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Five minutes with: Dr Daniel Maes

By Donna Duggan

Dr Daniel Maes shares his top three tips on keeping your skin in peak condition, on MiNDFOOD.


Protection of the skin is mandatory, especially if you live in a place that has a lot of UV light like Australia or New Zealand, you have to wear SPF every day. Where I differ from some dermatologists is that I recommend only a SPF 15, if it is applied correctly.

SPF 15 is sufficient if you only spend up to 30 minutes outside during the day. But you have to apply it evenly to the skin, not just a little bit on your cheek. You have to make sure the whole area of your face, neck and ears are covered.

SPF technology has improved dramatically. The best ones offer both UVA and UVB protection as well as antioxidants. If you’re out in the sun for more than 30 minutes, use an SPF 30.


We are starting to see real skin damage caused by people who have exhausted their skin from over stimulating cell division with peels, lasers, etc. You need to treat your skin gently, ideally with a mild cleanser, a moisturiser and a repair product at night.

At any one time you should only be using a maximum of three products. You could even just get away with a moisturiser in the morning and a repair product at night.

If you could only afford one product, I would just recommend a night repair. During the day the cells are coping with an onslaught of potentially damaging factors such as the sun and pollution. Skin repair is more active at nighttime, so it helps to have a product that supports this.


Once you have a skin program, don’t change it for a minimum of three months. Give your skin time to adapt to the products. People who change their product every month aren’t doing their skin any favours.


Dr Daniel Maes is the Senior Vice President of Global Research and Development for Estée Lauder. Dr. Maes oversees all aspects of Skin Biology, Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Microbiology, Analytical Chemistry, Medical testing, Safety-In-Use testing, Raw Material Administration, Public Relations, Polymer Technology, Physical Chemistry and the External Research Program. A staff of over 72 people assists him with his work.

Dr Maes was born in Belgium and raised in France. He holds a Masters of Science degree in Nuclear Chemistry from the University of Paris and earned his PhD in Nuclear Chemistry at the Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Since completing his doctorate, Dr Maes has published many scientific papers and holds numerous patents.


Estée Lauder is releasing a new anti-wrinkle moisturiser in February 2009 called Time Zone. The product contains new technology that work to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles. RRP 50ml $138.


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