Since living in London, I’ve had the absolute pleasure of getting to know Renée Lapino, London skin guru and medical facialist (who also happens to be American!) Renée is all about results when it comes to skincare. She’s been treating me for my rosacea, and giving me advice on my skin for the last 6 months that has legitimately changed and improved my skin. Because RESULTS BABY!
Since we’re both absolutely skin obsessed, and chat almost weekly (both on and offline), I thought we’d stick our heads together and share our TOP SKINCARE TIPS. Also, skincare can be overwhelming. It can be tough to filter through all of the products, brands, and treatments we’re ‘supposed’ to be taking advantage of to keep our skin in it’s best shape. So, Renee and I have simplified things into her ‘ultimate’ skin tips. There’s a LOT of science behind Renée’s recommendations and I’ve asked her to include some of the nitty gritty so we could really dig in. Also, below is a quick bio on Renée!
Renée’s Bio: Renée Lapino is London’s leading medical aesthetician, specializing in laser resurfacing, micro needling, and holistic facials with a medical twist. She is passionate about healing and rejuvenating all types of skin as she works on a customised, individual basis, focusing on each patient’s specific needs.
1. Install a water Filter! – Your skin is the largest organ in your body. Regular and plentiful water consumption can improve the color and texture of your skin by supporting cellular turnover properly. Drinking water also assists the skin as it regulates the body’s temperature through sweating. So drinking water is obvious, but hydration is not only what you consume and the water that you drink. The water you bathe in massively affects your skin – and it is often filled with metals and chlorine that strip the oil content out of your skin when you shower. The body responds to this aggressive strip with an increase in oil production in an attempt to rehydrate the skin, but the skin is so dry and tight that often the oil cannot redistribute properly, and it results in dry skin, with pimples and blackheads. Sound familiar? If you live in London, this probably is your skin. Top Tip: Install a water filter! They are inexpensive, easy to install, last for 8 to 12 months, and can go with you if you move! I recommend choosing one on Amazon here.
2. Add Chlorophyll to your morning glass of H2O – Chlorophyll makes plants green because it stimulates cellular life. In the human body it stimulates red blood cells which improves your blood quality and oxygenates your entire body. That increase of oxygen and blood aids in digestion and gut issues, increases circulation, decreases bloating and constipation (which visibly affects the skin), boosts production of collagen and improves healing time, therefore giving you a better response to any products you use, or treatments you have. Add 1 teaspoon to an 8 oz glass of water, and drink it 1 to 2 times a day. You will notice a difference within days – not only in your skin, but in your digestion, your energy levels and your mental clarity. You can find on Amazon.
3. Make sure you’re getting your Antioxidants! – Antioxidants can be confusing for so many people. You know they are good – but what are they and what do they do? When weak cellular bonds split, it leaves a molecule with an odd, unpaired electron, called a free radical. Free radicals are very unstable and react quickly with other compounds, trying to capture a needed electron to gain stability. Antioxidants pair with free radicals and neutralize them, therefore preventing that damage. Vitamins C and E are the more potent and easily found antioxidants, and should be in your diet as well as your skin care. Zenii supplements are a great way to ensure you’re getting internal oxidation protection, but make sure you are using a topical serum to additionally support your skin. I personally love Goldfaden MD Radical Difference.
4. Take daily Skincare Supplements – Top recommendations for individual tablets are evening primrose and zinc. Evening Primrose is a powerful ingredient for common skin woes like acne, wrinkles, and eczema and is packed with Omega-6 fatty acids, which are crucial for healthy skin and nails. Zinc Picolinate reduces inflammation, regulates immunity and may stimulate the production of new cells – therefore making it brilliant for those who suffer with breakout and acne. If you want the very best for your skin, my favorite supplement range is Zenii. Their ProClear, ProLuminous and Rebalance are all in my personal arsenal, and if you want lasting results you have to support your skin internally from the very beginning. These combination supplements include ingredients such as zinc, antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory agents all in one capsule, making them not only convenient but much more effective. All their supplements can be found here.
5. Add Retinol to your routine – Retinol is the only drug clinically proven and backed by the FDA to heal the nucleus of the cell, which means it literally treats most anything and everything wrong with your skin. Vitamin A, known as Retinol, will increase your cellular turnover rate, which can increase the appearance of firmness, diminish the look of fine lines and wrinkles, significantly improve uneven skin tone, decrease breakouts and blemishes, and smooth and refine the surface of skin. If you suffer from rosacea, eczema, or psoriasis, unfortunately retinol is not for you as it will increase your vascular response as well as the occurance of your condidtion. But for everyone else, yes you need retinol! As excited as you surely are about this miracle product, you must introduce retinol into your regime slowly, as the increased cellular turnover can lead to redness and dry, flaky patches.
I recommend retinol newbies stick to the following introductory regime: 2x a week, 2 weeks; 3x a week, 2 weeks; 4x a week, 4 weeks; then you are safe to move on to applying every night, usually without redness and peeling occurring. I prefer my patients apply retinol in the evening, as your skin repairs itself best overnight. SPF protection is absolutely critical to protect your new fresh skin cells, do not forget to cover up! I recommend trying out Medik8.
6. Properly cleanse your skin – cleansing sets the very foundation of your skin care regime, so why do so many people skimp on this step? Do not cleanse with water, shampoo, or a generic drugstore cleanser unless you want to do absolutely nothing for your skin, or even worse, actually harm it. You should be cleansing twice a day, morning and evening. Make sure you are massaging your cleanser in for at least one minute, or it cannot perform the job. I prefer cleansers with glycerin and antioxidants, that nourish the skin rather than strip it. I recommend chatting with a skin care professional to help choose the best cleanser for you, but if you are on ground zero and not already cleansing, start with something gentle such as Avéne Extremely Gentle Cleanser Lotion.
7. Wear makeup that benefits your skin – Makeup can be full of oils that can cause or worsen acne. Therefore, makeup that benefits your skin will make a major difference. Mineral foundations come in many formulations, liquid and powders, and are a great option and easily sourced. The absolute best in foundations and my personal favorite and must have is Oxygentix Oxygenating Foundation, which supports the generation of new skin cells, as well as the healing process following a blemish. Oxygenating Foundation calms, conceals and protects damaged skin with skin-loving ingredients including an Aloe Vera, and contains SPF 30, is oil free, hypoallergenic, water resistant, mild and safe – even with acne, rosacea, psoriasis, vitiligo, and eczema. I recommend every patient replace their existing foundation with Oxygenetix in their first consultation, every time.
8. Always wear Sun Protection! Beautiful skin does not mean you are regulated to a life of no fun in the sun. Simply enjoy the sun in moderation. Wear your SPF and a hat, and do not sit out in the afternoon sun without protection. And when I say protection, I recommend SPF 50 for outdoor activity, and SPF 30 for daily use. In reality, people rarely use nearly enough spf product to reach an actual protection level that matches the number on the bottle, so it is always best to be safe and stick with the higher number of broad spectrum protection. Great for even the most reactive skins, I recommend you reach for Elta or Avene.
Photos by Alise Jane