Since creating the R Devine Skin Care line, the biggest compliment that I receive from people is how healthy my skin is. While I’d like to give full credit to my R Devine Skin Care products, there’s a lot more to glowing skin than just the topical skin care products that I use.
Because healthy skin does involve both an internal and external approach, I thought it would be a good idea share some secrets with you, so that you can have glowing skin, as well.
Ways to Make Your Skin Glow
If your body is dehydrated, your skin will be dehydrated, too. Dehydrated skin tends to show more fine lines and wrinkles, and is more prone to skin sensitivity and inflammation.
The only true way to truly hydrate your skin from within is by drinking plenty of water. Water helps to clear toxins from the body, and helps transport essential nutrients and oxygen to the skin cells.
If you’re not a big fan of drinking water, try adding fruit or vegetables to it, like lemon, berries or cucumber. Decaffeinated herbal teas are another great way to get hydrated, and you also reap the benefits of the wonderful nutritional properties of these additions.
Take your Probiotics
Skin conditions stem from an overburdened liver. And an overburdened liver can negatively impact your gut health, which also can wreak havoc on the skin.
Over the last several years, since processed food has become more widely available, I have noticed a large increase in the amount of rosacea and adult acne cases that I see. Putting unnatural, synthetically processed foods into your body can feed the bad bacteria and create abnormal cells in the body. In order to stay healthy, our bodies need to be fed natural ingredients that only nature provides. By eating synthetically made food, toxins and unhealthy flora build up in your gut and intestines. An unhealthy gut leads to unhealthy skin.
“Your gut is made up of trillions of bacteria that affect your overall health. An overwhelming presence of bad bacteria can lead to numerous health issues from a slow metabolism all the away to more serious issues like Crohn’s disease. Probiotics will help you overcome these issues by providing balance to your gut which will help solve many of skin and health issues.” – Silver Fern Brand
While taking probiotics and working to improve your gut health, it’s vital that you avoid these foods in your diet.
Get Your Lymph System Flowing
Your lymphatic system is the drainage system of your body that is part of your immune system. It manufactures and carries white blood cells, which protect the body against foreign invaders, like pathogens and bacteria. The lymphatic system is also responsible for removing cellular waste, as well as cleansing, detoxifying and maintaining fluid levels within the body.
The lymphatic system is located directly below the skin’s surface. In fact, if you place a nickel on the back of your hand and let it sit there, you’re touch your lymphatic system.
The lymphatic system is the only system in the body that doesn’t run automatically. What does that mean? Well, you know how your blood circulates and your breathe automatically whether you’re conscious or not? Your lymphatic system does not do this. It needs to be stimulated in order to work properly. When it is not working properly, lymph fluid becomes stagnant and toxins begin building up, causing the skin to potentially suffer from acne, eczema, rosacea, loss of elasticity, premature aging… the list goes on. When lymph is properly flowing, the skin will be left glowing.
How do we get lymph moving? Through facial massage that involves lymphatic massage, professional massage-based facials, facial cupping, dry brushing, Gua Sha and regular movement (walking, rebounding, etc.).
My entire life, I’ve always loved my sleep. When I’m sleep deprived, I notice a huge difference in both my skin and my emotional health. There’s a reason why sleep is often referred to as beauty sleep, and you should never, ever sacrifice sleep for anything (except during the newborn phase of motherhood of course).
Our skin and body repair themselves while we sleep. Skin cells regenerate, circulation improves and oxygen flow increases. Lack of sleep lowers circulation and oxygen flow within the body. Poor circulation and decreased oxygen flow lead to pale, washed out skin, dark circles under the eyes and premature aging.
A large portion of our lymphatic system is in the skin. It is the drainage system of the body and a huge part of our immune system. The lymphatic system literally cleans us from the inside out, including our skin. It cleanses, nourishes + detoxifies.
Yes, our skin is exposed to pollution, environmental elements and makeup each day, so a super gentle oil cleanser that does not strip any beneficial oils or natural protection away from the skin is beneficial at night. But cleansing your skin twice a day is actually too much. Why? Because when you cleanse too much, you’re removing too many natural oils, dead skin cells, your acid mantle and healthy microbiome away. Your skin NEEDS all of this for healthy function. It was when I stopped cleansing my own skin twice a day that I saw the biggest improvement in the hydration and texture of my skin. You’re not doing your skin any favours by constantly cleansing it. The beauty industry has brain-washed you there so you’ll need to buy more product, more often.
Imagine if every time you made a meal, you had a huge plate full of vital nutrients and someone came along and swept it off your plate before you could eat it. That’s what you’re doing to your skin when you over cleanse!
Our skin produces sebum/oil, natural moisturizing factors, the acid mantle, dead skin cells, lipids (fats) and beneficial bacteria. All of these must be taken care of and respected because they are ALL necessary for optimal skin health and hydration.
Our skin needs to be in direct contact with its environment. When it is, it measures the humidity and quality of the air and instinctively responds accordingly. When the air is dry, healthy functioning skin will respond by producing oil, lipids and natural moisturizing factors in order to moisturize itself.
However, when we over moisturize topically or use moisturizers that are too thick or rich, this blocks the skin’s ability to be in direct contact with its environment. When the air is dry, the skin will not instinctively know to naturally produce what is needed to stay moisturized and hydrated, so the skin, without this topical moisturizer, becomes dry (because you are blocking its ability to take care of itself). This creates skin/product addiction.
In order to allow our skin to start naturally moisturizing itself again, it is vital that we use less product. Only a few drops of a light, fast-absorbing oil is needed, so that your skin can still be in direct contact with its environment. When reducing the amount of product you use, it’s normal for the skin to become more dry before it improves as it learns to readjust. As we age, the skin’s natural production decreases, but we can provide extra support by naturally stimulating this production (hello face massage).
Do Not Over-Exfoliate
Our skin cells have a 28 day life cycle. When they are produced, they start at the bottom and begin moving their way up to the surface of the skin (what we see).
As the cells get closer to the surface, they die, and when THEY are ready, they naturally slough off the skin (aka exfoliate). In fact, we lose about 30,000-40,000 cells every minute.
These dead skin cells are vital. They keep moisture in to hydrate our body and organs. They keep nutrients inside the body. They protect us from the sun’s damaging rays and they protect us from bacteria invasion, viruses, pollution, etc.
When we over-exfoliate with harsh exfoliants, peels, acids, vitamin C & retinol, we force our skin to start producing new skin cells at a faster rate. Because they’re being produced at a faster than normal rate, they are often not produced in optimal condition and may not function properly. You know what that means? Accelerated aging, inflammation + poor texture overtime.
Not only that, but you’ve heard me talk about the protective barrier. The one that helps maintain our pH level, skin health + prevents bacteria invasion? When we over-exfoliate, we damage this barrier… allowing it to be prone to excess oiliness or dryness, and be more susceptible to bacteria invasion, and increased inflammation.
Easier said than done, I know! Stress is big contributor to adult acne and other skin conditions, as it lowers the immune system, enabling the bacteria that causes acne to leave the liver and head straight for the skins surface, wreaking havoc inside the body.
I’m sure those of you who suffer from skin conditions such as acne, rosacea, eczema and psoriasis notice that your skin gets worse during periods of stress. When you experience stress, your body produces cortisol, which activate your oil glands, producing more oil. Unfortunately, skin conditions end up causing more stress, as they negatively impact your self esteem. It becomes a very vicious cycle.
Reducing stress as much as possible is really important for healthy skin. Exercise, plenty of sleep, downtime, deep-breathing exercises and meditation are all great ways to help reduce stress.
Apply Sunscreen Daily
The sun is the number one enemy of the skin and the main cause of premature aging. In fact, 80% of the sun damage that occurs within our skin happens before we reach the age of 18. In order to protect our skin from further damage, it is vital to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen daily.
When searching for sunscreen, make sure to look for zinc oxide or titanium dioxide (in cream form, not powder) as the active ingredients. These two ingredients are the only safe active sunscreen ingredients. Other active ingredients found in conventional brand sunscreens can be toxic and carcinogenic.
For more information on safe sunscreen and sun protection, check our the Environmental Working Group’s Guide to Sunscreen.
Eat Your Fruit and Veggies
Eating a healthy diet, full of fruits and vegetables, provides your body with the essential vitamins and nutrients that your skin loves.
Vitamin C is especially wonderful for the skin. Vitamin C reduces inflammation and irritation, and also boosts collagen production within the skin, slowing down the signs of premature aging. It is vital that you get your Vitamin C internally though, as the majority of Vitamin C serums and lotions on the market have lost their vitamin C by the time they make it to your skin.
Eating fruits that are high in antioxidants really benefit the skin. Antioxidants protect the skin by limiting the production of free radical damage, which can damage skin cells. Eating a diet rich in antioxidants can improve your health and the appearance of your skin.
Lastly, fruits and vegetables help to kill the bacteria that cause skin conditions, like acne, rosacea, eczema and psoriasis.