As winter approaches here in the northern hemisphere, you may notice your skin losing some of its summer luminosity. I frequently hear client concerns about dull skin around this time of year. The good news is that by adding just a few of these simple steps, you can maintain your glow year-round.
Read on for 6 quick tips you can put into practice right now to achieve radiant, luminous skin!
- Get a good night’s sleep. No one looks or feels their best without proper rest. Your skin functions don’t perform optimally without sleep, either. Lack of sleep raises the level of the stress hormone cortisol in your body, which triggers an increase in your skin’s oil production. It can make your sebum thick and gluey, causing dead skin cells to stick to skin’s surface and pores and resulting in dull, congested skin. Sufficient rest will help to keep your cortisol levels in check and your skin happy.
- Manage your stress. Cortisol doesn’t only surge when you’re not catching enough Z’s. It also skyrockets in direct response to any stress you may be feeling. Skin is truly your external nervous system—replete with nerve endings, it is often the first place where you can see the physical results of stress or irritation in the body. By practicing deep breathing, meditation, exercise, or any hobbies that help you relax, you can maintain healthy cortisol levels that manifest in healthy skin.
- Give yourself a facial massage. Massage delivers several immediate benefits to the skin. Right away, you’ll notice increased circulation. This blood flow provides your skin cells with oxygen and nourishment for a more vibrant complexion. Massage also reduces puffiness by encouraging the flow of lymph. By making facial massage part of our regular routine, you’ll notice long-term benefits such as stimulating muscle tone, which provides a good base structure to support the skin.
- Try a humidifier. Using a heater creates a lot of dry air inside your home, which can deplete surface moisture from your skin and leave skin more prone to irritation. Running a humidifier counteracts some of that dryness for more hydrated, resilient skin in the colder months.
- Drink some lemon water. Drinking water is essential for bodily health. It makes up 60% of our bodies and an even greater percentage of our vital organs. Water you consume doesn’t directly hydrate your skin, but proper hydration is necessary for your bodily systems to function at their most optimal level—including your skin cells and integumentary system at large. Adding lemon to the mix also brings benefits of vitamin C, antioxidant-rich flavonoids, and produces alkalizing byproducts in your body which can aid in kidney function.
- Protect yourself from sun exposure. There are mountains of research demonstrating how unprotected sun exposure wreaks havoc on skin. Whether you use SPF, a hat, staying in the shade, or (best of all) a combination of all three, practicing sun safety year-round is your best insurance against losing that healthy skin glow.