When it comes to the state of our skin, most of us simply resign ourselves to the fact that we're never going to look like the flawless models and celebrities that we see plastered on billboards and in magazines. Hey, they're airbrushed anyway, right? However, we can always look a little better than we do, and in some cases it's as simple as wearing sunblock, using the right cleanser, or hitting up the dermatologist for a special treatment once or twice a year. So if you're looking for a few ways to brighten up your skin tone or get rid of blemishes, sunspots, and other signs of aging, here are a few tips that are dermatologist approved.
(Guest Post by Carol Montrose)
- Avoid sunlight. It's not as though you have to turn into a vampire or hermetically seal yourself in your house during daylight hours. But considering that the sun's harmful rays can cause all kinds of skin damage and age you prematurely, it behooves you to protect yourself any time you're outdoors after dawn. So keep some sunblock handy and if you don't want to mess up your makeup, use a moisturizer and cosmetics with UV protection and carry a sunhat.
- Exfoliate the right way. Many women shy away from exfoliation altogether because there has been a lot of hoopla about how some abrasive exfoliants can cause micro-tears in skin that lead to premature wrinkles and other signs of aging. However, you should know that our skin exfoliates naturally, with new cells replacing old at a rapid rate. By adding gentle exfoliation to your daily routine (try a scrub with tiny, round grains) you can help to speed the process of cell turnover and reveal the fresh, new skin underneath. Also, removing dead skin cells can reduce the blocked pores that lead to unsightly blemishes and allow your skin to absorb more of the ingredients in the moisturizer or anti-aging cream you use.
- Sleep on your back. This might sound strange, but it does make sense when you think about it. Our faces contain fat and collagen that helps our skin to look full and soft, not to mention bounce back from compression. Over time, however, these substances decrease, leading to sagging and wrinkles. If you sleep on one side of your face consistently, these signs of aging will be more noticeable on that side.
- Change your routine. In case you didn't know, our skin can change over time. It can dry out, become oilier, lose elasticity, and even develop acne issues later in life. For this reason you should see your dermatologist to update your routine about every ten years (or when you start to notice changes).
- Treat spots. We get all kinds of spots on our face, from acne pockmarks to freckles and sunspots to moles and medication-induced pigmentation. Even pregnancy can cause dark spots on your skin! But there are all kinds of ways to even out your skin tone and treat these blights and blemishes, from mole removal to acne treatments to chemical and laser peels. Some can be costly and some painful, but all will help your skin to appear more clear and youthful than before if used properly.
(Guest Post by Carol Montrose)
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