May 7, 2024

Unveiling the secrets of menopause skincare

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Theresa, US

Product development. Skincare innovator. Anti-aging expert.

"Beauty starts with self-care, and confidence blooms from within."

Hi Theresa! Could you please tell us a bit about yourself?

My name is Theresa, and I am an entrepreneur in the beauty and wellness category specializing in the formulation and development of skincare products. Originally from Hong Kong, I have resided in the US for nearly three decades. With more than 20 years of experience, I have dedicated my career to the beauty industry, focusing specifically on skincare.

In 2000, I took a leap and introduced my own luxury skincare brand called SCO which represented "Skin Care Options." The brand quickly gained recognition and was available in high-end specialty stores across the globe. Currently,  I consult for various  beauty brands, including Pause Well-Aging, a skin care brand rooted in the idea of well-aging.

Tell us the story about yourself and skincare, how did you get into this field?

Since a young age, I struggled with extremely dry skin and had sought help from a dermatologist. Gradually, my interest in skincare grew. In 2000, I made the decision to make a career from my lifelong obsession, which is skin care and I launched SCO skincare with a range of 16 products, which transformed my passion for skincare into a full-fledged profession.

As I aged, I noticed more and more skin changes, I panicked and thought, "This is not good. What can I do?" Just like many women—and men too—I suddenly realized, "Oh my God, I've entered a new phase. It's concerning. What do I do now?" So, as someone from the industry, I still had to put insignificant effort and conduct thorough research to find a brand that could provide me with diverse options instead of having to search for individual products from various sources.

Now let’s talk a bit more about menopause. To start with, what’s your understanding of menopause?

Menopause is a natural biological process that marks the end of a woman's reproductive years. It typically occurs in women between the ages of 45 and 55, although it can vary from person to person. Menopause is characterized by a decrease in the production of  hormones, particularly estrogenic and progesterone, by the ovaries.

During menopause, because of the hormonal shifts, some of the most visible and noticeable side effect that occur are changes to the skin. Typically, there will be more pronounced skin dryness and wrinkles, hyper pigmentation, and overall sagging of the skin for both the face and body.  There are additionally  bodily changes that occur as well and are different for everyone but for me, I noticed the most shifts occurring with my skin.

How do you see the influence of menopause on skin care?

During menopause, because of a decline in the body ‘s ability to produce collagen women often experience dryness, increased skin sensitivity, thinning hair, decreasing bone health to the appearance of wrinkles and sagging skin. These total body changes are further influenced by hormonal changes as that continues as we age. Therefore, it's essential to develop skincare solutions that address the specific challenges and support women throughout their menopausal journey and beyond.

It's a common oversight in the industry that many skincare products primarily focus on facial concerns while neglecting the needs of the entire body during menopause. However, it's crucial to recognize that menopause affects the entire body, and addressing only facial skincare is not enough. Brands should strive to create products that provide comprehensive care for menopausal women, considering all aspects of their w ell-being.

I strongly believe that skincare formulations should be tailored to the specific needs of menopausal women. Menopause brings about significant hormonal changes, and the way men and women experience these changes differs. While the outward effects may appear similar, the underlying causes have slight variations. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to develop skincare products that specifically cater to the needs of menopausal women.

Pause well aging offers an information section alongside the Community Board, creating as pace where people facing similar situations can connect and find support. The brand is a pioneer in this space and has made it a point to be one of the first brands to openly discuss menopause and use the term "menopause" itself, rather than relying on euphemisms. Pause well aging believes that breaking the taboo surrounding menopause is crucial, and it's also encouraging to see celebrities opening about their experiences, which helps in normalizing the conversation.

Are there any misconceptions about menopause when it comes to skin care?

Misconceptions surrounding menopause are still prevalent, but it's important to debunk them and provide accurate information. One common misconception is that there's nothing you can do about menopause, but that's not entirely true. While menopause is a natural biological process, there are many things you can do to help yourself during this transition.

For instance, some women complain about gaining belly fat during menopause. While hormonal changes can affect how your body processes food, you can adjust your diet, take supplements, and modify your exercise routine to address these changes. It's about working with your body's natural signals and finding what makes you feel better. Taking proactive steps to help yourself is crucial.

Additionally, certain physical changes during menopause, like hair thinning, can bead dressed. Using specialized hair products or taking supplements that promote hair thickness can be beneficial. It's essential to take care of yourself holistically and address various aspects of your well-being. While skincare is important, overall health should not be neglected. As we age, our bodies undergo changes, and it's vital to adjust our lifestyle accordingly.

Prioritizing good nutrition, regular exercise, and quality sleep are all factors that can contribute to feeling better during the menopausal transition. Educating yourself about menopause before it happens is also crucial. The average age of menopause is around 52, but changes can start occurring in the mid-40s.Understanding early signs like metabolic changes, weight gain, or difficulties in recovering from indulgences can help indicate the approach of menopause. Brands should consider providing education and preventive skincare options for women in their 40s, assisting them in preparing for and minimizing the impact of menopause.

Taking care of skin and overall health is a lifelong process. Moisturizing regularly and using sunscreen daily are essential practices that should start at a young age, even during adolescence. Proper moisturization maintains skin elasticity and prevents premature aging, while sunscreen protects against damage from UVA, UV Brays and blue light which is emitted by both the sun and electronic devices. By starting early, you can help prevent or minimize the effects of menopause on your skin. Being aware of, and preventing the cumulative effects of the sun and blue light by using a strong SPF can also help prevent many issues like hyperpigmentation.

What do you think is the most important step for a good skincare?

When it comes to good skincare, there are a few important steps to consider. One of the most crucial aspects is proper sunscreen application. There are common is conceptions regarding sunscreen, such as believing that applying a thick layer in the morning will provide protection throughout the day, even in situations like going to the beach. However, the reality is that sun screen needs to be reapplied every two hours to ensure continuous protection.

Moisturization is another key step in skincare that should not be overlooked. Many people with oily skin tend to skip moisturizer, thinking that their skin already has enough moisture. However, this is a misconception. Regardless of your skin type, moisturization is essential. If you have oily skin, it's advisable to look for oil-free moisturizers that can keep your skin hydrated without adding excess oil. In fact, when the skin lacks moisture, it compensates by producing more oil, which can lead to further issues. By using a lightweight, oil-free moisturizer, you can provide the necessary hydration to your skin while helping to maintain its balance, particularly for those with oily or breakout-prone skin.

Have you noticed any trends in the skincare market?

Personalized skincare has gained traction in recent years, and for menopausal women, customization becomes more focused on addressing universal concerns that commonly arise during this stage of life. Issues such as increased dryness, sagging skin, and hyperpigmentation can be targeted with personalized solutions, making it easier to create tailored skincare regimens.

Incorporating technology into personalized skincare can further enhance the effectiveness and precision of the formulations. Advanced tools and devices can provide valuable data about an individual's skin condition, enabling the development of highly customized products and treatments.

Additionally, sustainability and eco-friendly practices are becoming increasingly important in the beauty and skincare industry. Consumers are actively seeking products that align with their values and contribute to a healthier planet. Brands should prioritize sustainable sourcing, packaging, and manufacturing processes to meet these demands and establish their commitment to environmental stewardship.

Do you have any skin care advice for women that are going through menopause?

During the menopausal transition, my final advice for women would be to proactively start taking care of their skin and researching skincare options earlier than they might anticipate. By addressing skin concerns and implementing a skincare routine during this period, the process can be smoother and less overwhelming. It's important to keep in mind that our skin is the largest organ in our body and constantly undergoes changes.

Don't be discouraged if you need to adjust and use different products over time. It's natural for our skin's needs to evolve, and adapting to those changes is essential. Additionally, consider exploring cosmetic procedures such as Botox or treatments with aestheticians if they align with your personal preference sand budget. Ultimately, the key is to prioritize self-care and take care of your skin, as it plays a significant role in overall well-being.

Finally, you have any advice for skincare brands?

Firstly, it is crucial to differentiate your formulas from existing products in the market. Whether your target audience is menopausal women, teenagers with skincare concerns, or individuals with dry skin, there should be a clear message on what sets your products apart. Carefully consider how you will differentiate your formulation sand effectively communicate that unique selling proposition to your target audience.

For large companies, it is important to leverage their resources to create high-quality products that are also reasonably priced. Prioritizing accessibility along side profitability can help build a strong brand and foster customer loyalty. By offering products that are both effective and affordable, large companies can reach a wider consumer base and establish themselves as trusted industry leaders.

On the other hand, entrepreneurs and newcomers should also focus on creating effective products that cater to specific customer needs and preferences. By conducting thorough market research and understanding the desires of their target audience, entrepreneurs can develop products that address unmet needs and provide innovative solutions. Being mindful of customer feedback and continuously adapting to their evolving preferences will help establish a loyal customer base and drive growth.

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