5 skincare trends that are growing as a result of the pandemic's effect on our habits

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Illustration. (Photo: Getty Images)
Illustration. (Photo: Getty Images)
  • The Covid-19 pandemic has had a lasting effect on many aspects of human behaviour, one of the least expected being a noticeable change in common skincare habits. 
  • These actions are not as a direct result of the pandemic, but rather the impact that it has had on our routines.
  • In addition to three skincare trends we've observed over the past year, Dr Alek Nikolic - renowned specialist in Aesthetic Medicine and Executive Director of SkinMiles - shares two more.

Beauty is cleaner. Lipstick is lasting longer. Nature is healing. 

Among the several habits and routine changes brought on by the pandemic, are more stringent hygiene and beauty regimens. Now it's almost foreign to imagine that there were hoards of people washing their hands for less than 20 seconds all those years before 2020.

Not only is the epidermis of our hands parched from all the store entrance sanitisers, but people have started to observe different - and more - skin concerns on their faces. 

“We have seen a real change in people’s skincare habits over the past year,” explains Dr Alek Nikolic, renowned specialist in Aesthetic Medicine and Executive Director of high-end online skincare store, SkinMiles.

READ MORE: Has the Zoom boom made us more critical of our facial quirks, sags and bags? Should we even care?

“Less exercise due to being in lockdown; general anxiety and less sleep; binge eating and drinking; and staring at screens for longer (and ourselves in screens) have all led to changes in how our skin behaves. We have seen a real change in the kind of problems that people are trying to treat and the products that they are searching for as a result,” he continues.

Here, Dr Alek shares some of his insights into what the most common Covid-induced skin problems and concerns are, as well as how to treat them:

Zoom-induced consultations

During lockdown, the general population spent a lot of time staring at themselves over a computer screen or in video calls. It comes as no surprise, therefore, that this activity has resulted in many people being more critical of their appearance and are starting to seek out ways to address these perceived concerns for the first time. 

There have been two main concern queries that have skyrocketed as a result; the first being that people have noticed their frown especially when focusing or concentrating, and feel it makes them look angry. According to Dr Alek, “the best approach to this problem is Botox, however,  some people may need filler too, especially if lines are deep and have been visible for a number of years.”  

The second concern is a drawn appearance caused by laxity and visible jowls, which is typically caused by looking down towards the screen. “The most effective solution is dermal fillers, which will return volume to the drawn tired looking areas and help lift structures in the face, including the jowls,” he continues. 

However, not everyone wants to invest in injectables, so this is the product he recommends in lieu of visiting an aesthetician: 

Lamelle Dermaheal Re-firm Serum, R3300 on skinmiles.com  

lamelle

My recommendation: 

Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair serum, 20ml, R495 on Takealot

skincare


Masks as the new best friend of lip filler recovery

Lip dermal fillers have become increasingly more popular over the last year as well.

This is as a result of people being more concerned about their visual appearance, but also because a mask provides a good way to hide side effects while recovering from the procedure. This treatment tends to cause visible swelling which can lead to bruising and may last for a few days.

Dr Alek makes the disclaimer that when it comes to any aesthetic medicine everyone should seek advice from industry professionals, such as a skincare therapist, an aesthetic medical doctor or a cosmetic dermatologist, before committing to any decisions. 

There are also online consultation options available, including live chats and assessments, which provide helpful advice and information. SkinMiles.com offers bespoke advice through their Face2Face Assessment. 

Plus, three more beauty trends we observed in 2020 as a result of the pandemic upon us: 

Maskne  

We told you about this one last year. But if you missed this memo; Maskne is skin irritation and/or acne that results from prolonged mask-wearing.  

Dr Alek further explains that it's caused by the trapping of high moisture content and bacteria on the skin, resulting in a disruption of the all-important skin barrier. 

“Over the last couple of months, I have seen so many clients suffering from this issue, and searches for remedies for acne and breakouts have soared. One way to successfully prevent maskne is to use a moisturiser that contains ceramides and hyaluronic acid," says Dr Alek.

"Another option is to invest in a face mist, which will instantly hydrate and protect the skin," he adds. 

Sufferers of maskne should not be too concerned, however. The problem is largely topical, can be managed generally with a good cleansing routine and will go away when masks are used less again. 

Dr Alek recommends: 

Alpha-H Daily Essential Vitamin Mist, R1060 on skinmiles.com  

skincare

My recommendation: 

Nuxe Crème fraîche de beauté mist - Express 24-HR Moisturising Care mist, R375 at Woolworths


nuxe mist

Still dealing with maskne? You can also read this article here.

Antimicrobial beauty

The Covid-19 pandemic has instilled in us a new appreciation for all things "clean" and "germ-free". Naturally, given this context, products that promise to "sanitise" and "disinfect" have become all the rage – and beauty products are no exception.

According to Glossy, October 2019 (with Covid-19 around the corner) saw the release of the results of a scientific study that found that 79 to 90 percent of makeup sponges and other cosmetic products contained bacteria

It includes Staphylococcus, which according to MedicineNet, is a group of bacteria known to cause a multitude of diseases. Antimicrobial cosmetic products promise to eliminate these kinds of bacteria or prevent them from forming in the first place.

An example is an antimicrobial makeup brush, which is given an antimicrobial coating and is designed in such a way that the bristles work to repel bacteria, according to Rank & Style.

One can also find antimicrobial makeup sponges, which work in a similar way to the brushes, that inhibit the growth of bacteria. Ecotools recently released a makeup sponge infused with antimicrobial silver, designed to keep your sponge "cleaner" and "fresher" for longer. 

READ MORE: Will women look different after the pandemic? Does it matter?

No more 'Instagram Face'

One of the first things that people ditched when they started working from home was a full face of makeup. The shift towards a more natural finish has been developing for some time, but living in isolation abolished the need to pile on product every day.

The result?

Minimal makeup usage and a larger focus on keeping skin healthy. So, while many might put on a flick of mascara before attending virtual meetings, it's nevertheless "see ya later" to "Instagram face"... at least for the time being.   

Additional information provided on behalf of Dr Alek Nikolic and SkinMiles

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