Your skin is the largest organ of your body, and if you haven’t noticed, it covers more than just your face. We live in an era where having a unlined, clear and pimple-free face is fashionable; however, it is easy too forget about the rest of the skin on your body. Treat it with respect!
A few things that you may or may not know about your skin:
- It shields your body from infections and diseases.
- It protects your body’s delicate tissues underneath, eg. internal organs, bones, and muscles.
- It mends itself when damaged.
- It allows your body to regulate its temperature.
Now that you know what your skin does to protect you, does it seem right to only take care of the skin on your face? If you think the answer to that question is “no” then you are correct. Here are some tips to keep both you and ALL of your skin healthy:
This is one of the most important steps to take when trying to maintain healthy skin. The sun, no matter where you are or what you are doing outside, is always a threat. Your epidermis, the outermost layer of skin, is extremely vulnerable to the UV rays that are put out by the sun. Too much exposure to these rays could lead to various types of skin cancers, wrinkles, sun spots, and moles.
TIP: Always apply a broad spectrum sunscreen to all exposed areas of skin before going outside (Check out the article “Dive in to SPF” to learn more about UV rays).
No matter what skin type you are, throughout your life, you will have to deal with dry skin. You’ll often find dry skin on your knees, elbows, and feet. Some people are cursed with naturally dry skin and have to moisturize more frequently than others, but often times dry skin can be caused by overexposure to hot or chlorinated water, dehydration, or by living in exceedingly dry climates. By implementing a moisturizer into your day to day routine, you can almost entirely eliminate dry, irritating and flaky skin from your life.
TIP: Avoid applying products that contain alcohol to your skin (When applied to skin, alcohol breaks down your skin’s protective barrier that would otherwise keep your skin looking healthier for a longer period of time).
The appearance of your skin can tell someone a lot about your diet and lifestyle. When trying to maintain clear and healthy skin it is imperative that you embrace a healthy diet. Eating greasy fast food will often leave your skin feeling oily to the touch (this is most obvious on the face but can also be felt elsewhere) as well as not providing your body with a sustainable amount of energy. By eating healthier, non-processed foods, you can almost guarantee that your skin will look and feel better.
TIP: Carrots contain Vitamin A which is known to help treat sun damage and cellulite.
When I say “Proper Hydration” I really mean “Avoid large amounts of alcohol.” Staying properly hydrated is one of the most underrated aspects of skin health. When your body is dehydrated, one of the first organs that begin to shut down is the skin. When the skin is dehydrated it starts to feel rough and it begins to tighten and lose its elasticity. One of the most common misconceptions about hydration is that people think that since they are drinking a liquid, they are staying hydrated. This is FALSE; especially when it comes to alcohol. Alcohol, if anything, is a dehydrator. According to an article written on hangovers, alcohol prohibits the production of a hormone called “vasopressin” which is used by the body to recycle water released from the kidneys. When there is no vasopressin, the water released by the kidneys is sent to the bladder to be excreted thus dehydrating the body much faster than normal which in turn causes your skin to become dehydrated.
Tip: Always make sure to drink plenty of water
Following these quick and easy lifestyle tips is just another way for you to stay #SkinSmart!