Have you ever met someone whose face has a healthy glow? Have you ever thought of someone's skin as lustrous, radiant, or clear? Have you ever wondered how you can get that same brilliant glow to your own skin?
Healthy people may have naturally radiant skin, but more often than not, those people whose faces you idolize are actually putting a lot of work into it. Taking care of your skin is important for maintaining a youthful look. A good skincare routine is crucial, and far too few people actually have one.
The skin is the single largest organ in your body. It's also a great indicator when something is out of balance in your body. Discoloration, breakouts, excess oil, puffiness, dullness, and other blemishes can all be an indication of an underlying problem you may need to address.
While a skin routine is important, if you're going from nothing, you may want to try out a skin detox to shock your system into purging whatever is wrong with it.
While the title of this post indicates that we'll be giving you fifteen different ways to detox your skin, that's not strictly true. What we actually have here is a list of 15 components of skincare and skin health. Embark on as many of these as possible, to give your system the best chance it can get to heal your skin and produce that radiant glow.
The skin detox methods we've listed below can be divided into two categories: internal and external. External methods are what you might expect from a skincare routine: exfoliating, moisturizing, using creams and lotions, that sort of thing. Meanwhile, internal methods involve changing your diet to be healthier for your skin and addressing any underlying problems.
Since the skin so heavily reflects internal problems, the place to start is with internal detoxing.
1. Support Your Liver
Your liver is the organ in control of your body's natural detoxification processes. When your body detects toxic chemicals or even nutrients in food it can't digest, it sends them to the liver. The liver isolates and purges them. Thus, healthy liver function is the best way to detox.
To promote liver health, try eating more foods like grapefruit, blueberries, cranberries, and grapes. Drink more water and beverages like coffee and tea. Consume cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, mustard greens, and Brussels sprouts. Add nuts and fatty fish to your diet as well.
2. Cut Out the Junk Foods
The other side of the coin with the liver is to cut out foods that it has to process. The more work you're making your liver do, the less effective it is going to be overall. Cut out processed sugars as much as possible. Minimize alcohol, which is a toxin and puts a lot of strain on the liver. Minimize red meats and processed flour. Finally, cut down on the salt; high sodium levels can be toxic as well and add stress to the liver.
3. Eat Healthier Foods
Even without boosting liver function, eating a healthier diet can go a long ways towards promoting skin health. If you've ever had a meal of fried foods and oily ingredients, and you've just felt greasy afterwards, that's your skin reflecting your diet. It's better to eat whole foods, organic foods, and healthier foods across the board.
What specifically constitutes a "healthy diet" can run a very wide variety of different foods. Just eat more fruits, vegetables, nuts, and lean meat, while cutting out the heavily processed ingredients, fatty foods, sugars, high sodium foods, and preservatives.
4. Drink More Water
Drinking more water and staying hydrated is one of the biggest tips you read in every healthy eating and bodily care guide, and it's there for a reason. Your body needs water to do basically anything, and when you don't have enough water, all manner of problems can crop up. You can survive without food for weeks, but you can only survive without water for only a couple days.
How much water should you be drinking every day? Now that's an interesting question. Most rules you may have heard, like the 8x8 rule, are arbitrary. Your actual ideal water intake depends on your health, your weight, and your activity levels. Drink more when it's hot and when you're active, drink when you're thirsty, and don't drink so much you hit water toxicity.
If you have trouble drinking water because you don't like the taste, try augmenting it with tea or citrus. You can also experiment with various filters to see if there's a mineral or chemical in your water that you don't like.
5. Limit or Eliminate Alcohol
There is some evidence to suggest that certain alcohols, in moderation, can be beneficial to your health. In particular, a single glass of red wine in the evening or with dinner can be beneficial. However, alcohol can be very detrimental to your liver. Harder alcohols, from whiskey to vodka and beyond, are particularly damaging and should generally be avoided.
Generally, the more alcohol you want to drink, the healthier you need to be in other respects to balance it out. You can drink more, but only if you exercise more, maintain a very healthy diet, and drink plenty of water. It's easier, and probably healthier, to simply minimize the amount you drink.
6. Limit or Eliminate Caffeine
While certain beverages, like coffee and tea, can be healthy for your body, not all caffeine is good. Caffeine is a stimulant drug and only has limited effect, which decreases over time as you build up a tolerance to it.
Meanwhile, excess caffeine can lead to excess energy, which is usually expressed as jitters or shakes. Once you build up that tolerance, you'll start to experience headaches and other issues, particularly if you try to stop. Be careful with caffeine, friends!
7. Increase Your Antioxidant Intake
Proper skin care is a multi-step daily process. are healthy for your body because they help combat free radicals, which are unstable atoms that tear through your body causing all kinds of damage. Free radicals lack electrons, and try to skim them off of other atoms in your body, which damages those atoms. Antioxidants basically make themselves available to be skimmed, so free radicals bond with them instead of with your cells. This helps reduce damage to the body overall.
In addition to supplements, you can get antioxidants from foods like dark berries, grapes, dark vegetables, nuts, orange vegetables like sweet potato and carrot, fish, and tea. If you're seeing a pattern with other forms of healthy eating, well, now you know why.
8. Consume More Collagen
Collagen is a component of skin, and helps form part of the dermis that gives your skin its elasticity and resilience. Collagen is usually synthesized in the body, but you can also get it directly from dietary sources.
To get your body to synthesize more collagen, eat more foods with amino acids and protein, like beef, chicken, fish, eggs, and dairy. Also, make sure you get enough vitamin C, zinc, and copper, to facilitate the synthesis.
You can also get collagen directly from bone broth, which is packed with collagen extracted from the bones of chicken, fish, or beef. Try to find organic bone broth, to avoid any lingering residue from chemicals fed to the animals.
If you're vegan or if you want to get your collagen from a supplement, you have two options. You can get supplements for the vitamins, minerals, and amino acids to synthesize it yourself, or you can get collagen supplements directly. Those supplements likely aren't vegan, though, so know what you're getting into.
9. Get More Sleep
Sleep isn't really something you consume, but it's incredibly important for health. Getting sleep for long enough each night, and at a consistent time each night, is important for health and healing. If you want healthy skin, sleeping enough to let your body heal any skin damage is extremely important.
To promote both healthy skin and restful sleep, try to keep your pillows and sheets fresh and clean. You'd be surprised at how quickly grime and microbes build up in your bedding. It's a good idea to change your bedding every week or so, and launder your pillows themselves frequently as well.
Once you have a solid dietary detox going, it's time to address the surface of your skin. Cleansing, moisturizing, and generally taking care of your skin from the outside helps bring out that healthy glow you long for.
10. Know Your Skin
"Normal" skin is simply a healthy balance between oil production or lack thereof. Dry skin lacks the normal oil production necessary to keep it healthy and smooth. Those with dry skin should avoid harsher chemicals, sun exposure, and drying makeup. Conversely, those with extra-oily skin should be more active with deeper cleansers and skin protection.
Additionally, if you have specific skin conditions, like alopecia, eczema, psoriasis, or acne, you may need to use or avoid specific kinds of medications, lotions, or treatments. Always be aware of your skin type and how you react to different kinds of treatments.
11. Limit Sun Exposure
Sun exposure is bad for the skin, both in the short term and in the long term. Short-term exposure damages skin directly, with anything from sun irritation to deep sunburns which can lead to blistering, cracking, peeling, and other nastiness. Long-term sun damage breaks down the underlying dermis and hurts your ability to heal. One of the most stark examples is Bill McElligott, a trucker who had half his face exposed to the sun for decades. You can clearly see how much damage the sun has done compared to his protected side.
Using a regular lotion or makeup that includes UV-blocking ingredients is a good idea, and if you plan to do any long-term outdoor activities, from sports to a beach trip, using a stronger sunblock is essential for healthy skin.
12. Avoid Bad Ingredients in Skincare Products
Skincare products have a wide range of artificial chemicals in them, so you have two options for selecting treatments. You can learn the various potentially dangerous chemicals and how to identify and avoid them, or you can focus on entirely organic products. We recommend a combination approach; not all chemicals are bad, but it's often easier to buy organic than it is to avoid everything synthetic.
13. Use a Daily/Nightly Cleanser
As for specific treatments for your skin, there are a lot of possible options. We're recommending three, because it's easiest to get into a light skincare routine and then add on later as you get more serious. Recommending a ten-step skincare program to someone who isn't used to anything more than soap and water is a tall ask.
First, start off with a daily cleanser. Cleaning your skin at night before you sleep helps your body heal over the evening, and helps minimize the amount of grime that saturates your bedding. Cleansing in the morning helps refresh your skin to remove nightly oils and prepare you for further treatments during the day.
14. Consider a Routine Mask
Skin masks help as a deeper cleanse and restorative, and there are all manner of different mask treatments to help with various conditions. Determine your skin type, figure out your skincare goals, and select a mask that's perfect for your needs.
15. Occasionally Use a Facial Peel
Facial peels are deep exfoliating treatments that help lift out deep-seated grime and dead skin, rejuvenate the skin beneath, and minimize wrinkles. However, they can also be very harsh depending on the kind of peel you use, so it's a good idea to leave these to once or twice a week, or even less if you're using a particularly harsh peel.
Above and beyond all of this, you can embark on a campaign of skincare as deep as you want to take it. We recommend a regular moisturizer and protective lotion on a daily basis, and try to select makeup that includes beneficial additives to help protect your skin as well as make it look great.