Many of our patients ask “How can I make my skin look younger?” It’s a great question, so let’s get into it.
What Happens to Our Skin as We Age?
Before we talk about what we can do for our skin, it’s important to understand what happens to our skin as we get older that causes the aging effects we want to manage.
While everyone’s skin will age differently depending on genetics, natural pigment, nutrition, and sun exposure (that’s a big one!), the processes that underly aging are the same.
The pigment-containing cells decrease in number and increase in size as the outer layer of skin thins. This results in a transparent look when compared with younger skin. In skin that receives more sun-exposure, large pigmented spots may appear.
Changes in connective tissue result in a loss of strength and elasticity. This is what causes a leathery appearance especially in the skin of those who spend a good deal of time in the sun.
In post-menopausal women, skin oil production decreases. Of course, this dries out the skin. Good for reducing pimples, bad in many other ways.
To combat these natural effects of aging, we need effective ways to slow the processes or counter them. And of course, we’re looking for ways that involve few-to-no artificial chemicals.
Ways to (Naturally) Help Out Your Skin
The good news is that it doesn’t take a trip to Tibet or a bigger budget to be able to give your skin’s health and appearance a boost. Try some of the following methods and let us know how they work for you!
Ice Water Facial
Refreshing your skin quickly can be as easy as putting your face in a bowl of ice water. Leave it in there as long as you can, as the cold closes pores and tightens your skin. This is great to do after thoroughly cleansing your skin with a face mask or other method. We don’t need to mention how this really helps wake you up, too.
Lemon Honey Mask
The mixture of 1/2 lemon 1 tbsp honey (go for the good stuff) applied once a month helps to moisturize, heal skin, and prevent wrinkles. Lemons contain many natural antioxidants, and honey has anti-microbial properties. The combination is a powerful skin cleanser and refresher.
To effectively use the mask, first mix the lemon and honey together thoroughly in a small bowl. Open your pores for full cleansing by putting your face over a bowl of boiling-hot water (don’t get too close!). Then apply the lemon-honey mixture to your face, avoiding your eyes. Let sit for 15-30 minutes and wash thoroughly with warm water. When your face is clean, splash with cold water to close the pores.
Aloe is for more than sunburns. It helps to moisturize skin naturally, being a great help for dry skin and eczema. Aloe is also anti-inflammatory and can help with inflammatory forms of acne when applied directly to pimples.
Aloe is effective either straight from the plant or in a topical gel form. Make sure you are choosing pure, natural aloe. The green stuff marketed for sunburns isn’t the cleanest in ingredients and won’t have the same benefits for you skin.
Coconut oil contains antioxidants, fatty acids, lauric acid, and vitamin E. Beyond simply moisturizing skin, it helps to eliminate bacteria and improve skin elasticity. Apply as you would moisturizing cream.
Rice Flour Water
It might be odd to think of putting flour on your face, but if you deal with oily skin which can make your face look dark, it can be a great help. Apply rice flour water as you would a mask to soak up oils and reduce the chances of getting a pimple.