Ok, so what are the biggest problems our skin has to contend with? From late nights on the town to long commutes with no fresh air, your lifestyle could be causing your skin more damage than you realize
Here are our top six issues:
NO.1 – The Sun: The sun is the source of energy that sustains life, but accumulated exposure without adequate protection can have negative consequences on the skin. The main types of sun-rays which damage our skin are UVA, UVB, and recent studies now indicate infrared rays are damaging too. These all have the ability to penetrate into the skin and cause damage. On the surface, this damage manifests as the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, pigmentation, sagging and loss of density and an un-even looking skin tone, however beneath the skin’s surface there is additional damage.
Damage Limitation: To adequately help to protect our skin from the damaging effects of the sun, sun protection needs to be a part of our every day skincare routine. SPF’s either reflect the UV light, or help to absorb the UV light, a combination of both is best. If a sun protection is deemed “broad spectrum” it indicates a level of protection from both UVA and UVB rays, whereas just SPF (sun protection factor) only indicates the length of time we are protected from the UVB rays.
For ultimate protection against sun damage we need to wear a topical antioxidant to give even more protection at a deeper level – A vital skincare step for anyone who is serious about their skin health.
No.2 – Pollution: Where as sun-damage is fairly well known, information about the damage caused by our pollution-ridden streets is limited. Failing to protect our skin from environmental toxins such as pollution and bacteria is a big cause of premature ageing. Environmental assaults generate free radicals in the body, damaging the skin’s DNA, causing pigmentation, wrinkles and inflammation, plus airborne germs mix with the skin’s natural oils to clog the pores and trigger acne and breakouts.
Damage Limitation: Firstly keep your skin clean, this means not going to bed with your make-up on and washing your skin after travelling on the underground etc. Secondly, by using a good topical antioxidant daily to help neutralize free radicals and protect the skin. For example: SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic® a revolutionary antioxidant combination that delivers advanced protection against photoageing by neutralising free radicals, boosting collagen synthesis, and providing unmatched antioxidant protection. Amazing product! One I use every day.
No.3- Smoking: Beyond its known links to cancer, lung and heart disease, smoking is also known to be associated with premature skin ageing and delayed wound healing, as well as a number of skin disorders, particularly psoriasis. Smoking accelerates the ageing process in the skin, it is not certain exactly how smoking causes early ageing of the skin, however theories include: Heat from the cigarette directly burning the skin; Changes in the elastic fibres of the skin; Narrowing of blood vessels (vasoconstriction) which reduces blood supply to the skin and can cause changes in skin elastic fibres AND loss of collagen; Reducing Vitamin A levels and moisture of the skin.
Damage Limitation: Easy for me to say, but…Try to give up! There is so much free help and support available to everyone now, you just need to visit your local pharmacy or GP to find out your options. If you don’t smoke yourself try to limit your time surrounded by smokers, there’s a lot to be said for passive smoking, and not just for skin health. A topical antioxidants as mentioned above will also help to protect your skin from the damaging effects of smoke.
NO.4 – Lack of sleep: The fact is our skin and body renews and regenerates whilst we sleep. We are all guilty of depriving ourselves of sleep; whether we work long hours, party hard or are up early with young children. It will all take a toll on our health, and our skin. Lack of sleep actually puts stress on our skin…hormones spiral out of control and can cause inflammatory problems like acne and Rosacea.
Damage Limitation: There is help at hand, products containing Vitamin A (retinol) can be used at night, they increase cell turnover and collagen production, so you get a smoother, brighter surface when you wake. For example SkinCeuticals Retinol 0.3 is a refining night cream which will help to reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, age spots and an uneven looking skin tone.
No.5 – Alcohol: A glass of wine here, a quick pint there, the units can quickly add up. Not only can your head suffer the consequences but your skin becomes very dehydrated too. Dull, dehydrated skin leads to a slow sluggish skin…collagen production and cell renewal will slow down, allowing lines to appear which get worse and deeper over time… Alcohol also dilates the blood vessels in the skin, so it can promote puffiness around the eyes and may also trigger rosacea.
Damage Limitation: Obviously drinking less alcohol will help, but increasing your plain water intake will also benefit. Use a nourishing moisturizer over night to further help lessen the loss of moisture, for example SkinCeauticals Hydrating B5, A gel/lotion enriched with vitamin B5, known to help with tissue repair in the skin. Hydrating B5 replenishes the nutrients the skin needs to feel smooth and appear younger looking. This moisture-enhancing serum contains hyaluronic acid, the body’s natural hydrator, to bind moisture to the skin. I LOVE this product, and it has many uses.
No.6 – Bad diet: We all know that eating the right foods helps keep you healthy. Here’s more good news: A healthy diet can also make you look and feel younger. It may even slow the aging process!
Damage limitation: Eat loads of colorful fruits and vegetables. The antioxidants in colorful vegetables and fruits, such as leafy greens, deep red tomatoes, blueberries, and carrots, help stop unstable molecules from damaging healthy cells. You cannot feel it when skin-cells are damaged or dying, but you can see it in the signs of aging. Eating foods such as fruit, vegetables, fish, nuts, and whole grains also protects against many chronic conditions that could limit your life, including diabetes and heart disease. These foods help keep your blood vessels in top shape and that is important for your heart, and for every organ of your body, including your skin.
So there you have it Six Skin Sins! I hope you enjoyed the read.