Build beautiful skin from the inside out! Healthy, supple skin can be yours if you just follow a few common-sense rules.
There’s nothing worse than dry, itchy skin. It can happen any time, but for most people dry skin seems to be more of a problem in winter when temperatures and low humidity combine with harsh winds to strip away the skin’s natural lipid layer. There are things you can do to add moisture back into your skin — and things to avoid that will rob your skin of what moisture it already has. Follow these tips and be kinder to your skin, starting today!
Processed, salty foods are just bad for you — they’re dangerous to your health and no friend to your skin. Foods rich in Vitamin C help skin, bones and ligaments. Don’t just depend on citrus fruits for your fix of Vitamin C. Try chili peppers, broccolli, cauliflower and kale, peppers and other fresh produce. Dark green vegetables have a bonus: They contain a lot of water! Omega-3 fish oil pills help soothe super-dry skin, and it certainly is fine to take fish oil as a supplement. But add more fish into your diet, too. Healthy food choices help create and maintain healthy, moist skin.
Moisture in the air is great for your thirsty skin. Have you noticed how people who live in the desert have leathery skin? Most of us stay near the furnace from fall until spring, and the hot dry air can be damaging. Your skin actually needs more than 30% humidity to stay properly moisturized. Invest in a humidifier — sleep with one in your bedroom at night, and keep the door closed so that the moist air doesn’t escape. Other ways to keep more humidity in your home: add some plants, leave a pot of water on top of the stove when you have something in the oven, or fill a crock pot with water and let it simmer on low with the lid off, all day or all night.
Don’t invite dryness to live on your legs!
Keep bath and shower water lukewarm, not hot. If you just can’t imagine skipping your hot shower, keep it short. Hot water robs skin of moisture and even if you moisturize immediately after, you’ve lost more than you’re replacing. Keep the lukewarm rule in mind when washing hands, too. Avoid drying soaps for both bathing and hand washing, and after every bath, shower or hand-rinse remember to moisturize.
You might be surprised, but weekly exfoliation will help your skin retain moisture. Exfoliation gets rid of dry top layers of dead skin cells and helps bring newer, moist skin cells closer to the surface. And exfoliated skin better absorbs topical moisturizers to seal moisture into the skin. Exfoliate your body in a lukewarm shower with a gentle salt or sugar rub.
Yes, water is your skin’s best friend. Be sure that you’re drinking enough water every day. Tea and coffee, juice and soda don’t count. Sipping 8 ounces of water every two hours is not that hard to do, and your healthy skin will thank you for giving it what it craves.