Protect Your Skin So It Can Protect You
With our busy schedules, many of us just don’t have time for intensive skin care. No worries, just make sure you attend to the basics. Good skin care and healthy lifestyle choices can help delay the natural aging process and prevent various skin problems.
Here are five no-nonsense summer skin care tips:
Protect yourself from the sun. As summer breaks into full bloom, so does the effect of increased exposure of our skin to harmful UV rays, especially during peak hours of 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Although we do get Vitamin D from sunlight, proper protection is recommended if you’re going to be out in the sun for longer than 15 minutes. Use sunscreen if you are going to be outside for long periods of time when exercising, golfing or at the beach. A broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 reapplied every two hours is a great start for protecting skin against UV rays. Other helpful tips include seeking shade and wearing protective clothing like long sleeve shirts, pants and hats.
Treat your skin gently. Hot water, long showers/baths and strong soaps strip the skin of essential oils. Use warm water, cool wet compresses and soothing lotions such as those containing aloe vera. Gently pat or blot your skin dry with a towel, ensuring that some moisture remains within the skin. When shaving, apply shaving cream to the area first and shave in the direction the hair grows.
Don’t smoke. Smoking ages your skin and contributes to wrinkles. It also narrows the tiny blood vessels in the outermost layers of the skin, which decreases blood flow and reduces nourishment to the skin. Plus, it damages collagen and elastin fibers that give your skin its strength and elasticity.
Eat a healthy diet. A healthy diet can help you look and feel your best. Eating red, orange and dark-green vegetables helps provide proper vitamins and minerals that support healthy skin. Examples of such food items are tomatoes, sweet potatoes and broccoli.
Manage stress. Uncontrolled stress can make your skin more sensitive and trigger acne breakouts. Take steps to manage your stress by setting reasonable limits for your to-do list and making time to pursue the things you enjoy.
Our skin is the body’s primary defense against many harmful viruses and bacteria. Following these tips can help your skin perform at peak levels and promote overall health.
Source: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research