dr kira ducharme holistic dermatology

Advice on Holistic Dermatology with Dr. Kira DuCharme

At Organic Beauty Lover, my goal is to give you the best advice and tools to love the skin you’re in! I’m so happy I was able to interview Dr. Kira DuCharme, ND, who’s located in Arizona, about her work in holistic dermatology and ask her my most prying skincare questions!

We connected a few years ago online and I instantly felt drawn to her informative posts, professionalism and passion for clean skincare. I’m thrilled to have Dr. DuCharme share extremely useful and scientific insight into how to adopt a holistic approach to treating skin.

I hope you find her advice on taking care of our skin from the inside out as useful as I did!

Dr. DuCharme, it’s wonderful to have you on the blog. Tell us a little about yourself and your path!

Thank you so much, Andrea for having me on your blog. I’m a huge fan of yours as you are a trusted OG in clean beauty and effective skincare.

My name is Dr. Kira DuCharme, ND. I am a licensed naturopathic physician and founder of DuCharme Integrative Dermatology. My clinical focus is holistic dermatology and preventative aesthetics. Key modalities used in my practice include Acupuncture, Botanical medicine, and Hydrotherapy. In practice, I provide many cosmetic procedures including Cosmetic Acupuncture, Facial Cupping, and Facial Gua sha.

I grew up in the Bahamas, where my mother grew hot peppers, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and so much more. We had banana trees that produced the sweetest bananas I have ever tasted.

We drank tea made from vines, ate sea grapes, and snacked on guineps. The women that raised me, all cook with fresh whole foods. I love cooking with in-season whole foods and herbs. And I enjoy being out in nature with my family.

What lead you to holistic dermatology and what do you love/hate most about it?

My dermatological struggles lead me down this path. I became interested in finding the root cause of my skin concerns. I have a certain level of respect and appreciation for prescription medication, but I did not want to be dependent on it. Learning more about nutrition and botanical medicine has played a critical role in the improvement of my skin.

It’s a niche community that is growing rapidly as more studies on the potentially harmful long-term side effects of conventional rejuvenation procedures surface.

For those of us who aren’t familiar with holistic dermatology / naturopathic medicine, can you explain what they are?

Holistic dermatology focuses on the “whole person,” body, mind, and spirit. I take my time with my clients 60-90 minutes discussing not only their skin concerns but also family dynamics, work history, stress management, sleep, lifestyle, diet, and much more. Once I understand more about my clients, I can create a treatment plan that is specifically tailored for them.

It is a collaborative approach to skin health where my client is encouraged to give suggestions and feedback. For instance, if my client prefers not to take capsules, I can suggest a tincture.

As a licensed Arizona naturopathic physician, I am at liberty to also prescribe medication for my clients when necessary. I employ the least harmful yet most effective treatments to address my clients’ concerns.

“Naturopathic medicine is a distinct health care profession that combines the wisdom of nature with the rigors of modern science. Naturopathic doctors (NDs) are trained as primary care providers who diagnose, treat, and manage patients with acute and chronic conditions while addressing disease and dysfunction at the level of body, mind, and spirit.” –aanmc.org

Are there any misconceptions around holistic dermatology, and if so, what are they?

As a naturopathic physician, the general public may not know that I have prescription rights. Arizona licensed naturopathic physicians can prescribe pharmaceuticals when needed, but we also have the added benefit of supporting your body naturally when pharmaceutical medications aren’t necessary.

As I practice cosmetic medicine, the types of modalities I use require time. Acupuncture addresses overall wellness, it can improve your sleep concerns, stress levels, and energy levels. I initially recommend at least 12 treatments—1-2 treatments weekly for 6-12 weeks and then we will reassess.

When my clients are happy with their results, I will see them every 2-4 weeks. I focus on preventative medicine, therefore, my goal is to prevent pigmentation changes, lines, and wrinkles. For my clients with mature skin, we are correcting and preventing the lines and wrinkles from deepening.

What does a typical day for you look like?

Breakfast with my family. My husband makes amazing breakfast burritos. Arriving at my clinic 1-2 hours before my 1st client. Preparing each room for the scheduled treatments. A short meditation that focuses on breathwork before seeing each client. Charting and finalizing treatment plans.

What are some things about skin or skincare you WISH people would know?

Keep your skincare routine simple!

There is no need to exfoliate daily—once MAYBE twice per week is plenty.

You don’t want to strip your skin’s microbiome. Opt for gentle cleansers.

There is no one product for everyone. When trying products give them a fair chance 4-6 weeks before drawing a conclusion.

Can you explain your process for treating acne?

Acne can be very complex. I will start you off with a skincare consultation. Depending on the type of acne, I usually start with evaluating your diet. How much water are you drinking per day? Is the water, filtered? Are you eating processed foods, dairy, or gluten? These can all contribute to inflammation in the body.

I will also ask questions about your bowel movements as this gives me insight into your pathways of detoxification. Issues with excretion of waste products can be directly connected to acne.

I will ask questions about your lifestyle, for instance, do you lead a sedentary lifestyle where you are sitting at a desk all day and not exercising or at the very least walking daily?

I will also evaluate your AM/PM skincare routine. Do you apply SPF, a vitamin C serum during the day? If so, what brand and how much? Do you apply your corrective products at night like vitamin A? If so, what brand?

My 1:1 Clean Beauty and Skincare Consultations are excellent for those who are pregnant, breastfeeding, or those with a personal or family history of cancer, as I help them make healthier lifestyle choices and assist them in making the switch to clean skincare and beauty products.

How do you treat dark circles?

I advise my clients to get at least 7 hours of undisturbed sleep. Limit alcohol consumption. Eat a plant-based diet—this does not mean vegetarian or vegan for me this means plants make up the majority of what you eat.

And lastly, invest in a professional that has the training and credentials to provide facial cupping. I’ve seen massive improvements when incorporating facial cupping to address dark circles. Consistency and compliance are key when using natural medicine for rejuvenation purposes.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?

Due to social media and the fact that our skin is one of the 1st things people see, if we are unhappy with our skin, it can wreak havoc on our self-esteem—no matter the age. No one’s skin is perfect. Somedays we get breakouts, and then some seasons are drier than others causing itching and flaking skin. Give yourself grace and the patience to find proper help.

It is a privilege to get older–to celebrate another trip around the sun. I allow my clients to tell me what they would like to improve because maybe you love your laugh lines and worked hard for your crows feet which represents a life full of happiness.

“Let’s change the way we eat, let’s change the way we live, and let’s change the way we treat each other”…[and ourselves] – Tupac Shakur

We found each other on social media so I have to ask how you feel about social media these days.

I have a love-dislike relationship with social media. I love the community of holistic natural-minded women that I have found and the relationships that we have cultivated.

I am so grateful for each person that follows me. I mean, just imagining myself speaking in front of 1000+ people is so heartwarming and humbling. I love when clients find me via social media, they are so excited because they didn’t know of all the natural rejuvenation treatments available, and I am so happy to be able to help.

I dislike it when self-proclaimed influencers give medical advice. It is imperative to understand that the advice of an influencer is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Medical professionals have proven their knowledge by undergoing rigorous training and board exams. We have taken oaths and are bound by ethical guidelines to provide effective scientific evidence-based care.

Thank you so much Dr. Kira DuCharme!

Check out Dr. DuCharme at her website and social media.

Website: TheOceanNative.com

IG: Dr.KiraDuCharme and DuCharmeIntegrativeDermatology

Holistic dermatologist naturopathic physician Dr Kira Ducharme


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