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This might not be welcome news, but have to tell you anyway: it’s really, really important to make a baseline appointment with your dermatologist.
Yes, even if you don’t have a specific skin condition. Yes, even if you don’t have a family history of skin cancer. Regardless of your age or skin type, it’s smart for everyone to schedule a visit with this skincare specialist.
The good news? A visit with your derm is the perfect opportunity to ask all your lingering questions about hair, skin, and nails, and maybe walk away with skin-saving strategies, too.
So book your appointment now (we’ll wait), then use this handy cheat sheet to make the most of your upcoming visit.
1. How can I solve problems with my hair, skin, or nails?
It’s easy to overlook skin issues if they aren’t presenting when we see the derm. Many of us get flustered during a visit with a specialist and rely on them to point out problems. That’s why you need to go in with a plan.
Think back over the last 6 months. Can you identify anything about your skin that’s freaked you out? It’s important to include a longer time horizon in this review because some of the most common skin conditions aren’t present all the time.
Acne, for instance, might flare up during your period or times of stress. Eczema, another of the most common skin conditions, might be worse in the winter. If it helps, do a mental scan of your skin from head to toe. Any new moles or old ones that have changed in shape, size, or color? What about that patch you’re really worried could be psoriasis?
Though many people don’t know it, your hair and nails are fair game for your dermatologist as well. Areas of concern might include dry or brittle hair, weird spots on your nails, or anything else that’s off enough to cause worry.
2. What could be better?
Now that you’ve gotten your actual concerns out of the way, give yourself some time to consider what about your skin could be better.
Think about small things like the tone and texture of your skin, the development of fine lines and wrinkles, or that one annoying zit that always pops up after you eat ice cream. If it’s something you usually cover up with makeup, it’s worth talking over with your dermatologist.
Maybe you’d like stronger, thicker, damage-proof hair. Or nails that grow longer without breaking. Shoot, maybe you’d just like to find a really great moisturizer.
Your dermatologist is an excellent resource for solutions to those small areas of improvement, so don’t be afraid to bring them up. This is your chance to toss out your questions, and a good derm will be more than happy to field them.
3. How can I maintain healthy skin for the long haul?
Finally, you can use your baseline appointment with your derm to make sure you’re making the most of your skincare routine—and prepping your skin for the long haul. Make a list of the cleansers, moisturizers, exfoliators, and makeup you regularly use and take it with you to your appointment.
We know that a good anti-aging skincare routine starts with Sundaily gummies and sunscreen, since 90% of the visible signs of aging come from environmental stressor like sun and smog.
But is there more you could be doing?
It’s worth running your current routine, including any medications you regularly take and your diet and water intake, by your derm for feedback. It’s likely they can recommend a few additions or tweaks that will lead to even healthier skin (see our post Anti-Aging Strategies to Start Right Now for more ideas).
Remember that this time is yours, and you shouldn’t feel intimidated. If you think you’ll get flustered, print this list and make notes for easy reference. By the time you walk out of your appointment, you’ll feel empowered to create an even better skincare routine.
If that routine doesn’t already include a way to combat environmental stressors, consider The Base Layer. These tasty gummies rely on powerful antioxidants to help prevent free radical damage, and they improve skin’s tone and texture, too! Start your subscription today.