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Does Your Skin Need A Detox?

Does Your Skin Need A Detox?

Sad, sluggish skin getting on your nerves? Then it’s time to hit the refresh button.

When your skin looks kinda cruddy, it’s often your lifestyle habits that are to blame. Hungover skin? Never pretty. Stressed skin? Ditto.

The truth is, booze, sugar, smoking and stress all play their part in below par skin. For starters, sugar-laden booze and sweet edible treats expose your body to way too much glucose than it really needs. And this does nothing for your skin’s precious levels of collagen and elastin, creating advanced glycation end products (AGEs) which kill your radiant, youthful complexion and leave you with dull, dry skin that ages you up faster than you can say ‘pass the Rocky Road’.

Stress is a similar complexion killer, causing unnecessary spikes in cortisol, the stress hormone (which says it all, right?). An overload of cortisol in your system leads to all manner of skin issues including inflammation, excessively oily skin, blocked pores and hey presto, acne breakouts.

And don’t even get us started on smoking which, after baking in the sun all day, is probably one of the worse things you can do for your skin, depriving it of oxygen and nutrients, and literally suffocating your skin with over 7,000 collagen-destroying chemicals. Eesh!

Of course, reducing the amount of sugar you eat, cutting down on alcohol, not smoking and minimizing your exposure to stressful situations are all great ways to get your skin back on track. But they’re not always easy – especially the stress part! So, if you want to give your complexion a simpler and slightly more speedy detox it’s worth looking at your skincare routine.

Full disclosure: it’s not medically possible to get rid of your body’s toxins through your skin. However, keeping your skin clean and well moisturized will go a long way to ridding its surface of pollutants, impurities and dead skin cells. And this is vital in order to create a brighter, calmer and more hydrated, aka healthy, complexion.

Here are a few things you can do to help detoxify your skin for the new year...

1. Double Cleanse Before Bed

We don’t believe double cleansing is necessary on a regular basis, but when your skin looks like it needs an extra nudge in the right direction, it can be a very effective way to purge every last scrap of makeup, dirt, oil, sweat and debris. Plus, deep cleaning your skin helps create the ideal base on which to apply the rest of your skincare formulations so they’re able to function at a much higher level. Win-win.

To set yourself up for double cleansing success, you’re going to need two different formulations. The first should be an oil-based makeup remover to cut through makeup, sunscreen, sebum and anything else that’s, well, oily. Then you’ll need a water-based gel, cream or foam cleanser to wash away all the pollutants you can’t see, while helping to address any particular concerns you may have.

The cleansers you choose will obviously depend on your skin type but our Charcoal Clarifying Cleanser is awesome for deep cleaning and detoxifying your skin. Use this after removing your makeup and you won’t regret it.

2. Steam Clean Skin Once A Week

In ‘ye olden days’, regularly steaming your skin was a given. And frankly, we should all start embracing mom’s favorite skin detox trick. Although, scratch the ‘all’. If you suffer with dryness or sensitivities like eczema or rosacea you might want to give this a miss because super-hot temperatures cause the blood vessels in your skin to dilate which can lead to further redness and flushing. Probably not what you were in the market for...

For the rest of you, however, steaming is a great way to boost blood flow, soften rough skin and deep clean your pores by loosening trapped oil and dirt. Hello clearer, brighter skin.

To nail the perfect steam clean, fill your sink or a large bowl with hot (although not boiling) water. Then cover your head with a clean towel and hover your face about 12 inches above the water for 10 minutes. You could even add some fresh herbs or essential oils like chamomile, lavender or rosemary to the water to decongest or soothe your skin.

After the 10 minutes is up, gently pat your face dry with the towel, then spritz Rose Water Refreshing Facial Toner all over to cool, calm and whisk away those loosened impurities.

3. Don’t Forget To Regularly Exfoliate

Who doesn’t love to exfoliate their skin every now and again? Exfoliating helps boost sluggish cell turnover to encourage dead skin cells to hop it, rather than sticking around at the surface where they clog up your pores and make your skin look dull and pimply.

Exfoliation is pretty important all-year long, especially as you get older when your natural rate of cell turnover slows down. But if your skin is feeling more yucksville than normal, it’s more important than ever.

Chemical exfoliation is probably the most skin-friendly way to exfoliate as it reduces any friction caused from scrubbing away at your skin. Look for glycolic acid and salicylic acid which are two of the best chemical exfoliators found in skincare. Our new AHA/BHA/PHA Liquid Exfoliant contains this dynamite blend, along with skin-brightening vitamin C and gluconolactone, a super-soothing exfoliating acid that also helps hydrate sad-looking skin. 

4. Try Skin Cycling

One of the latest beauty trends to storm TikTok is skin cycling. And while we generally steer clear of faddish skincare whims, this one has real legs – especially for skin that needs a bit of a kick up the butt.

The brainchild of New York dermatologist, Dr. Whitney Bowe, skin cycling is a great way to enhance your night time routine without overloading your skin with too much, all at once. The basic concept is that you exfoliate one night, apply retinol the next, then give your skin two days off by applying moisturizer only. Then you repeat the whole process. Of course, you cleanse and tone as normal every night, but by spacing out your exfoliation and retinol application you reduce irritation or flare-ups. And by giving your skin two ‘recovery’ days you also allow your skin’s super-important barrier function time to heal and rebuild itself.

It's pretty smart when you think about it. Plus, it's a great way to decongest blocked pores while boosting skin turnover and helping to rebuild valuable collagen and elastin.

5. Hydrate, Hydrate & Hydrate Some More

Chronic dehydration is one of the most common side-effects of stressed out, over-indulged skin which makes rehydration imperative. Of course, drinking plenty of sugar-free fluids like water and caffeine-free tea is a great way to go, but your skin will actually benefit way more from topical hydration.

Ensure your skincare routine is literally overflowing with hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid, glycerin and aloe vera. These are all humectants which act like water magnets, drawing in moisture like little skincare sponges. Your best bet is to layer up a hydrating serum with a kick-ass moisturizer for the ultimate hydration. We love the combination of Hyaluronic Acid Facial Serum and Vitamin C Brightening Moisturizer which gives you the added skin-loving benefits of vitamins C and E plus green tea and jojoba oil.




More About This Article

Georgia Gould

Georgia Gould

Georgia is an award-winning beauty writer who has been in the business for over 20 years. British-born, she began her career as a magazine beauty editor in London before moving to San Francisco, CA in 2012 where she now continues her love as a freelance writer and editor. As well as her editorial work, Georgia has created content for many high-profile beauty brands, including Clarins, L’Oréal, Procter & Gamble, Simple and TRESemmé. Her passions include retinol (obviously), golfing, skiing and walking her beloved Schnauzer, Dave.