15 Tips and Tricks for Better Skin

tips-for-better-skinI haven’t had a stable skincare routine for some time now, and I usually neglect simple things like taking off my makeup after a night out (I know, I know – really bad) and basically the entire existence of a morning routine. However, good skincare is becoming more important to me lately, and these tips have drastically improved the condition of my skin.

1. Hydration

I’m sure you’ve heard it all before, but keeping hydrated is essential to healthy skin. Without proper hydration, your skin produces more oil which causes breakouts, irritation and dry patches. Adriana Lima recently shared that she drinks “at least one coconut water a day” and “juices with native fruits like acai and acerola” for healthy, glowing skin.

2. Apply sunscreen everyday

Did you know sunscreen slows down the development of wrinkled, premature aging skin? Sun degrades the skin’s collagen and elastin, and affects our body’s ability to create healthy new cells. If there’s anything you should be applying daily, it should be sunscreen – even in winter and on cloudy days. There are way too many benefits you shouldn’t miss out on.

3. Get enough sleep

This is honestly one of the most important skincare tips but it’s always so overlooked. Do whatever you can to get seven to eight hours sleep a night. It offers results that no face cream can mimic.

4. Facial oils

There was a time I shuddered at the idea of putting oil all over my face, but once I gave it a chance, I never looked back. Facial oils are now my obsession and I have a growing collection. They’ve dramatically improved the appearance of my skin and have so many other benefits too. A few I couldn’t live without…

Jojoba oil: Mimics the skin’s sebum to produce less oil.
Rosehip oil: Penetrates deep layers of the skin where it regenerates cells, increasing collagen production which reduces the appearances of wrinkles and brightens skin.
Tea tree oil: A natural antiseptic, meaning it can be used to help treat wounds, burns and bacterial infections. Mostly I use this to prevent any and banish any blemishes. Works a charm!
Coconut oil: How could we forget, the one and only, coconut oil? The possibilities are endless. I use coconut oil as a makeup remover (grapeseed oil also works great), body lotion & scrub (my go-to DIY).

5. Exfoliate

When old skin cells start to pile up on the surface of the skin, it can leave skin looking dull, rough, and dry. The build-up of dead skin cells can result in excess oil and clogged pores, leading to blemishes and acne. Exfoliation can be performed mechanically, by scrubbing the skin or chemically, by using scrubs that contain special kinds of acids that remove the dead skin cells. Aim to exfoliate twice a week to ensure silky skin. 

6. Keep it simple

Don’t get caught up with using too many products at a time, because it can actually do more harm than good (to your skin and wallet). It’s so easy to accumulate more than is really necessary. The more you switch things up and the more products you use, the more confused your skin becomes. It’s all about finding products that suit your skin and sticking to them. A moisturiser (with SPF), oil/serum, toner, exfoliator, & a facial mist (I swear by this) are my essential staples.

7. Learn ingredients

Unfortunately, every day millions of people unknowingly use chemical-filled products that not only don’t help your skin, but actually harm your skin. Despite the bold claims of some skincare products, sometimes they can trigger skin problems. I’m not saying you have to make the switch to all-natural ingredients, but familiarizing yourself with the ingredients to avoid is really important.

8. Supplement your skin

There’s a growing trend of taking vitamins and supplements to fight aging, wrinkles, sun damage, and breakouts. Everyone wants to know if supplements will provide a beauty boost that skin-care products alone can’t. Here’s a few I’d recommend.

• Vitamin A is the best overall age-fighter. It repairs and reinforces the mucous membranes and tissues that protect against bacteria and viruses from entering your body. This means it helps reduce wrinkles, fade brown spots, smooth roughness, and prevent acne.
• Zinc helps control the amount of oil your glands produce and helps reduce the visibility of acne scarring.
• Fish oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which helps replenish our skin’s protective layer — or lipids. The acids also help calm acne breakouts.
• Vitamin C is known to mop up the free radicals that trigger wrinkling, sagging, and other aging change.

9. Cleanse day and night

It’s so important to cleanse your skin every night to remove make-up, impurities, dead skin cells, and excess oil. But a morning cleansing is also just as important, as it removes any toxins the skin eliminates during the night and refreshes the skin. 

10. Increase your greens

Dark leafy greens, such as kale and Swiss chard, are one of the top sources of beta carotene, a powerful antioxidant that helps repair and renew your skin to give it a youthful glow. Spinach, too, packs a healthy wallop. In addition to beta-carotene, it’s brimming folate, a vital nutrient for DNA repair. A green smoothie is my favourite way to ensure I’m getting my daily intake of greens!

11. Regular facials

Professional facials are deep cleansing, exfoliating, and hydrating, leaving you with an all-over glow every time. Estheticians are skin care experts so they know how to diagnose and treat the root causes of skin problems. But to reap long-term benefits, especially for acneic skin, you have to keep up the treatments. If you’re unable to book in with a professinoal, I highly recommend oxygen-infused facials, which you can easily achieve at home with these Decleor brightening sheets. Victoria Secret models swear by them so I don’t really think I need to say anymore.

12. Avoid dairy, caffeine and alcohol

…or at least keep them to a minimum! What we put into our body is every bit as important as what we put onto our face. When you develop cystic breakouts, it might be a sign you’re getting more dairy in your diet than your body can tolerate. Caffeinated drinks dehydrate you, which does a number on your skin’s elasticity and collagen, meaning your more prone to sagging and wrinkles. Limit your alcohol intake because like coffee, it dehydrates your skin. Although, one serving of red wine per day can actually have anti-aging benefits.

13. Stress less

The way stress affects your skin is that when you’re tense, your brain releases cortisol, a stress hormone, into your bloodstream. That tells oil glands to ramp up production, leading to breakouts. Stress also dilates blood vessels, which causes redness and aggravates rosacea. Another side effect is skin becomes dehydrated, sensitive, and more likely to age faster. If you’re often stressed, find some management techniques like meditation, yoga, a fun hobbby or just taking a break.

14. Never sleep with makeup on

Doing so can block pores, leaving oil trapped inside. This leads to bacteria build up, breakouts, and enlarged pores. It’s one of the worst things you can do to your skin. If you’re susceptible to being a little lazy after a night out (I totally feel you), be sure to keep makeup wipes nearby.

15. Exercise

A good workout doesn’t just burn calories, it also helps deliver oxygen and nutrients to your skin. Break a sweat and get your blood pumping – your skin will thank you!

Do you have any tips for better skin? I’d love to know!