Friday, 10 September 2010

No7 Research - Dermatologists warn of widespread UVA ignorance as new research highlights dramatic impact of everyday exposure

- Proof that year round daily UVA exposure can significantly accelerate skin ageing even indoors -
- No7 launches the 1st daily moisturisers with unbeatable 5-star rated UVA protection in response to independent research –

Leading dermatologists and photobiologists today warn that widespread lack of understanding of the impact of daily UV exposure particularly UVA on skin ageing means our skin could photo-age more than twice as quickly as it needs to.

This is just one finding from a number of independent research studies, conducted in collaboration with No7, which reveal the ageing acceleration of skin due to the effects of daily UVA exposure in a way never fully realised before. The brand which revolutionised the beauty industry in 2009, with the first published independent double-blind placebo controlled clinical trial of a beauty product, will now revolutionise protection against photo ageing in 2010.

Key research findings1 include:
· Everyday cumulative UVA exposure ages skin even through glass according to the first asymmetry study of its kind, conducted by Professor Philippe Humbert at the University College Hospital, Besancon2. The study measured, for the first time, the impact of cumulative UVA exposure on clinical skin measures such as hydration, barrier function and firmness, as well as visible signs of ageing. Participants showed significantly more clinical signs of facial ageing on one side of their face due to driving or working close to windows over many years.

- Beware of the car window.3 A volunteer was selected from the study who had driven routinely for 33 years. The side of her face closest to the car window was found to look more than 7 years older than the opposite side, as well as demonstrating more signs of ageing through clinical measurements.
- A complementary study, performed by Boots, revealed that even a few hours sitting in a car in April resulted in skin damage linked to ageing. An average increase of 300% in free radical damage linked to UVA was measured on the window side of the face.
- We should be protecting our skin from UVA all year round. Scientific modelling of UVA exposure by Professor Brian Diffey, Emeritus Professor of Photobiology, Dermatological Sciences, University of Newcastle indicates that about two-thirds of people’s annual UVA exposure in the UK occurs during the summer months with about one-third received from September to May.
- Even Autumn exposure has an impact. Research in collaboration with Professor Trevor McMillan and Dr Sarah Allinson at the School of Health and Medicine4, Lancaster University has proved that low dose UVA equivalent to a UK Autumn day causes up to a 50 fold increase in the expression of certain genes involved in photo-ageing.
- The findings are so conclusive the brand will this week launch the first 5-star daily moisturiser with SPF 15 to reduce UV exposure by up to 90%. Analysis suggests that daily use of a high UVA protection in a product could more than halve the rate that skin visibly ages.

Professor John Hawk, an Emeritus Professor of Dermatological Photobiology and UVA expert, very much supports the research findings: “This collection of studies definitely strengthens our understanding of the issue of UVA photoageing. We believe that up to 90% of the visible signs of ageing are due to the sun’s ultraviolet radiation and more than 95% of these are known to be UVA rays.”

“What’s needed is a step-change in awareness of the damaging effects of UVA all year round, not just during summer holiday season. If women were to do one further thing to help prevent the signs of facial ageing then I’d recommend the daily use of products with both SPF15 and 5-star UVA protection.”

According to a No7 survey of UK women*, 83% did not realise that they should be protecting their skin from the UVA rays outside their annual holiday in order to prevent photoageing. Boots is confident the research will raise further awareness of the damaging effects of UVA, as according to the study, many do not even know the difference between UVA and UVB. Whilst 65% of women use, and actively seek out, moisturisers with SPF (predominately a measure of UVB protection), just 14% look for day creams with UVA protection.

There are currently no 5-star UVA rated daily moisturisers on the market in the UK, a fact that the Boots Product Development Team will change significantly over the next year. In order to develop skincare products that would tackle the issues raised by the research, No7 will this week launch No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Day Cream** so consumers will be able to choose a daily product with the best in protection, alongside proven repair benefits.

No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Day Cream is the first SPF 15 day cream which delivers 5-star UVA rated protection combined with the same anti-ageing ingredients from No7’s famous clinically proven No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Beauty Serum.

Set to become another essential beauty buy, the product protects against up to 90% of the UVA and UVB rays that cause skin ageing, with proven No7 anti-ageing actives5. No7 analysis suggests that visible signs of ageing can be delayed by more than 50% by combining daily SPF 15 with 5-star UVA rated protection and the product is also proven to improve the appearance of deep lines and wrinkles in 4 weeks.

Dr Mike Bell, Boots Skincare Scientific Advisor comments: “The industry must broaden its focus beyond SPF. We must educate consumers on the need to protect their skin on a daily basis in the battle against UVA damage. We consider the results of these studies as so significant that the gold standard 5-star rating will be rolled out in all our No7 anti-ageing day creams by summer 2011. It is a major move with a complementary approach to prevention and repair. Up until this point SPF has been the only clear measure of prevention from the harmful effect of the sun in daily face creams. The move to include 5-star UVA protection in No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Day Cream is the next stage of No7’s pioneering campaign to help protect the nation’s skin from the undesired effects of the sun and ageing.”

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