Frances Phillips is a Registered Nutritional Therapist specialising in our very favourite topic – skin and beauty. Having struggled with her own skin as a former model, she understands her patients’ need to take back control when their skin acts out. Rather than masking the symptoms, she focuses on the root causes via nutrition, supplementation, lifestyle advice and clean, topical product recommendations. A holistic approach we’re all about at Pai too. In the first of a four-part blog series from our favourite holistic experts, we asked Frances to share her nutrition advice, sensitive skin tips and product recommendations…
Pai: What are the potential negative impacts of bad nutrition on skin?
Fran: ‘Sugar negatively impacts the quality of the collagen in our skin. The wrong food choices can also lead to hormonal imbalance – the primary driver of adult acne. Plus pro-inflammatory foods can exacerbate conditions like acne, eczema and psoriasis. Basically, you can’t hide from a bad diet when it comes to skin.’
Basically, you can’t hide from a bad diet when it comes to skin.
P: So how is your skin effected by good nutrition?
F: ‘I believe that good skin starts from within. No amount of topical product is going to compensate for that. As well as being able to help the skin conditions mentioned above, there are plenty of positive impacts that food can have on our skin. Foods containing vitamin C play a key role in collagen formation and synthesis, omega-3 fatty acids are anti-inflammatory and assist in skin healing and antioxidants protect our skin from the damaging free radicals in our environment.’
F: ‘Yes! I used to suffer with chronic eczema & cystic acne. It was definitely a really challenging time for me as I was also modelling. It massively affected every area of my life- work, sleep, mental health, relationships, social life! Coming out the other end of that, I appreciate every compliment I get about my skin now.’
P: What’s the one piece of advice you could give that’s related to happy healthy skin?
F: “’Stress less! Stress negatively impacts our health in many ways – including the health of our skin.’
P: Which products are your go tos?
P: What’s the one skincare step you can’t live without?
F: ‘All of them! But if I had to choose just one then cleansing because I can never leave make-up on my skin.’
P: What’s your experience with sensitive skin?
F: ‘I’ve suffered with eczema on and off all my life so I’m used to only being able to use a very small proportion of the body care products available. When I travel I take all my regular products with me because nine times out of ten the products in a hotel won’t be suitable. ‘
I’d say I’m quite lucky now as my skin is mostly normal all the time. I do have to keep on top of my stress levels and nutrition choices though to prevent eczema flare-ups.’
P: What would be your top tips for people wanting to make nutritional improvements?
- ‘Try to include as much variety in your diet as possible to ensure you’re getting a wide range of vitamins and minerals and won’t get bored
- Make sure you’re eating good fats such as avocados, nuts & seeds & oily fish
- Don’t think you have to take an “all or nothing” approach. Healthy eating is a lifestyle and not a diet.’
P: Favourite mantra or quote?
F: ‘When it comes to nutrition I like the quote “everything in moderation, including moderation!” I believe there isn’t any harm in indulging if you’re taking care of yourself most of the time.’