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Women In Australia Are Ageing Up To 20 Years Sooner Than Those In Northern Hemisphere

Living in Australia, you'd be far from alone if you spent your summers at the beach, splashing in the water and enjoying the sunshine on the sand.

But these halcyon days might have more to answer for than you first thought, given what we know about sun damage and its link to premature ageing.

After a recent study from Monash University in Melbourne found that Australian women are ageing faster and look more than 20 years older than women in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, one woman decided to take matters into her own hands and so created a product distinctly targeted at Aussie women.

The result - Oasis Beauty's Solar Serum® - is the upcoming brainchild of Stephanie Evans, 48, who launched a skincare business from her kitchen table in her 30s, when she found herself struggling with bad skin.

The serum - while not a replacement for SPF - has been specifically formulated to restore and repair sun-damaged skin.

According to Stephanie, who is based in New Zealand, the idea for her Solar Serum came about after years of hearing the same thing:

"We keep seeing further evidence of what women Down Under have long suspected - that the sun is damaging our skin and badly", she told FEMAIL.

"The World Health Organisation has long maintained that most of the visible signs of ageing are sun-related, a French study on UV exposure attributed 80 per cent of the visible signs of ageing to UV exposure and last year, Monash University research found that Aussie women are reporting more severe signs of skin ageing up to 20 years sooner than those living in the Northern hemisphere".

In the study of more than 1,400 Caucasian or Asian women aged between 18 and 75, researchers asked women to complete a questionnaire about their facial ageing and to compare their features against numbered rating scales.

The features they compared included their forehead, crow's feet and glabellar lines (the vertical frown lines between the eyebrows), tear troughs and midface volume loss, naso-labial folds (the lines between the nose and sides of the upper lip).

They were also asked to compare their oral commissures (lines at the corners of the mouth) and perioral lines, also called smoker's lines.

Australian women reported higher rates of change and 'significantly more severe facial lines' and 'volume-related' features like tear troughs and nasio-labial folds than women from other countries.

And so, Stephanie - who launched a skincare business based on natural products after she found herself struggling with her skin - turned her attentions to an anti-ageing product for Australian women.

'There's no doubt that our skin's biggest enemy are UV rays - photo ageing,' she explained.

'Here in Australia and New Zealand we are exposed to the strongest UV rays in the world. We made Oasis Beauty's Solar Serum with this in mind. I wanted to create something that would help with this very specific but crucial area of anti-ageing skincare.'

The serum has been specifically formulated to restore and repair sun-damaged skin.

Featuring Lycocelle® - a blend of lycopene (an antioxidant derived from tomatoes), rosehip and cucumber - Stephanie said it aims to 'repair DNA damaged by UV radiation and enhance the skin's natural immunity to UV radiation'.

While the product is yet to hit the shelves - which it will do in the next few months - it has been a labour of love for Stephanie, after having been two years in the making. 

Speaking previously to FEMAIL, Stephanie explained how she came up with the idea for Oasis Beauty.

After she left school at age 16, the now 48-year-old was encouraged to consider two options by her parents for her career: she could go into secretarial work, like her mother, or join the airforce, like her dad.

'It was a different time back then, and through default, I ended up training as a secretary for a year,' Stephanie told FEMAIL.

'I'd always struggled with my skin - aged 13 and upwards, I had the worst breakouts, I always thought people were looking at them.

'My skin was a source of embarrassment for me and by the time I got to age 30, I was still having problems.

'One day, I came across a book - Perfect Skin by Amanda Cochrane - and it was all about going back to basics.

'I thought about making my own products to see if they would work better than the pricey things I was putting on my skin.

'They made a huge improvement with my skin and so I started mixing more lotions and potions at home.' 

Slowly and steadily, the 48-year-old built up an arsenal of products, made from natural things like avocados and vitamin E.

'I was working full time, but I made sure I also created my products in the evenings and weekends - it was all an experiment and I was the test dummy,' she said.

Stephanie designed a special cream for her mother after her skin had an allergic reaction - Rhino Repair. The cream is still one of her bestselling products.

'At the time, I was making these things for myself and my mother - so no expense was spared,' she said.

'I spent months researching healing ingredients and people still use it for eczema and skin problems.'   

The Solar Serum is the latest product to be added to her collection.

BY SOPHIE HASLETT FOR DAILY MAIL AUSTRALIA


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