Improve your skin complexion and texture with these tips from experts.
Swapping out some daily habits and being more aware of other lifestyle factors
that could be affecting you will help you figure out how to get better skin.
Whether your main concern is anti-aging skincare or acne treatments,
steps below will get your skin complexion to where you want it to be.
Drink Green Tea
“If your complexion is red or blotchy, this tea’s anti-inflammatory properties can be soothing,”
says Andrea Cambio, a dermatologist in Cape Coral, Florida.
“Iced is best because hot beverages can worsen redness and other symptoms of rosacea.”
Another benefit: The epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) in green tea may help prevent the collagen
destruction that leads to wrinkles as well as sun-induced DNA damage in the skin
(think lines and discoloration), according to some experts.
Consider subbing tea for your morning mug of coffee.
Consider Your Water
And tailor your skin-care products accordingly. “Soft water doesn’t remove soap well,
so it can leave a residue on your skin,” says Susan H. Weinkle, an assistant clinical
professor of dermatology at the University of South Florida, in Tampa.
If your water is soft, use face and body cleansers sparingly
(no more than a nickel- or quarter-size amount, respectively).
Hard water, on the other hand, doesn’t allow washes to lather easily,
prompting you to use even more cleanser, which can cause dryness.
Watch Sun Exposure Indoors
Yes, you read it right: UV rays (in particular UVA rays) can penetrate the windows in your home
and office and cause wrinkling and brown spots.
The same goes for car windows: Studies have found higher rates of skin cancers
on the left side of the face and upper body than on the right, since that side is more exposed
when you’re driving. Cancers aside, “many people have more wrinkles and sun damage
on the left side of their faces, too,” notes Donofrio.
Make protection a no-brainer by always wearing a moisturizer with SPF. Try AAPE Sun Cream.
Keep Stress in Check
It takes a toll on nearly every part of your body, including your skin.
In a study conducted at Stanford University, researchers found that during exam time,
students who felt stressed had more severe acne breakouts than
did those under less pressure. That’s because stress increases the body’s production
of hormones such as cortisol, which can make skin oilier and decrease
its ability to fight off acne-causing bacteria.
Improve Your Air Quality
Avoiding smoky environments is smart since
“just being around smoke can lead to the release of free radicals that damage skin and hasten aging,”
Switch to Plain Toothpaste
Those with tartar-control ingredients or added flavors, like cinnamon,
may contribute to a common skin condition called perioral dermatitis.
It looks like pimples, redness, and scaling around the mouth.
Pay Attention to Your Cleanser
It may sound counterintuitive, but if you have dry skin, your choice of face wash may be even more
important than your moisturizer.
“A nonsoap cleanser is ideal because it helps replace the moisture barrier in the skin,”
Sleep a Full Night
While you’re snoozing, the skin’s repair mechanisms swing into action, says McBurney.
Being sleep-deprived, by contrast, puts stress on the body, causing it to release
more adrenaline and cortisol, which can trigger breakouts and other skin problems,
says Barbara R. Reed, a clinical professor of dermatology at the University of Colorado, Denver.
(And research from China found that insufficient sleep was a significant risk factor
for acne among adolescents.) Make getting seven to eight hours of shut-eye your last
good-skin move of each day.
Monitor Your Dairy Intake (If You Have Acne)
Research from the Harvard School of Public Health found that teenage girls who consume
a lot of milk are almost 30 percent more likely to have acne than those who drink less,
and experts believe the same holds true for adult women prone to serious breakouts.
Surprisingly, skim milk seems to be a worse offender than whole milk.
Scientists don’t understand exactly why milk products can lead to acne,
but some surmise that the natural hormones present in dairy may be to blame.
Choose Water-Based Hair Products
Some conditioners, as well as pomades, volumizers, and styling creams, contain oils
or waxes that can clog pores and create acne, especially on the forehead, the back,
and the hairline. Even if you’re careful to avoid getting them on your skin, they
can run down your face and body as you shower and when you sweat, or be transferred
by your pillowcase while you sleep. Instead, look for water-based formulas
and avoid those containing mineral oil, beeswax, or microcrystalline wax.
Or consider AAPE Hair Haircare product.
Check Your Medicine Cabinet
Some oral contraceptives, antibiotics, fertility drugs, and antiseizure medications
can bring on breakouts, “If you find your skin is reacting more while you’re taking
a particular drug, talk to your physician,”