x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

'I have a very natural approach'

q&a Dr Hala Hashad, The Kaya Skin Clinic's dermatologist, talks cosmetology, make-up and male lip augmentation.

The dermatologist Dr Hala Hashad says bare is better when it comes to skin.
The dermatologist Dr Hala Hashad says bare is better when it comes to skin.

Dr Hala Hashad, The Kaya Skin Clinic's dermatologist, talks about cosmetology, make-up and male lip augmentation.

To be a doctor was my dream. I studied in Alexandria and if you studied dermatology, you didn't have to work night shifts. I was engaged at the time, so for a married woman to take a night shift was not good. But even before I joined the department, I really liked the field. They say the skin is the mirror of the body, so any disease is reflected on your skin by a rash or pimples or discolouration. And the cosmetology field is very popular and interesting for its new technology and methods.

I moved two-and-a-half years ago. I had met the head of the medical department of the Kaya clinic in Alexandria and she explained to me how they work here - they have their own system and medical training.

I'm a dermatologist so I can deal with any skin condition, but Kaya's reputation is more in cosmetology. If someone has eczema or another skin disease, they'll go to a general doctor. We get male clients too, asking for all the treatments you can imagine - we've even had men asking for lip augmentation.

Here people don't have a lot of outdoor activities and they are not so exposed to pollution, so there is little that is actually related to living in Abu Dhabi. Problems are more likely to be hereditary. Hyper-pigmentation is a very big problem, though. Usually it is women who, after several pregnancies, get these patches on their cheeks. It depends on the type of skin, the age of the client, the lifestyle of the client.

Yes, usually I advise them. There is, for example, the lip augmentation. Usually I draw the effects for them, and some people want more. I cannot tell them no, because this is their own life, but first I will do what I want and let them see and maybe they will be convinced.

If there is a hepatitis B virus there is usually an association with small violaceous plaques appearing on the skin. So if I see one it's easy to apply a skin treatment, but it directs my mind to tell him to do a liver function test. There are many others that can be detected as well.

I have a very natural approach. I don't like to use too many creams and cleansers. If someone came to me with normal skin and maybe just a little dryness, I would advise them to simply drink more water and use a very mild moisturiser: with only that, they will get very good results. If you are asking about a working woman, if there is no obligation to wear make-up (as there is for air crew, for example), then it's not advisable to wear make-up every day. Even if you're comfortable with washing your face with only water, or twice a day with cleanser, for me that's OK. I don't think you have to use day cream, then moisturiser, then sunscreen with moisturiser, then foundation, then compact powder - how many layers are you putting on your skin? This is my advice: to be natural.
gchamp@thenational.ae