The Next Step in Your Skin Health Routine


Closeup of a healthy female getting ready for a spa treatment
Closeup of a healthy female getting ready for a spa treatment
Thinking about taking your beauty routine to the next level? We find out from a skin expert.

There is no shortage of moisturisers and serums promising to stop skin ageing in its tracks, and while efficacious skincare is an important part of any good beauty routine – ask any skin expert and they’ll tell you getting healthy, radiant skin is a journey. We caught up with Suzy Aitken, appearance medicine nurse and clinical manager of Skin Institute Queenstown, to find out about how to take the next step in your skin health routine. 

What happens at an initial skin consultation at Skin Institute?  

This is where discuss what the patient’s concerns are and what they are wanting to achieve with the treatment with the treatment they are inquiring about. We do an assessment of the area requiring treatment which looks at the following:

  • Quality of skin – pore size, scarring, the presence of red veins, pigmentation and melasma
  • Face shape
  • Fitzpatrick skin score
  • Ethnicity – relevant for patients having laser or IPL treatments
  • The amount of UV exposure the patient has had
  • Medical history, surgical history and history of any previous cosmetic treatments, plus allergies and medication the patient may be taking
  • History of skin cancers and recommendation of yearly skin checks

We also take photos and depending on what treatment is required, a Visia skin analysis. A personalised treatment plan is developed and documented. A copy is given to the patient along with information sheets and education material.

What are some common skin concerns you see with first-time patients who are in their late 30s and early 40s?

Pigmentation, rosacea, and acne scarring.

I’m concerned about fine lines, wrinkles and loss of volume but I don’t want Botox or fillers. What other options exist for me?

  • Dermagun treatments with PRP (platelet-rich plasma) or hyaluronic acid –a course of three treatments every three weeks and then maintanence treatments  6-12 monthly. It increases skin hydration, elasticity, radiance and improves texture and decreases redness.
  • Laser Genesis treatments – a laser treatment that stimulates the skin’s natural processes to reverse the signs of ageing and sun damage to promote a vibrant, healthy looking

Pigmentation is a common skin concern for Kiwi women. What treatment options exist for improving uneven skin tone and pigmentation?
IPL would be the treatment of choice for Fitzpatrick skin types 1-3. With higher Fitzpatrick skin types we would recommend topical application of Retinoic
acid combined with a bleaching agent. All patients would benefit from being on a Tyronidase inhibitor – Vitamin A and B serums. It’s essential to use SPF30 sunblock that contains zinc and/or titanium dioxide.

When you are starting someone on an active skincare regimen what key products do you generally look to include?

A good at-home skincare regimen is crucial to prevent the ageing process and maintain skin health. In the ideal world, everyone should be on a Vitamin A, B and C serum or cream and an SPF 30 sunscreen that contains zinc and/or titanium dioxide. Mosturising is important too – it doesn’t have to be an expensive brand but it  is essential to moisturise.

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