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Holiday Skin Care Tips: Maintaining Your Skin Routine
The holiday season filled with friends, family, love, traditions, and good food is everyone’s favorite time of year. However, with all these happy memories, stress, lack of sleep, and indulging in your favorite foods can lead to breakouts on your skin. Below are five tips to help you keep your skin clear while enjoying the holidays.
Tip #1: Get Some Sleep
Getting a good night’s sleep is necessary for clear skin. As we sleep, the lymphatic system is turned on and flushes out the neurotoxins in our skin. Our body also produces growth hormones that help with tissue repair and skin cell regeneration as we sleep. Lastly, without sleep, our bodies produce extra amounts of the stress hormone called cortisol. When cortisol levels are too high it can also result in acne breakouts.
During the holidays it is very difficult to sleep well with the parties, cooking, and drinking all night. Make sleep a priority during this time. Essential oils or CBD oil are great natural ways to relax, destress, and fall asleep easily. Avoid drinking too close to your bedtime and turn your phone off to get rid of all distractions.
Tip #2: Consume Less Sugar
Too much sugar results in glycation. This is a reaction that occurs in the body where sugar binds to protein and fat molecules. Glycation stops cells from functioning properly and creates free radicals that also damage skin cells. Your skin loses its collagen, elasticity, and its ability to fight off pollutants in the environment that clog your pores. Holiday treats are typically filled with dairy that can inflame and irritate the skin as well.
Of course, allow yourself to try the homemade cookies, cakes, and sweets throughout the holiday season. However, when available, opt to fill your dessert plate with a healthier sweet treat like fruit. This way you will still get your sweet craving filled but will also provide your body with nutrients and antioxidants that help keep your skin clear.
Tip #3: Drink Less
Adult treats like eggnog and holiday cocktails will all also wreak havoc on your skin. Alcohol in general creates a lot of inflammation in the body and when mixed with sugar and dairy the problem is exacerbated. This inflammation will clog your pores and increase your risk of acne breakouts. Alcohol also dehydrates your body and skin. Dehydrated skin can lead to fine lines, wrinkles, and makes your skin more susceptible to be affected by dirt and pollutants in the air.
Instead of the holiday drinks, swap them for red wine, a seltzer, or a spritzer. These are great options that have less alcohol and less sugar which lowers the chances of a breakout. Additionally, one glass of red wine has plenty of antioxidants that are actually beneficial to your skin and health!
Tip #4: Remove Your Makeup
Whether you are headed to a socially distant party or one on zoom you should always remember to remove your makeup afterward. If not removed, face makeup can seep into your pores and clog them along with other bacteria. This can create bumpy skin and breakouts. While once in a while you may be able to get away without removing makeup, it will likely catch up to you after back-to-back holiday parties.
At the end of every evening after wearing makeup you should double cleanse your face. Double cleansing is a technique where you use one cleanser that is oil-based to remove your makeup, and then a second water-based cleanser afterward to wash out all your pores. If you do not have time or access to double cleanse, try to carry around makeup removing towelettes with you to get rid of that first layer of makeup.
Tip #5: De-Stress
Shopping, cooking, spending, and all the other stressful activities during the holiday season do have an impact on your physical well-being. When it comes to your skin, stress causes cortisol which thickens hair follicle cells, increases oil production in the skin, and ultimately causes breakouts. Stress can also disrupt your natural skin barrier that protects your skin from dry air and pollutants in the environment.
To avoid stressing out too much during the holidays, carve out some time in your day and week to do the activities that bring you peace. All the following activities are proven to reduce stress levels:
- Take a bath with Epsom salts and essential oils
- Listen to your favorite music
- Avoid going on your phone first thing in the morning and last thing at night
- Go for a walk outside (weather permitting)
Again, just a few minutes a day to allow yourself to do the things you love will help decrease your stress levels and improve your mood immensely.
No matter how you are celebrating this year, these tips can help keep your skin clear throughout the season. If you are still struggling with acne or any other dermatology skin condition, consider reaching out to your dermatologist to receive a personalized treatment plan that will work just for you.