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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Curiosity Killed the Cat, but GREAT Skin Brought it Back: 7 Rules for TREATING Your Largest Organ

*giggles at the title* 


Let's talk about skincare. Good skincare can help fight the visible signs of aging and help your skin stay healthy and beautiful for years to come. You are no longer a teenager, yet you still have issues with random pimples and controlling the oil levels in your skin. WTFudge? You have ordered countless products from infomercials and tried several different home regimens but nothing seems to work. Your minor acne problems haven't improved and you still struggle with breakouts. Put down that concealer 


Gentlemen, skincare regimens are NOT just for ladies. You are expected to have great skin too.  Proactive worked for Diddy but it didn't work for you? No worries.  


Some people have seemingly flawless skin while others. . .well don't. Aside from extreme cases of acne, you don't need expensive prescriptions and visits to an expensive dermatologist to improve the look of your skin. 


I know everyone does not have time for intensive skin care regimens so I will keep it simple. What makes me think I'm qualified to give you tips on skincare? I have done the research and served as my own guinea pig for the past 10 years. Moving on... 


Here are 7 Simple Rules to Improving the Look of Your Largest Organ: 


1. Stay hydrated. The #1 rule for great skin is to always stay hydrated. You should drink plenty of water. Lack of water can lead to other issues and drinking a sufficient amount of water is not only good for your skin its good for your health. Properly hydrated skin has better elasticity and it helps your skin get a natural "glow." 
2, 3 and 4 are a necessary combo for EVERY skincare routine. I try to steer clear of products that aim to do all three because I have found that they don't work as well as products specifically dedicated to that purpose.  
2) Find the Right Cleanser. You should always start with a cleanser that does what it is supposed to do: clean your skin. Your cleanser should have the ability to remove traces of the big 3: dirt, oil and makeup. Some cleansers can be too harsh on the skin and can strip your skin of necessary oils. How do you know if your cleanser is too harsh? If your face ends up excessively dry after you use a cleanser, it is too harsh. By the same token, if you have traces of oil or makeup after you have used your cleanser, it is NOT effective.  You may choose to start with a more expensive cleanser and then downgrade to a cheaper cleanser as your skin improves. My first cleanser was $40/bottle then I switched to a $20/bottle cleanser and now my cleanser is $4/bottle. 


3) Use a Balancing Toner. The purpose of a toner is to make your skin look firmer and tighter...and to reduce the size of your pores. Your toner does not have to be expensive. My first skin toner was a bottle of witch hazel from my local dollar store. It cost me less than a buck.  Some toners claim to exfoliate, control oil, and renew your skin. Be weary of these claims as they are not all true. A balancing toner can help balance your skin tone and even out your complexion. Steer clear of toners with fragrance or menthols as they tend to leave unwanted residue on your skin. 


4) Use a Moisturizer Consistently. The type of moisturizer you choose depends on your skin type. Your moisturizer should hydrate your skin and help protect it from environmental conditions. Moisturizers come in the form of creams, serums, and lotions. 


5)  Stop smoking.  Smoking narrows the tiny blood vessels in the outermost layers of skin, which decreases blood flow. This depletes the skin of oxygen and nutrients, such as vitamin A, that are important to skin health. Smoking also damages collagen and elastin — fibers that give your skin its strength and elasticity. Regardless of how satisfying it is to "light one up" after an especially satisfying evening.


6) Eat a Healthy Diet. Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins. The association between diet and acne isn't clear — but research suggests that a diet rich in vitamin C and low in fats and carbohydrates may promote younger looking skin. AVOID greasy foods as much as possible. 


7) Manage Your Stress. You may be wondering what your stress level has to do with your skin. Then again, you may not have wondered that and you just want to know how to stop your breakouts. Uncontrolled stress makes your skin more sensitive and can trigger acne breakouts and other skin problems. To encourage healthy skin — and a healthy state of mind — takes steps to manage your stress. Set reasonable limits, scale back your to-do list and make time to do the things you enjoy. You may be surprised at the dramatic results. 


Getting your skin under control will require a considerable amount of discipline. You should get into the habit of going through your skincare regimen twice a day: once in the morning and once at night.  Don't believe the hype about expensive products being better. You do not have to spend a truckload of money on your skin care products. In the end, experimentation with different products is the best way to go. While you're experimenting, make note of what you like about different products and their active ingredients. 


Feel free to share any skincare tips I may have missed. 

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

LUSH cosmetics has some GREAT products and they're natural.

Rickeysha G said...

@Anonymous

Do you have any suggestions for specific products? I'm a Carol's Daughter junkie but I'm always looking to try new products.

Anonymous said...

@Rickeysha G

It all depends on your skin type. They are usually spot on. For oily skin: Coal Face, Dark Angels, and Herbalism are all great facial cleansers.

Rickeysha G said...

@Anonymous

Ok thanks so much for your input. I use their bath soaps and salts and I enjoy them. I will try out their cleansers as well.

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