Prescription skincare could be the solution to all your skin problems from acne to ageing

The next generation of skin care is flipping the script with tailor-made, micro-targeted treatment options. Kelsey Ferencak quizzes Dr Michele Squire and founder of Qr8 MediSkin on these new cosmetic cures.

In the past few years, skincare has evolved beyond our wildest imagination, as the beauty industry has used technology to create forward-thinking innovations (including natural alternatives to retinol and even skincare you eat, rather than apply).

Earlier this year we reported on the personalised skincare options that could be the answer to perfect skin.

It included local Australian cult favourite Rationale launching an epigenetic skincare treatment plan based on the results from a DNA cheek swab. Internationally, meanwhile, L’Oréal Paris came out with its virtual analysis tool Skin Genius, which uses artificial intelligence to assess your complexion via your phone or computer camera, then creates a tailor-made skincare routine based off its dermatologist- backed diagnostics.

In-clinic tech is also changing the face of personalised skin care. SkinCeuticals Custom Dose, which is available at selected dermatologists, combines a consultation and diagnostic analysis to formulate a supercharged custom serum that addresses your exact skin concerns, and allows you to measure and track your skin’s progress.

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A prescription but not as you know it

This year has seen telehealth expand from GP appointments to virtual beauty consults. Leading this new generation of easy-access services is prescription- only skin care, which is proving popular thanks to its affordability, availability to all, and new-and-improved formulations.

First to market Australia-wide is the skincare telemedicine service Qr8 MediSkin. Founded by PhD scientist Dr Michele Squire earlier this year, it works like a concierge service for your face. Its panel of experienced doctors review your skin, tailor an evidence- based prescription skin treatment to your needs, and deliver it to your door, all for as little as $1.40 per day (prices from $130 for a 50g treatment product that lasts for three months of daily application), with a follow-up consult at the end of your treatment product.

“Many Australians are affected by challenging cosmetic skin issues like sun damage, pigmentation or melasma, acne and ageing-related concerns,” Squire says. “Rather than seek qualified medical advice, there’s a tendency to self-diagnose and treat – often inaccurately, ineffectively and expensively – using the internet, or to leave these concerns untreated, at the expense of self-esteem.”

Skincare gets simplified

The Qr8 website prompts you to fill in a questionnaire and upload photos, which are then transformed into a 3D model so, as Squire says, “we never miss a single pore.” Following a one-on-one consult with an aesthetic medical practitioner, a prescription-only treatment is tailored to your skin needs – and it simplifies your whole beauty routine in the process.

“A customised medication is manufactured into a day or night [cream], and blends actives into a ‘one and done’ product without compromising on effectiveness,” she says. “All treatments are designed to work in conjunction with just a simple skincare routine of cleanser, moisturiser and sunscreen.”

This new era of skincare service combines high-potency products with on-hand support, allowing you to manage your complexion with professional help, and alter your routine based on the results. It’s like having your own personal skin care specialist literally “on call”.