By Linda S. Mills
7 tips for healthy skin
Every woman looks and feels her best when her skin is radiant and healthy. Regardless of age or lifestyle, a little bit of effort and a well-tailored regime can yield some glowing results in no time. The key is to recognize that flawless skin is a reflection of a well-planned diet, proper hygiene and conscious health habits. Here are 7 tips that will help improve the texture and appearance of any complexion.
1. Start with good nutrients
Protect healthy skin cells and ward off harmful sun damage by including fruits rich in antioxidants, such as berries, citrus and tomatoes. Salmon, walnuts, avocados and cold-pressed oils are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids and monosaturates, beneficial in helping skin retain moisture and elasticity.
Avoid over-consumption of refined carbohydrates containing sugar and white flour. Recent studies point to an increase in certain hormones that may stimulate oil (sebum) production and encourage acne breakouts.
2. Stay hydrated
Drinking plenty of fluids is essential in keeping your skin supple and smooth. Limit your consumption of liquids that dehydrate such as coffee and alcohol. Choose mineral or spring water and immune boosting green tea. 8-10 glasses a day will help clear your system of toxins that cause bloating and puffiness around the eyes.
3. Establish a daily routine
Choose a gentle skin cleanser that does not contain harsh drying agents or perfumes. Washing your face in the morning and again in the evening should be enough to rinse away impurities. Avoid products that tighten, since your skin may rebel and overproduce oil to compensate for the extra dryness.
Exfoliating dead skin cells from the surface of the skin can make a tremendous difference. Those with sensitive skin should try rubbing gently with a damp washcloth or applying a mild, exfoliating mask.
For more resilient complexions, drugstore strength alpha or beta hydroxy lotions improve skin tone and help clear acne blemishes. Prescription creams such as Retin A or Renova produce more dramatic skin improvements and can significantly alter skin texture and open clogged pores. These vitamin A-derived creams work at a deeper, cellular level and stimulate collagen, the substance responsible for keeping skin youthful and wrinkle free.
5. Choose the right moisturizer
All skin types require good moisturizing. Not only does this help to maintain a balanced, healthy skin tone, but also enhances exfoliation by softening dead skin cells. Women with oily skin often assume that they have enough natural moisture, but the proper lotion or cream will help retain water content and diminish over production of sebum due to excessive cleansing or acne medications.
6. Wear sunscreen
Unprotected sun exposure is one of the leading causes of deep wrinkles, brown spots, skin abnormalities and premature aging. Wearing a sunscreen with an SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of 20 or higher is a must, even on those cloudy days.
7. Protect your health
While many of us spend hundreds of dollars each year on make-up and skin care products, we often forget that our skin is the largest organ in our bodies and reflects how well we care for our health overall. Good quality sleep, positive stress management, a balanced diet and a smoke-free lifestyle go a long way in helping our skin to glow from within.