The key to good skincare is steady advice and skin-friendly moisturizers

Dr. Yuko Nomura
Director, Nomura Dermatology Clinic

When I was a child, I would call out "invisible shields up!" and pretend that I had a transparent barrier that wouldn't allow any germs in. Now that we understand how ceramides work, we are able to put up those invisible shields for real.

Anyone who suffers from dry skin—from small children to the elderly—can safely use the AK Series with ceramides. For patients suffering from atopic dermatitis and struggling to find a moisturizer that won't irritate their skin, it has been a godsend. When a person has intense itching or inflammation, we first make sure to inhibit the inflammatory response with external steroids or tacrolimus, an oral antihistamine, and so on. Once the inflammation has calmed down, I have the patients try using the AK Series as a moisturizer. I put either the ceramide emulsion or the cream directly on a portion of the patient's forearm, and then have them feel the difference between the skin that's been treated and the skin that hasn't. This way, they can experience for themselves how moist and soft the treated areas become. They'll often express joy and amazement at just how noticeable the difference is. And it's because they can really tell the difference that they keep using it. I have patients use the emulsion product when they need to apply it over their entire bodies or during the summer, whereas the cream product in the winter, or when they suffer from extreme dryness.

I've also gotten a lot of positive feedback about the AK Series sunscreen. The fact that you can moisturize while blocking UV rays knocks out two birds with one stone. It's also wonderful for patients whose skin is too sensitive to wash sunscreen off with soap. I recommend that patients use the AK Series sunscreen year-round.

In my daily examinations of patients, I've noticed that because ceramides restore the skin's barrier function, they seem to gradually increase its ability to ward off allergens while steadily alleviating itching. When patients have atopic dermatitis, I carefully educate them about how to look for and remove allergy-causing substances from their daily lives. At the same time, I advise them on proper skincare. As a result, they improve so dramatically that it's hard to believe they're the same person. I firmly believe that providing steady, consistent advice is at the heart of clinical dermatology, and I hope to continue to be of service to my patients in the future.