5 skincare truths I wish I had learned before I was in my 30s 3 weeks ago

5 skincare truths I wish I had learned before I was in my 30s

You live and learn.

Having written about beauty and skincare for a few years at this stage, I have been lucky enough to get to chat to, learn from and pick the brains of many a beautician, skincare expert and beauty industry insider over the past few years.

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To say I have learned a thing or two would be an understatement.

And that's not to say that I was blasé about taking care of my skin in my 20s, because I was not. I still distinctly remember spending small fortunes back then as well on fancy products and glossy lotions and potions.

It was just that I knew less about the nitty-gritty back then. I didn't know the science behind the products, the ingredients to look out for (or avoid), the habits to take up (or do something about). Now, though, years into writing about these things for a living, I like to think that I have picked up some seriously good tips along the way. Such as:

1. Take off your makeup EVERY night

This is such an important habit to get into, and one you should never skip – no matter how late it is or how tired you are feeling.

Your skin – which is, in fact, your largest organ – renews itself at night, and works hard to repair any damage done during the day (sunshine, pollution, stress etc.). The problem? If you go to bed wearing your makeup, you are only making it harder for your skin to heal itself, and making it impossible for your nighttime products to get to work.

Failing to remove makeup will, in fact, lead to all sorts of skin issues, like enlarged pores, impurities, dullness and even more wrinkles, as your skin is not able to regenerate the way it is meant to at night.

TIP: Get into the habit of removing your makeup and applying your night cream earlier in the evening – that way you will get it out of the way before you are so tired that you just fall into bed, unable to remove anything.

I have started taking my makeup off and applying face oil or night cream when I am in the bathroom getting the kids ready for bed. That way, I won't forget, as I am in the bathroom anyway, and I don't have to worry about later in the evening when I am actually getting ready for bed myself. Win-win.

2. Don't forget to exfoliate

Exfoliating removes dead skin cells, which not only helps unclog pores (and prevent breakouts), it also unveils new skin cells for a more glowing, radiant complexion. Aim to do it at least two-three times per week.

In fact, if you skip exfoliating, you really are throwing money out the window with your other skincare products – and here's why: Proper exfoliation removes the barrier of dead skin cells clogging the skin and uncovers fresh new cells below. Simply put, this opens the way for your products like serums, face oils,  night cream etc. to penetrate more deeply into the skin, which, of course, makes them more effective.

In other words, exfoliating regularly will leave your skin looking far more youthful and glowing.

 

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3. Embrace oils

If you haven't yet started using a facial oil as part of your beauty routine, consider this your reminder to start now. Facial oils, quickly explained, are applied after cleansing your skin (but before your regular moisturizer – if you find you need it), and will penetrate deep into your skin and deliver a very high concentration of active ingredients and hydration.

Brimming with essential fatty acids - to strengthen skin's protective lipid barrier - as well as potent, complexion-conditioning vitamins and minerals, good quality, clean face oils can correct a multitude of problems.

Many are afraid to include oils in their beauty regime, fearing probably that they will make your skin feel greasy or bring on breakouts, but all-natural plant oils will not, and are a real treat for your skin – and contain no harmful or toxic ingredients if you make sure to buy a high-quality oil.

 

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4. Switch to clean beauty products

I am becoming more and more passionate about clean beauty, both as I get older, but also as I learn more about how harmful mainstream beauty products can really be – not just to our skin, but to our overall health and wellbeing too. And since becoming a mum, I really wanted to make sure the products I was using on my skin, the same skin I was hugging and touching and embracing my children with, was as pure and non-toxic as possible.

Luckily, the world of clean beauty is expanding by the day, and it is becoming easier and easier to find really great and affordable products that are free from harmful toxins and chemicals, and kinder to not just us, but the planet too.

5. Great skin really starts from the inside

We really are what we eat, and when it comes to your skin, this becomes extra important.

To keep your skin and complexion looking youthful, you need to fill up on good fats (think avocados, nuts, oily fish...), anti-inflammatory ingredients, (turmeric is AMAZING for this) and good, healthy, wholesome food that works on keeping your skin healthy from the inside out.

Celebrity makeup artist Wendy Rowe's book, Eat Beautiful, is amazing, and am loving all the brilliant tips in there on what to eat to really keep your skin looking its very best.

 

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