The Simple Secret to Keeping Your Skin Young — Hydrate!

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Make Your Skin Look and Feel Younger by Staying Hydrated

Everyone wants the look of beautiful, healthy skin. We buy makeup (even the guys do!), scrubs, lotions, masks and spend hundreds of dollars looking for a fresh and healthy look. But overlooking the basics can mean all these efforts actually go to waste, and even make our skin look worse! Many of today’s beauty products actually dry out our skin, and dry skin both looks and acts like older skin, further undoing all of our efforts. Worst of all, dry skin doesn’t feel as good as when our skin is properly hydrated.

Dryness actually starts much deeper than the surface troubles we try to address in our daily skin regimens. Dry skin gets scaly, rough and dull, and looks far older than its actual age. Dry skin is also more likely to show fine lines and wrinkles. Once skin dries out, it starts to chap, crack, and even get tiny tears in it. And when the protective, outer barrier breaks down, outside contaminants start to seep in, irritating the healthy skin cells found under the protective, outer surface layer. When pollution, bacteria, pollen and other irritants get in, they cause inflammation (redness), acne and even infection.

What causes dryness? The environment can be a big factor, especially in these cold winter months. Sun, wind and harsh, heated air wick away the moisture, while many cleansers strip away the skin’s protective oils and even healthy skin cells, leaving that outer layer dehydrated and vulnerable to further damage. Add in poor lifestyle habits like not getting enough sleep, smoking, drinking too much alcohol and consuming too much sugar and caffeine and our skin really starts to deteriorate.

And just when you thought it couldn’t get worse, it turns out dry skin prevents our skincare products from working as well as they could. Dry skin doesn’t shed dead skin cells correctly, so cells pile up on the surface, creating a barrier that prevents your moisturizer and other products from reaching the cells where they could do the most good.

So what can we do to hydrate our skin so that it can look and feel its best?

Eating right, drinking plenty of water, getting enough exercise and sleep are all great ways to improve our skin’s foundation. Make sure you’re drinking at least 64 ounces of water each day and try to avoid beverages containing caffeine and alcohol, both of which deplete your body of precious fluids. Don’t forget to load up on plenty of water-heavy fruits and vegetables. Not only do many of them have a high water content, but they’re also loaded with antioxidants that are also great for your skin.

There’s plenty you can do to combat dry skin from the outside as well. Start with gentle exfoliation. Clearing away dry, dead skin cells makes it easier for your moisturizer to do its job. Gentle exfoliation will clear away those surface cells piling up, while preserving those vibrant vital healthy cells that make us glow. Follow up with a hydrating serum, like Rodan + Fields Active Hydration Serum, and then apply moisturizer. While these 2 steps may seem redundant, hydrating serum and moisturizer do different jobs: moisturizer stops our skin from losing water, while hydrating serum brings water to the skin. Be sure to moisturize before heading out into the cold where harsh temperatures and winds can whisk away moisture and always apply a good night cream to clean skin before bed when it has plenty of time to repair and rejuvenate. And don’t forget to protect your skin when you go outside, with a warm scarf or face mask. Harsh winter winds will whisk away moisture faster than you can say Jack Frost!

If you would like to discuss your skincare regimen and the best products for healthy, glowing skin, stop in or speak with one of us before or after class. We’ll help you find the perfect combination to make your skin glow!

 

Susan McInnis