Back to basics skincare

It’s time to spring clean your skin after a winter of damaging wind, dehydrating central heating and sluggish but comforting stodgy foods.

In a world of ever increasing high tech skincare we sometimes forget the basic steps to healthy, luminous skin.

Cleansers have come a long way since the old days of leaving a soapy film over the skin, which needed to be removed with a toner. Toners are no longer a necessary part of a skin care routine, unless you have a very oily or acneic skin, and even then alcohol free toners are the only type that should be used, otherwise dehydration is a possibility. Even so, more people use a toner as routine instead of essential beauty serums.

Cleansers have changed with the adding of Mandelic and Glycolic acids to gently cleanse and smooth the skin, eliminating dead skin cells, therefore facial scrubs are also no longer needed. Harsh facial scrubs can damage the delicate acid mantle of the skin and make matters worse.

Antioxidant serums have become the essential ingredients for glowing healthy skin. Of all the ingredients that fight wrinkles, boost collagen and improve skin tone, Retinol (a vitamin A derivative) is still the best. Vitamin C prevents photo ageing and increases collagen synthesis. Applying Vitamin C in the morning and Retinol at night enhances the application of both products.

A high tech approach to skincare is Growth Factors, which protect your skins DNA and rejuvenate cells to make them work like they did in your youth.

The biggest mistake people make is not using sunscreen all year round. UVA, which is present in daylight, causes premature ageing due to the gradual loss of elasticity.

Not forgetting another important factor in healthy skin is, diet. Essential fatty acids stop inflammation that accelerates fine lines, sagging and blotchiness; nuts, salmon and tuna are high in essential fatty acids. Sugar causes glycation which damages the collagen that keeps the skin smooth and firm. Stick to low glycaemic carbs, like whole grains. Green and black tea are beneficial in helping to prevent the breakdown of collagen.

Stress is another important factor, high levels of stress can raise hormone levels that lead to breakouts and aggravate psoriasis. Take some time to massage your skin at least once a week. Massage relaxes and tones the muscles, defines the facial contours and boosts luminosity.