Pakistan has a long history of obsession with fair skin and skin whitening. From our ads, celebrity endorsements, and “snow white” leads in our movies, the obsession has certainly grown. And whether we like it or not, dermatologists and aestheticians receive scores of patients with demands to get the “fairest of all skins”.
We sat down with Dr. Zafar Ahmed where he talks about the “fair skin obsession” in Pakistan and the best and safest treatments available for skin lightening. He also discussed another popular procedure; Face Lifting and its types, recovery, cost and results. Dr. Zafar has an extensive background in clinical, aesthetic and cosmetic dermatology with 24 years of experience.
Q.1. The fair skin obsession is still prevalent. Do you agree with that?
Yes, I most certainly agree with that. Fair skin in Pakistan is considered the ideal standard of beauty.
Q.2. What is the best treatment used for skin whitening?
Well, right now, the treatment that is used for overall skin whitening here and around the world is the vitamin C and glutathione injection. Glutathione is a naturally occurring antioxidant found in the skin that slows down aging.
These injections are available in the market and are applied on a weekly basis or twice a week. However, these aren’t permanent. If you want to delay the result, avoid sun exposure and wear sunblock.
Q.3. What are the side effects of skin whitening procedures?
Well, as of now, there haven’t been any side effects reported of vitamin C and glutathione. But if use glutathione for an extensive period of time, zinc levels in the body may plummet. So, to bring your zinc levels back to normal, you might need to take zinc supplements.
Also, if anyone has asthma, they must consult their healthcare provider before going forward with the injection.
Q.4. Is it possible for skin colour to be altered permanently?
No, I would say no. We cannot alter our skin colour permanently. The reason is that the pigment-producing cells (melanin) in the body will get naturally produced after a while. However, as I mentioned before, you can prevent skin tanning, by avoiding sun exposure and wearing a broad-spectrum sunblock.
Q.4. Are home remedies for skin brightening effective?
I believe that home remedies are not really that effective. However, face packs or creams may contain some herbs that give the skin a temporary radiance.
I would also like to mention to my viewers to be wary of buying commercially available herbal creams. Such creams may contain steroids that may give a temporary glow to the skin but are damaging in the long run. Excessive use may increase the chances of skin cancer.
If you want to learn more about skin whitening and facelifting treatment options in Pakistan, watch the full interview. Also, if skin whitening is a treatment you are interested in pursuing, consult a dermatologist. Refrain from buying over the counter steroids or cheaply made whitening creams.
You can book an appointment with a top dermatologist in Karachi, Multan and Islamabad through oladoc.com, or call our helpline at 042-3890-0939 for assistance to find the RIGHT professional for your concerns.