I often tell my patients that when you see someone with healthy, radiant skin over age 40, it’s no accident! Most of us in our 4th decade and older have acquired problem areas on our skin such as sun spots, redness, unwanted bumps or hair and scars, to name a few. Simply aging can cause the skin to look dull and uneven but factors such as acne, genetics, sun damage and medical problems can contribute to less than perfect skin.
So, while adults with beautiful skin may look like they are genetically blessed, it’s more likely that they are participating in a healthy lifestyle and skincare plan. The following are 5 ways YOU can help get the skin of your dreams:
1. Protect Your Skin
The #1 way to prevent wrinkles is by using a broad-spectrum sunscreen which protects against UV-A and UV-B rays daily. It should be judiciously applied to exposed skin and reapplied every 2-3 hours while in direct sun. Other products with ingredients such as Vitamin C & E, alpha hydroxy acids, retinols and peptides can further protect the skin as well as remove damaged cells.
For increased defense against environmental elements such as cold, wind and pollution, it’s recommended to wear proper coverings for the weather, sunglasses to shield the eyes and personal protection in your workplace. There are also products available that can provide a “barrier” or shield to the skin with ingredients such as zinc oxide, glycerin, petroleum and natural oils (coconut, safflower, jojoba).
2. Eat Well
How many of us have heard the old adage, you are what you eat? It’s as true today as it was in our childhood. Our skin is the biggest organ in our body and if you want it to be healthy, you must feed it wisely. Foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains and “good” fats such as olive and coconut oils are essential for a healthy complexion. A good rule of thumb is to eat “close to nature”…if it’s wrapped in plastic or has an expiration date of 2030, it’s probably not healthy.
We all know exercise is an important component of a healthy lifestyle but why would it help our skin? Exercise increases blood flow to the skin which distributes vital nutrition and oxygen to the cells of our epidermis. Increased blood flow allows the liver and kidneys to work more efficiently which ultimately carries away waste, toxins and free radicals that damage our skin. Exercise also benefits the skin by decreasing stress. High stress levels increase the hormone, cortisol, which in turn increases skin conditions such as acne, flushing and eczema.
Many people find that putting the time you will exercise into your calendar just like any other appointment is a good way to make it a priority. You don’t need to be an Ironman to enjoy the benefits of healthy skin. Any movements that increase blood flow give you an advantage. Low impact, high impact, cardiovascular, weight training or even a short, brisk walk around the block will give you results.
4. Hydrate Your Skin
Have you ever encountered someone whose skin seemed to be glowing? It wasn’t an illusion. Skin glows when it’s hydrated. Just like our houseplants that often get ignored, without proper fluids and care, your skin can look and feel parched, rough and irritated. To battle this, use a daily moisturizer to your entire body with extra attention to particularly dry areas such as the knees and elbows. If you react poorly to topical products, look for brands that are fragrance-free or formulated for sensitive/allergic skin types. Our favorite brand, AVENE, comes from a dermatology institute in France and even uses thermal spring water to help heal dry, damaged skin.
Don’t forget to drink plenty of water daily. Making sure your fluid intake is adequate not only allows our whole body to function its best, it helps regulate, nourish and flush our outer covering…from the inside out!
5. Treat Yourself
It’s all too common that I see patients in the office who are motivated to have healthy skin but reluctant to spend money on themselves or feel that having a beautiful complexion may seem like they are vain. For years we invest our time and money to others such as our spouse and children but feel terribly guilty when treating ourselves. Sometimes the most important advice I can give people is that it’s OK to take care of you.
The first step to get your skin back in shape is to develop a customized skin care plan with your clinician. Knowing the treatments that are best for your skin type and condition will give you the information to take the next steps. Treatments such as MicroLaser Peels, BroadBand Light and Skin Tightening will all improve the texture, tone and integrity of your skin, leaving it looking years younger.
Get Your Skin in Great Shape
Are you ready to have the skin of your dreams? Contact Rejuvenation Clinic of Sauk Prairie to meet the expert clinicians and receive a complimentary consultation. You can also join us at the Mid-West Family Marketing Healthy Living Expo on Sunday, March 15th, 2015 from 10-3pm at Marriott West in Madison, WI. We will be providing free skin analyses with our specialized UV camera system as well as mini-consultations, product samples and door prizes.