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Proper skincare should be a part of one’s daily routine. In the Philippines, however, most Filipinos do not pay too much attention to their skin’s health due to various reasons—lack of awareness, perceived high cost, among other things.
Enter Cetaphil, a world leader in sensitive skin care, which made it its brand’s mission to promote healthy skincare for every Filipino through its annual National Healthy Skin Mission.
Now on its sixth year and held in partnership with Watsons, this year’s event features Skin Academy, a pop-up booth on the ground floor of SM Makati that educates consumers on the importance of proper skincare and how it impacts one’s overall health and wellness.
Partners in promoting healthy skin
In her welcome remarks during the launch of the Skin Academy last Aug. 17, Abe Mationg, Cetaphil country brand manager, emphasized how the brand’s goal has always been to provide gentle skincare solutions.
Cetaphil, she said, continues to deliver effective results that go with ever-changing skin needs, especially for those with highly sensitive skin. “We hear you and we see you, that’s why we’re so happy to introduce the next level in skin education: the National Healthy Skin Mission Skin Academy.”
Abe explained how Cetaphil is “unwaveringly passionate” about providing complete care for all sensitive skincare needs, offering first-hand access to experts and science-driven recommendations.
“That’s why we have the authority to educate the public on proper skin health for every skin story,” she added.
Digital creator and model Patty Laurel-Filart, the event’s host, shared that as a long-time user of Cetaphil, she can vouch for the brand’s commitment to educating the public “in order to provide the best care for Filipinos with sensitive skin.”
Meanwhile, Aimee Pernia, category manager of Watsons Philippines, thanked Cetaphil for partnering with them for another year of advocating healthy skin for every Filipino.
“We want to keep educating Filipinos on the proper way of taking care of sensitive skin… And for the National Healthy Skin Mission, we’re offering exclusive promos and discounts to help our consumers journey towards achieving healthy skin. That way, you can live the life as emphasized by Watson’s core message: Look good. Do good. Feel great every day,” she said.
Skin Academy pop-up booth
The pop-up booth features four rooms, each highlighting a specific skin need to help educate customers, debunk skincare misconceptions, and even give guests a chance to win Cetaphil products.
First is the Hydration Room. This room is for consumers to learn the right cleanser for their skin type by testing the different cleansers of Cetaphil.
The second room is the Radiance Room, dedicated to teaching Cetaphil Bright Healthy Radiance users how to brighten their skin in a gentle and healthy way through educational videos. The Radiance Room also has a claw machine for you to try and take home different products from Cetaphil’s Bright Healthy Radiance line.
Third is the Protect Room, designed to help first-time or expecting moms when it comes to giving their kids a great head start when it comes to proper skincare. A play area for the little ones to enjoy is also found in this room.
Lastly, there’s the Acne Masterclass Room, a space especially for consumers to learn the real cause of acne and how to properly act on it with dermatologist-approved products. There’s also an “acne myth” wall in the room which debunks common misconceptions about the skin condition.
Knowing your skin type
It would not be a Cetaphil event if sensitive skin experts were not present to help educate guests on proper skincare. For the Skin Academy launch, speakers included board-certified dermatologist Dr. Gaile Robredo-Vitas and Mega magazine beauty director, Agoo Bengzon. Both beauty gurus shared knowledge on proper skincare culled from both research and experience.
Dr. Gaile, for instance, gave tips on how you can identify your skin type, saying this step is crucial in ensuring that you use only the appropriate skincare products. She added that knowing the type of your skin will help you develop a skincare routine.
“If you don’t know your skin type, you might end up using the wrong products, which can lead to skin irritation etc. Your skin type also affects how products work on your skin,” she reminded the audience. Dr. Gaile clarified that your skin type can change over time, it is important then, to know your skin well through regular observation.
Consulting your dermatologist or doing the “day” or “wash” test can help you identify your skin type. The day test is done by observing your skin as soon as you wake up in the morning and comparing it to how it is by the middle or the end of the day. “Are you oily? Dry? Or the same? Or are some parts of your skin oily and other parts are dry?” she said.
If you cannot do the day test because you go to the gym or work outdoors, then the wash test is for you. In the morning, Dr. Gaile advised to wash your face with a gentle cleanser, make sure you do not put anything after, and observe your skin after 30 minutes. “You can use a blotting or tissue paper to see—if it is puno then your skin is oily, but if nothing happens then you’re normal. If some areas are oily and some are not, then you can be combination.”
Choosing the right cleanser
Another important, yet often overlooked, topic discussed during the masterclass was choosing the right cleanser for your skin.
“For all skin types, I always recommend a cleanser that is gentle on the skin, that removes all dirt, makeup, impurities, without stripping your skin off its natural moisture—the fatty acids and the lipids,” said Dr. Gaile. She added that it has been her advocacy to tell her patients that “when their skin feels dry or banat, you’re using the wrong cleanser.”
A tidbit that surprised many members of the audience was not having to stick to one type of cleanser.
“If you look at my dresser, I have like five cleansers. This is because your skin needs change din,” Dr. Gaile advised. She explained that your cleanser should depend on the activities you are doing on a particular day. If you’re someone who always wears makeup, for instance, she stressed the importance of using a foaming cleanser. “The foam attaches itself to all the dirt and debris, so that it’s easier to wash off makeup, creams.”
Hydrating your skin
Hydration was the next topic discussed, which Patty described as the current buzzword in the beauty world. Dr. Gaile described healthy skin as containing about 70 percent water. “You will feel it. Properly hydrated skin feels soft, smooth, and (looks) radiant. When your skin is dehydrated, it’s flaky, it’s itchy, it gets red and irritated.”
She added that skin, which has proper hydration, provides a strong barrier “so that when you go outside your skin doesn’t get easily irritated and skin care products that you use work how they’re supposed to.”
Skincare as a commitment
Patty then asked Agoo, who has been in the beauty industry for over two decades, about her skincare and beauty journey. Agoo recalled that for as far back as she can remember, she has always been kikay. “I would watch my mom put on makeup. I guess early on it has already been an interest for me.”
Agoo said that having good skin comes from a “commitment.” “A lot of my friends, they always ask ‘Why is your skin so good?’ I tell them, it’s not like it’s effortless. I take the time to do a whole regimen day and night.” She shared that cleansers, toners, moisturizers, and sunscreens are must-haves in one’s skincare regimen.
She also mentioned that knowing what works for her has always been a result of a series of trial-and-error. She cautioned against relying on what friends recommend because “different skincare products work differently on different people.”
A tried-and-tested tip she shared is using a product before going to sleep. “If I use it at night and when I wake up in the morning and my skin looks different, because you have the whole evening to absorb it and for it to show results. For me, I can tell the following morning, if that product is good.” She, however, clarified that some products need more time for the results to show.
To this, Dr. Gaile added that generally, you should see results as early as two weeks from when you started using a product, and 12 weeks for more significant results. “Our skin needs time, about 20 days to change,” she emphasized.
Agoo shared another practical tip wherein she takes a photo on the first day she uses a particular product and another about two to three weeks later. “But make sure you take a picture in the same place, at the same time, (using) the same lighting.”
Building a skincare regimen
Patty mentioned that despite its importance to one’s overall health and well-being, building a skincare routine can be intimidating for many Filipinos. She then asked Dr. Gaile for advice on how to start building one’s own skincare regimen, who responded by reiterating her tip at the beginning of the masterclass—identifying your skin type first and foremost. “And then, what’s equally important is that you identify your skin concerns. For me, for example, my main issue is skin pigmentation. Kasi hindi pa naman uso before ‘yung sunscreen," she said.
She then recommended knowing your lifestyle and budget, as these will also affect the products you will use. “Then listen to your skin. After trying all these products, kung hindi siya okay, huwag niyo nang pilitin. You’ll know when it’s working or when it’s not.”
Lastly, if all else fails, consult a skin expert, Dr. Gaile said. “That’s why we’re here,” she quipped. She added that visiting a doctor instead of doing it on your own could save you time and money.
Go-to Cetaphil products
As the masterclass came to an end, Agoo shared what her go-to Cetaphil products are. “I’ve always been a user of Cetaphil’s Gentle Skin Cleanser. For me it’s simple; it’s very straightforward. It cleanses your skin, doesn’t strip your skin (of essential oils), and you can use it in a variety of ways. Sometimes, for example, I use it as a makeup remover.”
She likewise mentioned how her skin gets extra sensitive sometimes with all the products she has been testing. For these instances, she uses Cetaphil’s Soothing Foam Wash. “I feel like it’s soothing the irritated parts of my skin,” she said. Agoo added that the product’s blend of three soothing ingredients—Allantoin, Glycerin, and Triple Ceramides—improve the skin barrier, soothes skin, and improve overall skin health.
When asked for one final tip to close the masterclass, Agoo advised doing research and not just buying a product because a celebrity is endorsing it. “Buy from reputable brands—that’s the most important actually. Because these brands are the ones who invest in R&D (research and development), so you can trust them and you’ll know that nothing bad will happen to your skin.”
“Preventing is always better than repairing. Start young. Don’t be afraid to experiment on products,” she added. “You’ll never really know without trying it for yourself. Have fun. Don’t make your skincare regimen feel like a chore.”
Great news! The National Healthy Skin Mission Skin Academy pop-up booth is extended until Sept. 15.
For information and updates, follow Cetaphil and Watsons on their social media pages.
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Editor’s Note: BrandedUp is designed to provide you with insightful, inspiring and educational content created by PhilSTAR L!fe in collaboration with brands like Cetaphil.