Natural Skincare Solutions For Healthy, Vibrant Skin
Want beautiful, bright, glowing skin? Read on to learn about our favorite natural skincare solutions, remedies, and maintenance for vibrant and healthy skin.
The Skin in TCM:
Our skin is a direct reflection of our internal health, and according to TCM, the lungs are in charge of our complexion.
The lung-skin connection in Chinese medicine considers the opening and closing of pores to be the lung’s responsibility. When the lung is operating in a weakened state, elements can become trapped beneath and within the skin resulting in ailments from acne to eczema. The elements to blame for breakouts are often associated with excess heat, dampness, and wind.
In terms of treating excess heat, dampness, and wind, your acupuncturist will combine herbal formulas and specific acupoints geared toward the intended target, ridding your system of pathogens and strengthening the lung so the conditions are less likely to reappear.
So what about wrinkles and puffiness?
When it comes to skin elasticity, we may be looking at nutritional deficiencies…read on for a deep dive into what causes wrinkles and a functional nutrition approach to keeping them at bay!
What Causes Wrinkles?:
Free radicals play a large role in cellular aging, as it is the accumulation of cellular damage that leads to signs of old age such as skin sagging and wrinkles.
So what causes cellular damage?
Excess reactive oxygen is created by oxidative metabolism.
What causes excessive oxidative metabolism and reactive oxygen species?
The consumption of spoiled and inflammatory industrial seed oils, insufficient antioxidant status, and a number of lifestyle factors like excess stress, disrupted sleep, cigarette smoking, and more.
The good news?
We can keep excess free radicals at bay with diet and nutrition by switching from an inflammatory, standard American diet, to an antioxidant-rich, anti-inflammatory diet. In adopting a skin-healthy diet, you’re likely to see some dramatic improvements in elasticity, a fuller appearance, and a reduction in skin roughness and dryness.
Below is a list of nutrients and minerals needed to maintain skin elasticity, smoothness, and overall health:
- Omega-3 fatty acids
- Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5)
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin K2
Need help sourcing your supplements? Give us a call! We have both an in-office and online dispensary that we’d be happy to assist you in finding all of your skincare needs.
Prefer to get your nutrients and minerals through diet? We agree and it is our preferred choice, but let’s face it sometimes it’s hard to get all our nutrients from diet alone. Here are some of our favorite foods for youthful skin!
These anti-inflammatory foods are sure to provide you with the whole-food sources of nutrients you need for youthful, wrinkle-free skin:
- Colorful fruits and vegetables
- Grass-Fed Meat, Dairy Products, and Egg Yolks
- Bone Broth
- Fermented Foods
- Nuts and Seeds
In summary: Antioxidants rich and anti-inflammatory foods = brighter, healthier, smoother skin!
On top of supplementation and a sound nutrition plan, you can incorporate several lifestyle choices to keep your skin looking its best.
Lifestyle Changes for Youthful Skin:
- Managing stress: Stress can exasperate current skin conditions. Yoga, deep breathing, journaling, or mindfulness meditation are great stress management tools.
- Proper sleep: Lack of sleep significantly affects the appearance of your skin. Set your nighttime routine, limit your exposure to artificial light, and sleep in a cool, dark room.
- Sufficient Exercise: Too little, as well as too much exercise, can cause skin problems. Focus on getting a mix of cardio and resistance training three to five days per week.
- Sun protection: Over-exposure to UV radiation ages your skin, but hiding from the sun or using mass amounts of sunscreen (sunscreen has its own potential problems). Your body needs the right amount of vitamin D to be healthy, so we recommend spending 15 minutes to an hour outdoors each day.
- Cosmetic acupuncture – This safe, gentle, non-invasive, and effective method combats signs of aging without the risk or downtime of injections and/or surgery.
Skin Microbiome and Hydration
Our skin microbiome, aka the thousands of “bugs” that live on our skin, is essential to our overall health. More specifically the microbiome is involved in: communicating with our internal immune system, fighting off infection, easing inflammation, and protecting us from outside harm.
Soaps and sulfates found in our favorite body washes, a compromised gut, overuse of skin care products, and an increasing lack of exposure to the great outdoors puts our skin microbiomes out of balance.
The good news is, you can support and replenish your microbiome with the following:
- Eat healthily and stay hydrated – generally, we recommend consuming half your body weight in ounces is recommended
- Identify and remove food triggers – gluten and dairy are common triggers
- Take care of your gut – pre and probiotics help
- Be smart with hand sanitizers and harsh soaps – look for natural organic formulas
- Work up a sweat a few times a week – a short walk is a great start
- Keep your stress levels in check – practice mindfulness and gratitude daily
Choosing skin-conscious products and food can be overwhelming, so we’ve compiled a list of our favorite skincare products below!
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) Skin Deep Guide:
We also suggest that you visit the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep site for an immersive breakdown of all your favorite products’ ingredients and how they rank on a toxicity scale. You can also see what products are cleanest while you’re there.
With the skin being the largest organ of the body and our first barrier of defense, we must be conscious of what we are putting not just into our bodies, but onto them. The skin absorbs everything it contacts, so treat it well and pay attention to the ingredients in your favorite cosmetics, skincare lotions, soap, sunscreens, and fragrances.
Fortunately for us, EWG makes it easy to choose the right skincare products as everything is analyzed using 60 toxicity and regulatory databases to compare the ingredients on personal care product labels and websites. You can sleep easy knowing EWG is providing practical solutions to protect yourself and your family from everyday exposures to toxins and chemicals.
A Few Of Our Favorite Products for Skin Health from our Dispensary:
- Facial gua sha, cupping, and rose quartz roller – these tools help relieve tension in the face and reduce puffiness and inflammation.
- Infrared Saunas – increase blood circulation and allow your skin to receive fresh oxygenated blood. Increased oxygenated blood carries a variety of vitamins and minerals that are responsible for improved skin color, and increased collagen and allow your skin cells to replicate or repair themselves faster.
- Collagen supplementation – improve skin elasticity, reduce visible wrinkles, and increase blood flow to the skin. Some of our favorites are FurtherFood Collagen, Vital Nutrients, and Great Lakes.
- Vitamin D – plays an integral role in skin protection and rejuvenation. It also enhances the skin’s immune system and prevents premature aging.