Selfies and smartphones age your skin

For people who believe that selfies are the ultimate display of vanity it may seem like poetic justice.

Published: 18th June 2016 08:44 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th June 2016 08:49 AM   |  A+A-

Selfie_AFP

Photo for representational purpose only. (File Photo | AFP)

For people who believe that selfies are the ultimate display of vanity it may seem like poetic justice.

Dermatologists now believe that regularly exposing the face to the light and electromagnetic radiation from smartphones can damage the skin, speeding up ageing and wrinkles.

Doctors even claim they can tell which hand a person holds their phone in just by looking at which side of the face is most damaged.

Speaking before this weekend's FACE conference on aesthetics and anti-ageing, in London, Dr Simon Zoakei, medical director of the Linia Skin Clinic in Harley Street, said: "Those who take a lot of selfies and bloggers should worry. Even the blue light we get from our screens can damage our skin.

"I think there is a gap in the market for products which protect, because I know there are people who take lots of selfies, and bloggers who come to me. I have seen that there is damage and ageing taking place.

"It's a different wavelength of radiation so sunscreen will not block it."

His remarks were echoed by Dr Zein Obagi, of the Obagi Skin Health Institute in Beverley Hills. "Your cell phone will damage your skin," he said. "It's not documented, but in my clinical observation I can tell whether someone uses their right hand or left hand to hold their phone. You start to see a dull, dirty-looking texture you cannot identify on one side of the face.

He, too, called for the development of a "defence mechanism" against the effects of smartphones, adding that their light "has some sort of magnetic thing that is happening to the skin".

"This magnetic field is altering the minerals in the skin. A sunscreen will not protect you. But if you saturate your skin with anti-oxidants it can help prevent DNA damage from electronic devices."

Some experts believe that electromagnetic radiation ages skin by damaging the DNA, preventing skin from repairing itself.

The experts also claimed most over-the-counter moisturisers and oils do not work, and that "a good scrub" is the best way to keep skin healthy.

Dr Obagi added: "There is a reason that women have more problems with sensitive skin than men. It's because women use products."

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