It is the largest organ of human body and also the most prominent one. I’m talking about our skin. It is the most definitive representation of physical beauty in our civilization.
Throughout centuries of our civilised existence, women of all age groups, teenagers, young and mature adults have devoted tremendous time and efforts towards achieving a healthy glowing skin. And why not, a healthy glowing skin is the most prized beauty asset to flaunt for any woman. In the age of innovative science and technology, there are a plethora of products and treatments available to achieve ‘radiant skin’. Women all over the world are still facing a wide variety of skin problems and chasing the elusive ‘healthy glowing complexion’. While a number of skin problems are genetic (such as eczema, leukoderma), in general, most problems faced by women are common such as pimples, acne, blackhead, uneven complexion, dull complexion, spotting marks and many more.
Though I do not claim to be an expert on skin, I am sharing my personal experience on achieving a near perfect healthy skin, and I hope it offers some use to my fellow women bloggers. I am a young woman, working professional, wife and a frequent traveler. As a teenager, I faced numerous skin problems from pimples to dry skin to black spot marks. After trying out many beauty products (some very expensive) and totally getting totally disillusioned with them, I decided to do some serious research to improve my skin condition. This led me on a path to whole new (read healthy) lifestyle and I discovered that the best things in life are also the most simple. Also, being a traveler and working in the infrastructure sector means that I get to travel a lot, which brings in its own complexities, as far as skin problems go. My extensive travels have led my skin to face some of the harshest climatic conditions; rains, humidity, sun, sand, cold temperatures, fogs, haze, snow; hail, you name it, I have faced it! So, over the years, I have learned not only to protect my skin against nature’s vagaries, but also achieve a fairly healthy skin inspite of it.
So, I provide here my own experience encapsulated under 4 major heads, which in my opinion are the 4 pillars of skin care.
Eating Right And Healthy Lifestyle – Our skin is what we eat. Our body takes in energy and nutrition from the food that we eat and so does our skin. Eating healthy food, such as fruits, fresh vegetables, sprouts and nuts provide essential nutrients & minerals to our skin. Also, avoiding fried food, especially junk food and aerated drinks (Pepsi, Coca Cola, Thumbs Up, etc.) prevents a lot of common skin problems (such as dull skin, pimples, blackheads and acne). Using expensive creams, lotions, toner and going for fancy facials would really not result in good skin in the long run unless we espouse healthy eating habits.
During my early teenager life, I faced acute problem of white & black heads and dry/dull skin, and experimented with a lot of products promising black/white head free skin, but none worked effectively and the problem would reoccur. Then, I came across an article about the side effects of aerated drinks and found that dull skin and white/black heads are a byproduct of having fizzy drinks. I immediately stopped having aerated drinks and within a month, my skin type changed and it became normal from dry. Not only that, it became brighter and clearer. Encouraged by the results, I completely overhauled my diet to include lots of fruits, fresh vegetables, sprouts and soya milk in my diet, in addition to completely vowing to keep off from fried and junk food. While it has been hard to completely shun fried/junk food due to hectic work schedule and frequent traveling, I try to avoid it as much as possible.
Adopting any kind of physical activity such as running, recreational sports, gymming in the daily schedule goes a long way in improving not only our overall health, but adds a glow to the skin. I have been actively involved in sports since my childhood, having played basketball, volleyball and taking part in athletics, which resulted in adopting exercising on a daily basis. I have found that practising Yoga daily in the morning helps in achieving a calmer mind, supple body and glowing skin. Doing cardio exercises also results in a glowing and brighter skin as it opens the pores and lets it breathe by sweating.
Know The Skin Type – Knowing one’s skin type is the first step in skin care. The skin is a dynamic organ and changes characteristics over time due a variety of factors such as diet, weather, age, products used, etc. For example, my skin used to be very dry during childhood and early teens, but then it became normal to dry when I approached late teens; throughout my late teens and early twenties, it has remained normal to dry. However, now that I am approaching late 20s, I have noticed that my skin is showing signs of change again and is oily in the T zone. Knowing skin type is important not only to know which type of skin care products one should be using, but a vital information to understanding skin behaviour and specific skin problems.
It is always advisable to visit a dermatologist to understand the skin type, if not sure of skin type. Along with skin type, it is also important to understand that each individual might face characteristic skin problems such as uneven skin, dull skin, freckles and black spots. It is wise to acknowledge and accept these problems and not be frustrated by them, before one actually goes about remedying them. Remember, no one is perfect, not even super models. In my case, I have uneven skin complexion, with areas around my mouth being darker than rest of my face. For years, I was really frustrated by this, until my aunt who also happens to be a dermatologist advised me to accept it as part of my face, as it would remain with me till the rest of my life. Once I accepted this fact, life was much easier for me.
Select The Right Products – Once the individual skin type is known, the next activity is choosing the right products. And right products do not always mean expensive products. I have used simple off the shelf products and have had much better results on my skin, rather than with expensive products. Also herbal products are not always better.
There are a plenty of products available in the market today claiming to solve each & every skin problem. The key is not to get confused. One should keep in mind the basic skin care regimen first – Cleanse, Tone and Moisturize, while looking for skin care products. A good cleanser, toner and moisturiser suitable with the skin type are the basic products one should always buy. Again, it is advisable to consult a dermatologist in case of confusion regarding skin products.
Skin Care Basics During Travel – Travel is fun but it also takes a toll on your skin. I am an avid traveller and have travelled extensively both for leisure and work. While on leisure travel, one has the freedom of location and time; it’s not so in work related travel. Moreover, mostly due to hectic schedules in work related traveling, our skin is the first casualty. I have faced the harshest climates during my travel and also had the worst quality of food and water during my tours.
The most basic care one needs to take while traveling is to protect against sun. A good sun block is a must in the travel kit. Keeping your body hydrated by drinking water frequently (always try to have Mineral Water wherever possible) is also very important, as it not only keeps one healthy during travel but prevents the skin from drying and getting dull. Other than that, having a lot of juices wherever available is a good way to keep your skin hydrated and healthy. Of course, having fresh fruits and veggies is also a must, but as it’s not always available at all places.
After coming back from the travel, it’s essential to visit a beautician for a facial, it immediately freshens and relaxes the skin and prevents long term damage due to tanning. Do not wait for your monthly facial if you have come back from traveling; the skin problems might increase as you wait.
There, I have laid out all my skin-onomics. 🙂 In my experience, following the combination of all the above explained points go a long way in achieving not only healthy skin, but a healthy body and a calmer mind. I hope all that I have written is of help to my fellow bloggers, both women and men. Amen to healthy skin! 🙂
About Sushmita: I am a young woman, an infrastructure consultancy professional, married to a surgeon and living in Delhi. I believe in living life to the fullest and exploring all the wonderful possibilities it has to offer. My interests are quite varied such as Travel, Food, Fashion, Reading & Writing, Music and Dance. My Blog is a synopsis of my interests and experiences as I go through this wonderful journey of life; and that’s why I have titled my blog – ‘My Unfinished Life’.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, BlogAdda.com