of sunscreen.”
- Look at what you’re eating. “For those who are prone to acne, foods that are high in sugars and dairy could be an exacerbating factor too.”
- Avoid touching your face. “Our hands are quite dirty. We may accidentally transfer potential allergens and bacteria onto our face, and this can cause acne flare-ups.”
In addition to our physical actions, our mental health also plays a role in our skin health. “It’s easier said than done but try to manage your stress levels too. High stress levels are known to worsen your acne,” says Dr Vera.
What’s the best way to manage a pimple?
“Don’t pop it!” emphasises Dr Vera. “As tempting as it is, don’t pop a pimple and try not to touch it often. Instead, you can let your pimple heal naturally.”
“You can also use some simple Over-the-Counter treatment, like benzoyl peroxide, to help with a faster recovery.”
What happens if I pop a pimple?
It can be hard to resist popping a pimple. If you’ve done so, Dr Vera says, “In the best case scenario, it’ll recover well.”
More commonly, popping a pimple can make your skin health problems worse. “It becomes a portal of entry for bacteria to enter and this introduces more infection to the pimple,” cautions Dr Vera.
In the long-term, a popped pimple may also lead to scarring. “These scars could be long-lasting. They may even require further treatment in the future, if they don’t fade with time.”
When should I see a doctor for my skin health?
Deciding when you should see the doctor for your skin can be dependent on several factors. “If your skin issues are causing physical discomfort or perhaps affecting your self-confidence, it may be a good idea to see a doctor for help,” shares Dr Vera.
A doctor can help with various skin health issues, including persistent acne and eczema. “Not everything may require medication as well,” says Dr Vera. “Simple lifestyle changes may also help to improve your skin health.”
“During the consultation, we’ll be able to diagnose the condition and let you know the severity of your skin health issue. With this, we can come up with an individualised treatment plan to help with your skin health.”
Starting on your skincare journey? Get an assessment of your current skin health with our My Skin Coach feature. The personalised report will provide you with recommendations on how to improve your skin. Alternatively, speak to a doctor anytime you need on the DA app, to get advice and treatment options for better skin.