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Five minutes with: Aubrey Parsons

By Milly Nolan

Professor Aubrey Parsons says that the most exciting discoveries in the beauty sector are materials produced via biotechnology, genetic engineering, GMOs and a deeper understanding of microrganisms, on MiNDFOOD.

Professor Aubrey Parsons has two Doctorates in Chemistry and has researched Aromatic Botanics, Fragrances and Skin Care Cosmetics for the past 45 years. He is currently an Honorary Senior Researcher in the Department of Botanic Biology at the University of South Africa. He also serves on the Board of the International Society of Cosmetic Dermatology, as well as being a Researcher and Developer for Nimue Skin Technology.

What are your top skincare tips?

1 Avoid the sun and harsh wind.

2 Cleanse and moisturise daily and definitely before going to bed.

3 Eat intelligently and in moderation.

4 Do not smoke.

5 Limit your alcohol intake very carefully.

6 Avoid all forms of stress (where possible).

7 Your lifestyle must be contented and happy.

8 Sleep regularly and at least 6+ hours per day.

9 Enjoy fresh fruit and vegetables.

10 Apply SPF-20 daily.

11 Use a reputable, reliable and responsible range of skin care products.

What is worse for your skin, the sun or smoking?

The sun is more devastating than smoking; that does not mean that smoking is cool, though.

How big a role do genetics play in the ageing process? Can you look at your mother to tell how you are going to age?

Genetics are critical, but remember that genes jump a generation, so you need to look at your grandparents for a closer fingerprint of your future appearance. Your mum’s contribution is rather small in comparison to your gran’s. However, the final decision of quality, will almost solely depend on how you care for yourself from a very early age; it is never too early to start.

How important is nutrition when it comes to maintaining healthy, youthful skin? 

Your diet is critical and I can’t over emphasise enough the importance of fruit and vegetables. I also recommend poultry and fish with a limitation on red meat. Allow me to also add that a “small” amount of mild physical exercise should be undertaken.

What is your opinion on all-natural skincare products (ones without synthetic ingredients)?

I am only luke-warm on 100 per cent natural products. There are many synthetic materials that cant be replaced with naturals and they are all extremely safe and beneficial.

What are phytochemicals and how may they benefit humans?

Phytochemicals are botanical extracts. Some will benefit the skin due to rapid absorption.

What do you know about nutraceuticals?

Nutraceuticals are also labeled functional foods. They have arrived and are here to stay. When you care for yourself internally and externally correctly, you will greatly benefit metabolically.

In all your years of practice, what has been the most exciting discovery in the world of beauty and skincare?

In my humble opinion, it refers to the materials that have been produced via biotechnology, genetic engineering, GMO’s and a deeper understanding of microrganisms.

What do you think the future holds for skincare development?

The future is exceptionally bright. As new active ingredients are discovered, we are able to turn the clock backwards and produce facial conditions that we are proud of.


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