8 essential steps to healthy, glowing skin
here’s a collection of handy tips and tricks to get you looking as healthy on the outside as you feel on the inside!
Ask anyone what organs they think are the most important to take care of. They’ll probably mention the heart, lungs, liver, and so on. And these are all great answers.
But you’ll rarely hear someone mention the body’s largest organ: our skin.
It’s always worth incorporating skincare into your lifestyle, whether you’re looking for a brighter, more youthful complexion, or just want to clear up a few nasty spots. A few simple changes in habit can work wonders.
No matter your age, here’s a collection of handy tips and tricks to get you looking as healthy on the outside as you feel on the inside.
1. Protect yourself from UV rays
Did you know that Australia and New Zealand have the highest rates of skin cancer in the world? Preventing UV damage to your skin is vital, especially as we move into the summer months.
The best way to do this is to stay out of the sun. Bring tents and umbrellas to the beach, and wear a hat to keep the sun off of your face.
Of course, this isn’t always practical, so it’s a good idea to stock up on factor 30+ sunscreen. Make sure it protects against both UVA and UVB rays to allow for full protection.
And remember, tanning is a great way to form wrinkles! In fact, 90% of aging is thought to be caused by the sun. Sun protection means looking younger, as well as a lower risk of skin cancer.
2. Eat a healthy, balanced diet
Eat your way to glowing skin! There’s a huge variety of foods out there that help to enrich your skin and get it looking its best. A good diet plan for healthy skin works its magic from the inside out.
Dry skin? Omega-3 fatty acids, found in oily fish and walnuts, are a must to keep your face dewy and moisturised.
Want to reduce signs of aging? Look no further than vitamin E. This antioxidant is also found in oily fish, as well as avocados and sunflower seeds, and has been shown to reduce wrinkles and hyperpigmentation. Another great supplement you can add to your daily routine is collagen (the 'on trend' product at the moment) which may also help to improve skin health by reducing wrinkles and dryness.
Some other great foods for skincare are broccoli, kale, sweet potatoes, and dark, cocoa-rich chocolate. Check out our recipe for sweet potato brownies for a delicious way to get some skin-friendly nutrients!
3. Hydration, hydration, hydration
Drinking plenty of water is not only good for your internal organs, it also gives your skin a well-needed boost. High water levels improve circulation, allowing for faster healing and a more even complexion.
If you struggle with eczema or psoriasis, make sure you’re staying hydrated! Water flushes toxins out from the body, reducing the effects of certain skin conditions.
Water is also key to moisture retention. Hydrated cells mean increased skin elasticity and fewer fine lines and wrinkles. The same goes for parched, dry skin.
And all acne-sufferers, listen up. Getting enough water not only removes nasty toxins from your bloodstream, but also helps keep your pH balance in check. Sounds good to us!
4. Create your skincare routine
Often when people think of the words skincare routine, they think of the 15-step organic Korean routines found all over Pinterest and Instagram.
A healthy skin routine doesn’t need to be this complex, at all. Most dermatologists recommend that you just take the time to cleanse and moisturise twice a day. Nothing fancy!
Cleansers keep your skin clear of pore-clogging oil and dirt, while moisturisers deliver extra hydration to your cells. To go even further, you can use a gentle exfoliator to remove even more grime and dead skin a few times a week.
But make sure you know your skin type before diving into the world of serums and toners. Oil-based cleansers and moisturisers are amazing for dry skin, but will worsen oily complexions. Take a look here and here for skincare products that fit your skin type.
5. Keep it squeaky clean
Acne is a struggle many of us face. After all, it’s the most common skin condition. And there’s nothing like bacteria, oil, and dirt to cause a breakout.
Protecting your face from grime and bacteria is vital if you’re trying to calm your skin down. Avoid touching your face before you wash your hands. And don’t. Pop. Anything.
Bacteria can also be transferred onto your face from makeup brushes and pillowcases. Regularly washing anything that comes into contact with your face will help to reduce the appearance of those annoying spots.
6. Get your beauty sleep
As every book/health magazine/doctor will tell you, sleep is a miracle worker. This is just as true for your skin as it is for the rest of your body.
When you sleep, your body produces a growth hormone and plenty of collagen, healing and rejuvenating your skin overnight. So getting 8 hours a night means lots of regenerated and reinforced skin cells.
Sleeping also decreases cortisol, responsible for discolouration, and increases melatonin, an antioxidant which fights fine lines and wrinkles.
And the best part: it’s 100% free!
7. Give your skin a break
Makeup is great. It makes us feel more confident and ready to face the day. But like anything else, use too much, too often, and problems start to crop up.
The bottom line is, your skin needs to breathe! Products like concealer, foundation, and powders can clog pores and cause breakouts. Spend a day or two per week going makeup free to allow your face to get back to normal.
While you’re at it, make sure you take it all off before bed. Yes, even if you’re exhausted. Just take a couple of minutes to get rid of the day’s buildup and your skin will thank you.
8. Wear masks made of a gentle material
Right now, our skin is being faced with a brand new problem. Our face masks tend to trap sweat and moisture right next to the skin, causing breakouts.
For those of us who are prone to acne, dermatologists have been recommending face masks made of silk. The breathable fabric doesn’t cause as much friction between the mask and your skin, resulting in less irritation.
Looking for more information on keeping your body happy and healthy? We've got lots of great blogs and articles you can check out. Also, get ready for the upcoming LiveFit Festival! With tons of activities, and speakers covering a wide range of health and fitness topics, you’re bound to find something you’ll enjoy no matter what your fitness level.