Genetic skin testing involves analysis of your DNA with the aim of providing you with advice and recommendations based on genetic predispositions associated with the health of your skin. This might include suggestions on how to improve the look and feel of your skin, precautions to take to prevent premature ageing and more.
After purchasing, you’ll be sent a testing kit with everything you need to take the sample at home. Once you’ve sent it back to the lab, it will be analysed and you’ll receive your results a few weeks later.
How does it work?
Skin DNA tests examine the specific genes associated with different skin characteristics. The tests look for differences, known as genetic variants, in these genes, to predict which of these characteristics your skin will exhibit. They are then able to advise on the best skincare routines to follow in order to maintain skin health and slow its ageing. Most companies base their analysis and advice on peer-reviewed studies in scientific journals, which identify genes linked to skin health.
What will a skin DNA test tell me?
Different tests will tell you about different aspects your skin, but most will include information on at least one of the following categories:
• Sensitivity to the sun. Lighter skin tends to be more sensitive to the sun, but even those with a darker complexion may find that they are genetically likely to be sensitive to UV rays.
• Sensitivity to chemicals. Different skin reacts differently to environmental substances such as pollutants and certain metals.
• Ageing: A big part of most skin DNA tests is advice on how to best treat your skin to slow the ageing process, making you look younger for longer.
These are just a few of the areas that might be covered by a skin DNA test, but there are many other factors that may be considered, depending on the test you choose. Most providers will offer advice on the sorts of (non-medical) skin products that would be best for your skin, and some even offer packages that include personalised skincare products with the DNA test.
Are all aspects of skin health genetically determined?
No, there are no skin characteristics that are exclusively determined by your genetics – all are affected by environmental factors in one way or another. Skin DNA testing focuses on reporting on the factors affected by your DNA, to help you to tailor your skincare routine to best suit your genetics, but this doesn’t mean that your skin won’t still be affected by the environment.
Can I use skin DNA testing to diagnose or treat a medical skin condition?
No, skin DNA tests should not be used to help you diagnose or treat any medical conditions you believe you’re suffering with. The tests do not replace a medical professional, so you should seek professional advice if you have concerns about a condition you may be experiencing.