Our Tuesday series today features suggestions and strategies on how to promote clear and natural looking skin. Many teens of all kinds have written to us in various ways on this topic. The common denominator is that every teen strives to have a clear complexion and a healthy-looking face.
At this time of year, as we go through the spring and will soon enter summer, many people, especially teenagers, will be socializing, traveling to popular vacation spots and enjoying outdoor activities and get-togethers as the weather warms up. Everyone deserves to look as good as possible, so without further ado, here are suggestions for those seeking to achieve the clearest, healthiest skin possible.
HOW TO ACHIEVE AND MAINTAIN HEALTHY SKIN
— Natural ingredients like turmeric, licorice root and ginkgo can be added to brewed tea and consumed to absorb their health benefits. I’ve read several recent studies that indicate evidence exists that various herbs can promote healthy skin. This “home brew” can work wonders for some people!
— Be wary of dairy! Some people have the type of body chemistry that does not blend well with dairy products. If you’re experiencing skin problems, keep a log or journal of everything you eat so that you can look back to see if any correlation exists between your diet and your skin.
—Consider using a mineral-based sunscreen every day, especially at this time of year, no matter what your skin type is. Protection from the sun is very often the foundation upon which healthy skin flourishes. Incorporating a dollop of sunscreen into your morning routine adds only a few seconds to your preparation for the day.
— Consider a massage, especially for your face. Massage improves blood flow and brings oxygen to the surface of your skin. The increased circulation will also help with lymphatic drainage, so take an extra minute to massage your face each morning.
— Smile often! Not only will you benefit from the mood-enhancing endorphins that will be released but you’ll also keep your circulation moving after your morning massage. Make it a point to make eye contact with many people during the day, smile and simply say, “Good morning” or, “Good afternoon.” Most people will smile back and answer you in-kind. For those who don’t, just keep smiling and focusing on the benefits your smile is providing you!
— Besides brewing your own blends of healthy teas, you should always consider eating healthy antioxidant-rich foods such as blueberries, dark leafy vegetables and healthy fruits of many varieties. Spinach and kale are well-known for their benefits in this arena. Add some vitamin C and you’ll be well on your way toward giving your skin the fuel it needs for a healthy glow.
— Be quite proactive about hydration! This is a common mistake that some people make. Don’t always wait until you feel thirsty to have a drink of water or juice; do so regularly throughout the day. Keep healthy drinks, especially pure water, near your workspace and study areas at all times. Get in the habit of taking a sip several times an hour as you work.
— Avoid smoking! Smoking in any of its various forms is quite detrimental to skin health. I’ll spare those of you who smoke the lecture, but do know that smoke adversely affects human skin. For those who don’t smoke, do your best to avoid getting smoke on your skin.
— Get your proper rest! Be sure to get enough sleep to let your body and skin regenerate daily. A lack of sleep disrupts many parts of the human body, and unfortunately, your skin is front and center in this regard.
— Seek to avoid stress wherever you can. This is easy to say but hard to do given today’s frantic pace that many of us regularly pursue in our daily lives. To combat stress, consider yoga, meditation or any other related discipline that helps you to reduce stress and helps you to reset your inner core both physically and mentally. Regular exercise is one of the best natural stress-reducers, so take advantage of this in whatever format you prefer.
Use common sense, take all suggestions forward in moderation at first and seek to build routines that can help you to keep your skin as healthy as possible. Take advantage of any of these ideas you feel you can integrate into your daily life and your daily routines. Soon, summer will be here in full bloom, so now is the time to build up healthy habits that you can stick with. Your skin will thank you in many ways, and you’ll enjoy seeing the improvements that can often be achieved through these strategies.
Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he is unable to reply to all of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. E-mail him at [email protected] To find out more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.