When it comes to having and maintaining great looking skin, there are 5 top mistakes that people make every day without realizing that they are compromising how healthy their skin looks.
1 – Alcohol
One of the worst things to age your skin is alcohol. I can hear you all screaming in protest at those mere words right now, but the hard truth is, if we want to improve the quality of our skin, one of the biggest factors contributing to its hydration levels is alcohol and we need to get real. Alcohol causes the body to become dehydrated which in turn affects the overall quality and appearance of our skin. Alcohol is a diuretic (promotes the production of urine) meaning it makes you need to urinate more often. As the body dehydrates, the brain mass shrinks slightly causing that familiar hangover headache and dry mouth. Alcohol also lacks proficient sodium, allowing the body to absorb less fluid.
What’s more, alcohol is actually poisonous to the human body and so when we drink to access, our bodies do everything it can in order to reject the poison in its system, leading to vomiting and black outs. (In fact, if alcohol was invented today it would be illegal.) The act of vomiting in itself dehydrates the body (and the skin), so if you want nice, healthy, glowing skin which won’t look many years older than you actually are, opt for a nice cool glass of water instead of that glass of wine or beer. You will stay sober and your skin will look amazing.
2 – Smoking
Everyone knows that smoking is bad for your body but not everyone understands that it is also bad for your skin too. Even so called e-cigarettes contain a cocktail of chemicals that will leave your skin dull and tired looking. Cigarettes will dehydrate your skin in a similar way that alcohol does but also has the added factor of causing cancer. Passive smokers are not even safe from the toxic effects of cigarettes. To keep your skin clear and smooth, quit the cigs and ban friends and family from smoking around you.
3 – Diet
We all know that old saying ‘we are what we eat’, although many people choose to ignore this fact and eat rubbish until they begin to feel and look rubbish. Even then, many still remain in denial. But when it comes to our looks, we really are what we eat. Our skin’s health relies on us getting the correct level of nutrients from what we eat, having a good digestion system to break it down correctly, a healthy gut to absorb the goodness and an efficient, regular ‘waste disposal’ to rid our bodies of toxins and waste matter. Our skin is directly connected with our entire digestive system and mirrors its health levels. If your insides are not healthy, you can’t expect your skin to be a glowing, clear picture of health either. In fact, our skin is our indication of what is going on inside us. If you eat large amounts of high salt, sugar or vegetable oil filled (trans fats) foods, your skin will over time look dull and sallow. (Not to mention the fact that you will become very overweight). This is because fatty, high salt and sugary foods do not contain any nutritional value at all and have no benefit to the body. White processed sugar has ‘zero’ nutritional value.
Our bodies depend on us getting the correct level of minerals and vitamins in order for us to look bright eyed, fresh, youthful and disgustingly happy. Eating high levels of fruit and veg, our skin will glow with radiance and our internal system will work perfectly. An imbalance of gut bacteria is linked to thrush, leaky gut syndrome or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), constipation and digestion issues, all of which will be visible on the skin. What’s more, prolonged bad eating can lead to more serious conditions such as heart disease and cancers.
4 – Late Nights
We have all heard of the term ‘beauty sleep’, but so many of us go to bed over tired which prevents us from settling into our natural bodies sleep pattern. The result? We end up having little or disrupted sleep throughout the night which ends up making us feel less ‘perfect’ than we would like upon waking the following morning. Beauty sleep is aptly named because after a good nights rest, wrinkles and furrows often appear ironed out. Skin cell production speeds up during the night, although scientists are still out on the verdict why. This makes our night time skin routine a vital one, and getting a good nights sleep (at least 8 hours) is important to maintain a healthy complexion. Night is an ideal time for the skin to absorb moisture and nutrients without the suns harsh UV rays interrupting progress. Sleep deprivation also weakens the immune system too. Lack of sleep leaves the skin looking tired and washed out which triggers dark circles under the eyes. A bad nights sleep also increases stress levels which can last all day, making things even
5 – Stress
When we are happy, relaxed and healthy, our skin invariably is too. When we are anxious or under pressure, our two adrenal glands, which sit on top of each kidney, release the ‘fight or flight’ hormones ‘adrenaline and cortisol’. When our blood sugar rises, our bodies produce insulin (the hormone that processes sugars). This in turn triggers inflammatory chemicals in the cells which are linked directly to spots, acne and many other skin problems. It is also known that cortisol blocks collagen production. Left unchecked, high levels of cortisol can also affect the immune cells in the epidermis, disrupting the skin barrier and weakening the skin’s natural defense against UV light, pollutants and chemicals.