Tired Skin, so what exactly does it mean? Luminous, glowing skin never goes out of style. But maintaining a radiant face is not always easy, and the reality is there are reasons your skin is missing that so-called glow.
Our skin constantly sheds dead cells, but if the process is not working efficiently, your complexion can take on a lacklustre, tired, unhealthy appearance that emphasizes wrinkles.
There are easy ways to get back that healthy glow. It is the little things that can make the biggest difference when it comes to your complexion. If you are feeling like you’ve lost your glow thanks to dull skin, chances are, one of the causes below is responsible. Learn about skin care products and treatments to get rid of, rejuvenate and brighten dull, tired skin in no time.
The Cause – You are dehydrated and so is your skin!
Dehydration decreases the volume of blood flow to the skin, making you look “pale and sickly.” Consistently failing to give your skin the hydration it needs can cause lasting damage, like fine lines, sagging skin, and even scales and deep wrinkles from severe chronic dehydration.
THE BEST TREATMENT: Drink up! Aim for at least eight cups per day of water or other sugar- and caffeine-free beverages like green tea, matcha tea, white tea or herbal beverages. Topically, apply products rich in glycosaminoglycans, e.g. hyaluronic acid, alpha-hydroxy acids, products with black rice extract or neroli extract to aid in rehydration of the epidermal layers of the skin.
The Cause: You are not exfoliating!
A crucial skincare routine step almost half of women miss, is exfoliating. The process removes dry, dead skin cells, creating a fresh canvas that allows topical products to penetrate better. “Exfoliation is the best way to smooth the skin’s surface so it reflects light and appears glowing or brightened.”
THE BEST TREATMENT: Incorporate one type of exfoliator at a time — either a physical formula like a face scrub or a chemical one such as a face peel — into your routine to avoid skin irritation and damage, and protect with a broad-spectrum SPF 30/50+ face sunscreen every morning.
The Cause: You are forgetting to moisturise regularly.
Dryness/Dehydration are the most common causes of dull tired face skin. It creates cracks in skin’s surface and causes dead skin cells to build up, making the complexion look uneven and lacklustre.
THE BEST TREATMENT: Applying a moisturizer every morning and evening fills in those fissures with lipids, which mimic the natural fats of the skin, creating a smooth, reflective surface. Look for moisturizers with ingredients like ceramides, fatty acids, cholesterol, urea and vitamin E to help repair skin barrier function and improve water retention. This way you will prevent trans-epidermal water loss. Products with hyaluronic acid will plump skin cells by attracting water and locking it in the skin cells. Apply moisturizer in upward strokes to boost blood circulation and stimulate cells, this brings oxygen to the skin’s surface, making it look nourished and healthy.
The Cause: You are super stressed.
Whether brought on by a pressing deadline, an argument, a big life change or just the day-to-day grind, feeling anxious plays a role in your skin’s brilliance — or lack of it. Stress causes the hormone cortisol to increase, which can negatively affect blood flow to skin and skin repair.
THE BEST TREATMENT: Find a few minutes every day (or more!) to de-stress. Try a quick yoga session, mindful breathing, a walk in the nature or a soak in an aromatherapy bath (look for bath salts or oils with lavender, chamomile, geranium, which promote relaxation). These help relax your body and bring your mind to the present. The result: a more peaceful you — and healthier, more radiant skin over time.
The Cause: You are sleep deprived.
Anything that keeps you up at night can stand between you and glowing skin. Sleep is when your skin cells repair themselves and regenerate. If that period is shortened or altered, skin cells cannot perform at their optimum level.
THE BEST TREATMENT: Aim to log about seven to nine hours of sleep per night. For added anti-aging benefits, apply a night treatment with an ingredient like retinol to boost collagen production while you doze. To maximize moisturizing power, swap in an extra-nourishing overnight face mask weekly in place of night cream.
The Cause: The environment is affecting your skin.
Environmental factors such as air pollution, low humidity, harsh winds and exposure to UV rays from the sun can dull unprotected skin. In one study, researchers tracked women who lived in rural places and others in urban areas for over 20 years and found that the city dwellers ended up with significantly more lines and dark spots.
THE BEST TREATMENT: You do not have to relocate (or hide in a cave) to keep your skin smooth and even. First, be diligent about cleansing your face each night. Otherwise, pollution particles can clog pores, while you sleep. Your next defence: daily broad-spectrum SPF 30/50+ to shield against UV rays and pollution, plus an antioxidant product like a serum every morning to “stop the free radicals we are exposed to in the environment from harming skin. (Some of the most effective antioxidants are vitamin C, green and white tea and resveratrol.) Another way to counteract the environment’s detrimental effect on skin is regular exercise. Aerobic activity enhances circulation to skin, which helps in nutrient exchange and removal of toxins from our skin cells.
The Cause: You are a smoker!
Not only is puffing away harmful to your health, but it can also sap skin’s glow. Carcinogenic substances are extremely detrimental to skin integrity and structure. Cigarette smoking causes collagen breakdown, making skin appear sallow, waxy, and wrinkled over time.
THE BEST TREATMENT: You know all this, but seriously — try to get help to quit smoking, your body (and loved ones) will thank you.
The Cause: You are overdoing it with matte makeup.
Avoid mattifying cosmetics like heavy or chalky powders, which absorb skin’s natural oils (and glow). And steer clear of makeup removers containing alcohol, as they can sap skin-plumping moisture.
THE BEST TREATMENT: opt for a base like a BB cream that is made with moisturizers to boost dewiness — or, for more coverage, a foundation with light-reflecting pigments (look for words like “radiance,” “glow” and “luminating” on the bottle). These bounce light off the skin so it looks more even-toned. A touch of cream highlighter in a champagne colour for fair skin or gold for medium to dark skin instantly erases dullness too. Swipe it along the length of your cheekbones for a pretty, dewy effect that makes your entire face seem more luminous.
The Cause: You are not eating a healthy diet!
The age-old saying “you are what you eat” very much applies here. What you put into your body is reflected in your complexion, so do not expect to under-nourish your body and see radiant skin.
THE BEST TREATMENT: Stay away from salty and processed foods—they enhance tissue swelling through fluid retention, which retards ideal light reflection. Avoid food high in sugar and saturated fat, and devoid of fibre, antioxidants, high-quality protein and essential fatty acids, all major culprits when it comes to dull skin. There are healthy food options out there to please both your stomach and your skin. Antioxidant-rich foods like blueberries, cranberries, red beans and pinto beans, good-fat treats like avocados and walnuts, as well as citrus fruits and kiwi, which contain vitamin C, and are known to boost collagen growth.