Isn’t it lovely when we feel like our skin glows and looks good? It fills us with confidence.
We all want our skin to look its best as often as possible and especially for important occasions. Our skin condition plays a large role in our overall appearance; it is usually what people see first and most.
We know the foundation to good skin is good skincare, and by that I don’t just mean the products we use but the way we treat our skin from a holistic point if view. It’s also important to know is that our skin has its own agenda and not only does it operate in cycles but it also reacts to our environment and lifestyle.
The skin performs as the barrier between us and all external aggressors; sunlight, pollution, weather etc. Whilst we want our skin to look good, stay young-looking and radiant, let’s remember it’s also our largest organ and plays a number of keys roles namely protection, regulation, excretion and sensation amongst others.
Over the last 18 months I’ve closely observed my skin and I conclude that it’s very astute. It relays information or messages from the inside to the outside and from the outside to the inside. For example if we sit in the sun too long we burn, that tells us we need to wear an SPF to ‘protect’ ourselves, our skin goes red because it is angry and damaged.
If we are in a hot sticky environment we sweat and may get breakouts. If we are stressed or have indulged in a poor diet recently our skin suffers in different ways maybe with breakouts, puffiness or lack of radiance. If we lack sleep we get dark circles under our eyes and our skin looks tired. When we are dehydrated our lines are deeper and more exaggerated.
I’m sure we’ve all got our own examples but we get the picture, it’s always our skin relaying messages, through the way it looks, about our life style and product use. We must learn to listen to the skin and act appropriately in both lifestyle and product usage.
Hydration, diet, lifestyle and sleep are all key factors in skin condition but we all need a little help. When it comes to product usage all the experts tell us the first and most important step is cleansing. Cleansing properly removes all grease, grime, excess oil, dead skin cells, sweat and make up. Cleansing properly allows the skin the best chance to breathe without a barrier of dirt blocking the pores, it also means our other products work better and last longer.
Know which cleanser works best for you and commit to cleansing in the morning and evening. I try not to adopt a ‘one cleanser for everything all the time’ attitude. Think about the situation you’ve been in, the amount of make up you have worn, the environmental factors you’ve been exposed to and the lifestyle you have lead recently. In the morning our skin needs refreshing and awakening, after work you may need something that requires make up removal capability, on holiday you may need a more hydrating cleanser, if you are particularly stressed perhaps an oil-based cleanser to balance… and the list goes on. Recently I’ve been poorly so I opted more for natural nurturing brands for this process such as Liz Earle and Decleor.
The other single most important factor I have found makes an incredible difference to the way my skin looks and behaves is exfoliating twice a week. See it as wiping the slate clean a couple of times a week, removing all those hardworking worn-out dead cells that have done their job and cleaning them away to make room for some fresh new ones to put their best face forward. Our cells constantly renew themselves so we should clear the old ones out of the way and make room for the newer fresher brighter ones waiting just under the surface.
And never underestimate your hydration levels, and thierimpact on the way the skin looks – drink plenty of water and consider your diet.
So please observe your skin and observe the messages on display – it could make all the difference. Here at QVC we do some truly incredible cleansers and exfoliators – Have a look at our beauty department for more, and for advice on skin-specific cleansers and exfoliators why not tweet @AlisonYoungQVC, our in-house beauty expert for advice.