Dermatologist Dr Justine Kluk discusses the importance of knowing exactly what you are putting on your skin as part of your daily beauty regime. 

Dr Justine Kluk

Dr Justine Kluk

Hi Justine, thank you so much for joining us today. Can you give us a little bit of background of how you got into dermatology and how you’re now working with Garnier?

So I became interested in dermatology through having acne myself as a teenager so I was really self-conscious about my skin and it really affected myself esteem as I was growing up and I was determined that I was going to be able to do something for other people to prevent them from going through the same things as me so that provoked me to go to medical school and study dermatology. A relationship with Garnier, is because we’re aligned with things such as sun protection, natural skin care ingredients and conveying the same messages as each other.

Perfect. Can you tell us a bit about new range that Garnier is launching please?

The new range that Garnier is launching is called the ‘naturals range’ and this is 96% derived from natural sources so Garnier are responding to research that is showing that half of women polled, want to know more about what is contained in the products they are using, where the ingredients come from, whether they are green or sustainable; this is a reflection of being increasingly conscious of living a natural lifestyle and using natural products.

Well I think we’re all increasingly concerned about the provenience of the products that we use; we want to know more about the ingredients, where they come from, that we’re not depleting natural resources that things are green, ethical, sustainable etc.

So Garnier is responding to that demand from women by producing products that contain more natural ingredients but also decoding the ingredients clearly on the back of packaging so that people can make an informed choice about what products that they buy.

So you mentioned earlier, about the labelling that they’re introducing with the new range, why do you think it is important for beauty brands to be more transparent? I’ve also looked the new Garnier labelling and it all seems incredibly well laid out, has a list of slightly scientific ingredients and then explanations of what that actually is and what it does. Why is it important, why aren’t other brands doing this?

I think it will head in the same direction. I think the desire for transparency comes from people more concerned about what they’re putting into their bodies and what is followed over time is an increasing concern about what we’re putting onto our faces and bodies every day.

One in four of us will regularly check our food packaging but one in seven of us are checking our beauty products in the same way. Having said that, one in ten women, when asked about this by Garnier, said that they were shocked that they don’t pay more attention to what they’re putting onto their faces and bodies on a day- to- day basis.

So I think this will catch up in skincare as well.

Earlier on in the year, microbeads hit the headlines and that was a massive point of interest across all media. Looking at introducing banning laws etc, what sort of ingredients, would you say, are things that people need to be looking out for when they’re looking at labelling? Things like parabens for example.

I think there are few thing that are universally bad and those are never going to be contained in any skincare product that goes to market, hopefully, because all of these products should be subject to rigorous scientific testing to make sure they’re safe and effective.

I think the exclusion of parabens from products in response to genuine concern from what people have read in the media or seen online and although I guess that products containing parabens are less appealing to people because they have various things about them, so the particular products we are talking about today do not contain parabens.

What are some natural products that are better for you as opposed to ones that are not? So for example, a natural antiseptic what are the sorts of things that are good to see on the back of labelling?

I think actually, first and foremost, people like to recognise the names of ingredients they see on the back of packaging. Most of us can’t pronounce half of the things we see on the back of packages, so I think knowing what the ingredients are makes a big difference to us.

I think in regards as to whether certain things should be included, it’s very specific to the individual. There’s not going to be one particular ingredient that suits everyone, but I think at least by, having the transparency around what’s inside a product, we know from experience, what products suit us best and what we ought to avoid so when it’s really clear on the packaging, it allows us to buy things that we know are going to work better for us.

What would you say are the long term effects are using only natural products on your skin?

I think that the benefits that are hopefully from using naturally derived sources is that they’re kinder and more gentle to the skin.

In my dermatology clinic, I have so many people coming to me and telling me that their skin is dry and sensitive. Sensitive skin is a really big problem; there is a lot of fear around chemicals within skincare products, we mentioned parabens a minute ago, so I think people find it really attractive, the idea of using natural skin care solutions.

Can you please just finish off, by giving us your ten reasons, why it’s important to go natural with your facial products?

- The first thing is that there’s comfort and reassurance in being able to recognise the names of ingredients.

- Secondly, people want to know exactly what they’re putting onto their faces and bodies every day. 

- It enables us to choose products that are better suited to our skin.

- This allows us also to avoid items that we may be allergic to or may have reacted to in the past.

- I think we want to know where our products comes from.

- We are all more concerned about the environment and being more green and choosing products that are sustainably sourced.

- We want to avoid ‘nasties.’

- We want to use things that are kind to the skin.

- And we want things that are safe

...and affordable. So there’s ten.

Brilliant. Thank you so much Justine.