How many of you have heard of a winter glow? Not many! That is because we often associate a “glow” with a tan, but this does not, and should not, be the case. Winter is a time where the chill and wind becomes harsher and we are exposed to heating systems, often drying out the skin and prompting us to employ better skin habits. We also need to change some of the foods we eat, eating seasonally, to give our body what it craves during this time. Don’t rely on highlighter and bronzer this winter, nourish your cells from the inside out and choose simple, nothing-nasty ingredients topically, to keep your skin plump and radiant through the colder months.
Eat essential fatty acids – UDOs 369 oil, Chia seeds, nuts, and of course, green vegetables all contain EFA’s. Healthy fats are necessary for moisture retention in skin cells and anti-inflammatory benefits, to minimise the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, dryness and damaged skin. Walnuts are another good choice as not only are they a healthy source of dietary fat, but contain melatonin (the sleep hormone), supporting a good night of beauty rest, critical for youthful skin.
Look after your liver – The liver is one of the main organs involved in the elimination of toxins and processing of hormones. When it is overworked, it may underperform, creating a buildup of excesses that can manifest in the skin. It also plays a very important role when it comes to breaking down fat, and any disruption can create an imbalance in sebum (oil) production, causing breakouts, congestion and inflammation. Choosing bitter foods like rocket, endive, radicchio and dandelion are fantastic ways to nurture this vital organ. I like this tea because it has two benefits, it not only assists liver function but also can replace coffee, relieving the load caffeine places on the liver! Other tips are to ensure the majority of your diet consists of fresh fruits and vegetables (organic where possible), especially cruciferous vegetables, and choosing healthy fats over anything processed and fried.
Hydrate from the inside out – Your skin is a reflection of what is going on internally, and thus, dry and dehydrated skin can often indicate you simply need to drink more H20. Drinking first thing is crucial after a good nights sleep, to rehydrate our cells (tip: make a habit of starting the morning with a tall glass of warm lemon water). Carry a water bottle to ensure you are drinking throughout the day, and set hourly reminders on your phone to take a sip until it becomes second nature. If you prefer warmer drinks during the winter, don’t worry, herbal teas most definitely count toward your liquid intake! Try this tea, which is specifically aimed at skin purifying. As caffeine and alcohol are dehydrating, excessive consumption is best avoided when striving for a clear, dewy complexion.
Hydrate from the outside in – After a warm (not boiling) shower, pat skin dry and apply your face and body moisturiser. Dermatologists recommend this as the best time, as the product helps “seal” in some of the moisture from your shower. Keep your products near the shower and by the sink (for your hands), and apply generously each time you wash. Take it up a notch by applying pure rose water to your face just prior to moisturising – known for its cleansing, calming and hydrating actions.
Improve circulation – Dry Brushing is a fantastic way to keep your blood flowing and lymphatic system working. Blood flow is important in order to supply oxygen and nutrients to our organs and tissues, and promote cell growth and repair. lymphatic drainage can help keep your skin glowing and supple by eliminating toxins and maintaining adequate fluid levels. Ensure you dry brush prior to showering on dry skin, using light pressure, starting at your feet and always moving toward your heart.
Pamper yourself regularly – the harsher weather is the perfect excuse for frequent self-care rituals, so schedule them in your calendar weekly! I like to set a reminder to do an exfoliation and face mask Friday nights, but choose a day that works for you. Strapped for time? Try this super hydrating rosewater mask. If you feel like getting creative try a DIY mask utilising natural moisturising ingredients such as honey, lemon, avocado, bananas, papaya, oats, coconut milk, ACV, jojoba oil, cacao, rose water and aloe vera. Mix 2-4 ingredients together to create a paste, apply to skin for 10-30 minutes before rinsing with warm water to reveal beautiful, supple skin!