Skin care: 5 tips for healthy skin
Don't have time for intensive skin care?
Pamper yourself with the basics. Good skin care and healthy lifestyle choices
can help delay the natural aging process and prevent various skin problems. Get
started with these five no-nonsense tips.
1. Protect yourself from the sun
One of the most important ways to take
care of your skin is to protect it from the sun. A lifetime of sun exposure can
cause wrinkles, age spots and other skin problems — as well as increase the risk
of skin cancer.
For the most complete sun protection:
Use sunscreen. Use a broad-spectrum
sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. When you're outdoors, reapply sunscreen
every two hours — or more often if you're swimming or
Seek shade. Avoid the sun between 10 a.m.
and 4 p.m., when the sun's rays
Wear protective clothing. Cover your skin
with tightly woven long-sleeved shirts, long pants and wide-brimmed hats. Also
consider laundry additives, which give clothing an additional layer of
ultraviolet protection for a certain number of washings, or special
sun-protective clothing — which is specifically designed to block ultraviolet
2. Don't smoke
Smoking makes your skin look older and
contributes to wrinkles. Smoking narrows the tiny blood vessels in the
outermost layers of skin, which decreases blood flow. This depletes the skin of
oxygen and nutrients that are important to skin health. Smoking also damages
collagen and elastin — the fibers that give your skin its strength and
elasticity. In addition, the repetitive facial expressions you make when
smoking — such as pursing your lips when inhaling and squinting your eyes to
keep out smoke — can contribute to wrinkles.
If you smoke, the best way to protect
your skin is to quit. Ask your doctor for tips or treatments to help you stop smoking.
3. Treat your skin gently
Daily cleansing and shaving can take a
toll on your skin. To keep it gentle:
Limit bath time. Hot water and long showers
or baths remove oils from your skin. Limit your bath or shower time, and use
warm — rather than hot — water.
Avoid strong soaps. Strong soaps and
detergents can strip oil from your skin. Instead, choose mild cleansers.
Shave carefully. To protect and lubricate
your skin, apply shaving cream, lotion or gel before shaving. For the closest
shave, use a clean, sharp razor. Shave in the direction the hair grows, not
Pat dry. After washing or bathing,
gently pat or blot your skin dry with a towel so that some moisture remains on
Moisturize dry skin. If your skin is
dry, use a moisturizer that fits your skin type. For daily use, consider a
moisturizer that contains SPF.
4. Eat a healthy diet A healthy diet can
help you look and feel your best. Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains
and lean proteins. The association between diet and acne isn't clear — but some
research suggests that a diet rich in vitamin C and low in unhealthy fats and
processed or refined carbohydrates might promote younger looking skin.
5. Manage stress Uncontrolled stress can
make your skin more sensitive and trigger acne breakouts and other skin
problems. To encourage healthy skin — and a healthy state of mind — take steps
to manage your stress. Set reasonable limits, scale back your to-do list and
make time to do the things you enjoy. The results might be more dramatic than
A chemical skin peel is a popular procedure used to treat various skin
problems, like acne, age spots and wrinkles.
A chemical solution is applied
to the skin to improve and smooth the skin
(usually on the face) by
removing the damaged outer layers.
It sounds like the answer to a lot of
people’s problems, but it is important
to remember there might be risks or
There are basically three different types of peel available: the light,
superficial, peels (AHA) medium peels (TCA) and deep peels (Phenols).
Glycolic acid is used, which is a mild chemical
solution. These are the most common
peels and remove the top layer of skin to
reveal healthy skin underneath.
They are for superficial skin problems only. It is quick and easy, and
often known as a “lunch-time procedure”. The face is cleansed and the peel
applied for around ten to fifteen minutes. You may experience a mild
tingling, stinging feeling. The peel is then washed off.
Trichloroacetic acids or TCAs are used which are
stronger than glycolic acid are used. These penetrate further into the skin to
reduce acne scars, smaller wrinkles and will help to even out skin tone.
The skin is cleansed and the peel applied. The area turns a whitish-grey
colour and a saline compress is applied to neutralise the acid in the peel. Your
face may swell while the peel is applied and you may experience a burning,
stinging feeling for around an hour after the treatment.
Carbolic acid is used for deep exfoliation. These are not
and penetrate deeper to reduce deep scarring and wrinkles.
You will be given a
local anaesthetic and sometimes be sedated. The skin is
cleansed and the peel
applied for around 30 minutes before being
The skin will be pink afterwards but there
should be no
after-effects. It may also show faint discolouration or
blotches but these
should fade soon after. You should repeat the procedure
every week for four to
six weeks, then monthly after that. Your skin should
be radiant and glowing
Recovery takes around a week and your skin will
be itchy then start to peel. It may be a dark brown colour to begin with
and when it has peeled, become a bright red which will fade over the
following three to
six weeks. You should repeat the treatment monthly until
you reach the desired
effect and then maintain the result with treatments
every six to 12 months. The
results will not be seen immediately but the
appearance of your skin will
visibly improve once the skin has healed.
You can expect to feel unwell after the peel and
experience moderate to severe pain for the following days. Your face will be
itchy and swollen and it will be around two weeks before you probably want to be
seen in public. But the results are dramatic and the effects can last up to ten