Being in the swimwear business naturally aligns us with a sun-oriented lifestyle. All of us at Helen Jon are committed to staying smart, healthy and protected from the damaging effects of the sun. We are so thankful to have the opportunity to talk with Dr. John Cook, from the Whole Beauty Institute in Chicago, to learn how to keep our skin sun-safe and looking beautiful.
Q: Sun — and yes, aging — can wreak havoc on our skin. This we know. Should we be adjusting our skincare routines for different seasons, different elements, and aging?
Yes, each season brings different elements that affect the skin. The colder months typically dry out the moisture in the skin leaving a dull, chapped look. We recommend our Hydrating Peptide Serum in conjunction with our Maximum Recovery moisturizer. The serum helps produce collagen and reduces the appearance of fine lines, and the moisturizer seals in hydration.
Q: What about serums and oils? Are these best applied at night, if at all? We worry that the serums and oils, if applied before heading out into the sun, might cause sunburns or irritation?
Most serums and oils that have any active ingredients would be best suited for night applications to avoid promoting irritation due to sun exposure. Our Hydrating Peptide Serum can be used morning and evening without any irritation. In fact this particular product is great for all skin types.
Q: Do you have a favorite sunblock and post-sun cream that you recommend for your patients? Is it one-size-fits-all, or does fair skin require a certain kind, whereas olive or dark skin might respond better to a different one?
The Whole Beauty Institute Collection carries a variety of sun blocks for each skin type. Our sun blocks have Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide, which are the key ingredients you want to have in the fight against sun damage. Regardless of products claiming long lasting coverage, reapplication is key to when using SPF while exposed to sun for extended periods of time.
Q: We love our Helen Jon surf shirts which all have UPF 50. Do you recommend rash guards to your patients or other sun-safe activewear?
This time of year many of our patients take a break from the Chicago winter and visit sunny beaches all around the world. I like to remind my patients that it is important to protect their skin with sun block. I also encourage them to seek out swim suits and active wear that are sun-protective. The Helen Jon surf shirts are a perfect choice because they allow for ease of motion, protect from the sun, and have a very elegant look.
Q: What can we do if we do get a burn?
We educate our patients on the importance of sun protection such as the appropriate SPF, hats or Helen Jon Surf shirts. Should you get sunburned we recommend using our Hydrating Peptide Serum or one of our moisturizers that do not contain any active ingredients.
Q: The kind of medicine you practice invites individuality and offers room for creative expression. You are renowned and so highly respected in your field for the work you do with reconstructive breast surgeries, as well as for aesthetically-driven procedures. What aspect of your practice inspires you the most?
My patients are my greatest inspiration. Each individual has a unique expressive identity. Plastic surgery, at its best, helps restore that identity when time and the aging process have obscured it. Many times a patient will tell me, “Now I look like myself again.” This brings me great happiness and inspires me to keep refining my work.
Q: What are your favorite non-invasive procedures to help us look younger?
Our clinical aestheticians utilize a series of chemical peels, enhanced oxygen facials, micro-channeling with platelet rich plasma and photofacials along with products from our medical grade skin care line to assist in maintaining or restoring skin to a youthful glow.
Think of this as if we were your personal trainer, but for your skin. Our aestheticians give your skin a work-out using these different types of treatments. To maintain the effects of the treatments you need to nourish your skin at home with medical grade products.
Q: We understand that you have a true love of art, literature, architecture, music, restoring arts - a true, modern day Renaissance Man, which we love! Is there a favorite book, exhibit or project you are working on right now that you can share with us?
I usually have about twenty books on my bedside table, as I am a voracious reader. For me, boredom is impossible because there are so many interesting things to do and to learn about. I am fascinated by the ways that trees can restore health and well-being, so I was delighted to discover the book, “The Hidden Life of Trees.” This book explores the concept of trees as communicative and social beings. Every now and then you come across a book that changes the way you look at the world; this is one of them.
Our thanks to Dr. Cook for sharing this with us! Springtime, here we come. The sun awaits…