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As a society, we are OBSESSED with anti-aging and maintaining a youthful appearance. Cue the Botox, collagen supplements, and everything else you see advertised. Unfortunately, we haven’t found the Fountain of Youth quite yet.
An easy way to stay looking young is taking care of your skin. It doesn’t have to be difficult. There are plenty of things you can do naturally right now to get happier and healthier skin.
Why else should we keep our skin healthy? Skin is the body’s first line of defense and tells us a lot about our health. For example, a strange rash can alert us to infection or an autoimmune problem, a new yellow color can indicate liver disease, and changes in moles can be a signal for skin cancer. Not to mention, our skin helps us soak up sunlight and turn it into vitamin D.
Here are some easy ways to keep your skin healthy now and in the days to come.
Use sun protection for healthy skin
Too much sun is bad for your skin; long periods of sun exposure puts you at greater risk for wrinkles, dark spots, and even skin cancer.
While it is good to let sunlight hit our skin for vitamin D synthesis, you only need a few minutes per day for this to happen.
Take precautions against excess sun exposure by doing these things:
- Use SPF every day. Yes, even when it’s cloudy outside because UV rays still come through clouds. Use a sheer, oil-free formulation on your face like this one.
- Get under the shade when UV rays are at their peak, between 10 AM and 4 PM during the day.
- If you must be in the sun, try to wear long-sleeved shirts and pants to limit exposure. Wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect your scalp and ears!
Did you know? Even some of the foods we eat contain potent antioxidants that help protect our skin from sun damage.
This should be a no-brainer. Staying hydrated does so much for our health.
Water helps replenish all of our cells and keeps our bodies functioning at an optimal level.
Even the slightest bit of dehydration makes our skin look saggy, dull, and dry.
I try to drink about a half-gallon of water per day. Bottoms up!
Take a good look at your diet
Food heals us from the inside out. If you eat a lot of foods that are processed or have a lot of sugar or salt, it can show in your skin.
Foods that contain antioxidants are the key to healthy skin. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals which cause damage to our cells. One antioxidant, in particular, vitamin C, provides benefits to our skin like decreasing dark spots from sun exposure.
Foods containing lots of antioxidants include:
- green tea
- dark chocolate
- tomatoes (contains lycopene)
- citrus fruits
- carrots (contains beta carotene)
- sweet potatoes
Also consider incorporating foods containing healthy fats. Healthy fats keep your skin healthy and glowing. Try:
- olive oil
- nuts like almonds
- fatty fish like salmon
- fish oil supplement
Consider a biotin supplement
Biotin is a B vitamin that has long been touted for its benefits for healthy skin, hair, and nails.
You can get biotin through your diet; foods like meat, fish, eggs, and nuts are rich in biotin.
You can also get biotin through a dietary supplement. There is no real consensus as to the best dosage to take. Research shows that daily doses between 2,500 mcg to 5,000 mcg daily improved nail and hair health. Some supplements contain up to 10,000 mcg.
Find a biotin supplement here.
Stick to a cleansing routine
Keeping a regular routine with cleansing your face will give you that nice, healthy glow.
Here’s what you should know:
- Cleanse your face every morning and evening. Always wash your face before you go to bed! Otherwise, old makeup will clog up your pores and make you break out. Use a gentle cleanser like this. Or, if you have acne-prone skin, use a cleanser with salicylic acid.
- Exfoliate your face 2-3 times per week. Exfoliation gently removes dead skin cells and impurities that clog your pores. Your face will feel so smooth and shiny afterward! Try this one which contains natural ingredients.
- Moisturize! Moisturizing locks in hydration to prevent your skin from becoming dry and flaky. Use moisturizer day and night. Try a daily formulation like this one. Bonus: it contains sunscreen.
Stop smoking (or don’t start)
This is another no-brainer. Smoking is bad not only for our physical health but also for our skin.
Smoking makes a person look older by constricting the blood vessels near the surface of the skin, causing discoloration. It is also damaging to cells by depleting oxygen and nutrients. Smoking also hurts the elasticity of the skin which causes wrinkles.
Not to mention, think about all of the repetitive motions you make with your face when you smoke. The constant pursing of your lips creates wrinkles around your mouth. Also, it turns your fingers and nails yellow. Gross.
Get enough sleep
People underestimate the power of a good night’s rest. Getting adequate sleep does so much to keep our bodies going during the day.
Sleep is how the body rejuvenates itself and that includes your skin. Ever get those bags under your eyes after a sleepless night?
Make sure you are getting at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night. That means good quality sleep! If you have trouble sleeping, you may need to take a look at some of your daily habits.
Get some activity in
Exercise has a lot of great benefits for our bodies.
In terms of healthy skin, exercise helps deliver oxygen and nutrients to our skin to help repair it. Also, getting your sweat on helps get the toxins and nasty stuff out. Just be sure to clean your face afterward so you’re not soaking in sweat and clogging your pores.
Exercise is also great to help manage stress. As we all know, stress can trigger acne breakouts and other unwanted flare-ups.
Yoga is an excellent form of exercise to relieve stress!
There you have it! These are the best and easiest ways to achieve healthy skin for years to come.
What other tips do you have for healthy skin? Share with me in the comments!