As we age, we learn to spend more time on our appearences. Gone are the days when we used to run out of the house without brushing our hair (or teeth) because we just had to go swing on the swings right.that.second. Now we spend countless hours perfecting how straight we can get our hair with a straightening iron (or complaining about how we hate it that straight and lifeless), and obsessing over whether or not those lines under our eyes are permanent, or if they just appear when we crinkle our face.
Unfortunately, even if our skin is almost perfect– we often still feel that it’s just not good enough. We’re surrounded by flawless celebrities, and we want to measure up. So, we spoke with Dr. Murad, the dermatologist and genius behind the Murad product line, and he clued us in on a few ways to maintain healthier looking skin.
SC: What are your top three tips for maintaining flawless skin?
Dr. Murad: I believe in a philosophy called Inclusive Health, which encompasses three pillars of care and addresses the mind, skin, and body. First of all, internal skincare is one of the most important things about skincare. What you eat has a dramatic effect on your skin– if you eat foods rich in omegas, like walnuts, olive oil, flax seed oil or fish oil, it will help internally to keep your skin moisturized during dry weather. Secondly, external care– maintaining the barrier function of your skin– is very important. This entails applying products on your skin that have antioxidants and anti-inflammatories which are needed to maintain the barrier (in case the air is dry, it can’t suck up all of the moisture). And lastly, emotional care for your skin is also very important. Most people don’t realize this but when you’re sad, lonely, and depressed, you don’t take care of yourself and this harms your skincare. So, splurge a little, be good to yourself, and make sure to take a little time for yourself each day.
SC: What should you do if you get a zit two days before a big event? What about the day of?
DM: If you can’t go see a dermatologist and get a shot of Cortisone, apply an anti-inflammatory cream to the spot. A great one to use is an acne spot treatment with concealer, which hides the blemish while treating it.
SC: What’s the best way to shrink pores?
DM: Pores are genetic, but a good pore refining gel will have a mixture of glycolic acid and salycylic acid. Menopause can also cause really enlarged pores due to the thinning of the skin– you can use soy and black cohosh to get your skin back on track.
SC: What are the best ways to fight aging skin (i.e. wrinkles, crows feet) and how early should we start?
DM: It’s never too soon and never too late– it will prevent future damage no matter what. Practicing appropriate skincare, eating properly, and reducing stress will help. Use hydrators and peptides for your skin as well.
SC: Do you know of any remedy for cellulite? If so, can you share with us?
DM: There isn’t a cure; it’s unfortunately a genetic problem that happens in women. But, if you want to improve it and make a difference, the answer is yes– anything that encourages better circulation will improve cellulite. When the circulation is diminished, the fat can move up through the layers of your skin and get that cottage cheese look. Again, internal skincare can help as well– eating more cayenne pepper and vitamin B in your diet can make a big difference. (The Cellulite Solution, $14.95, at murad.com).
SC: Why are pomegranates used in so many skincare products lately, and how do they improve your skin?
DM: Pomegranates are rich in antioxidants such as polyphenols which strengthen the cell membranes and make them resistant to damage. It’s also proven that when you apply pomegranate topically you improve SPF by 20 percent.
SC: What is your favorite product and why? How should we use it?
DM: Youth Builder Supplement— take 4 a day and you’ll have a 30 percent reduction in lines and wrinkles.
Dr. Howard Murad is a board-certified dermatologist, trained pharmacist, and Associate Clinical Professer of Medicine (Dermatology) at the Geffon School of Medicine, UCLA. He has personally treated over 50,000 patients and in 1989 founded Murad, Inc. as a way to share his groundbreaking skincare formulas which were among the first to achieve significant measurable anti-aging results without surgery. His pioneering research and clinical studies into The Science of Cellular Water have established him as an international authority on the aging process. His scientifically-proven formulas and inclusive approach to overall skin and body health have helped millions live better lives.