Oh, if I knew then what I knew now! A few weeks ago we asked our audience on social media what advice they wish they could go back and give to their younger selves about skin care. While there were countless pieces of advice given, we quickly noticed that about six pieces of advice were consistent: drink more water, avoid tanning and tanning beds, ditch hyped up brands, use retina, wear sunscreen daily and start microcurrent early so you can avoid the need for Botox. Today we want to explore each of these pieces of advice more in-depth!
Drink more water for more radiant, healthy skin.
This topic has come up time and time again in the history of the 7E Wellness blog. We have talked about how important it is to stay hydrated not only for the health of your skin but for the overall health of your body. In a previous blog article on staying hydrated we referenced UW Health as they point out that, "skin is made up of cells. And skin cells, like any other cell in the body, are made up of water. Without water, the organs will certainly not function properly or at their best. If your skin is not getting the sufficient amount of water, the lack of hydration will present itself by turning your skin dry, tight and flaky. Dry skin has less resilience and is more prone to wrinkling" (UW Health, 2016).
Since then, our educators at 7E Wellness have made it clear that body hydration and skin hydration are not one in the same. While drinking water does play a critical role in the function of our skin calls and result in a more radiant complexion, it is also important to hydrate skin from the outside. Oddly enough, you cannot do this with water as water tends to throw off the pH balance of our skin when applied on its own. Make sure that in addition to hydrating your skin on the inside with ample water intake, you are hydrating your skin from the outside with a nourishing moisturizer.
Avoid tanning beds to make sure you age gracefully.
Fortunately, the fad of laying out in the sun unprotected and the use of tanning beds has dwindled since its peak in the late 90’s and early 2000’s. In the last decade, research has repeatedly pointed to UV radiation from the sun and tanning beds being directly responsible for development of skin cancers. This knowledge has led the masses to say, “no more” to the damaging habit of tanning. In fact, between 2010 and 2015 tanning salons lost a whopping 1/3rd of foot traffic (Reuters, 2017). It seems that the temporary confidence boost of a golden glow isn’t quite as satisfying as protecting our health and extending the youthful appearance of our skin.
Ditch hyped up skin care gimmicks.
Brands like Proactiv and St. Ives were criticized as being gimmicky by our audience. While the popular over-the-counter brands have been known to generate some success, the gist we found from our audience is that they found more confidence and success in their skin care journey when they worked with professional estheticians and dermatologists to identify skin care products more curated to their unique skin conditions. Professional skin care products not only cater to your unique skin makeup, but offer higher quality and quantity of active ingredients that combat any skin care concerns.
Proactiv and St. Ives may be easy to get your hands on and generate some results of more clear skin, but the bottom line is that skin care is not one-size-fits-all. Some of the ingredients in these bandwagon, big-name products can actually cause more harm than healing. Working with a skin care professional to truly understand your skin type, skin conditions and ingredients that address your uniqueness will make a world of difference in a long-lasting, healthy relationship with your skin.
Retin-A is a prescription topical cream or gel that is wildly popular in the pursuit of anti-aging and skin health. Laura Figura, MD summarizes that ,”the earliest effect of Retin-A is that the outer layer of keratinocytes start shedding off, leaving the skin fresher, smoother and more evenly pigmented. The next effect seen is that the epidermal cells start to replicate faster causing the skin to look and feel softer, more robust and healthier. Finally, the collagen bundles in the dermis will thicken and organize, causing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles to lessen with time” (Plastic Surgery Connect, 2019).
As with all skin health habits, the earlier you begin to integrate tools like Retin-A into your routine the longer you reap the rewards of their benefits. That leads us to our next spotlight product and tool in the name of skin health…
Use sunscreen daily (and re-apply!) for healthy, youthful skin.
The most popular answer among our audience when we asked them, “what advice would you give to yourself for healthy skin” was to wear sunscreen daily and re-apply. Even people who aren’t proficient in professional skincare know that sunscreen is the number one superpower against signs of aging and skin cancer. This goes hand-in-hand with cancelling tanning bed appointments and using active products like Retin-A. If you haven’t been told this yet, make sure you have a face sunscreen of at least SPF 30 on hand that you apply daily. That means rainy days, sunny days and everything in between! It’s not complicated.
Schedule a Microcurrent Facial to enjoy your best-looking skin.
Okay, this one was our favorite answer (for obvious reasons). Professional facials that include a microcurrent treatment are a one-stop-shop to feeling great and looking your best in your skin. Microcurrent is a way to stimulate the energy of your skin cells (this energy is called Adenosine Triphosphate or ATP), in turn helping with the production of Collagen and Elastin. The instant results include even skin tone, reduced fine lines and enhanced skin with a youthful glow. One audience member said, “start microcurrent early so you can avoid Botox” which many of our clients have found to be true. The gentle, non-invasive and non-surgical therapy of microcurrent technology to the facial muscles helps them naturally hold and re-discover their youthful shape by relaxing or strengthening the muscles responsible for fine lines, wrinkles and sagging skin. Regular microcurrent facials used as a preventative treatment to anti-aging help facial muscles stay healthy, keeping your face naturally contoured for a longer period of time.
Aging gracefully and enjoying your youthful skin doesn’t have to be complicated. Even if you select one or two pieces of advice from this list your skin will thank you for it for years to come. Integrate all six tips into your routine and who knows, maybe you’ll defy aging all together! So now we ask you: if you could add to this list, what piece of advice would you make sure to share with your younger self? Let us know in the comments!