Best Ingredients for Dry Skin

Winter can be a magical time for the environment! But let’s be real, it can be downright horrible for certain skin types. With the drier air and temperature drops, winter can herald the dreaded dry skin! But it isn’t only the changing of season that causes flakiness. Long baths/hot showers, harsh soaps/detergents, genetics and predisposed skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis can also be a culprit. Whatever the causes may be, dry skin is not a welcome guest in your life. So, we have compiled a list of terms and their ingredients to get you back on track to hydrated and healthy skin!

1. Emollients

Emollients provide hydration and softening, as well as help repair cracks in the skin barrier preventing water loss. If you think of the lipids in your skin as tiles, the emollient is the grout that fills in the cracks and smooths everything over. Because of this, emollients are also great for their anti-aging qualities and skin repairing ability. So if you struggle with age/sun spots, acne scars, or just want to keep your skin looking youthful and vibrant, add some emollients into your skin care routine. So how can you recognize emollients at the store? Common ones are cocoa/shea/jojoba butter, aloe vera, squalene, colloidal oatmeal, beeswax, and non-fragrant plant oils, such as coconut, jojoba, borage, argan and even primrose oil. 

2. Humectants

Humectants are fantastic since they are moisturizing agents that draw moisture into your skin from the surrounding environment and your deepest skin layers. That’s right, it’s a moisturizer that attracts moisture. Talk about like attracting like! You won’t find humectant on a product label, so what types of humectants should you look for when purchasing products? Look out for hyaluronic acid which is an ingredient celebrated for its ability to retain 1,000 times its weight in water and considered one of the most hydrating ingredients to put on your skin. Another humectant to look out for is glycerin, which is a powerhouse moisturizer and works best when it is coupled with other emollient ingredients. Even though there are synthetic glycerin sources, many natural ones are available, such as vegetable glycerin. 

3. Occlusives 

Occlusives are a great final step to your dry skin repair routine as they serve as a physical barrier to help prevent water loss from the skin’s surface, while protecting the skin from external irritants. Common occlusive agents include vegetable waxes (carnauba and candelilla), plant oils and butters high in oleic acid (olive and soybean), lecithin, and cocoa butter which are all usually found in moisturizers. This sealant often has a thick and heavy consistency when used topically, making them an ideal pick for very dry skin. Some of these occlusives also have humectant and emollient properties as well which gives you a great chance to mix ingredients into a great moisturizer that works for you. 

4. Ceramides

Ceramides are fatty acids called lipids and are naturally found in skin cells, which make up 50% of the outer layer of skin (epidermis). Topical ceramides end up mimicking the natural oils in your skin, making them super effective when combined with other moisturizing ingredients like hyaluronic acid and glycerin. There are multiple types of ceramides on the market, but the ones you want to look out for on your product label have ceramides I, 3 or 6-II. 

You might think fixing dry skin is an easy fix, but in reality it involves a little bit of trial and error. Don’t be discouraged if a few of your trials with these ingredients don’t work. Everyone’s skin reacts differently to these ingredients, especially if you’re acne prone. Don’t worry! Move on to the next one and see which ingredients work best for your particular dry skin type. With the right mixture of humectants, emollients, occlusives, and ceramides your routine will fix your skin’s dehydration and get you back to healthy skin in no time. Just remember to also stay hydrated by drinking tons of water! 

 

The Best Smoothie Ingredients for Flawless Skin

You Are What You Eat

There is no truer statement when it comes to skincare. The key to a flawless complexion is not in the beauty products we apply topically, but rather what we consume.

Our organs depend on food for proper functioning. Among these organs is the skin, the largest organ of the human body. Proper nutrition can have a profound impact on the health and function of the skin. A healthy complexion can also indicate a healthy body. 

Certainly, aging, poor genes, stress, and neglect of self-care affect skin. However, eating the right foods supports healthy skin function, regardless of the individual’s age, gender, or skin tone.

The Greek physician Hypocrates is often credited with saying, “Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.” The right foods can aid in treating chronic dehydration, removing toxins, and stimulating skin production of collagen, elastin, and fibrin. 

Smoothies As Skincare 

Smoothies are a great way to consistently feed your skin what it needs on a daily basis. Besides being delicious, blended drinks are an amazing way to consume more vegetables, fruit, and other nutrients.

Certain foods, such as those high in sugar and refined carbohydrates, should always be avoided. However, there are many smoothie add-ins that have been shown to improve skin health. With smoothies as a stepping stone to a daily skincare routine, it is possible to target problem areas naturally. 

Here are the best beauty ingredients for an everyday skincare routine, using a blender.

 

Best Smoothie Ingredients for All Skin Types

Ginger 

Keeping skin hydrated and glowing is made easier with ginger’s antioxidant properties. Antioxidants protect your skin against sunburn and tanning damage. Ginger contains anti-inflammatory properties that reduce the appearance of pigmentation and blemishes. Additionally, it rejuvenates dull skin and delays the signs of aging. 

In terms of flavor potency, ginger is pretty powerful. When mixing it into smoothies, one should only add about a half-inch piece.

Pomegranate

Pomegranates’ antioxidant properties make this fruit a true superfood, capable of regulating skin hydration levels across different skin types.  Antioxidants improve the texture of the skin by improving collagen and elastin production. Besides helping to reduce the appearance of aging skin, it also has other benefits. Studies suggest pomegranates may also help prevent skin cancer. 

Store-bought pomegranate juice contains added sugar, and the seeds are difficult to blend. Instead, prepare pomegranate juice from the seeds and blend it into smoothies. 

 

Best Smoothie Ingredient for Dark Under-Eye Circles

Spinach 

As a natural source of vitamin K, spinach is a great smoothie addition. By reducing bruising and discoloration, strengthening blood capillaries, and healing wounded skin, vitamin K is the most essential ingredient when struggling with dark circles under the eyes. Spinach is also known to have some antioxidant properties that may help to prevent the formation of wrinkles, lines, and pigmentation.

 

Best Smoothie Ingredient for Dry Skin

Avocados

Avocados are rich in biotin, a B-complex vitamin, and biotin helps prevent dry skin. Healthy fats, like those found in avocados, are vital to keeping skin flexible and moisturized. Avocados also contain vitamins E and C, which are essential for healthy skin.

 

Best Smoothie Ingredients for Oily or Acne Prone Skin

Oatmeal

This superfood is beneficial for treating acne, amongst other things. Oatmeal promotes collagen production, improves your skin complexion, and reduces inflammation. The high fiber content of oatmeal helps to control blood sugar levels, which is recommended for preventing acne. For smoothies, soaked raw oats provide the best results. The soaking process is vital here. Oats that are not soaked will be gritty. After the oats are soaked, pour the liquid with the oats into a blender, add all the remaining ingredients, and blend until smooth.

Sweet Potatoes

Because they contain beta-carotene, sweet potatoes are great for acne-prone individuals with oily skin. During digestion, the body converts beta-carotene into vitamin A. Vitamin A can protect the skin from damage resulting from free radicals, such as discoloration, inflammation, and clogged pores. To make a sweet potato smoothie, place cooked sweet potatoes and all the remaining ingredients in a blender, then blend until smooth.

 

Best Smoothie Ingredient for Aging Skin and Wrinkles

Quinoa

Quinoa offers the possibility of delaying visible signs of aging like fine lines and wrinkles by stimulating new collagen production in the skin over time. Its high levels of riboflavin make your skin both soft and resilient. Manganese and vitamin B are abundant in quinoa, making it a valuable anti-aging health product. 

Raw, uncooked quinoa can be blended into a smoothie with a powerful blender. The raw grains can also be soaked for a half hour or so to soften them up. As an additional option, quinoa can be blended together with fruit and yogurt, though some nutrients will be lost to the cooking process.

 

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