Having a daily skin care routine that you follow religiously, as well as good overall health habits will make the difference between rough, dull-looking skin, and a smooth, fresh-looking complexion, no matter what your skin type is. It doesn't take a lot of time to implement these tips, but consistency is the key.
If you are still young and have that perfect skin of youth, be aware that your looks are fleeting. If you don't take the time to properly care for your skin now, in 10 or twenty years down the road, you will clearly see the signs of neglect, and so will everyone you meet. Smoking, tanning and a poor diet will leave you with a skin looking like a pair of beat-up shoes. No one wants that, so plan to take good care of your skin now. If you are older, you can't turn back the hands of time, but good skin care can help arrest the signs of aging.
To follow are some great skin care tips to keep you looking fresh and lovely, no matter what your age is.
1) Stay away from smoking, and drinking to excess
It's fine to have the occasional glass of wine or a cocktail, but excess drinking can age you fast. Both cigarettes and booze contain toxins that are terrible for your skin. Smokers are well-noted for having premature aging due to constantly pursing their lips around a smoke, and the deadly toxins in cigarettes. Smokers will generally form wrinkles at a much younger age, and those that hit the bottle hard will develop early wrinkles and have blotchy skin.
2) Use sun protection
This cannot be stated enough: Excess sun exposure will give you wrinkles and skin that looks more akin to your leather furniture than fresh and dewy. While some people think they just cannot be without a "golden glow" from tanning, their skin will eventually pay the price.
Get into the habit of applying a moisturizer with built in UV protection everyday, not just on sunny days. During the summer when the sun is most intense, make sure to use sunscreen on any exposed areas of the skin, and be sure to cover up when the sun is at its peak at midday. Not only will this keep your skin looking younger for longer, it will also help protect you from getting deadly skin cancers.
3. Hydration -- It can't be stated enough that this is one of the most important keys to healthy skin
Your beverage of choice should be water, not sodas or coffee, if you want beautiful skin. You must drink water consistently throughout your day as well. A sip of water now, but nothing for hours afterwards leads to dehydration. Water flushes out impurities, helps keep the skin moisturized from the inside out, and also helps you to control your weight.
4) Getting enough sleep is crucial for great skin
Not only does lack of sleep show on your skin, it also affects your overall health. If you are overtired, you are not at your most productive anyway, so why not call it a night, and get the rest you need?
Getting adequate sleep will help to reduce your stress levels and give your skin time to regenerate during your sleeping hours.
5) Exfoliating to remove dead skin cells reveals a fresher-looking complexion
Your skin renews itself by producing new skin cells and pushing old, dead skin cells to the surface of the skin. Exfoliation removes these dead skin cells, and reveals more lustrous skin hiding beneath old dull skin cells. Dry skin should not be over-exfoliated; once or twice a week is ample for that skin type. Oily and normal skin can take more frequent exfoliation; perhaps 3-4 times weekly. Make sure to use an exfoliate that is appropriate for your skin type, and don't over-do it. Your skin is delicate, so don't scrub at it like it's the kitchen sink.
6) Throw out old skin care products
Nearly all skin care products have a "use-by" date, and it is important to adhere to it. The ingredients in these product break down over time and being exposed to the air. If you see lotions or creams separating, or you notice a funky smell from any of your skin care products, get rid of them pronto. They are likely contaminated with bacteria, which can lead to skin irritation and break-outs.
7) Limit sodium intake
Too much sodium dehydrates you, leaving you with wrinkly, aged-looking skin.
8) Keep it clean -- Cleanse your skin morning and night
A creamy cleanser is best for dry-to-normal skin types, while oily, acne prone skin may benefit from an anti-bacterial cleaners. One of the best things you can do for your skin is to remove all traces of makeup before going to sleep at night. This avoids contaminating your pillow, leading to breakouts.
9) Use a toner that is right for your skin type
Toners remove any lingering traces of make-up and oil from the skin. This enables your moisturizer to penetrate the pores more effectively, and do a better job of keeping your skin moist and healthy. If your skin is on the dry side, skip the toner on your cheeks. Instead, just stroke it on with a cotton ball to the oilier areas of your face; the forehead, nose and chin.
10) Use the right moisturizer for your skin type and use it faithfully
Oily skins need an oil-free, lightweight moisturizer, while mature skin that tends to be on the dry side can benefit from a rich moisturizer, particularly at night. Avoid moisturizers with artificial fragrances or colorants.
If you have very dry skin, you may benefit from moisturizers known as "humectants" as they draw in additional moisture from the atmosphere to soothe dry skin.
11) Move it
Exercise brings blood and nutrients to the surface of the skin, and sweating removes impurities, so it is fantastic for your skin. Just remember to shower promptly when you are finished to keep your pores from being clogged by sweat. This will prevent outbreaks and rashes.
If you follow these skin care tips, you are well on your way to the type of skin that will be the envy of all of your friends, no matter what your age.