Last week  I published my interview with Gbemi Olateru Olagbegi where we discussed her skincare routine click here for that interview. She shared her journey to clear skin with us and in it she mentioned her dermatologist Dr Akhere Aire of Airesthetic med clinic based in Lagos , Nigeria . I was so impressed with the results and had a plethora of questions  about his treatment protocol so I reached out to Dr Aires and he was so kind to participate in our new series Krème Chats with EXPERTS.

In this series I will chat with professionals in the skincare industry bringing expert insights on everything skincare. So without further ado Dr Aire interview Part 1


Give our reader a background of what you do and why you went into dermatology

My primary degree is in dentistry. I am a dentist by profession, but around 2009 I decided to go into cosmetic skin work because I discovered there was a need for more than a beautiful smile. I did a lot of courses, joined the American Academy of esthetic medicine, and up till now I still take a lot of courses with them trying to stay abreast with the developments in the medical beauty world.

What is your specialization?

I am a Cosmetic dermatologist.

Gbemi Olabegi spoke highly of you and the effective treatment she received from your clinic on Instagram. She mentioned a light peel and the at-home care you recommend. Could you explain why you choose that protocol?

In general, when treating skin of colour, one has to be careful in terms of the aggression that is applied to the skin, so that there isn’t any scarring or excessive wounding of the skin because the general configuration of collagen and other such structures that we have within the skin needs that gradual healing. We usually  go  with salicylic acids, azealaic acid, and even at that we use relatively low strength to start with, to test the tolerance of the skin. Chemical agents like salicylic are usually good for acne prone skin because the help to open up the pores beautifully and dissolve the substance clogging up the pores; in addition to that there is the added benefit of oil control. So that would sum up why we choose to use these acids over acids like glycolic acids or higher strengths of those.

Speaking of glycolic acid, from my research I found that a lot of people tend to use more glycolic over salicylic, why? In my treatment room, I tend to use more salicylic acids  first with women of colour, and glycolic for Caucasian or more aggressive skin condition , but I find that a lot of people use a lot of glycolic home treatments. Please explain the difference between both acids in relation to women of colour to our readers

Personally, I feel like people jump to using glycolic because it is so popular; it is the first line of treatment for a Caucasians, who are still the largest number of people who come in for peels in the first place, and it is what would work best for their skin. There is a lot more information with things like glycolic acid as compared to acids like mandelic acid which has very similar benefits like glycolic but has not been given as much air play. Mandelic acid does the same as glycolic acid, but it has a nice melanin inhibitory type of effect as well.  It’s just information or just lack thereof. Out here I find that I have to give my clients a lot of information on acids.

What causes acne?

Acne, depending on one’s age, sex and such things, could be a result of environmental factors. It could be excessive sun exposure, and it could be hormonal etc. I must say that most of my clients that come into my clinic these days are usually young adult females. In such cases, we found that there is a huge hormonal component, especially in this part of the world. So that coupled with improper sunscreen usage, tends to exacerbate the underlying condition.

What is the difference between female hormonal acne and regular acne?

Regular acne is caused by clogging up of the pores from environmental factors and hygiene techniques. With hormonal acne we find that there is a certain male version of hormone that could be found in women called androgen. It affects the skin. It makes the skin sticky, for lack of a better word, and we find that with that present it makes it easier for the skin to get clogged. As the skin gets clogged, with a raised reaction to inflammation, there is that chance that substance stuck in the pores could get infected, which leads to inflammation and eruption all over the place. Basically when it comes to things like hormonal acne, we have to reduce the effects of the hormone on the skin to ensure that the hormones are produced at a lesser degree.

So the treatment for hormonal acne and regular acne are different?

Absolutely, because regular acne is usually formed as a result of other causes we find that there is a bacterial component to that. So medication like benzoyl peroxide would have a better effect, and salicyclic acid would help open the pores as well. In the case of hormonal acne, you may try to use medication like benzoyl peroxide etc. but they may just dry up your skin and not get to the root cause of the hormonal acne.
How to prevent acne

For regular acne, we find that keeping the skin clean, keeping the pores open, sun avoidance or sun protection techniques can help reduce the causative factors or at least lessen the degree of the breakout and reduction of the bacterial load as well. Things like benzoyl peroxide could help.
Products recommendation for acne (home care)

For acne, when consultation and diagnosis of the cause of the acne has been done, we still need look at the client’s diet, sun exposure, exercise; even resting patterns can affect your skin. In terms of home care, we advise that you reduce the amount of carbohydrate that you consume, especially if it is a hormonal type of acne because we find that the spike in insulin could also lead to hormonal acne. So anything we can do to limit those would be helpful.
At home beauty remedies for acne

There is great benefit that could be achieved from using at home care like honey or turmeric, but unfortunately unqualified people give advice to people with these conditions and they end up worsening or aggravating the situation. For example, things like coconut oil; it may great for some but not others. You have to make sure you are recommending it to the right person otherwise you are doing more harm than good, so proceed with caution.

Interview Continued in Part 2 .

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