In light of recent changes to ultra-low emission zone and a greater focus on pollution reduction in urban areas, the latest Government air quality statistics show pollution is improving but issue red flag over rush hour spikes


Statistics released by The Department of Health today (25.04.19) have shown generally pollution levels are improving in cities across the UK but rush hour still a cause for concern with pollution concentration as much as 20 per cent greater during the working week, compared with the weekend. As well serious environmental implications and health consequences, pollution can have an ageing impact on our skin. But just how much do us Brits understand about the effects of pollution and how to protect our skin from it?

New insight from leading skincare clinic group sk:n has shown that whilst 78% of people across the UK are concerned about the effect of pollution on their skin, only a tiny 23% know how to protect their skin from harm. And when it comes to Londoners, a staggering 75% feel their commute has a negative impact on the condition of their skin.

Consultant Dermatologist at sk:n, Jinah Yoo explains more:

“There are several mechanisms by which air pollution can affect the skin. Ozone, which is one of the major air pollutants, generates free radicals (a toxic by-product of oxidation) which leads to a reduction in the antioxidants in our skin, as well as disrupting collagen production and destroying the skin’s barrier. As a result, it promotes skin ageing.

“With long-term exposure to air pollutants, you may see the signs of skin ageing which will appear as wrinkles, brown spots, uneven skin tone, dehydration and loosing elasticity of the skin.

“Air pollutants also cause skin inflammation and increased pigment production. Some studies have shown pollution can result in up to a 50% reduction in skin microflora, which are group of microorganisms living on our skin to protect against harmful bacteria.

“What’s more, some of the air pollutants are small enough to penetrate into pores which can be trapped and cause acne-like spots.”

The report also highlights that as we enter spring and summer, concentrations of Ozone peak due to prolonged hot and sunny conditions, with exposure increasing in urban living in 2018 compared to previous years.

With 83% of Brits[1] Rural Economic Bulletin for England, May 2018

living in urban areas, Jinah offers here advice for how to protect your skin against pollution.

“There are four important daily skincare steps you should consider: deep cleansing, antioxidant application, moisturiser and sunscreen.

“Firstly, deep cleansing at night will help to remove pollutants accumulated on the surface of the skin during the daytime.

“After cleansing, application of an antioxidant cream containing vitamin C and E, which inhibit free radical formation, will help to delay the skin ageing process caused by extrinsic factors such as air pollution or UV. However, choosing the right antioxidant and using it correctly is important. Vitamin C cream comes in various concentrations (5-20%), it is best to start with a low concentration, then gradually increase the concentration as starting with high strength can occasionally cause skin irritation. As vitamin C oxidise quickly, storing in a cool, dark place with tightly sealed container and looking for a product containing ferulic acid with vitamin C and E which improves stability of antioxidants can reduce the concern over stability. Antioxidants need to be used for at least 6 months before seeing any significant improvement.

“Keeping the skin well-moisturised will also help to maintain intact skin barrier. And finally, using sun cream which contains UV and visible light block will help to reduce signs of skin ageing.”

Whilst maintaining a good daily skincare routine will help protect your skin from damage, there are a variety of treatments that can help improve skin pigmentation and tone whilst rejuvenating the skin. sk:n operates on a case-by-case basis, providing free aesthetic treatment consultations for every patient with a trained medical specialist.


[1] Rural Economic Bulletin for England, May 2018

We would like to wish Dr Graham Johnson the best of luck in this year’s Virgin Money’s London Marathon. Taking place on 28th April, the event will see over 40,000 people take part in the gruelling 26.2-mile run. Our capitals 39th race will celebrate in 2019 as funding from the event reaches a huge £1 billion! Dr Johnson will be raising money for 2 different charities, his local charity, the Lifton Community Centre and a national charity – the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity (RNRMC). Dr Johnson served in both the Navy and Marines for the first 10 years of his medical career, so this charity is close to his heart. sk:n is delighted to be supporting Graham in his mission to raise money for both of these worthy charities.  Dr Johnson, based in our Plymouth clinic, the port city known for its maritime heritage, historic Barbican district and harbours said “I am looking forward (I think!) to taking part in the London Marathon again, which I last attempted in 2004! I’m raising money for a local charity, the Lifton Community Centre who gave me the place to run, and a national charity which looks after sailors, marines and their families who need support. If anyone would like to support my chosen charities please visit my fundraising page – any donations will be very much appreciated. Thank you!”

Good luck Dr Johnson! We look forward to hearing more from you after the race.

sk:n’s network of award-winning clinics is continuing to grow, with our latest opening on Charles Street, Cardiff.

The new clinic location is a merger between sk:n’s existing clinic at the David Lloyd Health Club on Ipswich Road and Cellite, an established aesthetic clinic that has been in the area for more than 20 years.

Practitioners from both clinics, including David Lloyd’s clinic manager and Cellite’s Medical Director Dr Harryono Judodihardjo and Nurse Kay Mounter, have joined forces to create a highly-skilled team of qualified medical professionals.

Dr Harry said:  “We are all very excited to join an established, leading medical clinic group and I believe that our joint expertise brings a new dimension to what we can offer. The award-winning quality of our service and treatments will by no means be compromised, but can only improve and grow as we embark on this journey with sk:n. We look forward to welcoming back our existing patients, as well as new ones.”

Capital South Wales DJ, Kally Davies, who attended the launch party event, was impressed with the clinic’s range of treatments. “It is great to see such a strong offering in the local area. Having confidence in your skin is so important, and sk:n offers people the chance to boost their confidence,” she said.

The clinic underwent a full refurbishment ahead of the re-opening and offers a range of body treatments never before available at sk:n. These include Pure Tumescent LiposculptureEndermologie Cellulite TreatmentTixelSpectra Laser Peels and Photodynamic Therapy.

There will also be the usual core offering of sk:n’s professional skincare and dermatology treatments available, including laser hair removal, dermal fillers, anti-ageing injections, acne treatments and microneedling.

To find out more or arrange a treatment consultation at sk:n Charles Street Cardiff, click here or call 0330 037 6854.


We live in a golden age of DIY beauty products. We’re told that from the comfort of our own homes, we can depilate, exfoliate, manicure and even give ourselves intensive facial treatments with gadgets promising salon results. And now there is a hot new skincare device on the market: the Ziip; a smartphone-sized device which promises to eradicate acne and leave skin looking healthier and younger using nano technology.


But is it worth a space on your bathroom shelf? Read on and decide for yourself.


There are four different settings, which can be used for anti-ageing, sensitivity, clarifying and under-eye treatment. Each setting sends a different type of electrical current towards your skin, allowing Ziip to target acne and redness as well as stimulating collagen to promote anti-ageing.

The Ziip device can be connected to an app on your iPad or iPhone, allowing you to tailor and track your skincare programme.


The Ziip device is not cheap, retailing at around $500 in the US (£325), plus $129 for a two-month supply of conductive gel treatments.

You may not see instant results – Simon says that the device is best used as part of your regular skincare regime, and promises that you will notice a difference in your skin over time.

You will probably feel a slight tingling sensation as you use it, but this is no worse than your average at-home IPL or depilatory treatment.


The Ziip device has only just been launched, so the jury is out on its long-term benefits and ease of use for your average home user.

Right now, if you have insurance with Bupa, you are able to opt to have your Bupa approved dermatology treatment at sk:n, double industry award winner and accepted as, ‘The Nation’s Skin Clinic’. Founded almost 25 years ago in Harrogate and Birmingham City hospital, sk:n has more experience than any other provider in the UK of working with the highest clinical protocols, across the most treatment areas with the UK’s leading dermatologists.

What treatments do sk:n offer?

There are 3 easy steps to follow.

  1. Visit your GP who will provide you with a referral to one of our Consultants or they will provide you with an open referral.
  2. Contact BUPA and request an authorisation code for an initial consultation at the sk:n clinic of your choice.
  3. Finally, simply contact your sk:n clinic and provide us with your membership and authorisation number and we will do the rest!

You will be seen on a day and time that suits you by one of our highly skilled Consultants, and all the billing and administration is taken care of by one of our pracititioners.

I loved being seen at a clinic so close to home. It just made everything more convenient

sk:n has been working with BUPA for many years in providing their clients with access to the best skin treatments and expert advice. The majority of our clinics are registered to provide BUPA treatments and are working towards registering the remainder within the next few weeks.

There really is an app for everything nowadays, and there are quite a few that promise to solve all your skin concerns without the need to go to a GP or dermatologist. The latest is called SkinBetter, and claims to give a personal analysis of your skin.

The app was developed in partnership with Allure Magazine in order to provide an answer to all the women who don’t have time or don’t want to visit a doctor.

How it works


In short, the app leverages the ability to take a good selfie. The app uses ‘medical-imagery software’ on your selfie as well as your answers to a questionnaire in order to analyse current and future problems in your skin.


The software claims to be able to identify wrinkles, dry areas, dark spots, sun damage and more. You are then left with a skin “grade” which leads you to a list of suggested skincare products that it deems suitable for your skin.

Not a replacement for dermatologists

The article in Allure Magazine introducing the app stresses the fact that this is not a replacement for doctor visits or dermatologist appointments. It is to educate users on their skin and the appropriate products for your skin type.

We are constantly looking for easy, quick fixes that will aid our busy, modern lifestyles, so are more than happy to swap a doctor’s appointment for an app that claims to give the same, if not more detailed solution.

It may be useful for understanding the general skincare for your skin types but only a dermatologist will be able to give you a truly personalised experience as well as comfort and support. An app is unlikely going to recognise medical conditions that could be causing your skin problems. This could result in more damage as only the symptoms will be treated and not the cause.

In the U.K there are about 2500 deaths from skin cancer every year, with over exposure to the sun’s strong UV rays as the biggest single reason for contracting it.

There is much we can do to help prevent it, as well as preventing the other side effects of sun damage such as wrinkles, through protecting ourselves with sunscreen and also limiting the amount of time we spend in the sun.

It is difficult however to know how much damage our skin has already suffered from the sun, and so what our risk levels are. Over exposure to UV rays can also cause other skin conditions such as unsightly skin pigmentation, coarsening of the skin and premature wrinkles. We won’t necessarily know what damage is being inflicted to our skin until it is too late; once the effects of sun damaged skin are visible they are often hard to treat.

Benefits of skin scan

Undertaking a skin scan will reveal the levels of skin damage that you wouldn’t normally be able to see. It will reveal any brown spots, freckles and redness, all of which are usually signs of skin damage. Though it doesn’t treat the sun damage itself, usually revealing the damage that has already been done is enough to ensure that the right steps are taken to minimise the future risk of sun damage.

As well as making sure that you continue to protect your skin in the sun, and to reduce your time in it, it also allows you the opportunity to understand what other protective products your skin may need to help minimise potential future skin conditions, such as pigmentation.