Our 8 Tips for Radiant Skin
The winter months were harsh on our skin. Between the cold weather and the air conditioned heaters, it can leave our skin feeling dry and cracked. We have put together our top 8 tips to keep your skin feeling fresh and hydrated and to have you glowing this spring.
They don’t call it ‘beauty sleep’ for nothing! Getting a minimum of 7-8 hours sleep every night is vital to the health of your skin. Sleep is a time your body uses to heal, enhancing the growth and repair of your skin cells. To reduce puffiness on your face and around your eyes use a slightly elevated pillow to increase lymphatic drainage. If you have acne prone skin or experience dry skin switch to a silk pillowcase. Silk pillow cases keep your skin hydrated while reducing the amount of harmful bacteria being spread.
Drink plenty of filtered water, herbal tea and/or fresh juices daily to improve your body’s hydration. Drinking water helps to circulate essential nutrients throughout the body while simultaneously clearing harmful toxins out of your body. Adequate water intake will help to balance the pH of your skin as well as reduce excessive oil production. If you have ever felt like you have both oily and dry skin at the same time, chances are your skin is dehydrated.
3. Antioxidant rich foods
Antioxidant foods and foods high in vitamin C will help to stimulate collagen production. This reduces ageing, increases the vibrance of your skin and will help your skin to look plump and radiant. Try including more bitter citrus such as lemons, limes and grapefruit, add more dark leafy green vegetables including spinach and kale and increase the amount of vibrantly coloured fruits and vegetables such as beetroot, watermelon, blueberries etc. Remember ‘we are what we eat!’.
Exfoliate both your face and body. Remove dead skin cells and stimulate new cell growth. Try using a hydrating scrub on your face 1-2 times per week and maybe include 5 minutes of dry skin brushing on your body every day. Dry skin brushing is also an effective way to stimulate lymphatic drainage.
5. Herbal tea
Herbal teas can be an effective way at both increasing your daily water intake and increasing antioxidants in your diet. Try the Gaia Botanica Radiance tea. This herbal blend of organic botanicals was created to support healthy looking skin from within. What is in our Radiance tea:
- Hibiscus (Hibiscus sabdariffa): With its high vitamin C and iron content, Hibiscus has been found to improve hair and skin cell repair, reduce fluid retention, support healthy circulation and promote gut health. The vibrant deep red of Radiance primarily comes from the cyanidin found in hibiscus flowers. This antioxidant and anti-inflammatory-rich constituent has been found to promote cardiovascular health.
- Rose (Rosa): With its beautiful floral fragrance, Rose is antioxidant rich. These antioxidants help to reduce free radical damage. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) rose is used to regulate Qi, or life energy.
- Rosehip (Rosa canina) Rosehip has a delicate, floral flavour with a slightly sweet and distinct tart aftertaste. Rose hips contain polyphenols, carotenoids and vitamin C and E, all of which have antioxidant properties to promote healthy skin.
- Calendula (Calendula officinalis): Calendula has traditionally been used to treat skin conditions such as acne, eczema and psoriasis. Calendula has been found to contain antibacterial and antifungal properties that help to balance the skin's microbiome. In clinical practice, calendula has shown to be effective in reducing skin inflammation and improving wound healing.
- Echinacea (Echinacea purpurea): Echinacea has constituents that are both antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory. Antimicrobials help to reduce the growth and spread of acne. Echinacea has also been traditionally used to promote lymphatic health.
6. Avoid sugar and dairy
If you experience regular breakouts or have acne prone skin avoid dairy and refined sugars or limit your intake to a minimum. Not only do these disrupt the microbiome or your gut (more about the importance of this down below), but they may interfere with hormone regulation and create a hormonal imbalance. Research has shown that dairy increases 5-alpha-reductase which may increase the potent male sex hormone known as androgens. A side effect of increased androgens is acne and breakouts. Sugar will feed the harmful bacteria in the skin and lesions causing a further and continuing spread of acne.
7. Mask up
Just like you should hydrate on the inside you should also give your skin a regular treatment to hydrate and remove dead skin cells on the outside. This could include going to see a skin specialist that will provide a personalised skin treatment to you or you might like to try an at home sheet mask or a clay mask if you are after a little skin detox.
8. Love your gut
As a naturopath I always tell my clients about the importance of gut health. Our gut is so important to all aspects of our health & wellbeing and our skin is no exception to that. If we aren’t getting enough nutrients or digesting our food correctly due to a poor functioning gut, our skin won’t receive the required nutrients to support healthy new cell growth and repair. This affects the skins elasticity and collagen production, creating dull and troubled skin. Likewise, if we are not detoxifying sufficiently, the skin - being the body’s largest elimination organ - will suffer. So support your gut by including a diverse range of coloured fruits and vegetables, fermented probiotic foods and prebiotic foods, drink plenty of filtered water, breathe fresh air and exercise.