It may seem like some women are born with enviably smooth and clear skin, but don’t be fooled. It would be a mistake to credit their beautiful skin to just luck and good genes alone; seriously radiant skin takes work!
Lucky for all of us ladies, fab skin is all about fab skincare habits. The products women use and the specific foods they eat may differ, but according to Dr. Jill Waibel, founder of Miami Dermatology & Laser Institute, most women with great skin share these 7 habits, which you can totally (easily) steal and make your own.
1. Maintain a healthy, balanced diet. First and foremost: you can spend a million dollars on skincare products, but if you aren’t eating vitamin and nutrient-packed foods, you might as well flush your serums down the toilet. “Maintaining a healthy diet will suit you well when trying to accomplish freshly toned and flawless skin,” Waibel says. “Fruits like berries and pomegranates contain antioxidants that help fight off free radicals, which have been linked to causing a number of skin issues including wrinkling and sagging. Stay away from sugary foods as excess sugar can lead to unwanted wrinkles and lines on the face.” Other great food choices that do wonders for the skin include almonds, walnuts, green tea, sardines, olive oil, oatmeal, kale, and–mmmm–even a bit of coffee now and then.
2. Drink water (lots of it). How many times have we heard about the importance of water? As many as it takes until we realize there is no such thing as gorgeous skin without it! “Drinking water is one of the most important parts of a healthy diet and it is the easiest way to keep skin hydrated and healthy,” Waibel says. “Dehydration can have many unflattering effects on your skin as it can cause skin to feel dry, tight, and flaky and can cause any wrinkle or fold in the skin to be more prominent. Water can help replenish your skin, giving you a soft, healthy glow.”
3. Commit to a daily skincare routine. Think of your skincare routine the way you do the steps you take in the morning to get yourself ready for work. Then stick to it–each and every morning and night. “Always start your day with a gentle cleanser and apply the most active ingredients first, like Vitamin C + E, and follow with a sunscreen–SPF 15 or higher–and finish with a moisturizer,” Waibel says. “To keep your skin moisturized, I recommend using Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion and oils like Neutrogena Sesame Oil or Bio Oil. Always wash your face each night before bed to help keep pores clean and exfoliate twice a week to rid skin of any excess dirt and oil.”
4. Apply sunscreen–every single day. There’s no way around this one–no matter where you live and how many inches of snow you get each year, you need to apply a moisturizer with SPF of least 15 each day, even if you”ll be sitting in the office from morning until night. “Sunscreen doesn’t just protect skin from painful sunburns and potential cancer, it also works to prevent signs of anti-aging, including wrinkles, spotting and fine lines,” Waibel explains.
5. Sleep. The older I get and the younger my children seem to stay, the more difficult I find it is to get enough sleep. I can always automatically tell a difference in my skin–it seems duller–when I don’t get at least seven hours of rest. It isn’t just my imagination. “Try and get an adequate amount of sleep each night, as your body needs sleep to turn over new cells that help refresh your skin, further helping your appearance,” Waibel says.
6. Choose skincare products wisely. There are a lot of products on the market. I mean, an obscene, ridiculous number of skincare products–so many that it’s dead easy to spend a fortune on creams and oils that make you skin feel nice, but aren’t actually healing, changing, or helping. Before you drop another dime, become acquainted with both innovative and new ingredients and the classics.
We know aloe vera has healing properties, but alasta, a proprietary ingredient derived from inside the rind of the leaf of the aloe vera plant, is clinically proven to to increase skin firmness and elasticity by 72% in four weeks. Sustainable Youth is an exciting skincare line of moisturizers, eye creams, serums, and lotions that uses alasta.
“Some other ingredients that are great to incorporate into your daily skin care regimen include Vitamin C as this can reduce brown spots and signs of aging,” Waibel says. “Another ingredient that can be tough to find, but great to use is called PSP, which is a balanced mixture of proteins associated with optimal nutritive properties for the skin. One product I recommend with PSP is Neocutis Lumiere Bio-restorative Eye Cream, as this works to reduce the appearance of puffiness and discoloration.” Other ingredients to include in your skincare regimen are retinoids, Vitamin A and Vitamin E.”
7. Befriend a dermatologist. “Great skin doesn’t happen overnight–it’s a process that involves a commitment to healthy habits, dedication to skincare products and routines, and loyalty to skin care doctors,” Waibel says. “The prettiest patients I see come through my office are those that I see frequently throughout the year. They supplement their in-office procedures with great products that are used daily in their skincare routine, including SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic Acid, which is a serum that helps build collagen while simultaneously fighting the effects of photoaging. The combination of committing to a dermatologist to help keep their appearance at its height and committing to a skincare routine made of great products helps keep these patients’ skin in the best shape possible, while receiving the best care possible.”
For more beauty tips, check out when you should replace your beauty products and the 5 eyeliners every woman needs in her makeup collection.