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What To Do If You Hate Those Fine Lines Around Your LipsRead More
Advice for all of your skin care needs
What To Do If You Hate Those Fine Lines Around Your LipsRead More
Realistic skincare goals are the bomb. Because there’s always room for improvement when it comes to the look and feel of your skin.
Let’s get one thing clear. Striving for skin perfection is not something we subscribe to here at TruSkin. Better skin? Sure. But perfect skin? Hell no. In fact, does that even exist outside Hollywood movies and retouched glossy magazine covers? Probably not.
That being said, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to improve what you’ve been blessed with. That’s just human nature. Whether you’re done with your dull, lackluster skin or totally over your monthly breakouts, these are the kind of skin issues we can get on board with. Because wanting better things for your skin is realistic. It’s also attainable – especially when you’re armed with the right tools and a side of skincare knowhow.
On that note, read on for five of the most common skin goals – plus how to flip them into reality…
Skincare Goal #1: Glowing Skin
Dull skin that lacks radiance hits us all at some point. And whether it’s a temporary, day-after-the-night-before blip or a more long-term grievance, dull skin is usually related to one big issue: dehydration.
Dehydration can be a problem for any skin type – dry or oily – and it happens when your skin isn’t retaining enough moisture. Not to be confused with dry skin, which lacks sebum, dehydration occurs thanks to things like cold weather, stress, a lack of sleep, poor skincare choices and surprise, surprise, sun damage. Basically anything that screws up your barrier function and compromises your skin's ability to hold onto water.
But dehydration isn’t the only reason your skin might look kind of sad. Poor cellular turnover can also be an issue. Healthy, adult skin has a turnover rate of around 28 days (give or take) but as you age, this gets longer as your skin cells become sluggish and dead ones hang around longer than necessary.
To help get your glow back, we recommend two important things. First, increase your skin’s moisture levels by applying a hydrating serum twice daily. Try one that contains ingredients like hyaluronic acid or aloe vera. We love Hyaluronic Acid Serum when our skin is feeling thirsty.
Second up, add a little gentle exfoliation into your skincare routine. Our Charcoal Clarifying Cleanser is a great choice because it contains citric acid, a chemical exfoliator that helps dissolve the bonds that bind dead skin cells together.
Skincare Goal #2: Smaller-Looking Pores
Pores are kind of annoying, we agree. But they’re actually super important for your skin to function so don’t give them too much of a hard time, OK?
Your body has two types of pores: those that produce sebum (oil) and others than produce sweat. Oil-producing pores are tiny little openings found at the top of your hair follicles where they release sebum to moisturize and soften the skin.
This may sound innocent, but the problem starts when your sebaceous glands produce too much sebum than your skin really needs, causing your pores to stretch and become blocked. This is very common for oily and combination skin types, but here’s the thing – your pore size is determined by genetics which means that, no matter what you do, you can’t physically shrink them. However, there are many things you CAN do to help strengthen and firm your skin, and simultaneously help keep your pores in decent shape.
Keeping your skin clean and your pores clear of excess oils, makeup, sunscreen and the like is your most important play, but don't go too nuts. Gentle is the key. Try our new Tea Tree Super Cleanser+, followed by Ocean Minerals Super Toner for a pore-kicking cleansing routine that won’t strip your skin completely dry.
Skincare Goal #3: Less Visible Wrinkles
As the most common signs of aging, fine lines and wrinkles are a bugbear we all have to face at some point. And while it’s easy to say, ‘don’t worry about them,’ it’s much harder to actually put that into practice.
Lines and wrinkles usually appear on and around areas of the face that experience repeated muscle movement. This is because repetitive motions like laughing, frowning and smiling cause weaknesses and dips in the skin which, as your skin matures and it loses valuable proteins, don’t bounce back like they used to.
Once wrinkles start to set-in, they’re pretty tricky to eradicate with skincare products alone, but the best way to keep them at a minimum is to look after your collagen levels. And this is where the mighty retinol steps in.
Retinol is the gold-standard of skincare because it actually ‘communicates’ with your skin at a cellular level, encouraging it to rev up collagen and elastin production, accelerate cell turnover and neutralize skin-damaging free radicals. Pretty good stuff.
Skincare Goal #4: Fewer Breakouts
Pimples, spots, zits, breakouts, whatever you call them, welcome they are not. So annoying, then, that acne is the most common skin condition in the US and affects around 50 million of us every darn year!
Acne rears its ugly head (pun absolutely intended) when your pores get blocked up with an excess of sebum that mixes with dead skin cells and bacteria. Thanks to genetics, you’re either susceptible to acne, or you’re not. But plenty of other triggers can contribute to the frequency and severity of your breakouts. Hormones – yeah those again – are a major trigger, as is stress.
Obviously you can’t miraculously change your genetic makeup but there are plenty of skincare ingredients and helpful tricks for treating and controlling your breakouts. Our absolute go-to is Tea Tree Super Serum+ which combines tea tree oil with salicylic acid and niacinamide to create a powerful, yet gentle way to balance your skin and deal with unwanted pimples. Tea tree is one of the best ingredients for acne as its anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial AND way less irritating than things like benzoyl peroxide. What’s more you only need to apply it two or three times a week to see experience visible results.
Skincare Goal #5: A More Even Skin Tone
Fed up with dark spots that are totally killing your skin’s mojo? Dark spots, aka hyperpigmentation, appear when your skin produces too much melanin which is the pigment that gives it its color. The three main triggers are your hormones; skin trauma like a bite, burn or pimple; or the sun.
We like to blame the sun for all manner of things where the skin is concerned. But this is totally legit for it really does have a lot to answer for. Dark spots included. Even if the sun wasn’t the original trigger, the sun makes any dark spot so much worse in the long run.
This is why protecting your skin from the sun’s evil rays is the single most important thing you can do for dark spots and patchy skin. Broad-spectrum sunscreen is a must (hi there SPF 30 Mineral Sunscreen with Vitamin C) but don’t dismiss antioxidants, either, which have a very clever way of neutralizing free radical damage and shielding your skin from cumulative photodamage. Our go-to is always vitamin C which not only protects your skin from damage but also helps to fade the appearance of uneven skin that’s already come and bitten you on the butt! Try our classic Vitamin C Facial Serum twice daily, swapping it out for Vitamin C Super Serum+ two or three times a week, to really hit dark spots where it hurts.
Good News! Your Skincare Goals Just Got Closerread more
Prepping your skin for an awesome night’s sleep is super important – and good news, you don’t need to sweat over it…
Quality skin isn’t solely about what you do in the morning and consequently what you see throughout the day. Of course, an effective morning routine that includes gentle cleansing, moisturizing, treating and protecting your skin is essential and, without it, your complexion would be a far cry from what it is today.
However, what your skin gets up to overnight, and what you do to help or hinder this, is just as important. Maybe even more so.
While you sleep, your skin kickstarts a whole plethora of damage limitation processes. Not only does blood flow increase to nourish and revitalize the skin, but collagen and elastin production accelerates to boost cell renewal and help keep your skin strong, supple and firm. Your body’s natural antioxidant system also revs up to counteract damage from the slings and arrows of everyday life. Think pollution, UV radiation, sweating, irritants – all of which hit your skin hard while you’re awake. This means your poor, delicate skin needs a serious amount of recovery time if it’s going to look, feel and perform at the top of its game.
Enter the power of a good night’s sleep.
Research shows that people who get regular, quality sleep (around eight hours is the sweet spot) have much better skin than those who sleep less, like five hours. This is because short-sleepers miss out on precious time to allow their skin’s overnight restoration activities to do their magic.
Don’t be like those people. Get. Your. Sleep.
In order to get the most out of your invaluable hours of sleep, it’s vital to start your skin off right. And how do you go about that? Well, you must cleanse away the sins of the day for starters, then it's important to amp up hydration; boost those antioxidants, and protect and nourish your barrier function. Sounds complicated? Ha, that’s where you’re wrong. In fact, the simplest night time skincare routine is often the most effective. Read on for five easy steps for nailing your skin's best beauty sleep ever…
1. The Non-Negotiable Cleanse
Newsflash: cleansing before bed is way more important than a morning cleanse. Think about it, by the end of the day you’ve been awake for a good 16 hours and in this time your skin has been subjected to all manner of aggressors including dirt, pollution, sweat and makeup. Do you really want to leave all that grime on your skin overnight? No way! Not only does this stop your skin from functioning properly, but it’ll also reduce the efficacy of any other skincare product you might apply afterwards.
Whatever your skin type and product preference, the golden rule is to cleanse your skin thoroughly but gently, using a mild formulation and avoiding harsh cleansing agents like sodium lauryl sulfate. Use warm, not hot water to help protect your barrier function; massage your cleanser all over your face and neck for at least a minute, and remember to rinse thoroughly then gently pat dry with a clean towel. Our current go-to is our new Tea Tree Super Cleanser+ but we have three incredible cleansers to choose from right here.
2. The Speedy Spritz That Speaks Volumes
Toner doesn’t have it easy. Some people hate it, others just can’t be bothered. But the thing is, toner is an extremely simple step that can really turn up your bedtime skincare routine an extra notch. Take our Ocean Minerals Super Toner, for example. Not only does it require zero effort (remove lid, spritz on skin, done) but it’s packed with minerals, vitamins, peptides and nourishing ingredients that finish off your cleanse to the nth degree and prepare your skin for the next steps in your routine. Fancy boosting cell turnover, hydration and strengthening your skin in, literally, seconds? It’s a no brainer, right?
3. The Restoration Project
Remember that whole rejuvenation process we spoke of earlier? Well, if you want to give your skin a little nudge in the right direction, you have to get on board with a treatment serum. The exact formulation you choose will obviously depend on your skin type and needs (vitamin C for brightening, hyaluronic acid for hydration etc.) but if you want to stick with the number one ingredient for overnight skin restoration, look no further than retinol.
Retinol’s secret is its ability to ‘communicate’ with your skin at a cellular level, accelerating the production of collagen and elastin, improving cell turnover and being an overall demon at strengthening your skin while increasing elasticity and refining everything from lines and wrinkles to dark spots and acne breakouts.
Retinol is often advised for night time use only as it's pretty potent stuff. It also reacts to sunlight, becoming less effective unless you protect your skin extremely well. So bed time is the best time, people!
Try our Retinol Facial Serum for a fabulous overnight skin revamp, but remember to go slow, applying it just two or three times a week to begin with.
4. The Treatment For Your Eyes
If you’ve ever had a rough night’s sleep you’ll know that the skin around your eyes is the first area to give the game away. How so? Because it’s thinner, more delicate and contains fewer sebaceous glands than the rest of your face so it becomes dry and shows up fine lines and wrinkles lightning fast.
A lack of sleep also causes the blood vessels under the skin to dilate which increases blood retention and creates dark circles. And we're not done yet. An abundance of cortisol in your system (the stress hormone that goes awry if you don’t get enough sleep) also changes the balance of salts in your body which makes it retain water and can result in swelling under your eyes. Hello puffy eye bags!
The moral of this story? Get your zzzs and help the skin around your eyes look after itself by applying a targeted treatment before bed. We love Hyaluronic Acid Eye Cream which blends HA with vitamin C to hydrate and brighten dark circles, plus vitamin B5 to strengthen and moisturize.
5. The Moisture Lock-In
Sure, your regular moisturizer will do a decent job of locking in hydration and keeping your barrier function ticking along nicely as you sleep. But is ‘decent’ good enough? We don’t think so. Instead, do the best for your skin by applying a targeted night cream that boasts all the ingredients your skin could possibly need to replenish moisture and support its overnight renewal system.
Vitamin C Deep Hydration Night Cream is an awesome way to end your night time routine and will have your skin looking incredible the next morning. Chock full of supportive ingredients like vitamin C, vitamin B5, MSM and aloe it’s the ideal formulation for the night shift. Plus it seals moisture into your skin to help replace that which is lost as you sleep (which is way more than in the daytime, btw!). Oh, and it feels amazing to apply. Yeah yeah, we know that’s not the most important thing in a skincare product, but it’s important to us.
And we know it’s just as important to you!
The No-Sweat Bedtime Skincare Routine (That Works!)read more
From brightening serums and powerful moisturizers to the obligatory sunscreen, here’s everything your skincare routine needs to deal with hyperpigmentation, aka pesky dark spots.
Dark spots get all of us eventually. And whether yours are thanks to teenage acne, more recent hormonal changes, years of sun damage or even skin trauma, one thing’s for sure, dark spots get right under your skin.
While they’re rarely harmful to your health, dark spots, aka hyperpigmentation, appear when your skin produces too much melanin – the pigment that gives your skin, hair and eyes their color. Many factors can trigger an erratic overproduction of melanin but the three main causes are: hormonal changes such as those during pregnancy or the menopause; some kind of skin trauma (bites, burns, acne spots etc.) that didn't heal properly, or the thing we like to quite rightly blame for almost everything, the sun. Certain medications can also create dark, patchy areas on your skin, as can existing conditions like eczema and psoriasis.
So, what can you do to, first off, prevent dark spots for forming in the first place, and secondly help fade the ones you’ve already been lumbered with?
Keep scrolling for the most important products to have up your skincare sleeve.
The Absolute Must: Sunscreen
Of course, like most things in life, prevention is better (read: easier!) than cure. Granted, not all dark spots are caused by the sun, but here’s the thing. Whatever the cause of your dark spots, the sun will make them ten times worse because your skin can’t help but naturally produce melanin when it’s exposed to UV rays. Sometimes, melanin production is smooth and even and you tan, but other times it becomes erratic, uneven and melanin clumps together forming dark, patchy areas on your skin.
It makes sense, therefore, that all skincare experts, including the American Academy of Dermatology agree that your first line of defense against dark spots should be to protect your skin from the sun’s damaging rays in the first place. Stay out of the midday sun, and wear wide-brimmed hats, sunglasses and protective, long-sleeved clothing. And, of course, wear sunscreen. Every day. Not only is a broad-spectrum sunscreen the number one way to prevent dark spots, but it can also help to clear or minimize existing ones as an added bonus.
The Skin Reviver: Exfoliator
Products that exfoliate your skin are the cat’s whiskers for helping to treat dark spots as they help remove dead skin cells from the surface of your skin while improving cellular turnover. But exfoliation isn’t a one-fits-all. In fact, there are two very different ways to exfoliate your skin: chemical and physical exfoliation.
Physical exfoliation is the obvious type that requires a little bit of physical force to work. Think scrubs, loofahs, facial mitts and cleansing brushes. Chemical exfoliation, on the other hand, requires no physical action but instead uses certain ingredients like glycolic, lactic and salicylic acid to dissolve the bonds between the dead skin cells so they shed quicker and more efficiently.
Both types of exfoliation work pretty darn well, so it's really a matter of personal choice. Just remember, go gently and stick to maybe two or three times a week depending on your skin type.
The Brightening Superhero: Vitamin C
Antioxidants are an awesome way to ward off the damaging effects of the sun (dark spots, wrinkles, the whole shebang!) because they help neutralize free radicals which form in your skin when it’s exposed to UV radiation.
One of the best and most clinically-proven of the antioxidant powerhouses is vitamin C – specifically when it comes to preventing and fading dark spots. Vitamin C not only gets to work on those aforementioned free radical villains to help reduce oxidative stress and keep your skin healthy, but it’s also been shown to inhibit the production of melanin by decreasing an enzyme in your skin called tyrosinase. And as an extra side? Vitamin C also has impressive anti-inflammatory properties which is key in the fight against dark spots. How so? Because dark spots are often the result of… yes, you guessed it… inflammation.
Triple-action brightening effects right there? You’d better believe it.
If you’re not sure how to include vitamin C in your skincare routine, we believe the best type is sodium ascorbyl phosphate, or SAP to its buddies. SAP is the less potent, but more stable version of pure l-ascorbic acid. This makes it a) way more tolerable for all skin types and b) more longer-lasting since it doesn’t break down and lose efficacy when exposed to light and air. Winner!
The Gold-Star Of Skin Renewal: Retinol
Short of doing the washing up and taking the kids to school, there’s very little retinol can’t do. OK, so we exaggerate, but you get the idea of just what an awesome skincare ingredient retinol is, right?
A type of vitamin A, retinol is well-known for its anti-aging and acne-fighting skills, but it’s also a strong contender in the battle against unwanted dark spots. For one thing, retinol stimulates the production of collagen and elastin which improves everything from elasticity and strength to tone, texture and radiance. It also has similar effects to exfoliation in that it accelerates cell renewal, forcing all those dead surface skin cells to beat it.
Retinol is a powerful beast, however, so there are a few important things to remember when introducing it into your regime for the first time.
1. Always do a patch test. No arguments.
2. Introduce retinol slowly, starting with two or three times a week max.
3. Give it a few weeks, then if your skin is behaving OK, up your frequency to four or five times a week.
4. Repeat until you’re applying it nightly.
5. Skin feeling unnecessarily dry, red, itchy or irritated? Then reduce your usage again until your skin acclimates.
6. Be patient. The effects of retinol take time, so don’t expect miracles overnight. You’ll likely need to wait a few months for the best results. But it'll be worth it, promise.
Try: Retinol Facial Serum
The Best Skincare Routine For Dealing With Dark Spotsread more
Stress = irritation, which is one of the worst things for your skin. Let’s see what we can do to help turn stressed skin into your best skin ever.
Your skin is the largest organ in your body, so it’s no wonder what you see on the outside reflects exactly what’s going on inside. When you’re rested and bursting with energy, for example, your skin often reflects that. And, ps, can we have a group hug for those rare but joyous days, please?!
Similarly, when you’re super tired, anxious and emotionally drained, your skin is likely to react in the same way, looking dull, feeling rough and, frankly, being a bit of a stressed mess.
But why does stress and emotional anxiety affect the skin in such a major way? Well, when you feel stressed about something, your brain prepares your body to go into fight or flight mode. In doing so, your nervous system releases hormones like cortisol and adrenaline into the bloodstream which nudges your heart to beat faster, your breath to speed up and your muscles to tense up. All this is great in short-lived stressful situations like job interviews or when dealing with a threat or emergency. But when stress becomes more the norm than a rarity, these hormones go into constant overdrive and things start to go awry. Headaches and nausea can kick in, your digestive system becomes compromised and, in extremely chronic cases, you may even increase your risk of a heart attack or stroke.
And then there’s your skin.
Various studies show that both acute (temporary) and chronic (consistent) stress create negative effects on the health of your skin. For starters, spikes in cortisol increase inflammation and cause your sebaceous glands to go wild, encouraging them to produce way too much oil than your skin really needs (cue breakouts!). An overload of cortisol also breaks down vital collagen supplies, decreases hydrating hyaluronic acid, upsets the balance of your skin’s barrier function and messes up its pH levels. All of these things equal bad news for the health of your skin, resulting in any number of skin annoyances such as blocked pores, acne, dehydration, irritation and flare-ups in existing conditions like rosacea, psoriasis or eczema.
And the worst thing of all? Cruddy, stress-induced skin is, well, stressful in itself. Which doesn’t help your emotional well-being one tiny bit. Sigh.
The good news is there are many ways to improve our skin when stress is hitting you hard. To follow, seven of our tried and tested favorites…
1. De-Stress With A Journal
Before you start working on your skin, you need to concentrate on your entire health and well-being. And the best way to do this? Make a note of any habits or experiences that make you stressed or uneasy. Write down how they made you feel, how you reacted to them and what, if anything, you did to make yourself feel better. This allows you to notice themes or patterns in your stress levels, as well as ways to improve your mood and help you relax.
2. Sleep like A Queen
Like all skin experts, we’re big believers in the power of a great night’s sleep. In terms of stress, this is because cortisol levels dramatically drop when you’re asleep. So, if you deprive yourself of valuable zzzs your skin misses out on this important time of repair and rejuvenation during which collagen production accelerates, cell turnover speeds up, blood flow increases, muscles relax and antioxidants kick in to repair damage caused during the day.
The Mayo Clinic recommends at least seven hours of quality sleep every night but the most important thing is to go to bed and get up at roughly the same time to get into a good routine. Ensure your bedroom is dark, quiet, not too warm and limit caffeine, food and your smartphone for at least two hours before you hit the sack.
3. Dial Down Your Actives
Active ingredients like retinol, vitamin C and glycolic acid are all well and good when your skin’s barrier function is working like clockwork. But when stress upsets its delicate nature, your skin’s ability to heal and repair itself becomes compromised. This is when an overload of actives can be too much for your skin to deal with. Cut back for a while and allow your barrier function to rebuild itself. If you usually exfoliate every other day, for example, switch to once or twice a week. Love to apply your Retinol Facial Serum every night? Reduce this to every other night for a short period of time, or try alternating it with our soothing Niacinamide Facial Serum which is perfect for sensitized skin.
Trust us, giving your skin a break is super important during times of stress.
4. Avoid ‘Triggering’ Skincare Ingredients
We recommend avoiding the most common skincare nasties ALL of the time, but it’s even more important during times of emotional and mental stress when your barrier function might not be working to the best of its abilities.
Keep your routine straightforward, simple and steer clear of sulfates, in particular, which are excellent at cleansing, but can exacerbate dryness, itching, redness and breakouts – especially if your skin is feeling stressed out.
Gentle cleansers that contain non-drying surfactants like disodium lauryl sulfosuccinate and disodium 2-sulfolaurate are a far better choice and ideal for sensitized skin. Try our Vitamin C Brightening Cleanser which also contains nourishing rose hip oil to help reduce inflammation and redness.
5. Save New Skincare Products For Another Time
Sure, we all love to try out a brand new product every now and again but now’s not the time to introduce a newbie to your daily routine. Stressed skin is more reactive which means ingredients that usually feel great may bother you more than normal.
Stick to what you know for now and save the new stuff for later.
6. Enjoy A Cup Of Tea
Research shows that drinking black tea helps lower the levels of cortisol in your bloodstream, making you feel more relaxed and positive. It’s even been suggested that the simple act of making tea alone is enough to help soothe stress and anxiety.
The reason black (as well as green) tea is thought to be such a mood booster is mainly down to l-theanine, an amino acid that helps promotes relaxation, counteracts anxiety, reduces fatigue and supports thinking.
7. Finally, Give Yourself A Break
Everyone goes through stressful periods in their lives and it’s perfectly normal for things to get on top of you every now and again. But try not to allow your stress to get the better of you as this will result in a vicious circle for both your health and your skin – and that can be hard to shake off. Practice deep breathing throughout the day to center yourself, go for a quick walk to clear your head, or read a book for ten minutes in the afternoon to take your mind off things.
These healthy habits are awesome for lifting your emotional health and maintaining stronger, radiant skin. Period.
How To Turn Stressed Skin Into Your Best Skinread more
Because nourished skin = better skin and, we don’t know about you, but we are all in for that.
When you think of feeding your skin you might believe that it’s all about what you eat. And yes, a nutritious, balanced diet that’s packed with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids is vital for healthy, glowing skin. Similarly, a diet that’s packed with sugar, processed foods, refined carbs and booze can (and usually does) have the reverse effect, accelerating aging and harming your skin. Nobody’s arguing this. However, it’s worth remembering that what you put on your face is just as important as what goes into your body. In fact, topical nutrition provides your skin with even more targeted nourishment that works from the surface down to the deeper levels of your epidermis.
Not sure where to start when it comes to nourishing your skin with topical skincare? Well, if you’re a TruSkin fan (yeah you are!) you’re likely feeding your skin with some pretty kick-ass ingredients already – maybe without even knowing it. However, there’s always room for improvement, so here’s everything you need to know about amping up your skin nutrition from the outside in.
What Does Skin Nutrition Mean?
As with body nutrition, skin nutrition is about feeding your skin with certain ingredients in order for it to remain as healthy as possible. As you know, consuming your daily fill of fresh fruit and veggies, lean proteins, nuts and legumes is essential for your entire health and wellbeing (as well as your skin, of course!). Well, similarly, applying nutrients like vitamins and minerals to your skin helps it function at its best. For one thing, quality ingredients help your skin cells turn over and regenerate more efficiently. They also work hard to strengthen and fortify the skin’s protective barrier which is super important for keeping irritants out… and vital moisture in.
By feeding your skin with the nutrients it needs, it has no choice but to function like a well-oiled machine. Which is the ultimate goal for all of us, after all.
The Difference Between Hydrating, Moisturizing and Nourishing Your Skin
Often talked about in the same breath, products that hydrate, moisturize and nourish are quite different things. Yes, they sound fairly similar and some formulations manage to cleverly combine all three, but it’s worth having a quick recap about their vital functions.
An ingredient or product that hydrates is all about drawing water to your skin’s surface to add moisture and, well, hydrate it. Moisturizing, however, is the act of lubricating the skin and locking in water to prevent it from escaping from the surface. And then there’s nourishment which focuses on the nutrients required to help feed and drive your skin to function better.
Pretty simple when you think about it, right?
Skin Nutrition: What To Look Out For In Your Skincare Products
So, which ingredients are best for nourishing your skin? Of course, the most obvious are nature’s finest offerings such as aloe vera, licorice, green tea and plant-based oils like chamomile, tea tree and ylang ylang. These all have their own unique super powers to help improve your skin by brightening tone, balancing sebum production, fending off free radicals and more.
Then you have minerals like MSM, a natural-occurring form of sulfur which reduces inflammation and accelerates collagen production; as well as magnesium, potassium and calcium which, among other benefits, are incredible for energizing your skin and helping it to retain water.
And of course, we mustn’t forget some of the most effective and clinically proven skin-feeding ingredients out there – vitamins. From A (aka retinol) through to K, topical vitamins offer so many awesome benefits, we’d need the best part of a day to go through them all. Instead, let’s have a look at three of our favorite TruSkin products for feeding your skin – and if you want to learn more about how different vitamins affect your skin, read about six of the best, right here.
3 MVPs (that’ll be the Most Valuable Products, BTW) For Awesome Skin Nutrition
1. Multi-Vitamin Facial Serum
If you’re looking for an all-round nourishing treatment that works like an oral multi-vitamin for your skin, our new facial serum is exactly the product for you. Infused with a complex blend of seven plant-derived vitamins (yes SEVEN!) including B3 (niacinamide), C, E, F and K, it’s the cat’s whiskers for feeding your skin and improving its overall health. Vitamin B3 helps clarify your skin and strengthen its barrier function, while C brightens and protects, E deeply hydrates, F aids repair and K calms inflammation. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Multi-Vitamin Facial Serum also contains a whole bunch of minerals and electrolytes that work hard to drive water into the skin and regulate pH, therefore improving hydration to ensure your skin retains as much moisture as possible.
Packed with super nutrients, this is skin nourishment in a nutshell.
2. Vitamin C Super Serum+
If you know anything about vitamin C, you’ll know that countless science-backed studies prove that it offers almost unbeatable, skin-changing results to dull or discolored skin. It’s also one of the most effective antioxidants available which makes it a shoo-in for any and almost every skin type.
Our Vitamin C Super Serum+ harnesses the powers of vitamin C and blends it with another big favorite among dermatologists and skin experts the world over – retinol (aka vitamin A). Like vitamin C, retinol has undergone decades of clinical research to study its effects on the skin. And the results don’t lie… it’s good stuff. Like really good stuff. By communicating with your skin at a cellular level, retinol boosts the production of collagen and elastin and improves cell turnover to strengthen your skin while improving elasticity and reducing the visible signs of aging.
3. Ocean Minerals Super Toner
Finally, may we present to you our Ocean Minerals Super Toner which offers a fantastic, all-round hit of skin nutrition that’s often hard to come by in a toner? Toners are often swept aside in terms of their importance in your skincare routine. Big mistake in this instance.
Turbo charged with goodies like MSM, peptides, vitamin C and glycolic acid for that extra boost of exfoliation, this revitalizing spritz contains no less than 90 deep ocean minerals to stimulate your skin into action and help accelerate cell regeneration for brighter, fresher-looking skin. The addition of essential oils, plant extracts, aloe vera and witch hazel offer a further boost of hydration, protection, clarity and strength which is almost unheard of in a toner. Just saying!
How To Nourish Your Skin From The Outsideread more
When it comes to your skin we can’t think of a more mind-numbingly frustrating phrase than – wait for it – hormonal acne. Are we right or are we right? Here’s what we know about dealing with these pesky, recurring breakouts…
Hormonal acne might sound like one of those distant horrors from your teenage years when angry pimples plagued your chin on a monthly basis. But sadly, filing this common skin condition away in the annals of pubescent history isn’t the case for everyone. In fact, hormonal breakouts can affect you at any age. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, acne affects more than 50 percent of women between the ages of 20 and 29, while just over 25 percent of those between 40 and 49 are also suffering. What’s more, studies show that acne hits adult women way more frequently than men.
Acne is caused by one thing and one thing alone – excess sebum that gets trapped in your pores and may or may not become inflamed. Nobody’s arguing this. But it’s the hows and whys your skin overproduces sebum that can change from person to person. Oh how simple it would be if you could point the finger at chocolate, poor cleansing or your parents (because, genes), right? Instead, a whole host of factors trigger acne. And one of the most common? Yup, hormones.
Read on for everything we know about how to deal with these pesky hormonal breakouts…
What Exactly Is Hormonal Acne?
While not strictly a term used in the medical profession, hormonal acne occurs when an imbalance in hormones stimulates the skin to produce excessive amounts of sebum and consequently (although not always) break out. These breakouts are cyclical and commonly coincide with periods in your life (no pun intended) when your body experiences major shifts in hormone levels. Think menstruation, pregnancy, child birth and the menopause.
The hormones in question here are estrogen and progesterone which fluctuate like crazy during these times, creating imbalances with your levels of testosterone.
However, not all hormonal acne is down to inherent hormonal fluctuations. That may sound like a contradiction in terms but all we mean is that certain medications can also throw your hormones out of whack, as can emotional stress which produces an excess of cortisol in your body. Cortisol is known as ‘the stress hormone,’ and it’s a major trigger of excess sebum production and inflammation. Say no more.
How To Tell If Your Breakouts Are Hormonal
If you’ve noticed your skin is breaking out monthly, around the time of your period, this is a tell-tale sign you have hormonal acne – especially if you’re experiencing red, inflamed pimples in the same places each time, and they’re mainly concentrated on your chin, around the jawline or across your back and chest. Even if you’re menopausal, hormonal fluctuations still occur on a regular basis as your reproductive hormones systematically decline.
Some hormone replacement therapies also use different hormones to replace those which your body is losing. And all this can cause a similar type of cyclical adult acne. So, there’s that.
During pregnancy, or postpartum is another common time as, again, your hormones are all over the place, sending your sebaceous glands into turmoil and creating excess oil at the surface of your skin. And if you’re super stressed? This won’t help one bit.
Of course, self-diagnosing hormonal acne is no mean feat so if you’re not sure whether your flare-ups are hormonal or thanks to some other trigger, it’s always wise to seek professional help from a board-certified dermatologist.
5 Ways To Help Treat Hormonal Acne
There are plenty of ways to help keep hormonal acne under control. At the doctor’s office, things like laser treatments, hormone-regulating meds and prescription topicals can reap awesome rewards for severe acne. However, if you’re dealing with mild to moderate breakouts these at-home acne treatments are also well worth it…
1. Keep Your Pores Clean
Dirty skin doesn’t cause acne, per se, but if you allow dirt and surface debris to build up in your pores, well, this won’t help at all. This means a great cleansing routine is imperative if you’re suffering right now. Don’t make the mistake of cleansing like your life depended on it, however, as harsh formulations and over-zealous scrubbing will completely strip your skin’s protective layer which accelerates oil production even further.
Instead, choose balancing products that, yes, whisk away dirt, oil and impurities but, no, don’t suck all the life out of your skin. Try Charcoal Clarifying Cleanser which contains activated coconut charcoal to decongest your pores, along with reishi mushrooms to hydrate and ylang ylang blossom to fight inflammation. Cleanse twice daily, using lukewarm rather than hot water, and always after exercising.
2. The Same Goes For The Rest Of Your Home
Keeping clean doesn’t begin and end with the skin on your face. If you’re a face-toucher, oil and dirt from your hands will constantly transfer itself straight to your face which is bad news for your pores. So a) wash your hands regularly and b) try to stop touching your face as much.
Also, wash your pillowcases, bed linens and makeup brushes at least once a week, and do your face towels and smartphone even more regularly – daily if you can.
3. Make Tea Tree Oil Your BFF
One of the most effective topical ingredients for targeting acne is tea tree oil. Naturally antifungal, anti-inflammatory AND antimicrobial, this incredibly therapeutic essential oil has been used in traditional medicine for centuries and is scientifically proven to treat and heal mild to moderate acne. It’s also less drying and irritating than other acne-busting favorites such as benzoyl peroxide which makes it awesome for sensitive or more mature skin types. It can still be pretty potent, however, so stick with diluted, carefully curated formulations that have been specifically created for safe use on your skin.
Try Tea Tree Super Serum+ which combines tea tree oil (well, dur!) with salicylic acid, niacinamide, hyaluronic acid and vitamin C to create a purposeful, well-rounded treatment for clearer, healthier-looking skin. What’s more, it might be gentle, but it’s still mighty powerful so you only need to use it two or three times a week for awesome results. And remember, always do a patch test first.
4. Look After Yourself
Emotional anxiety and constant stress put your mental wellness on edge. They also encourage your body to produce excessive amounts of cortisol which upsets the balance of your hormones and triggers an inflammatory response in your skin. Now we’re well aware that being told to chill out and stress less rarely reaps the desired result, but if you can do a few things to improve your emotional wellbeing, this will really help the health of your skin.
Exercising regularly and making sleep a top priority are great ways to manage your levels of stress so try to go to bed at the same time each night, and do a fitness class or go for a brisk walk two or three times a week – or whatever your schedule allows. Just don’t stress about it. Because, well, you’re trying to reduce stress, not build on it!
It’s also worth taking a look at your diet as overdoing things like sugar, dairy and processed carbs are thought to increase inflammation in your body. And anything you can do to avoid inflammation is a very good thing.
5. Invest In Some Butt-Kickin' Retinol
Not only is it seen as the gold-standard in anti-aging, but retinol can have a huge impact on acne-prone skin. Retinoids have been proven to speed up cell turnover to help regulate sebum production and keep your pores clean and clear. They’re often the first port of call for the treatment of hormonal acne at the doctor’s office.
Prescription retinoids, however, can be pretty harsh on your skin – especially if it’s super sensitive – and some people simply don’t get on with them. Think redness, irritation, dryness and flaky skin which, when coupled with breakouts, is so not the desired effect. This is why many people turn to retinol, which is kinder to the skin and much more highly tolerated by the skin.
Try our powerful, but gentle Retinol Moisturizer or give Retinol Facial Serum a go which also contains vitamin E to aid healing. You could even layer them both, depending on your skin’s tolerance to retinol, of course. Just remember to patch test them first, then introduce them slowly into your routine – two or three times a week – building up to nightly use.
What’s The Deal With Hormonal Acne?read more