When it comes to skincare, a lot of people want to convince you that for clear skin you have to buy this scrub or that cream, use this toner, or that moisturizer. On the Internet, you will also find a lot of different “tips” on the kind of household remedies you can use (which usually includes putting certain fruits and vegetables on your skin). I would outright ignore these household remedies that you can read on most beauty blogs especially when they’re telling you to put acidic fruits on your skin.
These “health” blogs are today’s top self employed businesses, but they are often misleading. While initially, it may seem like the remedies are working, there’s a lot of damage that you can cause to your skin, in the long run, using those techniques. Something that a lot of people don’t tell you is that most fruits have acid in them and that can irritate your skin, cause redness, and dry out your skin altogether. In addition, a lot of the scrubs and toners that I recommended can cause micro-tears in your skin and dry it out as well.
Skincare really doesn’t have to be that complicated. You can naturally take care of your skin without having to spend a dime on creams or supplements.
Hydration, Hydration, Hydration
This first tip is pretty obvious. Your skin is the largest organ of your body. This organ is made up of cells. All cells in the body need water. If we all know this and it’s so obvious, why is it that people are scrubbing their skin with sugars and putting acidic fruits on their faces? Nothing works better than drinking a lot of water. The skin cells are closest to the environment and, therefore, may be more at risk of losing their moisture to the elements.
Drinking water throughout the day may help keep the skin cells healthy. When you don’t hydrate, it will manifest in tight, dry, flaky skin. Dry, flaky skin is not your friend and when mixed with the natural oils in your skin, will most likely lead to acne. For a healthy amount, you want to aim to consume around two liters (of about half a gallon) of water a day.
Included in all of this hydration, make sure to wash your face regularly. Don’t overdo it, but wash your face with a gentle soap before going to sleep and after waking up. If you work out during the day, wash your face immediately after you work out as well. Don’t use hot water, indeed, keep it on the colder side. Colder water will tighten your pores as well as refresh your face.
There’s a lot of gunk that gets stuck in your skin because of all the natural oils and all the dirt and pollution in the air, so you want to make sure to get rid of that before you go to bed and start clean in the morning.
Nutrition is a very important thing in our lives. Eating healthy foods in the right amounts can help prevent unintentional weight gain and keep the organs functioning well, including the skin. Consuming certain types of food may help keep the skin clear. Some foods have properties that reduce inflammation and may help lessen the appearance of acne.
Disclaimer: Acne can be due to several factors, some unrelated to diet, so always make sure you are consulting a doctor or dermatologist to find the right solution for you.
Stay Away from Dairy
Some research suggests that milk and dairy products might contribute to skin conditions, such as acne, in some people. There seems to be a link between high blood levels of the hormone IGF-1 and acne severity. IGF-1 interacts with adrenal glands, affecting hormones in a way that contributes to acne and since milk and other dairy products contain this hormone, it may explain a possible link between dairy consumption and acne.
Stay Away from a High GI
Diets with a high glycemic index (GI) may contribute to acne. Foods with a high GI raise blood sugar, and therefore insulin levels, faster than foods with a lower GI. Eating a diet with a high GI causes the body to produce more insulin and when the body has excess insulin, it stimulates the production of androgen hormones and sebum in the skin, which can lead to acne. These foods include:
- refined grains
- sugary cereals
- white bread
- sugary beverages
- foods with added sugars
Of course, you don’t need to completely cut these out of your diet, just eat them in moderation and everything will be fine.
- Foods to Eat
- Fatty fish
- Most vegetables
- Most fruits (berries are very good)
- Probiotics such as kombucha, sauerkraut, anything pickled, yogurt with live active cultures, kefir, and miso
- Prebiotics such as garlic, leeks, dandelion greens, asparagus, and other fibrous foods
- Low-Glycemic Index Foods, or protein sources like chicken, pasteurized eggs, vegetables, quinoa, steel-cut oatmeal, sweet potato, brown rice
- Leafy Greens such as spinach, kale, collard greens, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts
Sleep is amazing for your skin (as long as you’ve changed your pillowcase at least once a week to make sure you have a clean surface to lay your head on). Not sleeping enough can make your hormones get out of whack and raise your body’s stress levels, which can make you break out. Aim to get at least eight hours of sleep to look and feel your best. I cannot oversell this enough, sleep is the main player when it comes to keeping your skin healthy and young.
It’s not rocket science, when you go into work or school, you can immediately tell if someone hasn’t had a good night’s sleep. But if your own eyes can’t convince you, scientific research shows that one night of poor sleep can cause:
- hanging eyelids
- swollen eyes
- darker under eye circles
- paler skin
- more wrinkles and fine lines
- more droopy corners of the mouth
A full night’s sleep can cause genuine wonders to your face. It tightens your skin, allows your body to regenerate and replenish itself, keeps those dark circles away, and restores damages that were done to your skin during the day.
If you truly want to have clear, healthy skin you don’t need to overdo it. Most employed jobs today are on the internet. Bloggers and skincare enthusiasts want to overcomplicate the road to skincare so they can sell their products. Drink enough water, wash your face, eat right, and sleep well. That’s all there is to it, and the best part is, anyone can do this.