Last year I was adamant I wanted Botox for the lines my newly dry skin had created from taking the Roaccutane/ Isotretinoin.
That really is the only bonus to having oily skin, you don’t start to crack as early as everyone else. But the lines on my forehead were sticking around for longer than a second after laughing and, have you ever looked in the mirror after going for a really hard run or hard cardio session and see the 65-year-old version of yourself because every part of your face is just dehydrated.
Well, I have, and it was concerning me at 25 as I have a real complex about getting older. I’m now nearly 28 years old and still haven’t done anything to my face to help with ageing other than follow the below advice.
Should I speak to a dermatologist?
In May 2015 I went to see anti-ageing specialists Face the Future where I saw Kate Bancroft, RGN, NIP
“Kate is a Registered Nurse Independent Prescriber, with a BSc in Health and Certificate in Education. Kate has over 15 years experience of Cosmetic Dermatology and Aesthetics and is passionate about skin remodelling and age management techniques.”
I was given fantastic advice where Kate examined my skin closely and advised me I was too young for Botox, in the long run, it would just make the issue worse, if you push something up, you have to push something down, which after a while will create ripples making me look about 45 when I get to 30.
Hard advice to take when you are looking for a quick fix, but she was extremely helpful and knowledgeable and didn’t try to sell any procedures or products to me like most chain clinics do, which gave so much credibility to her advice.
She suggested looking after myself from the inside, increasing my vitamin A and omegas to create radiance from the inside. Suggesting to give it 6 months and then return to discuss further treatments as your skin after Roaccutane can be extremely sensitive for 1-3 years after taking it.
It’s better to wait and let your body adjust to the changes before having peels, or using anything harsh or acidic to get rid of scars or lines left from the treatment. Even people who haven’t taken Roaccutane, adding vitamin A and Omega supplements to your routine is the key to stopping ageing.
She also advised using a high 50 SPF to protect your face every day. Sun damage is not pretty.
Vitamin A is vital for regulating genes, maintaining healthy skin, supporting the immune system and producing red blood cells.
There are several forms of Vitamin A that are needed by the body. These include:
- Retinal – a metabolite of vitamin A required for vision.
- Rentinol – the form of vitamin A that can be stored by the body and converted to retinal when needed.
- Retinioc acid – a growth factor needed primarily to regulate genes.
The retinol form of vitamin A is responsible for maintaining the function of the cells that make up these barriers. Vitamin A is also needed for the formation and activation of white blood cells.
Natural sources of Vitamin A can be found in:
- Cod liver oil
- Whole milk
- Sweet Potato
- Squash/ butternut
How much vitamin A do I need?
The amount of vitamin A adults (19-64 years) need is:
- 0.7mg a day for men
- 0.6mg a day for women
“If you eat liver or liver pâté more than once a week, you may be getting too much vitamin A.
Supplements, such as fish liver oil, are also high in vitamin A. If you take supplements containing vitamin A, make sure your daily intake from food and supplements doesn’t exceed 1.5mg. If you eat liver every week, don’t take supplements that contain vitamin A.
If you’re pregnant
Having large amounts of vitamin A can harm your unborn baby. So if you’re pregnant or thinking about having a baby, don’t eat liver or liver products, such as pâté, because these are very high in vitamin A.
Also, avoid taking supplements that contain vitamin A. Speak to your GP or midwife if you would like more information.”
Why do we get wrinkles?
The sun and various toxins (pollution) form reactive oxygen species (ROS) such as superoxide anion, peroxides, and singlet oxygen (oxidants.) These oxidants damage DNA, cell membranes and most importantly collagen fibers. These reactive oxygen species increase matrix metalloproteinases (MMP), which breaks down collagen. Arnold R. Oppenheim, MD
As we get older our bodies produce less collagen, such as elastin in the skin. This causes ageing. The idea is to trick the body into increasing collagen production with treatments such as Retin-A.
What is Retin-A / Tretinoin?
Retin-A is a form of Vitamin A which comes in creams and gels also known as Tretinoin. (sadly we can’t buy this over the counter in the UK yet, Dermotoglist prescriptions only) Click here for my alternative.
“This medication is used to treat acne. It may decrease the number and severity of acne pimples and promote quick healing of pimples that do develop. Tretinoin belongs to a class of medications called retinoids. It works by affecting the growth of skin cells”.
Yes, this sounds just like Roaccutane/ Isotretinoin, but they are not the same. Despite the sound-alike names, tretinoin and isotretinoin are two very different drugs that work in very different ways.
Does Retinol help acne?
Tretinoin, unlike Isotretinoin, can be used for longer lengths of time. Tretinoin controls acne, while you’re using it, but doesn’t completely stop it like isotretinoin can, and has amazing anti-ageing properties.
There is a significant amount of marketing around “increased collagen production” – usually from non-prescription products known as retinol or have the ingredient retinol advertised in them, that cannot effectively achieve this, which is why people use Botox.
What to do instead of botox?
So for now. I will be sticking to Kates advice, Vitamin A supplement tablets from My Vitamins, a great SPF 50 such as Ultra Sun’s Factor 50 and using a Retinol treatment at night such as The Ordinary Retinoal oil.
*please research into the amount of vitamin A to take per person. Too much can cause illness.
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