Aging skin is biological rather than chronological. The process can be delayed or even reversed with holistic, natural approach that includes optimal diet, lifestyle and product choices.
In this article, you will find simple and easy seven steps towards glowing skin.
Dear Mr. Zit Can You Please Just Go Away?
I had terrible skin decorated with zits and dryness throughout my teens and twenties. Sleepless nights, drinking, eating crap, not moving and stress. So, my life was on my face.
A few decades ago, I embarked on a journey of self-discovery and healing. Yoga became a massive part of this process. While it ruined my social life, it improved my skin dramatically.
I had to give up cigarettes, drinking and get up early to practice. My smoky, polluted lungs refused to support my vinyasa flow; my belly was too busy processing sugar and fat as I was trying to practice meditation.
Seven Essential Tips for Glowing Skin
1) Chill Out
Stress increases skin problems and often results in wrinkles, zits, and blemishes. Besides the physiological effects of stress, we tend to neglect our skin. It could be due to a lack of energy or motivation to adhere to the daily skin care regimens. Simple things like washing your face can become a choir.
There is no “one-fits-it-all” solution to find your “Zen” place. For me, my daily yoga practice, hiking in nature, reading, listening to music is the answer.
- Practice yoga
- Take a dance class
- Go for a hike
- Evaluate your environment. In addition to a toxic work or home environment, environmental pollutants and even food additives can make you anxious.
2) Eat Well
Processed foods can cause inflammation and make your skin look puffy, adding years to your looks. To improve your complexion, enrich your day with raw fruits and vegetables. Don’t eat anything you can’t pronounce. There are numerous studies on whole foods plant-based diet is optimal for our health and well-being.
I eliminated foods by keeping a “zits” journal where I recorded triggers for my pimples. My biggest offenses for zits after alcohol and cigarets were foods like packaged “cookies,” sweet and salty junk, fish, dairy (especially cheese) and animal products. So, I just gave it up.
- Glow with Pomegranates. They are packed with polyphenol antioxidants. Polyphenols fight free radicals and regulate the skin’s blood flow, giving it rosiness. One pomegranate or a few glasses of juice daily should do the trick.
- Go nuts! Seeds and nuts also contain vitamins and minerals for healthy skin. Sunflower seeds and almonds are chock full of vitamin E, which combats the damaging effects of free radicals on skin. Zinc is a mineral that influences oil production in your skin and can help prevent breakouts. Pumpkin seeds, pecans, and Brazil nuts are rich in zinc. Flaxseeds contain omega-3 fatty acids, which contribute to skin health by adding moisture and elasticity to the skin.
- Grains and Legumes. Whole grains and legumes are rich in fiber, which helps flush toxins from your system and keep your skin healthy. Whole grains and legumes also offer zinc and other minerals which promote skin health. Skin-boosting whole grains include wholewheat bread, brown rice, oatmeal, split pea soup, hummus, vegetarian chili and bean salads.
- Berries. Loaded with vitamin C. a potent antioxidant that protects skin from free radicals. It hydrates the skin and increases collagen and elastin levels. Found in blackberries, blueberries, cranberries, elderberries, goji berries, raspberries, and strawberries.
3) Always Wash Your Face Before Bed
Instead of dozing out on Facebook or watching TV, opt out to give yourself 10-15 minutes of transitional time to prepare to go bed.
I always spend a few minutes at the end of my day, stretching, reflecting but only after I have washed my face.
Adopt a “no excuses” philosophy when it comes to taking off your makeup or sunblock at the end of the day. No matter how late it is and no matter how you are feeling! I don’t wear makeup, but I do wash my face daily. Choose a face cleanser that fits your skin type.
4) Wear Sunblock After 10:00 am
No, sunscreen isn’t just for summertime! It’s incredibly sunny here in Colorado. Winter sun combined with snow glare can damage your skin.
I use broad-spectrum sunscreen on my face and my hands about 30 minutes before going outside.
5) Get Your Beauty Sleep
A lack of sleep will cause baggy eyes, wrinkles, stress and unhealthy skin color. If there is one point you can gain from this article, this should be it:
Get more sleep!
You can always cut a thing or two from your schedule: late night dinner, TV, Facebook, late night phone calls to name a few.
6) Find Good Skincare Products
If your facial skin is uncomfortably dry, avoid using harsh peels, masks, and alcohol-based toners or astringents, all of which can strip vital oil from your skin. Instead, find a cleansing milk or mild foaming cleanser, a toner with no alcohol, and masks that are “deeply hydrating,” rather than clay-based, which tends to draw moisture out of the face. And use them a little less often. There are some DIY options you can look into, but I love Luzern skin-care.
- Wash your face before going to bed.
- Apply moisturizer. I use Luzern Laboratories cream intense (I buy it from eBay).
Twice a week
- Apply a gentle scrub. I use Naturopathica Oat Facial Scrub.
- Use a rehydrating mask once or twice a week. I use Naturopathica Pumpkin Purifying Enzyme mask and Luzern Rehydrating.
- I love Luzern detox and Luzern hydro-enzime mask.
7) Get a Facial
A facial is the second most popular spa treatment after a massage. It works best when it is part of an on-going program of skin care. It is one of the best ways to take care of your skin, especially when it’s given by an experienced, knowledgeable esthetician. A good facial exfoliates and nourishes the skin. Not to mention, the fact that it is relaxing and can reduce stress.
I usually ask for referrals from friends and check online for specific spa recommendations.
The esthetician can also tell you how she thinks you can take better care of your skin and recommend products. You aren’t obligated to buy anything, but if you like the line, it’s usually worth trying.
I love St. Julian Spa in Boulder. In addition to my fantastic esthetician (Shei), there is a sauna and steam room. You can get a discount via Groupongroupon or the spa if it is offering good deals.
Bottom line: there is no magical solution. You can apply all kinds of fancy products and hope for results. We can all agree that some of the most effective long-term ways to improve your skin are to chill out, eat well and follow a good daily skin-care regime.
Please consult your dermatologist before using any new products. Also, please note that this advice is all purely experimental, and my goal is to share my path to glowing complexion in a genuine hope that it can help you too!