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Having A Bad Skin Day?

May 17, 2008
Taking care of your body's largest organ will help you look better for longer.

You may have heard of a bad hair day. In a similar vein, look in the mirror to see whether you're having a bad skin day, how appearance can affect every aspect of your life, including work and relationships. Skin and one's state of mind are connected and if your skin doesn't look good, it's hard to feel good.

"We know from science that there are neurotransmitters, neuro-peptides, hormones, and blood vessels that communicate between our brains and our other organs. Since the skin is the largest organ, it is a good place to look for examples of the mind-body connection," explains Dr Wechsler. "When you are under stress, pro-inflammatory mediators make their way to the various organs of the body and inevitably to the skin. These 'bad' molecules trigger inflammation creating a range of results: breakouts, dullness, flaky skin, rosacea, dark circles or eczema."

For example, if you are suffering from lack of sleep or poor nutrition it will show in your skin's appearance. Whether it is simply dark circles under your eyes or more exacerbated issues like eczema or acne, it all effects the way you look. For great skin, the dermatologist based in New York City advises good health. "If you get into a rut of poor health practices it can snowball," she says. " For instance, you stop exercising and eating responsibly and before you know it there is a general decline in your overall wellness. Keeping simple daily habits, including caring for your skin, is a great way to ensure that you do not fall into this kind of malaise."

As for common mistakes that people make when they are stressed that lead to further skin damage, she observes that people slack off on their daily regimen, not using sufficient sun protection and worst of all... picking at their skin!

Stress is the skin's worst enemy, especially for those who want to look young as long as they can. Dr Wechsler says that if someone has a really positive attitude, and they reduce stress in their life they can minimize this and probably look better.

"But more important, if you are focused on looking young, vibrant, and healthy, you tend to take precautions like wearing sun block and eating healthily. The fact is that once you damage your skin you create a much bigger problem than if you had protected it in the first place," she says. "Getting the right amount of sleep, protecting yourself from sun damage and drinking 6-8 glasses of water a day will also go a long way to maintain youthful looking skin. Finally, do not carry your burdens alone - seek a doctor, friend or family member to share your challenges with, it will take a load off!"

BE PREPARED

When faced with stressful times - like starting a new job, long business trips or meeting your in-laws - you can prepare yourself and your skin. Here are some tips from Dr Amy Wechsler.

- Be aware of what you can and cannot control.

- Do not keep everything inside. Find a trusted confidant with whom to vent or seek help.

- Have another outlet - do not get too fixated on the one event. As long as you do not pick up an unhealthy habit (smoking, overeating, drinking, etc) then just about any hobby will do.

- Look at the bigger picture, as a little perspective will help. For example, if you are preparing for a happy occasion, remind yourself of that!

- Sleep!!! Easy to say, hard to do.

- Do not let up on your simple daily care. A few minutes in the morning and at night are all that you need to cleanse, exfoliate and moisturise. If you do not have time to go to the gym for an hour, take a mini break, as you deserve at least 15 minutes to yourself and you should not feel guilty about taking the time to restore yourself.

- Keep your hands off your face!!!

BEAUTY TEMPTATIONS

You've followed a healthy lifestyle - applying sunblock, taking antioxidants, exercising, cutting stress and so on - in order to stay young. Signs of ageing will, however, come one day with crow's feet, age spots, sagging skin and more. Tackling multiple signs of ageing may mean adding more treatments to your skincare routine.

Many women find it a fuss to follow a complicated regimen, layering over three to four products on their skin. Tackling one problem at a time, many beauty experts say, may be a better approach. And with so many enticing products at skincare counters, take time to ask for information and test them to pick the right one for a specific concern.

Consistent use will determine whether that hope in a jar will make any difference, although some try-them-all consumers will probably be tempted by amazing claims from the latest hi-tech formulas.
About the Author
Jack Vallieres is the professional freelance writer. He's also the webmaster of Daily2healthy.com/
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