Ok. I’m officially obsessed with skin care. Maybe it’s because I’ve reached a certain age and I find my dark circles now refuse to go away, and I am getting tiny moles everywhere thanks to being a self-proclaimed sun worshipper. One of my New Year’s Resolutions was to take much better care of my skin. I thought that may be easier to attain and make me happier than the usual “Spend Less”, “Exercise More”, “Drink Less”, “Buy a Chanel Bag” and “Buy More Shoes” resolutions that I make year after year. Here is my list of skin no-nos, things that most of us all do on a daily basis that causes us not to reach our full JLo-like, glowy potential.
Not Drinking Enough Water
This tip is first for a reason. Drink as much water as you can on a daily basis. I aim for two litres a day. It flushes out toxins from your body, greatly hydrates your skin giving you that covetable youthful glow on top of warding off the aging process. As soon as I wake up, I drink a large mug of warm water infused with fresh lemon. I get to work and drink two litres of water over the course of eight hours. I get home and drink a few more glasses of water. Just do it – trust me on this one.
Not Enough Sleep
Getting at least eight hours of sleep a night not only replenishes your body and allows your brain to recharge, it replenishes and rehydrates skin ensuring a nice, refreshed look. Lack of sleep can definitely dull your skin and lead to clogged pores.
Too Much Salt In Your Diet
A diet high in sodium can suck the moisture out of your skin, leaving it dry and lacklustre. Cut down on the salty foods and drink plenty of water.
Sleeping With Your Makeup On
When you wake up in the morning, does your pillow look like Homer shot it with his now infamous Makeup Gun?
Sleeping with your makeup on can clog your pores and cause bacterial infections leading to acne. Not washing your face before bedtime can promote eye infections. Here’s a tip: keep some makeup remover wipes on your nightstand. Next time you collapse on your bed after having eight too many margaritas, you can wipe off your makeup in a pinch.
Too Much Coffee
Coffee is major skin dehydrator leading to wrinkles. Counteract its effects with tons of water. Don’t like water all that much? Add lemon slices or berries (or both) to enhance it’s flavour, minus the sugar. Which leads me to…
Too Much Sugar
I have always been a big believer that foods affect your skin. Before I cut out sugar and various other junk food, I suffered constant breakouts. My skin is now much clearer and I only suffer the occassional breakout now that I’ve overhauled my diet for the better. Apparently, a diet heavy in sugar breaks down the collagen in skin and causes sagging. Bad! Try combatting your sweet tooth with natural sugars found in fruit and berrries.
Too Much Sun
Excess sun exposure can lead to the following: wrinkles, sagging, age spots, freckles, discolouration and worst of all skin cancer. I know, I know. I love the sun! It feels so good! Just protect yourself while under it!
Constantly picking at a pimple will cause bacteria to work its way deeper into your pores, which leads to more acne. Picking at acne also leads to scarring. What’s worse? A zit that lasts a few days, or a scar that lasts months…or worse yet, years?
Testing Too Many Products
Want a raging, oily/dry, cracked, red angry mess? Try way too many skin care products. I learned this the hard way being a new blogger. I’d rush out, buy all sorts of skin cleansers, toners, creams, etc. and use myself as my test subject. When my skin went haywire and I got an angry rash from a much too fragrant cream, I finally thought “enough is enough”. I went back to basics and stuck to the skin care line that always worked for me.
Remember, if you want to try out several skin care products, try them out on a small patch of skin on the inside of your arm first.
Not Cleaning Your Smartphone
Give your smartphone a good cleaning with some antibacterial wipes on a regular basis. I clean my beloved iPhone on a daily basis. Constantly touching your phone covers it in bacteria, which is transferred to your cheeks and jawline during a phone conversation…which can lead to an acne breakout.
Getting Hair Products On Your Face
Try to cover your face with a towel the next time you use hairspray! Hairspray and other hair products can be pore-cloggers.
Like your smartphone, dirty sunglasses can harbour bacteria from constant touching. Add sweat to the mix and you can be facing breakouts and irritation at your temples and bridge of your nose. Don’t forget to clean your sunglasses regularly.
Frequent weight loss and weight gain can cause sagging and stretch marks. Remember – diet the safe way. Slow and steady wins the race, and tends to ensure that you keep the weight off in the long run.
I started washing my bed linens on a weekly basis many years ago after watching a terrifying documentary on dust mites! Be sure to wash your bed linens at least every two weeks to rid them of skin cells that have shedded while you sleep. Any longer than that and they will build up leading to excess bacteria and dirt.
Exfoliating Too Often
You should exfoliate your skin no more than once a week, and by “exfoliate”, I mean exfoliating with harsher products such as sugar or salt scrubs, bath brushes and tough loofah sponges. If you overdo it, you will strip your skin of those necessary oils that help keep you moisturized.
This one is a biggie. Stress manifests itself in so many different ways – some of which include blemishes, rashes, dullness and wrinkles from constant frowning from worrying. Remember to incorporate ways to combat stress in your life by taking time for yourself and doing something you enjoy.
Alcohol completely dehydrates your skin leaving you looking like a bloated corpse the day after a good binge-drinking session (wow – that’s harsh). Not only does alcohol deplete your skin of moisture, it robs your body of Vitamin A which is necessary for cell turnover and renewal, which can leave you looking gray…and corpse-ish.
Not Enough Exercise
A good workout flushes out toxins from the body through perspiration and increases blood flow to your skin therefore producing a nice, healthy glow. Not exercising has been linked to an increase in age spots.
Second Hand Smoke
We all know cigarettes are horrible for obvious reasons. Being around smoke speeds up the aging process – think sagging and wrinkles.
Too Much AC
Having the air conditioning on full blast dries out your skin by stripping the air of humidity. The Arctic is one of the driest places on Earth…so is my office during the summer. Sigh.
A few days a week, don’t wear makeup. You will reduce clogged pores and potential irritation. Makeup is the leading cause of acne and other skin irritations in 30% of patients seen by dermatologists! Some makeup contains known carcinogens, hormone disruptors and neurotoxins. After years of repeated use, some can cause a great deal of damage to internal organs. WOW. Remember – be an informed shopper next time you purchase cosmetics and know which ingredients to avoid!
Hope you all found this post informative and not too depressing and scary!
What are some of your skin care tips? Please feel free to share in the comments section!