Congratulations to the three winners selected to receive a free copy of Feed Your Face and have their skincare questions answered by Dr Jessica Wu! You will find the answers to your questions below.
Unfortunately we could only pick three winners this time, but luckily most of the answers to the other questions submitted can be found within the pages of Feed Your Face — available to buy now from all good bookshops and to download from all major ebook retailers.
Q: I've got a couple of scars on my face, I've tried various products to minimise their redness like Bio-Oil and Wheatgerm oil but nothing seems to work. What would you recommend?
A: The products you mention can help smooth out a bumpy scars; however, they’re not as effective at reducing redness. The good news is that red scars typically fade over time, although the process can take months or even years. I would suggest using a skin product designed to reduce redness, such as Boots No 7 Calm Skin Redness Relief Gel or Eucerin Redness Relief Cream. Use them twice a day on your bare skin, and apply moisturizer or makeup afterwards. Both of these products contain liquorice extract, which has an anti-inflammatory effect and has been shown to reduce facial redness. In addition, it’s also best to avoid activities that make your face red, since this can prolong the redness of your scars; for example, avoid washing your face with hot water, or taking long hot showers or baths, or using a hot tub or steam bath. If you have done all of the above for at least eight weeks and see no difference, you might consider visiting a doctor who is a laser specialist, since some lasers can help red scars fade more quickly.
Q: My skin has started to get very dry and flaky and all the creams I have used don’t seem to make much difference. My feet and legs seem the worst affected and as I am diabetic I need to take special care of my feet. Any suggestions please?
A: Since you have used creams without noticing improvement, I’m concerned that you might have an infection, especially since you have diabetes. The first step is to make sure that the dryness and flaking isn’t due to a fungus infection (also called ‘Athlete’s Foot’). Fungus infections can start at the feet and move up the legs, causing dryness and flaking that won’t respond to moisturizing creams. Your doctor can do a simple, painless test to determine this. Fungus infections are more common in those who are diabetic, and must be treated right away to avoid spreading to deeper tissues. If you do not have an infection, then I would recommend trying a cream containing an ingredient called urea, which helps soften and remove dead skin, leaving feet and legs softer and smoother. Urea creams are especially helpful for diabetics, since they help prevent cracks in the skin that can lead to infections. For best results, do this nightly: soak feet in warm water, use a pumice stone to gently loosen dead skin, dry off, then apply the cream, followed by socks.
Q: I've always had pretty good skin but now I'm 28 I've started to get little 'bumps' on my forehead which I think are blocked pores and I've lost my glow. What's the best thing to eat to flush out my pores and get some radiance back?
A: It’s common for adult women to get clogged pores, even if they never had skin problems before. Starting in your late twenties, skin cells turn over more slowly, leading to clogged pores, bumps, and dull skin. I’d suggest avoiding sugar, dairy, and white carbohydrates (bread, pasta, rice), which can increase oil production and lead to bumps. Instead, choose foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are anti-inflammatory. These include fish such as salmon, mackerel, and sardines, as well as walnuts, almonds, and flaxseeds. Try to include one of these foods every day. Omega-3 fatty acids are also available as supplements; check with your doctor before starting any new supplements, especially if you’re taking medicines for any other reason or have any health problems. It’s also a good idea to exfoliate your skin once a week, to remove dead skin cells and restore more glowing skin. Look for a toner or scrub containing glycolic acid, which helps remove dead skin cells gently.
Dr Jessica Wu, a graduate of Harvard Medical School, is a board certified celebrity dermatologist in Los Angeles and an Assistant Clinical Professor at the USC Medical School. When she's not helping Hollywood's A-list get red carpet-ready, she's dishing up advice as the Skin and Beauty Expert on EverydayHealth.com and on her daily e-Newsletter. To find out more visit www.feedyourface.com.
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