Whether you are starting a new skin care regimen or just looking to see what might be missing in your current routine, resolve to make this year the best yet for the health of your skin.
Begin from within
The health of your skin often reflects your overall health. Maybe you don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables, consume too much junk food, or lack essential nutrients your body needs. Make eating healthy a priority, and consider supplementing with a multivitamin, essential fatty acids, and Vitamin D. And remember to drink plenty of water over the course of the day to keep skin hydrated and looking smooth.
Moisturize morning and night
We all know warm showers can strip essential oils from the skin. Replace these oils with a good moisturizer every time you get out of the shower. Dermatologists suggest applying moisturizer within 10 minutes after showering for best results. Also, use a product formulated for use on delicate facial skin as a part of your skin care program.
Use sunscreen everyday
There is not a single thing that will impact your skin more than using sunscreen every day. Ultraviolet light from the sun is harmful to your skin and has a cumulative effect over a lifetime. Find a good naturally derived physical sunscreen like zinc oxide or use a BB cream (which is a combination makeup and sunscreen in one) and make sunscreen an automatic part of your daily skin care routine.
Remove makeup before bed
Not only do some cosmetics trap dirt, bacteria, and even free radicals next to your skin, but wearing makeup overnight can lead to breakouts. A healthy nighttime routine to keep your skin looking clear includes makeup removal, cleansing, toning, and moisturizing before bed.
Refresh after exercise
Going to the gym is a great move for your skin health. Exercising brings much-needed blood, nutrients, and oxygen to your skin. But you should shower as soon as you can after you exercise to remove sweat, grime, and bacteria. Wearing moisture-wicking clothes and carrying facial wipes and hand sanitizers in your gym bag are also good options to keep germs at bay.
Visit a Skin Care Specialist
An annual checkup of your skin health is a good habit for anyone, but especially if you are light skinned or otherwise more sensitive to potential sun damage. Dermatologists are your first choice, but estheticians (particularly medical estheticians) can also help.
The number of questionable chemicals that make it into some cosmetics and skin care products is surprising. Many of these chemicals can work against your goal of healthy skin. Read the labels, and choose products carefully.
Clean your makeup brushes
Makeup, skin cells, oils, and potential contaminants cling to your makeup brushes. Commit to at least a monthly brush cleaning (How about the first Saturday of every month?). To wash your brushes well, use a liquid hand soap or baby shampoo and rinse with lukewarm water. Gently squeeze out the water, re-shape, and let them dry completely before using them again.
Here is a good habit to get into for the new year: keep your hands off your face. Studies suggest that people touch their face around 3–4 times each hour.[i] While that may not sound like that often, you touch your face far more frequently than you wash your hands. The key here is that each time you bring your hands to your face, you risk transferring bacteria and viruses from contaminated surfaces to your skin.
Skin care products don’t last forever, so don’t hesitate to discard old products. After all, keeping your skin healthy and clean is the foundation of your skin care regimen.
It’s a new year, so start it off right. Commit to a healthy skin program—it will pay off with beautiful, healthy skin for a lifetime.
[i]Alonso WJ, Nascimento FC, Shapiro J, Schuck-Paim C. Facing ubiquitous viruses: when hand washing is not enough. Clinical infectious diseases. 2013 Feb 15;56(4):617.