I don't know about you, but we're only a few days into January and I'm already fed up of all the "New Year, new you"-type ads pushing supplements, ridiculous detoxes etc in the wellbeing space so I wanted to offer something a little different!
I've never been one to make New Year's resolutions (so admittedly the title of this blog is a little misleading!), but what I would like to do is encourage you to form small, easy habits for 2023 when it comes to looking after your skin. So here are some "resolutions" you can get on board with, which don't cost the earth!
Contrary to what you may read, there isn't a single product or ingredient that results in healthy skin. Rather, it's that consistency is key! Some ingredients / products take time to have an effect on the skin so it's important to be patient with your skincare, and if you've just started a new routine, you should give it at least a few weeks (often longer) to see any improvements to your skin. I know it's tempting to chop and change products with so many new launches in the skincare space, but it's really important to avoid the temptation of FOMO! Whilst everything in life these days seems to be about instant fixes, the reality is that we need to play the long-game 🙂 - I often liken this to the difference between crash dieting vs a long-term sustainable change in lifestyle!
Skin barrier-first approach to skincare
As you know, Apothaka®'s brand philosophy has always been about putting the skin barrier at the heart of our approach to skincare. This means using the gentlest approach which respects the skin barrier, and offers results without compromising skin health. Practically, what does this look like? I've outlined 4 key elements with a few suggested products below where relevant:
- gentle but thorough cleansing with something like velveteen cloud cleanser
- sufficient hydration with a moisturiser like skin quenching moisturiser or comforting moisturiser
- protection from UV exposure with a broad spectrum sunscreen like EVY
- sensible use of actives to target specific concerns e.g. retinoids for "health ageing" and /or acne etc
Never underestimate the importance of good sleep for the health of our skin, and our health more generally. This is something I've really focussed on over the last 6 months as I've been working hard to improve my overall health and I do think it's helping contribute to healthier skin for me. I aim for 7-8 hours of sleep every night, and try my best to go to sleep by 11pm. Studies suggest that consistently poor sleep quality is associated with increased signs of ageing and reduced skin barrier function / poorer skin hydration, which isn't surprising given that most of the skin's reparative processes happen whilst you're sleeping.
Eat well for health and skin
Unsurprisingly, the best foods for your skin are generally also good for overall health - a balanced and varied diet rich in different whole plant foods (vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, nuts and seeds) will provide the antioxidants which help to neutralise free radicals and reduce inflammation, as well as vitamins and minerals for optimal skin health. Personally, I don't subscribe to any diet that cuts out specific food groups - as with everything, balance is key, so ensuring you're also getting enough healthy fats and good quality protein in your diet is also really important. Protein is the body's main building block and omega 3 fats are essential for helping cells in your body function as they should (they can't be produced by the body so are needed from the food we eat).
Stay hydrated for overall health
One myth that won't die is that drinking water hydrates the skin. In fact, it isn't clear from studies that drinking water directly affects skin hydration. Our skin is made up of 3 layers and the outer layer, the epidermis is what we can see and feel. Sometimes the skin can feel rough and look dehydrated if this layer doesn't contain enough water. However, drinking water hasn't been shown to directly impact skin hydration or its appearance. That said, drinking water is important for your overall health and anecdotally I notice that the dark circles under my eyes are minimised when I do drink enough water 🙂
As you can see, these are very manageable suggestions to build in, so after reading this, are these skincare resolutions that you can get on board with? If you'd like some help building a simple skincare routine which puts your skin barrier first, please get in touch!