While your daily work, study and social routine may have been disrupted during the COVID-19 pandemic, your skincare routine doesn’t need to be a victim of lockdown. In fact, lockdown is the perfect time to perfect your home skincare regimen.
1. Cleanse thy skin
Gently wash your face with cool water and a soap and fragrance-free cleanser twice per day to remove dirt and grime. Don’t forget to wash your face after you sweat too.
Splash the cool water over your face then gently rub the cleanser in a circular motion. Don’t forget your nose, the area under your nose and under your neck. Wash it off with more cool water and pat your skin dry with a soft towel. Using cleansers that contain ingredients like salicylic acid may irritate some kinds of skin so steer clear of these unless you have been advised by your dermatologist to use it for your skin type.
Some gentle skin cleansers that our patients love include Avene Extremely Gentle Cleanser Lotion, CeraVe gentle cleanser, QV gentle cleanser, Neutrogena Extra Gentle Cleanser.
2. Keep active with your ‘actives’
Depending on how old you are, skin actives can be added to your skincare regimen for anti-oxidant, anti-wrinkle and anti-pigment effects.
Topical niacinamide serums or creams can be used from the teenage years onward. This has been proven to have anti-inflammatory and anti-pigmentation effects. Our patients love supporting locals so the Australian made and owned brand, Propaira is a staff and patient favourite. The Ordinary also have a good niacinamide. The concentration of niacinamide needed to positively affect the skin is about 3-5%.
Vitamin C and Vitamin A -containing creams (like some retinols and tretinoin) can be used also for their exfoliating effects, anti-acne, anti-inflammatory and of course, anti-ageing effects. It is best to consult with your dermatologist to work out if your skin type can and should be treated with these actives. Retinols can be found in over-the-counter products but tretinoin is a medical-grade vitamin A and has to be prescribed. Tretinoin has a lot of solid scientific evidence to prove it really does work!
Most of the time, tretinoin needs to be started gently and gradually increased in frequency. Using too much, too quickly will cause redness, irritation and possibly dermatitis. Start off three times per week and gradually increase the frequency of use. Vitamin A products can be mixed with your usual moisturisers and are usually used at night before bed. And remember, you don’t have to spend more than $50AUD to get a good tretinoin-based cream.
3. Go mad with moisturiser
Moisturising the skin helps keep it hydrated, less wrinkled and is also a very important treatment for those with eczema (dermatitis). Moisturisers should be applied every morning and evening before bed. And yes, even if you have oily skin, you should apply a moisturiser.
If you have oily, pimple-prone skin, think about using lotions or gels. If your skin is on the dry side, look for cream-based formulas. Moisturisers without perfumes are best. Perfumes can cause skin allergies. You don’t have to spend empty your wallet for a good hydration boost. Some new moisturisers contain substances called ceramides. Ceramides play a critical role in establishing and maintaining the water-retaining properties of the skin. Ceramides are especially beneficial for those with atopic dermatitis (eczema), psoriasis, dry skin and even acne! Yes, acne.
It’s easy to remember moisturise for your face but don’t neglect your hands, especially with all the handwashing we have all been doing during the pandemic. For more on tips to maintain healthy hands during COVID, check out our blog from earlier in the year.
4. Slap on your sunscreen
While winter is upon us, sunscreen is still important for those that have pigment problems like melasma and those who are super vigilant about skin ageing. This is because ultra-violet light A (UVA) is one of the contributing factors to skin ageing and UVA is around from sunrise to sunset, all year-round. Sunscreen is definitely THE best way to block ultra-violet light and keep you looking younger for longer! So, what should you look out for when choosing a sunscreen?
Be sure your sunscreen is SPF 50+ with high UVA protection and check that it is approved by the Therapeutics Goods Administration (TGA). This is a regulatory body that ensures that the sunscreen meets certain standards and actually do what the label says it should. You should look for an “AUST L” number on the label which means that sunscreen is approved by the TGA. Cosmetic sunscreens will not have this “AUST L” number so they may not actually be giving you the protection you need. To learn more about sunscreen regulation, head to
For tips on sunscreen in skin of colour or darker skin types, check out this link.
5. Spot the difference!
Skin cancers don’t stop appearing during a pandemic. It is important to check over your skin (don’t forget your scalp, palms, soles, nails and intimate areas) for any spots or lumps that are new or changing. Skin cancers can be red, brown, black or even skin coloured and they might not cause any symptoms at all. Check out this page for just a little more information on skin cancer. If you are concerned about new or changing spots or lumps on your skin, consult your general practitioner or dermatologist. Check out the SunSmart website for more detailed information on signs of skin cancer.
6. Stress Less
Healthy body, healthy mind, healthy skin. It’s important for all of us to find healthy ways of managing stress, especially during these COVID-19 times. Meditating, exercising (also improves skin health also!), eating and sleeping well will help ease stress. Many people identify stress as a trigger for conditions like psoriasis, eczema and acne. Controlling stress will help control skin conditions like these. And if your skin is not behaving, seek advice from your dermatologist.
If, after reading this, you are not sure what products you should be using, contact us to book your 10-minute complimentary consultation with our dermal clinician to discuss your skin type and skin needs so you can get started with your skin care routine. Chroma Dermatology have set in place multiple measures to optimise your safety during your onsite visits to us. We will discuss these with you when you contact us.
The information contained in this blog post is intended as a guide only and should not substitute seeking medical attention. Please see your healthcare provider for more information on suitability of products, treatments or procedures.