Part 3 of 3
Skin Maintenance Techniques
Our skin needs to breathe. But what does this mean? Your skin doesn’t actually absorb oxygen from the atmosphere, but instead the phrase references the need for us to unclog the pores on our face.
Build up of residue sets in over time, so regular cleansing keeps the process gentler on your skin. If you wear makeup, try not to exceed more than 10 hours of continuous wear before cleaning and settling your skin before reapplication.
On the flip side, exposed skin is at risk of drying out and becoming flaky, and our skin needs to retain moisture!
So how should we clean our skin? In this article we explore the different steps in a complete skin care regimen and how they fit into a routine.
Caring for Your Skin
Healthy skin is well hydrated on the inside, and oily on the surface. But a build up of oil can lead to problems associated with clogged pores. In part 2 of this series (Your Skin’s Anatomy), we identified the “sebaceous gland” as the source of oily skin. It’s attached to the pore and produces “sebum” to lubricate a hair follicle as it grows. It also helps seal the surface of your skin, which combats dryness and provides protection against infection. Imagine sebum as making the surface of your skin a bit more slippery for microbes to hang on to.
However, an overproduction can occur beneath the skin with an agitated gland. This may, perhaps, have been triggered by a release of hormones. In turn, this can cause a blockage of sebum before it has reached the surface. This will result in the swelling of a pimple.
Prevention is better than cure, and keeping your skin functioning smoothly will help you avoid unexpected downtime. Planned maintenance can even become relaxing parts of your daily routine, and keeps pimples from popping up on your face inconveniently, giving you one less thing to stress about when life gets busy.
Pimples… Should we pop them?
Generally, no. As tempting as it may be to remedy our skin with what might seem like an instant-fix, the stuff contained inside a blocked pore is filled with bacteria that spreads through contact, in an uncontrolled burst or via your fingertips. The swelling is a natural response of your skin fighting off an infection, and though it may look juicy, you won’t want to replace it with an open wound that is even more susceptible and may leave scarring.
If a pimple or break out is getting out of hand, seek a physician’s direction, and discuss personal dietary and lifestyle factors that may be a contributing factor.
If you really want to clean out an excess of sebum, consider using pore strips as a way to hygienically extract blackheads and whiteheads without having to squeeze with your fingers.
Again, prevention is better than cure. Understanding the ingredients of the products in your medicine cabinet and how they can affect your skin can help you make better decisions for your pores to function optimally. For example, If an ingredient is said to be “non-comedogenic” then it won’t block or close your pores.
Exercise is an excellent way to encourage stronger skin regeneration and overall long-term health through increased blood flow. Aside from all the other benefits, exercise also emulsifies skin oils with both sweat and the heat from working out, making crusty residue that has set in to your skin easier to remove.
In contrast, however, pores opening from the increased blood flow give makeup, dirt and bacteria an opportunity to become trapped under the skin’s surface, so always be quick to cleanse straight after.
Finally, an intense session that will make you break a sweat will also help your body get rid of toxins and encourage you to actively rehydrate.
- Rehydrate while cooling down from sweat-breaking exercise
- Wash your hands thoroughly
- Massage your face with a gentle Face Wash
- Rinse well and pat dry
- An Exfoliator may be combined with a Facial Cleanser for deep cleaning
- Rinse well and pat dry
- Use a Facial Toner to remove missed traces of oil, dirt, and makeup with a cotton pad
- You now have a 5 minute window to apply any skin serums and supplements to reap the benefits of maximum absorption
- It’s time to seal in hydration with your choice of moisturizer
Read More about Skin Types
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- After 5 to 10 minutes of drying time, you are ready to enjoy your evening in. Or, if you’re getting ready to head out in the midday sun, then don’t forget to cover up with adequate SPF (“Sun Protection Formula”) and layer with appropriate clothing to protect your skin from harmful UV-damage. On the other hand, if you love makeup, your face is fresh for an awesome new look. Feel great, look great!
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