What Gives Healthy Skin Its Glow

What Gives Healthy Skin Its Glow

How often have you ogled a pregnant woman, jealous of her beautiful, glowing countenance? You want that same, bright look, but it just seems like it's impossible. So what's missing?

According to Dr. Tina Funt at Schweiger Dermatology Group in New York, "Glowing skin is skin that is moist and soft-not dull, dry or flaky. [It's] characterized by small pores, even complexion and clear skin without blemishes."

So how do you get that? It's really not as difficult as it sounds. Skin gets its glow by being healthy. Take care of your skin, and not only will it take care of you, but people will start to notice your glow!

Get Your Zzz's

 While you sleep, your body resets itself. During the deep stages of sleep (stages three and four), there is a surge in the secretion of growth hormone, which helps to repair and rebuild the body's tissues. This naturally occurring growth hormone stimulates cell production. While you sleep, you body is better able to recover faster from skin stressors like sun damage and dryness.HealthySkinGlow-Sleep"Many people don't realize what a large role sleep plays in the anti-aging realm," notes dermatologist and founder of Ava MD Skincare, Dr. Ava Shamban. "Sleep is important for your skin. Physiologically, the skin has a lot to do during the day including metabolism, fending off UV radiation, protecting the body from pathogens and regulating body temperature. But once asleep, the skin does its most significant repair work including production of collagen and elastin, the skin's connective tissue responsible for firmness, tone and elasticity."

 Women who are sleep-deprived are found to be at higher risk for fine lines, sagging skin, and uneven pigmentation. According to the National Sleep Institute, you should aim for seven to nine hours of sleep per night. Try to sleep on your back, if possible, as this helps to keep pressure off of your face.

Maintain Your Healthy Appetite

"In 2013, I lost nearly 60 pounds by making small changes to what I ate -” largely cutting out breads, pasta, sugars and any processed food and adding in lots of lean protein, greens and healthy fats. The improvement in my complexion and energy levels was astounding. Fresh greens like arugula, kale and collards oxygenate the body and skin unlike any topical you can apply. Protein provides skin cells with the building blocks they require to turn over effectively and maintain hydration. My rosacea went away, my under eye circles and puffiness faded. It was quite something," says Dr. Harold Lancer, dermatologist and founder of Lancer Skincare.

That's no surprise. What you eat has drastic effects on how your skin looks and functions . A poor diet will contribute to excessive oil, acne, rashes, and other problems while depriving skin of vital nutrients that it needs. Your skin relies on vitamins, minerals, and building block materials to continue regenerating cells and collagen on a daily basis. Those same vitamins and minerals are what provide the antioxidant support capable of fighting damage caused by normal cell metabolism and environmental factors like UV damage and toxins, and they come from eating a balanced, healthy diet.

Be sure to incorporate foods of all colors throughout your day, and always opt for organic. It doesn't contain the toxins in the form of pesticides and other harmful chemicals.HealthySkinGlow-AntioxidantsAntioxidants are the best resources to assist your body in fighting disease and aging. They reduce cellular damage and inflammation. You need a wide variety of antioxidants to help combat those pesky free radicals, and you can ensure you're getting that variety by eating foods of many colors.

On the No-No List

Avoid foods that are poor-quality packaged or processed. Many essential nutrients and enzymes are destroyed during processing. Deep fried foods, particularly those made in reused cooking oil, should be avoided, as they become very difficult to clear out of the body and will clog the body's collagen producing process, resulting in dull, dry skin. Foods high in sugars will increase circulating insulin levels in the blood, leading to breakouts and acne and will trigger inflammation.

Anyone that's ever been on a binge knows that alcohol can dehydrate you, but even as much as one drink a day may sap moisture from your skin, creating fine lines and wrinkles. Try to limit your intake to one drink a day or less.

Smoking is one of the top offenders when it comes to free-radical damage. It contributes to an older appearance with wrinkles and pale skin.

Wash Your Face Like You Mean It

While you don't want to utilize a cleanser with strong chemicals or a sponge or brush that is too harsh, you still need to take the time to properly wash twice a day. "Wash your face like you mean it," advises Jenifer Kramer, founder of Corrective Skincare. "Sounds simple enough, but too often people are in a rush and don't take the time to ‘baby' their skin. Imagine washing a pan full of grease. If you don't take your time and wash it thoroughly, the grease and oil will still be left in the spots you didn't pay attention to."

Follow a Routine

HealthySkinGlow-RoutineDon't forget the importance of following a regular regimen and sticking to it. Avoid using too many products, since lots of ingredients can irritate your skin and might even cancel each other out. You'll want to use a cleanser, exfoliant, toner, and moisturizer every day. Products that are rich in antioxidants can help to topically nourish your skin's cells, supplementing what you're giving your skin through your diet.

Apply your eye cream - but take it all the way out. Cover the same area that a pair of sunglasses would: down to the cheekbone, out to the hairline, and up around the eyelid. Crow's feet start at the eyes, but can extend all the way to the hairline.

There are no shortcuts. Leading a healthy lifestyle and taking good care of your skin will do wonders for your complexion.