Discover how your Asian heritage affects the way your skin ages
When it comes to your skin care routine, there’s a strategy we all abide by: cleanse, treat, moisturise, protect. But did you know that tailoring your regimen according to your heritage can lead to seamless skin? Here, top skin doctors dish advice for Asian skin types looking to care for and maintain a springy, clear complexion.
Your biggest skin concerns
Asian skin can be sensitive due to a weak barrier lipid function. “It also has less natural moisturising factor, which could account for a higher incidence of dryness and reduced exfoliation, both of which can lead to an ashen appearance,” explains Dr Diana Howard, vice-president of research and development for Dermalogica. Skin is also susceptible to “pigmentation and stubborn redness that stays around for anywhere from a couple of months to a few years”, says Dr Véronique Delvigne, scientific director at Lancôme.
Skin care treatment tips
Cleansing is key, in fact, some Korean women advocate cleansing twice in one hit. A gentle milk or oil-based cleanser will dissolve impurities and surface debris without drying out your skin. Massage in circular motions sans rubbing to avoid tugging or pulling at skin. Remember to regularly exfoliate with a mild mechanical or physical exfoliant—this rids skin of dead skin cells, allowing for more effective absorption of antioxidants and anti-ageing actives. Keep skin hydrated with hyaluronic acid (this molecule holds 1000 times its weight in water), and boost the skin barrier with silicones and lightweight lipids. “If you have sensitive skin, look for a physical sunscreen (zinc oxide or titanium dioxide) instead of chemical ones,” advises Dr Howard. Physical sunscreens are less likely to irritate as they sit on the surface of skin.
Benefits of Asian skin types
“Generally, Asian skin has a lower visible ageing process,” says Dr Howard. Dr Delvigne adds that forehead wrinkling generally appears on Asian skin around 37 years of age, while frown lines usually occur around 42.