This month, I'm featured on the Skin Clinic page of Women's Health sharing a bit about me, my typical day and some of the products I use personally to help keep my own blemishes at bay as London's go-to acne and acne scarring expert. Read all the juicy details in the full interview below. Enjoy!
1. Name - Dr Justine Kluk
2. Age - 35 (I've actually turned 36 since these questions were answered!)
3. Profession - Consultant Dermatologist
4. Typical day
I get up early as I like to fit in some exercise before heading to my clinic. I spin three mornings a week at a local studio called Spinnoff near my home in Hampstead. The class is pretty gruelling, but the music is invigorating and I always feel ready to face whatever the day has to throw at me afterwards. Once I've showered and changed, I grab a coffee and make my way to my private dermatology clinic in London's Harley Street.
There is no average day in the clinic! Every patient has their own unique story and my job is to ensure that I tailor the treatment and the skincare advice I give to their individual concerns in order to get the best results. Having said this, many patients who come to see me are looking for help with acne and acne scarring. These are my particular areas of expertise, and having suffered personally with persistent breakouts throughout most of my teens and twenties, they know they will find a sympathetic ear and someone who is really motivated to make things better for them from first-hand experience.
After clinic, I might meet a friend or colleague for a drink nearby or spend a little time browsing the stores around Oxford Street. I always find myself drawn to the beautiful row of boutiques in St Christopher's Place, just behind Selfridges, for a bit of window shopping. This is one of the real perks of working in central London as there is so much to do and see and I try my best to take full advantage of it all!
5. Skincare philosophy
Keep it simple. Choose products with ingredients you recognise and know to be effective. Give new products time to work - don't keep chopping and changing. Make sure that the products you pick are suited to your skin type. One size does not fit all.
6. Skincare non-negotiable
SPF. It's a no-brainer! As well as protecting you from skin cancer, wearing a sun protection moisturiser every morning, come rain or come shine, reduces your risk of dark spots, saggy skin, fine lines and wrinkles. There are lots and lots of really nice, cosmetically acceptable sunscreens available these days that don't leave thick, sticky, white marks everywhere. If you look for the words "non comedogenic" on the package label, they shouldn't clog your pores either.
7. Personal skincare concern
Spots. I suffered with acne from the age of 12 or 13. Like many parents, mine thought I'd grow out of it by the time I reached my twenties. I didn't and it made me feel totally miserable. It may sound dramatic, but when I did eventually get effective treatment, it was an absolute game-changer and this is the main reason I went to medical school and specialised in Dermatology. I wanted to make sure that no-one else had to feel the way I did when there is treatment that actually works. These days I get to help others with a similar story to me every day and it is so rewarding, both personally and professionally.
8. 3 products you use in the morning and why?
In the morning, I splash some lukewarm water on my face then massage a gentle cleanser like La Roche Posay Effaclar H cleansing cream over my skin before rinsing and patting dry. This removes any grease or dirt and prepares my skin for the rest of my routine. Next up is my antioxidant serum. I love Skinceuticals Phloretin CF serum which contains 10% vitamin C. Antioxidants protect your skin from environmental damage like UV rays and city pollution by neutralising free radicals so are great as part of any anti-ageing skincare routine or if your goal is a brighter complexion. Finally, I apply a sun protection moisturiser. Because of my history of breakouts, I will only use a non-comedogenic product and I can highly recommend Garnier Ambre Solaire Sensitive Advanced anti-imperfection sun cream which also contains salicylic acid to help control blemishes.
9. 3 products you use in the evening and why?
At night, I use micellar water to remove my makeup before cleansing. I also keep a bottle next to my bed along with some cotton pads in case I am ever tempted to skip my evening routine because I've had a late night. Garnier's new oil-infused cornflower micellar water is a godsend for removing eye-makeup. I follow this with a retinol cream, such as Redermic R by La Roche Posay 3 nights per week. This helps with evening skin tone, preventing fine lines and tightening pores. If my spots have been problematic, I may use a prescription cream at this point instead. Finally, my skin has a tendency to get irritated if I overdo the retinol, particularly in autumn and winter when the air is much drier. I finish my evening routine by applying a soothing moisturiser such as Bioderma Sensibio Rich. By reinforcing the skin barrier, it helps reduce those tight, uncomfortable sensations and also calms redness.
If you're struggling with spots and would like me to help you get them under control, call my team to book an appointment on 02037333225.