In Hot and Humid Singapore, What Skin Concerns Do Singaporeans Encounter?

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It’s said that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, but clear and spotless skin is universally considered an attractive and coveted trait.

Singaporeans are spending a lot of money on products related to beauty and fashion. In 2019 alone, consumers aged 16 to 64 across the city-state shelled out US$296 million on personal care — 9.7% more compared to the year before. To many, money is no object. Some are willing to part with hundreds to thousands of dollars for products that will address their specific skin concern or maintain smooth, perfect, youthful-looking skin.

Yet, Singaporeans have to wrestle with intense heat and humidity, especially during the dry seasons when the mercury in the thermometer reaches 36 degrees Celsius. The sun can be extremely damaging to the skin, and overexposure can lead to a myriad of skin concerns.

Here are the common skin concerns that Singaporeans have to deal with regularly.

Large Pores

Your skin is covered in tiny holes that allow oil and sweat to escape, naturally cooling your body and getting rid of toxins at the same time. In the tropics, your pores work overtime.

Noticeable pores are a common concern among Southeast Asians, including Singaporeans. It is harder to cover up with makeup because whatever base you use might settle on it, making it look more prominent, after hours of wear. Large pores get in the way of achieving smooth and blemish-free skin.

There is no way to close the pores (you would not want that anyway), but there are ways to minimize its appearance. Clinics such as Freia Medical offers deep pore cleaning procedures and chemical peel to remove the amount of sebum, dead skin cells, and dirt that accumulates in your pores. When the pores are clogged, they look more pronounced. It can also lead to an acne breakout.

Aside from regularly visiting an aesthetic clinic, using the right type of cleanser every day will also improve the appearance of large pores. A gentle cleanser that has glycolic acid will remove the layer of dead skin cells, traces of makeup, and air pollution that are clinging to your skin at the end of the day. Sitting inside a steam room for five to 10 minutes will also open up your pores, allowing you to wash the sebum, dirt, and bacteria out.

Dark Spots

In one survey conducted in 2019, over half of all Singaporean women between the ages of 35 and 44 said that hyperpigmentation, dark spots, and freckles were their primary skin concerns.

In a country where the sun is out and shining most of the year, the color of the skin will naturally darken as a result. While a darker skin tone is not a problem, if it is uneven or appears as patches, it becomes undesirable.

Everyone should wear sunscreen as part of their everyday skincare routine. A generous layer of sunscreen, ideally with an SPF 50, will protect the skin from the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun, keeping hyperpigmentation, including dark spots and freckles, at bay.

Those who already are suffering from hyperpigmentation will benefit from using products that have azelaic acid, glycolic acid, lactic acid, or vitamin C. These common skincare product ingredients exfoliate the uppermost layer of the skin to reveal younger, brighter, and even skin.

Excess Sebum

Hormones play a huge role in whether your skin will turn out dry or oily. But, so does the environment.

People living in places where it is hot and humid tend to produce excess sebum, especially on their faces. The sebaceous sweat glands, which are all over your skin, secrete sebum to lubricate the skin as well as cool the body during summer days. As a result, you get slick, shiny, oily skin.

Unlike sweat, sebum does not drip down and dry in time. It sits on the skin. As a result, people use mattifying cleansers and makeup or skip moisturizers to get rid of the oil.

Experts recommend that people who deal with excess sebum do the opposite of what they typically do. Instead of stripping their skin of sebum, they should hydrate their skin.

Singaporeans should use a gentle and hydrating cleanser that dries the skin. The lack of moisture will only lead to more sebum production as the sebaceous sweat glands try to compensate. They should also use a hydrating moisturizer to maintain an ideal skin condition that would not further increase the production of sebum beyond what is necessary.

Beautiful skin can only be achieved by using the right types of products. Singaporeans have to deal with heat and humidity throughout the year. They should, therefore, use products that are specifically formulated for their skin concerns.

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