5 frequently overlooked essentials for healthy skin
Updated: Oct 9
People often take skincare for granted until they hit the big 3 or late 40s. Even worse, many people often overlook these five important points we will be covering in this article that greatly impacts the health of their skin. Don't worry, we are not going to 'excite' you with loads of scientific details and terms. We will give just enough information to perhaps leave you with a clearer understanding for you to start your healthy lifestyle journey that rewards you with healthier skin.
Without further ado, let's dig in.
You have probably heard about the health and beauty benefits you get from regular exercise. Nope, we are not referring to that 500-metre stroll to the nearby cafe where you end up indulging in a cup of sugar-filled 'artisanal' coffee, or having 'workouts' like Homer in the gif above, but specifically sessions that either push you to your limit or at least get your heart pumping. Believe me, having the discipline to hit the gym or go for that 2km jog at 7am in the morning brings a lot of good to your physical, mental and emotional health on top of the skincare benefits.
(yeah, run for your supple skin, run from your wrinkles).
Over the years, researchers have published countless of articles and publications on the benefits exercise have on our skin. In a nutshell, exercise increases blood circulation which is key to delivering essential nutrients and vitamins to the different parts of our body, including the skin. With healthy skin, more collagen is produced and quicker cell turnover (newer skin cells to replace the older ones) occurs which are both vital in our anti-aging journey. <source>
"Beauty sleep". Sounds familiar?
In this day and age when most of our schedules are packed to the brim, we often put sleep as one of our last priorities. Unfortunately, this is really bad for your health and skin.
During the day, our skin takes damage from UV and pollutants. When we sleep, our stress hormones are reduced and our skin undergoes repair. Our body produces more collagen and growth hormone, which help to reduce wrinkles and strengthens the skin. <source>
So be sure to make sleep a priority every night as it is not only good for your skin, but also essential for a good physical and mental health.
Knowing what goes onto your skin
Dry, oily, sensitive, combination, etc are some of the different skin types people have. Some of our skin may not react well with certain ingredients, while some have better tolerance.
Now you may be wondering: if there are people sensitive to certain ingredients, why can't we just avoid them completely?
Certain ingredients come with pros and cons. Let us take the highly debated Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) for example. SLS is an economical surfactant that effectively cleanses your skin (which also contributes to the lower prices you pay for that product). However some people are turning away from SLS, arguing that it is harsh to the skin. You see the possible dilemma here? On one hand, effective cleansers may be harsh, while on the other hand you do not want to harm or dry your skin. But here comes SLES (Sodium Lauryl Ether Sulfate). SLES is derived from SLS and it is gentler and safer than SLS. In summary, SLES is a great alternative to SLS which gently and effectively cleanses your skin. Sure, there are other alternatives to sulfates, but they may not do the cleansing job as well as you think they are. Ultimately you have to ask yourself what is your purpose of getting that body wash, and what do you want to get out of it. There are products in the market like Pine & Co's Antibacterial Natural Moisturising Body Wash that uses SLES rather than SLS.
The Covid-19 pandemic got people scrambling for antibacterial solutions. Common antibacterial body washes you find in the market contain harsh and toxic active ingredients that severely damage and dry your skin. However brands like Pine & Co bring into the market effective antibacterial body-care products that do not damage or dry your skin, while at the same time nourishing and restoring your skin.
The food you eat will affect your skin. Like every part of our body, our skin needs nutrients and vitamins to repair itself and grow.
Fatty fish, vegetables, fruits, and tea, contain essential nutrients and vitamins like Vitamin A, C, and E, and Omega-3 fatty acids that are vital for having that smooth supple skin we long for.
On the contrary, sweets, chips, deep-fried food and soft-drinks cause our insulin levels to spike which may causes inflammation throughout our body which will result in the breakdown of essentials like collagen and elastin. <source>
So be sure to include fruits and vegetables like berries, carrots, avocados, and from time to time indulge in that cup of green or white tea sitting (hopefully not too long) in your airtight jar!
Keeping your stress level in check
Your stress level may be shortening your life. Literally. Health problems aside, stress is one of the most overlooked (and even unnoticed) causes for problematic skin. Remember the time you had a massive pimple breakout before a major interview or exam?
Our body produces hormones like cortisol which in return motivates our skin to secrete more oil, making you exposed to acne breakouts and other skin issues. The production of hyaluronic acid may also diminish, which may lead to skin moisture loss.
Find ways to relax and calm yourselves. Dedicate time to pull yourself away from toxicity, listen to music, watch a movie, or read a book. And if you are into aromas, Pine & Co's Spring body wash (from the Antibacterial Natural Moisturising series) has an artisanally curated aroma that inspires calmness with a sense of luxury.
There is no one-step quick fix solution to acquiring healthy skin. It takes discipline and lots of self motivation to live that healthy lifestyle. That daily 7am jog or that bowl of salad in replacement of chips will do wonders to your body and you will be able to feel the difference in a short a period of time. Of course, be careful not to over strain your body and always factor in rest days. Start a timetable or look for a partner to join you in this journey for healthy living and you will be able to experience the health and skincare benefits in the many years to come.