Skin Food Essentials
Updated: Mar 26, 2020
Having great skin is not just in your DNA, there are tons of things you need to take care of to maintain that great skin. For people actually born with great skin, the only effort for them to put in is maintain that great skin but, for some of us who still struggle with acne, pigmentation, spots and what not...It's time to change the game. I personally have dry/combination skin type but mostly it's dry all the time. I also deal with acne here and there nothing major. I have had phases in life where I picked on my zits and and I was left with horrible scarring and spots. We all have been there at some point of time in life where you just loose your confidence, don't like seeing yourself in the mirror, when taking pictures there is a significant loss of confidence in you. I'm all about embracing natural beauty and feeling beautiful in your own skin but these things are hard to fathom when you are merely a teenager or getting ready to go on a date for the first time, or thinking of posting that first Instagram picture. We always look at models and celebrities and we can only wish for skin like theirs but we know it very well they have tons of people taking care of their skin, hair, body...in general everything. Also, lets not forget the photo editing technology these days. All this can be very deceiving and we should not let it dominate our minds. Everyone is responsible to maintain their own health. As a blogger and a big skincare junkie all I can do is share my skincare regimen with you all, pass my wisdom on skincare practices that helped me to achieve health, glowing skin. Without much further ado, here we go.
I am breaking down basic skin care protocol into four main categories:
We all know what cleansing is and do it everyday and I'm not going to rave about it. Washing your face is the most important step in any skin care routine. However you have to decide the frequency of washing your face based on your skin type. You don't want to strip away those natural skin oils that keeps your skin naturally moisturized. Sometimes cleanser selection can be overwhelming. What type of cleanser should I look for? Sensitive, dry, oily, acne-prone? Don't fret, I gotchu!
Best Face Wash for Dull Skin
If you're dealing with dullness or discoloration, like dark spots, or post-inflammatory hyperpigmenation, it's worth investing in a face wash with gentle exfoliating ingredients to slough off the top layer of uneven skin. Washing with alpha hydroxy acids (like glycolic, lactic, and mandelic acid) helps dissolve the glue that holds together dead skin cells. And when those dead cells are MIA? New, undamaged skin cells are able to come to the surface, resulting in clearer, more even-toned skin.
Best Face Wash for Sensitive Skin
Skin that's prone to redness or irritation has a weakened skin barrier, and using a face wash that's too harsh can definitely make matters worse. So to prevent that from happening, you'll want to look for something labeled "gentle" or "for sensitive skin". This means no bar soaps, scrubs, or super sudsy cleansers with stripping sulfates. Instead, opt for creamy or low-foam formulas with hydrating and calming ingredients. Also good to know: If your skin is super sensitive, just cleanse your face once in the day preferably during night.
Best Face Wash for Dry Skin
Using the wrong face wash can actually dry out of your face crazy. As a rule, look for formulas that have a cream, lotion, or milk-like texture and contain hydrating ingredients, like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, or a moisturizing oil, says. And again, skip any face washes with drying sulfates. You might think they're doing amazing things for your skin, since they feel nice and foamy on your face when you're washing, but secretly, they're sucking up all the moisture, leaving your face dry and flaky.
Best Face Wash for Oily Skin
Washing your face is necessary to remove the excess oil and dead skin cells that contribute to clogged pores and acne. But don't overdo it! Studies show that washing your face more than twice a day can actually make acne worse and cause significant skin irritation. Stick to cleansing in just the morning and at night and choose a face wash that has has pore-clearing ingredients, like charcoal, clay, or exfoliating alpha and beta hydroxy acids (aka AHAs/BHAs).
What does toner do?
1. It shrinks pores.
Applying a small amount of toner to a soft cotton ball or pad and gently blotting and wiping your face with it will remove oil and give the appearance of smaller pores.
2. It restores your skin's pH balance.
Our skin is naturally acidic, typically with a pH balance of between five and six (on a scale from 0 to 14). But that balance can get out of whack after cleansing due to the alkaline nature of soap. When this happens, your skin needs to work overtime to return to its normal levels (and that may result in oil), but using a toner can help restore this balance quickly.
3. It adds a layer of protection.
Toners can help close pores and tighten cell gaps after cleansing, reducing the penetration of impurities and environmental contaminants into the skin. It can even protect and remove chlorine and minerals present in tap water.
4. It acts like a moisturizer.
Some toners are humectants, which means they help to bind moisture to the skin. I would also recommend buying toners that are free from alcohol.
5. It refreshes skin.
Toner can also be used in lieu of washing your skin when it's oily or dirty. It will leave your skin revitalized even when you're on the go.
6. It can prevent ingrown hairs.
Toners containing glycolic acid or other alpha hydroxy acids can help to prevent ingrown hairs, so it also aids in grooming.
Hydration and moisturization of the skin are often used synonymously, but they are actually different mechanisms to replenish your skins natural balance. Hydrators use ingredients that attract water to the skin. Moisturizers form a protective layer over the skin to lock in moisture and prevent further loss of water from our skin to the atmosphere. Think of it this way…hydrators quench the thirst and moisturizers essentially trap it into the skin. Our skin is made of a lipid barrier that helps prevent what scientists and dermatologists call trans epidermal water loss, or the movement of water from our skin to the atmosphere. Interestingly, we can measure how well certain products prevent trans epidermal water loss. This lipid barrier needs to be intact to keep the skin hydrated and moisturized. Moisturizers contain ingredients that add a protective layer to the skin to prevent water loss such as petrolatum, mineral oil, dimethicone and cyclomethicone.
Hydrators contain humectants which attract water to the skin. Classic ingredients to look for include glycerine, sorbitol, hyaluronic acid, urea, sodium PCA proteins among others. Avoid products packed with fragrances as this can exaggerate dry skin. Look for the words gentle, free and clear and fragrance free on your product labels. Certain anti-aging and acne treatments have ingredients that can perpetuate dehydrated and dry skin. When the skin becomes dry cut back on the chemical exfoliants such as retinol, glycolic acid, salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide. You may notice when the temperature and humidity drop during cooler months, you may need to use less acne medications, hydrate and moisturize more and decrease the number of times per week you are using an exfoliant.
Also, lets not forget the king of hydration/moisturization- WATER. I will not ramble about drinking lots of water and the benefits associated with it but I might admit, my hair and skin have never looked so good.
You might do everything that it takes to maintain a good, balanced and healthy skincare routine, spend so much on skin care products, eat healthy, drink sufficient amount of water but, all the investment goes in vain if you don't let your skin rest. Sometimes, you might feel, "I take such good care of my skin, but what's wrong?", well it's not just skincare products that can help you achieve the skin you've been dreaming for.
Good night's sleep can mean good skin health because when you’re sleep-deprived, your body makes more of the stress hormone cortisol. Elevated levels of cortisol can lead to increased stress and inflammation in the body, hurting your skin’s quality. While you're sleeping, the body's hydration re balances. Skin is able to recover moisture, while excess water in general in the body is processed for removal. Not getting enough sleep results in poor water balance, leading to puffy bags under your eyes and under-eye circles, as well as dryness and more visible wrinkles. During deep sleep, the rise in growth hormones allows damaged cells to become repaired. Without the deeper phases of sleep, this won't occur, allowing daily small breakdowns to accumulate instead of being reversed overnight. This results in more noticeable signs of aging.
Hence, EAT, DRINK, MOISTURIZE, SLEEP AND REPEAT!