Dermatologists Francis Wu and Petra Dikrama of Erasmus MC and co-founder of Dikrama clinics were recently interviewed for Trosradar doctors of tomorrow. Our daily skin care is discussed. Questions about, among other things, SPF in day cream: does it work, and what should you pay attention to if you are looking for a day cream that also protects against the sun? And: because we are heading towards winter time and have less to do with sun protection, what makes sense.
Doctors of Tomorrow – the interview
61 percent of the poll respondents say they use a day cream with a sun protection factor. A good protection against skin cancer and it also works against skin aging, some respondents wrote to us. Is that right?
Those day creams often only contain an SPF factor, which provides protection against UVB radiation, explains Wu. From September to April, the UVB strength is low to nil in the Netherlands, due to the geographical location of the Netherlands. Manufacturers who produce SPF day creams sell it for a large area such as Europe and the Netherlands is a small market. In the autumn and winter period, UVB protection is not as important as protection for UVA in the Netherlands. It is precisely that UVA radiation that actually penetrates everything, and protection is required for that radiation throughout the year’.
Sunlight consists of a whole spectrum of rays, including ultraviolet radiation, or UV radiation. ‘I use a mnemonic’, says Wu, ‘the ‘A’ of ‘UVA’ stands for ‘aging’ and the ‘B’ of UVB stands for ‘burning’. So that first radiation can mainly give you wrinkles, and gives just a little more chance of developing melanoma. You can burn yourself from that second radiation, and UVB can also slightly increase the risk of skin cancer. But: UVB also ensures the production of vitamin D’.
Do you use day cream with a factor (SPF – Sun Protection Factor)?
Almost 900 people completed our poll: do you use a day cream with SPF? 61 percent say they use such a cream as standard, 5 percent only on sunny days. 19 percent also use sunscreen in addition to a cream when going into the sun. 11 percent do not use a day cream with SPF.
Dikrama: ‘As we head towards winter, I prefer that only UVA radiation is blocked. Vitamin D is made in the skin under the influence of UVB. I’m a bit tinted myself and work a lot indoors, so I don’t see much UV light in the winter. If I also apply something that blocks UVB radiation, my skin produces less vitamin D’. Wu adds: ‘A study among Dutch men showed that 36 percent have too low a vitamin D level in the summer, and in the winter that was even 60 percent’.
What is advisable?
The advice of both dermatologists is therefore to apply a sunscreen in the morning that at least protects against UVA radiation. If you are outside for a longer period of time, especially in the spring, summer or during winter sports, it is advisable to have both UVA and UVB protection. You must reapply sunscreen every two hours.
In the evening you can possibly use a cream with an ‘active ingredient’, for example a cream with vitamin C or vitamin A,’ says Dikrama. ‘And if you really want to take good care of your skin, that just means not too much sunlight and not smoking. There’s no point in applying sun cream and tanning in the meantime under the sunbed’.
And how do you choose a good night cream? Dikrama has a number of tips for this: in the first place, do not opt for a cream in a jar with a screw cap. “Many active ingredients can become inactive in this way, and you’re still stuck with your finger in that cream, so you take all kinds of bacteria with you.” So choose a copy that is packaged airtight and UV-tight, for example in a bottle with a pump.
You shouldn’t expect great miracles from those tubes, by the way: ‘You have to realize: everything that you can buy yourself may not contain any medicines, it often contains derivatives or very small amounts of ingredients that have been shown to work. Dermatologists can prescribe much stronger products than the products you can buy in the store.
While you are here
Great news! Our collaboration is expanding. Starting in 2021, Iconic Elements and Dikrama Clinics will collaborate. Dikrama Clinics consists of a unique team of skilled doctors (cosmetic doctors and dermatologist) specialized in injectables such as botulinum toxin and fillers, infusion therapy and skin improvement. Iconic Elements is therefore very happy to work with this team. The combined knowledge of skin care ingredients supported by dermatologists and skin improving treatments makes this collaboration very special. To be continued and more soon….