Natural, beautiful, you | Sunday Observer

Natural, beautiful, you

Dr. Shanika Arsecularatne
Dr. Shanika Arsecularatne

The older we get the more interested with skincare and beauty we become, and that certainly is not a crime. Most times we are hit by acne that leaves acne scars, premature wrinkles and uneven toned skin.

No matter the amount of beauty products we use the issue remains stubbornly unchanged, and it is vital to understand what really causes them. Experts say changing lifestyle, stress and fast-food make your skin unhealthy and look much older than your real age.

Dr. Shanika Arsecularatne (MBBS, Cosmetic Medicine Dip. [USA], DPD [UK]) of Christell Skin Clinic, Colombo 04, speaks to Young Voice regarding skincare and youths’ strange obsession to look more like popular social media stars.

What are the common issues Sri Lankan youth suffer from when it comes to skincare and beauty?

In my practice I see two key problems the youth are facing. One is acne where they suffer, at times, silently because no matter what they do acne and acne scars seem to remain or reappear after treatment. Two is their obsession with trying to look like certain social media stars. This need to be and look ‘perfect’ is engraved into our youth, and this leads to issues such as low self confidence and even depression. I have had young clients who were depressed and needed to make extreme changes to how they looked.

What can be done to rectify these issues?

Acne can be cause by hormonal changes, usage of various beauty products and hygiene. However, unlike the olden days there is cure for them. With proper diet and right treatment acne issues can be controlled.

For this trend of following social media stars, I believe youth need to be confident of their own skin. There is no need to look like a certain person when one can have a better identity looking the way he or she is. However, it is alright to go to certain beauty enhancements if they really want to but not transform themselves entirely.

Are the issues you see different in this day and age compared to our parents’ times?

Of course. Now the youth are more stressed. They are in a rat race. Constantly comparing themselves to others and trying to outdo to ‘get ahead’. Then there are the diet changes. We have more and more fast-food outlets opening up because our youth prefer to binge eat them. Youth need to realize that both stress and unhealthy-diet are key sources to bad skin.

What advice do you have for the young people out these?

My key advice is to build their self confidence, which will enhance their appearance greatly. There is no need to follow the trend and suffer mentally. Each and every one is made unique and perfect. You can enhance your looks through beauty treatments.

Also, one needs to be very careful when choosing treatment. There is large number of beauty products in the market today, especially for fairness, which are very bad for skin. Our youth fall victim for these because they are mostly cheap. I advice youth to be very careful when choosing beauty products because bad quality ones can leave serious defects. Always be careful as to what you put on your face.

Better to brighten up the skin colour you have got by birth with suitable treatment rather than going for artificial whitening methods or treatments. Fair skin is affected by sun radiation and you will face skin problems like freckles, pigmentation, and be a target for premature ageing.

Obesity is the other problem most of our young people face. But we can solve that problem with proper diet control, exercise and if needed by non surgical fat reduction methods.