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Dermatologists say young women of color shouldn’t get Botox

Dr. Gauri Desai and her husband Dr. Abhijit Desai created Brownkind for the issues regarding melanin-rich skin
Photo credit: Brownkind
Dermatologists say young women of color shouldn't get Botox
Brownkind founders Dr. Gauri and Dr. Abhijit Desai (Photo credit Brownkind)

There is a noticeable difference in the way people of color age. According to dermatologists Gauri and Abhijit Desai, the aging process is different for people with melanin-rich skin than for their counterparts.

“Brown skin is brown because of the melanin in it. The amount of pigment may be different, but all melanated skin has a very different aging process. Dullness, uneven tone and lack of radiance and pigmentation issues are the first signs of aging for melanated skin. Fine lines and wrinkles will come up, but much later,” Dr. Gauri says.

Dr. Gauri and Dr. Abhijit realized there was a distinct lack of education and diversity in dermatology and decided to focus on creating a line of products that dealt with the signs of aging from the perspective of brown skin.

Dr. Gauri compared the aging process in non-melanated skin to melanated skin by comparing two popular fruits.

“If you picture a peach and a pear in your mind, the peach is similar to white skin; as the skin ripens the skin starts wrinkling first and looks shriveled. If you look at a pear, as it starts ripening there are small brown spots that appear on the skin and the more it ripens the spots become darker and darker. It really isn’t until the end of the ripening process — when the fruit is going bad — do you see the wrinkling actually start to begin. That is how the [skin] tone difference is in the aging process is between white skin and skin of color,” she explained.

Instead of focusing on wrinkles and fine lines, Brownkind focuses on replenishing the color of brown skin and making sure the skin maintains a rich even tone. Dr. Gauri said she cringes when she sees young women of color getting Botox and or fillers to prevent the signs of aging when their issues will eventually be very different.

“Twenty-something Brown girls should not be asking about Botox. They should be thinking about skin preservation and tone preservation in terms of putting signs of aging at bay,” Dr. Gauri said.

Dr. Abhijit believes the beauty industry makes money off of women’s desire to look youthful, but he says healthy skin should be the overall goal.

“Skin health is the most important factor in appearing youthful, and we’re excited to introduce these products that promote healthier skin for people of color. Surgery is not always the answer,” he shared.

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