Ten Habits for Flawless Skin


1. Don’t overdo the use of cosmeceuticals. With more and more beauty potions containing alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs), salicylic acids, antioxidants, and retinoids, mixing a cleanser from one line with a scrub or daytime moisturizer from another, then a night cream from yet another, can lead to over-exfoliation and irritation. This can add up to a real problem, especially for women with olive and darker complexions, who are more prone to discoloration when their skin is irritated.

2. Exercise. Twenty to 30 minutes of any aerobic exercise will give you a glow. Exercise increases blood flow, which brings more nutrients to the skin. But beware — the buildup of oil and perspiration can result in sweatband acne, folliculitis, and prickly heat. The solution: Shower as soon as possible after working out.

3. Exfoliate. By mildly abrading your skin with exfoliating agents, you will remove the surface layer of dead cells. Afterward, fine lines will be less visible and your complexion will glow. A microdermabrasion cloth can do the trick. To find out more about microdermabrasion cloths check out www.youthfulskinsecrets.com

4. Check your body for spots. Any sudden or suspicious-looking bump, mole, or other growth is reason to see a dermatologist. But as skin-cancer rates rise, having a full body check by a professional is crucial — especially for those of us in the baby-oil-and-iodine, pre-sunscreen generation. “People in a high-risk group — having a personal or family history of skin cancer, a lot of moles, fair skin, and/or light eyes or hair — may need regular checkups starting in their teens, and probably no later than age 35, Even if you’re not in a high-risk group, the American Cancer Society recommends that between the ages of 20 and 40, people have a cancer-related checkup, including a skin exam, every three to four years. Once you hit your 40s, begin having a cancer-related checkup, including a skin exam, every year.

5. Eat Healthy Foods. Antioxidants (vitamins A, C, and E) — which help reduce sun damage and fight certain cancers, including skin cancer — are essential to your health. A well-balanced diet filled with at least five servings a day of fruits and vegetables, plus a multivitamin that meets RDA standards.

6. Don’t wear makeup to bed. We all know it, but we sometimes do it anyway. “Layers of foundation, powder, and blusher left on overnight can clog pores and lead to acne or folliculitis,” Take it all off before bed with a mild non-soap cleanser.

7. Handle pimples carefully. Poking, prodding, and popping can prolong a pimple’s life and make the problem worse. Scarring and the spread of infection are two possible consequences. To speed up healing, cleanse your face, then apply a warm compress, such as a clean, damp washcloth. Next, dab on an over-the-counter cream or lotion containing a drying agent, such as salicylic acid, sulfur, or benzoyl peroxide.

8. Get plenty of sleep. Most of us don’t get the eight to nine hours we need to avoid sleep deprivation. The effects aren’t hard to detect — namely, under-eye circles. The solution: Budget in sleep time, including a short afternoon nap whenever you can manage it

9. Drink plenty of water. Yes, drinking water does keep you hydrated, which helps skin look and feel better,” Get in the standard 6 to 8 eight-ounce glasses throughout the day — more if you’re a heavy exerciser. Also, many of the new sugar substitutes are dehydrating, so drink more water if you’re into low-cal liquids.

10. Use Natural Cosmeceuticals. To wisely to play it really safe, stick with one line of natural products which are formulated to work together. If you use any prescription products ask your dermatologist to advise you on how to combine prescription treatments with over-the-counter natural cosmeceutical products.

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