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Dr. Vanessa Lapiner

Dr Vanessa Lapiner is a specialist dermatologist with key interests in dermatological surgery, the field of mole mapping and dermo-cosmetology. A curious mind, analytical aptitude and appreciation of subtle clinical clues make for an expert diagnostician while patients respond to her gentle and unhurried care, focusing always on the patient rather than on the disease. Read more about Dr Vanessa

Patient Diary: Mrs H and the Reason I became a Dermatologist

This month in celebration of World Vitiligo Day on 25 June, I would like to share with you a patient’s story who is very close to my heart. Not only was she the match which kindled my fascination into holistic integrative dermatology but she was the reason I spent two years studying the pigment cell condition of vitiligo and developing a test which would predict a patient’s response to treatment.

My mentor Prof Gail Todd always told me that my greatest teachers would be my patients. Mrs H – you were my first and greatest teacher and one of the reasons I became a dermatologist. Thank you for allowing me to share your story and for changing the trajectory of my life.

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Cheat Sheets to Skin Cancer’s 3 Big Bad Wolves

South Africa is renowned for our beautiful climate, picture perfect beaches and bucket-list bushveld adventures. An active outdoor lifestyle together with one of the highest monitored global ultraviolet levels sets the stage for our South African population to have one of the highest skin cancer rates world-wide. Keep reading for your CHEAT SHEETS to skin cancer’s 3 main Big Bad Wolves. Learn how to identify them and how worried you should be about them!

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Safe Beauty ABCs – Why we need to be reading Ingredient Labels

Confused what ‘Clean Beauty’ means? Yup, that’s totally understandable. With no clear regulations around this term, it can be tricky to figure out, because “clean” and “natural” (the other word that’s become ubiquitous in beauty marketing) can mean a lot of different things. That’s because there’s still no standard definition.

Clean beauty is more than being paraben-free. It is skincare that is good for your skin, good for you and good for the environment.

Still confused? That’s why I prefer to talk about ‘Safe Beauty’ rather than ‘Clean beauty’. We want to be using skincare that is safe regardless of whether it is natural or synthetic.

Let’s clarify further by looking at my Safe Beauty ABCs

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The Real Truth behind the Most Common Sunscreen Myths I hear from my Patients

It’s not a myth that UV rays damage your skin: skin cancer aside, think wrinkling, broken capillaries and pigmentation.

So sunscreen is my no. 1 year-round skincare staple. Summer, winter, indoors and outdoors – but it is the skincare product most shrouded in controversy. Here are some of the most common statements I hear from my patients around this topic and the real truth based on scientific evidence. So hold on to your zinc oxide – we are about to do some myth-busting!

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