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Sunday, February 6, 2011

Skin Caring Tips

Maybe you're in your 20s or early 30s & you think you can't possibly have aging skin yet. Well, you're wrong. Your skin starts acting old, losing collagen, glow & elasticity. Lines will develop & pores can seem more pronounced. It's easier to prevent damage than to repair it but the good news is you CAN reverse skin damage. To slow down/reverse the aging process & leave your skin glowing at any age:
Don't take too many showers:
Yes you're working up a sweat, but taking multiple showers throughout the day can wreak havoc with your skin. Though you might think it's hydrating, topically, water can have a drying effect on your epidermis. To avoid looking like a prune, douse in small doses & always moisturize immediately after showering.
Do drink plenty of water:
While topically water can hinder your skin, drinking 1.8 litre of water daily is essential for a healthy complexion because it flushes out toxins & keeps your insides running efficiently. It doesn't matter whether you drink bottled, filtered, tap water or eat fruits/veggies.
Don't go overboard with rich moisturizers:
While you want to keep your skin supple during summer, you can afford to lighten up - especially since thick doesn't necessarily equal better.
Do use a nighttime face lotion:
There's evidence that skin-cell regeneration is slightly faster at night than during the day, so take advantage of your skin's receptiveness & don't skimp on overnight hydration.
Don't drink too much coffee:
Do lavish your face & body with coffee topically. Numerous studies point to coffee-derived caffeine's skin-tightening & redness-soothing properties, making it the perfect antidote to under-eye pouches & rosacea.
Don't use harsh scrubs or scrub too often:
A void crushed nuts that are jagged. They can cause tiny lacerations in the skin, making the skin vulnerable. While the general rule is to exfoliate twice a week, your skin type plays a factor. Oily skin can handle exfoliation sessions up to four times a week, whereas dry or sensitive skin should stick to once or twice-a-week scrubs.
Do exfoliate with natural fruit enzymes:
Fruit acids from pumpkin, papaya & pineapple, for example, dissolve dead skin cells gently yet effectively. Pump up your scrub by squirting a little lemon juice into it for instant brightening & buffing action.
Don't over massage the skin or touch your face too much:
A facial massage can help relieve stress, improve elasticity, & provide a healthy glow, but stimulating the skin too much can also irritate sensitive skin & worsen acne, psoriasis, or eczema. Also, try not to touch your skin during the day when your fingers might not be clean..
Do use the zipper technique when applying anti-aging creams & serums to fine lines & wrinkles:
This will create a crevice-free surface so that the cream/serum can effectively penetrate. Here's how to do it - Using your index finger & middle finger, gently push the skin on either side of the line outward. Keeping fingers spread, use a finger from your other hand to zip up the smoothed-out area in between with product.
Don't rely on commercial beauty drinks for glowing skin:
They can provide a hydrating boost, but there aren't enough vitamins & antioxidants in them to make a visible difference in your skin.

Do take anti-inflammatory supplements:
Omega-3s, B vitamins & querecitin help prevent acne flare-ups, encourage moisture absorption/retention & improve blood circulation. If you're handy with a juicer, you might even try making your own at-home beauty drinks. Natural juices are enriched with vitamins as well as antioxidants, which increase blood flow, reduce collagen breakdown, improve collagen deposition, production & help with increasing the overall cell turnover rate of your skin, mixing leafy green vegetables like spinach.
Do stop smoking:
Ever notice the skin of a lifelong smoker? It can appear wrinkly like a squashed paper bag. The fact is, smoking is the 2nd biggest cause of skin damage after sun exposure. Why? nicotine constricts blood vessels & decreases the flow of oxygen to the skin.

Do use an AHA or BHA (also known as retinols) every day:
A daily application of a one percent prescription retinoid lotion (such as Retin-A or even better, Tazorac) can erase years from your face. AHAs used properly not only take off lots of dead skin, but can seem to take 10 years off as well by reducing fine lines. (Keep in mind these products do OT shrink pores. Your pore size is completely hereditary, so don't believe promises of permanent reduction).

Extra tip:
You must stay out of the sun if you use retinoids- You are extra-susceptible to sunburns.

Do exfoliate once a week:
Choose a formulation that's best for your skin type. Chemical exfoliators (glycolic or salicylic acid) are best for oily or combo skin, while scrubs found in micro-dermabrasives work best for sensitive skin.

Do use rye & neck cream daily:
Eyes are one of the first places to show aging. The skin around the eyes is extra thin so you'll want to protect it from the sun with eye cream with SPF 30.

Do invest & ingest antioxidants:
Antioxidants is a huge word in aging prevention. A huge proponent of antioxidants (found in green teas & beta carotene) Q 10.

Don't pull & rub your skin:
Aging skin has been under attack by UV rays, stress & carbon monoxide so don't stress it more by pulling on it.

Don't forget to moisturize:
While it's a myth that wrinkles are caused by dry skin, moisturizing can improve the appearance of lines by temporarily plumping them up.

Don't ignore your neck & chest:
The neck & chest are first to show the signs of aging (they have fewer oil glands than the rest of your body), yet most of us ignore them. Look for moisturizers that have age- fighting ingredients like vitamin A (retinols), kinetin, copper or vitamin C.

Don't forget the sunscreen:
You've had it ingrained in your head since youth, but seriously, even in winter it can take just 20 minutes of unprotected sun exposure to damage the skin. One word of warning: Once you start an anti-aging regimen, you have to keep it up. The effects of acid peels, AHAs, moisturizers - all the anti-aging products that remove dead skin cells & make skin look plumper - won 't last forever. You will have to maintain them.

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