All the products and advice my GP prescribed for me to improve my skin condition



In the skin care world, Dr. Anita Sturnham is a well-respected general practitioner. Her professional interest in dermatology and aesthetics led her to open the doors of Nuriss Clinics: 


Skin & Wellbeing - arguably one of the most booked and busiest skincare spaces in West London - but you may know her best as a clinic by Founder of influencer-endorsed luxury brand Beauty Brand Decree. That, or her brutally honest approach to skin care. 

If you spend some time with Dr. Sturnham, you will leave with a truly tailor-made skincare routine and a completely new look for your skin. Unlike many other skin experts, she won't blame you for your care routine or for damaging your skin barrier with exfoliating acids 

(even though 90 percent of her patients have skin problems of their own making). Instead, their goal is to provide you with the knowledge you need to get the most out of your skin, no matter its skin tone, type or texture. 

"Most of my patients have very unrealistic ideas about what we should look like, and that's because of the industry we're in," Dr. told me. As Sternam and I walked into her luxurious treatment room. "Everything is filtered and airbrushed, and we put a lot of pressure on ourselves." 

It may seem like a bold move for a skin specialist whose goal is to improve skin tone, but Dr. Steenam advocates "celebrating the beauty of skin." Positive things”. She added: “I don’t want my patients to go home traumatized, so we focus on their strengths and how to keep them strong and what areas need more support.” 

As someone who has had more than her fair share of bad skin days (thanks to hormones and British winters), I have to give Dr. Borrow Steenam's brain and learn the complexion tips and tricks she swears by. Here's everything I've learned about keeping your skin looking its best year-round. 

Skip the Vitamin C Serum: Well, not really. However, if you have sensitive skin, you may want to reconsider your daily dose of vitamin C. The benefits are huge: Experts around the world love Vitamin C serum, which protects skin from pollution for more radiant, even-toned skin. 

But if you experience a stinging or burning sensation when using vitamin C (which is actually quite common), you’re using the wrong vitamin C. "Sensitive skin runs the risk of reacting to anything that contains ascorbic acid says Dr. Sturnham, which is basically the more technical name for a very popular form of vitamin C used in many skin care products. If you want to use a vitamin C serum, Dr. Sternham looks for ascorbic acid glucoside in the ingredients list. "This might be a better option," she said. “It’s the only vitamin C that converts to ascorbic acid in the skin, so you get all the benefits of ascorbic acid without any side effects.” 

R29 reviews The Ordinary's Ascorbyl Glucoside Solution 12%, £12.70, NIP+FAB Vitamin C Repair Concentrate Extreme 3%, £25, or The Inkey List's 15% Vitamin C & EGF Serum, £15.99, after cleansing and in the morning Use before moisturizing. Use toner first: "Toners are controversial in the world of dermatology," says Dr. "But a good water-based toner can really do a great job of hydrating," says Sturnham. This is a must if your skin feels tight after cleansing or becomes dry during the winter. "A well-formulated toner will rebalance your skin even after cleansing," says Dr. Steenham and making sure she stays healthy and well. She recommends spraying it after cleansing in the morning and evening. 

I've used the good old cotton pad method," she says, "but using them wastes a lot of product. Decree Preparatory Mist, £55, can be sprayed on your face." Also try Eucerin Hyaluron, which is very gentle PH Balancing Facial Mist with Hyaluronic Acid, £14. 

One thing Dr. Steenam said in her clinic is that she often sees people using toner to cleanse their face, but that's not the best use for the product. "Toner is only meant to moisturize, not cleanse," she says. 

Instead, Dr. Sturnham offers a deep cleanse (£59) in the evening to tackle clogged pores, and a light cleanse (£47) in the morning. Avoid facial oil. Sure, facial oil feels luxurious, but Dr. Sternham reveals that most skin types won't benefit from the product. 

Even worse, oil can dry out your skin. "When you apply oil topically to the surface of your skin, your sebaceous glands send a signal that there's enough oil in your skin and there's no need to produce more," she says. 

Essentially, it shuts down your natural oil production - which can be a problem. "Sebum is synonymous with the skin's natural moisture supply," explains Dr. Stunum. Therefore, using sebum and facial oil can lead to dry skin in the long run. 

What should you use instead? "There are a lot of moisturizing ingredients," says Dr. Sternam evaluates glycerin and hyaluronic acid in moisturizers. "To me, those are the two winners." Also look for a moisturizer with ingredients that support the skin barrier. 

"I'm a big fan of ceramides, niacinamide for cell health and hydrating squalane. This is definitely my favorite. Try incorporating pyruvate into your daily routine, While exfoliating acids like glycolic and salicylic are beneficial for skin prone to oiliness, blemishes, and hyperpigmentation 

Dr. Sturnham pyruvate, especially if your rash issues are hormone-related. "It works similarly to salicylic acid," she says, by penetrating deep into the skin, reducing inflammation and making the oil less "sticky" and therefore less likely to clog pores.
According to Dr. Sturnham It's also great for eliminating acne-causing bacteria and can be used in conjunction with lactic acid or glycolic acid in your nighttime skincare routine. If you use acids, be sure to apply broad-spectrum SPF 30 or 50 during the day.
Use these ingredients to improve the texture of eye area skin
PhD. Sternam points out that eye cream isn't strictly necessary.

"Sometimes you don't need an eye cream. If your moisturizer is gentle enough, it can treat your area. In fact, many of the ingredient lists for eye creams are very similar to those of a range of face creams," she says. 'I designed the Peptide Emollient Veil Moisturizer (£115) and other decree serums to double as eye creams.' Just make sure they're 'Eye Tested' (safe for use around the eyes), which you can see on the label or in the product description.
There are some ingredients that you should pay special attention to when treating the eye area. 

"Peptides (which boost collagen production) are always great for the eye area, as are ceramides and anything that helps with hydration, like hyaluronic acid and glycerin," says Dr. Stunum. "Caffeine is also great for relieving stress and reducing puffiness, and vitamin K and arnica are great for dark circles," she adds. “Even chamomile is very beautiful and calming.”
In addition to skin care, if you're interested in further treatment, lasers like the popular Nd:YAG can help reshape the skin in the area, Dr. Steenam said. "It's gentle, but also strong." 

Try topical treatments for your skin
If you have breakouts or dryness in a small area, but other skin problems are also present, Dr. Steenam performs "spot treatments." "For areas prone to dryness, such as around the eyes or mouth, using a hyaluronic acid hydrating mask on these areas can be helpful," she says. Spot care simply concentrates ingredients where your skin needs it most.
The same goes for acne or blackheads. PhD. Steenam recommends using a mask for spot treatments that contains salicylic acid (to exfoliate and reduce redness) and ingredients like bentonite clay and kaolin clay. "Think of it like an at-home spa treatment," says Dr. Sturnham, but remember: "Less is more, and there's no benefit in doing this every night or your skin will become a mess. 

Make sure you're gentle most days of the week." Try The Ordinary's Salicylic Acid 2% Mask (£22.70) or Pixi's Glowing Clay Mask (£18). For total hydration, Dr. Sturnham's weekly masks, like the SOS Revitalizing Mask , cost £20.
Consider taking skin care supplements
Although there is little evidence that taking supplements can benefit skin health, Dr. Sternham doesn't deny that they currently play an important role in skin care, especially collagen supplements. "More and more data is showing how type 1 marine collagen can actually impact your skin," she says. "When you're younger and your collagen isn't completely depleted, it might be a good idea to consider adding something like this. But collagen is also very helpful in breaking down the barrier."

Strong barrier = healthy skin.
PhD. Sturnham likes Revive Active's Beauty Complex, £59.95. If you prefer capsules, you could also try Ingenious Beauty Ultimate Collagen+ Second Generation, £60.
Slowly introduce retinol into your daily routine
Retinol is beloved by skin experts for boosting collagen, reducing fine lines, and treating breakouts, but it's also known to be irritating. Keywords: skin pain, redness, flaking. However, there are ways to slowly introduce retinol into the skin, says Dr. Stunum. "Skin loves retinoids, but the way products are formulated and the strength can sometimes be too much. 

With ingredients, we now know less is more. You can apply it for 30 minutes one night, wash it off, and then apply moisturizer." For the next week, apply for 60 minutes, leave on, wash off, then apply moisturizer. My strategy is very personal. "
If you leave your retinol on overnight, Dr. Sturnham recommends using a barrier support serum for the first four to six weeks so your skin can better tolerate it. She recommends using squalane. R29 Like Face Theory's Emolliating Olive Squalane O7, £17. Don’t forget to wear SPF sunscreen even during the day.
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