The skin is the largest organ of the body. It makes up approximately 5% of your body’s weight. So you’re not big boned, just heavy skinned. And your skin is Bae in letting you know when something is up with your health. From becoming sensitive due to allergies, acneic due to a bad diet and poor digestion or becoming dry due to harsh cleaning products etc. Skin is usually a pretty good indicator of your general state of health. Even though genetics still play a big part. But since the Glow Up is very real, here are 3 pilars that should be part of any skin-care routine… whether you’re “oily”, “dry”, “dehydrated”, “sensitive” or any combination of the above.
So fresh and so clean, clean
The amount of clients I get who still neglect the cleaning part in their beauty-routine is simply astonishing. Just like the amount of people who still fall asleep without taking their make-up off… Hunny, its 2017, we really can’t be friends if you don’t wash off your make-up at night. Washing your face, and washing it well, can affect everything from the health and clarity of your skin to the benefits you’ll get from any product you put on top. Which makes sense. If your makeup is not coming off fully or you have a whole lotta dead skincells, then anything else you layer is just not going to be as effective. But there is a difference in washing well and being abrasive.
For example, many acne sufferers, tend to take a harsh approach to cleansing. But this can aggravate the spots. So if you have a reactive skin with lots of spots, lay down the cleansing brushes or washcloths for a while, these can be too intense and potentially spread bacteria. You want to treat the troubled area very delicately and just wash really well with your (clean) hands. A sulfate free face-wash under the shower or a cleanse-off oil will work wonders.
Hydration is key
Whether your skin is dry to very oily, any skin-type can benefit from an extra dose of hydration. To hydrate the skin is to add water to it. The simplest and most effective way of doing so is simply by… drinking more water. This can be complemented by serums, treatments etc. But if you’re not drinking enough water you will your bucks will go to waste. Because day-creams, body lotions etc work with emolients. And an emolient is an ingredient that helps keep the skin moist by slowing down the water-loss that happens during the day by providing a barrier on the skin to keep water in. But if there’s not enough water to keep in… see where I’m going here? And if you’re spending 50 bucks on a moisturizer without spending 2 bucks on water… Then congratulations, you played yourself.
If you’re not a big water drinker I’d suggest you start with small steps : a big glass of water when you wake up, a big glass of water with every meal and one more before you go to sleep. This will make sure your water-levels are up consistently, your digestion will be on fleek and toxins will find it way easier to get out. Plus, during the night your skin is working its regenerating magic. So cleanse, drank and apply a product that nourishes. (Look for ingredients like : cucumber extract, glycerin, malachite, rhodochrosite or kukui nut oil amongst others.)
the Aviary filter is overrated, SPF is not
Minimal exposure to the sun provides a few advantages for the body. It causes production of vitamin D, metabolism of calcium and the sterilization of the skin which can be an aid to some skin problems. But, the disadvantages of sun exposure outweigh most of these advantages. Overexposure to sun can lead to hyper-pigmentation, cause sunburns and lead to a break down of the connective tissue (collagen) which causes premature aging. And then we’re not even mentioning the skin cancer part. So make it a habit to add an SPF to your beauty routine.
SPF, or Sun Protection Factor, is a measure of how well a sunscreen will protect skin from UVB rays. For example : if your skin would normally burn after 10 minutes in the sun, applying an SPF 15 sunscreen would allow you to stay in the sun without burning for approximately 150 minutes (a factor of 15 times longer). This is a rough estimate that depends on skin type, intensity of sunlight and amount of sunscreen used. For best protection, experts recommend using a minimum SPF sunscreen of 15, applying the proper amount (2mg/cm2 of skin), and reapplying every 2 hours. Your skin will repay you ten times over. Also, if you glow in the dark like me, invest in a self-tanner or get a spray tan done by a professional. (And by all means, avoid tanning beds!) Stained sheets are a small price to pay. You can always go to Ikea for new linnen, you can’t go out and just buy a new skin.
Photo credits : Glossier, Into the Gloss