Skin that lacks that certain ‘je ne sais quoi,’ is almost inevitable at this time of year. The combination of miserable (terrible!) weather and winter fatigue is a sure-fire ticket to dull, tired skin – especially if you’re also high on stress (thanks for that, Eunice, the Covid-effect, Franklin…) and low on sleep (ditto).
So, whether you need to revisit some of your lifestyle choices or up your skincare ante, here are some of our favourite tricks for energising your skin that work every time. And trust us, we’ve tried them all!
1. Exfoliate Regularly
Skin often becomes sluggish and ashen-looking when dead skin cells hang around at the surface for way longer than they should. Skin cells have an average life cycle of just 28 days, in which time they form, grow, move up to the surface and then fall off.
The problem is that as you get older this cycle becomes lazy which allows dead cells to build up like dust on the surface of your skin. To accelerate cell turnover and boost a glowy, fresh complexion, gently exfoliate your skin daily if your skin isn’t super sensitive. Our Natural Luminosity Scrub is fabulous for injecting life back into your skin in as little as three minutes.
Simply apply it to damp skin morning or night and gently massage it all over your face and neck before rinsing with lukewarm water then gently patting dry.
2. Try Skin Icing
Not to be confused with the kind of icing you smooth over a cake, skin icing is all about exposing your skin to something extremely cold – ie: ice – for a couple of minutes. A form of cryotherapy, ice constricts the blood vessels which improves circulation and helps soothe, tighten and brighten the skin while simultaneously reducing inflammation and puffiness.
You’ve probably done something similar around your eyes with a cold spoon or a couple of cucumber slices, right? Well, this is the same thing. The best thing about this trick is it’s quick, easy and completely free! You just wrap an ice cube in a clean, cotton hanky and glide it across your skin after cleansing.
You could even try icing your skin after applying your Pre-Eminent Beauty Serum as this helps the ingredients penetrate your skin deeper and quicker. Just remember to apply Imperial Moisturiser afterwards to seal in hydration.
Can’t bear super cold temperatures on your skin? A final rinse of cold water after cleansing your face will do the job almost as well!
3. Watch Your Sugar & Salt Intake
Contrary to popular belief, chips and chocolate won’t give you spots. However, your diet can have a major impact on the look and feel of your skin. Too much sugar in your bloodstream, for example, attaches itself to collagen and elastin, causing nasty free radicals in your skin called advanced glycation end products, or AGEs as they’re so aptly known.
As these AGEs accumulate, they do a real number on your complexion, making it vulnerable to damage, ageing, dryness and the inevitable dullness.
An excess of salt is similarly bad news, causing puffiness, bloating, dehydration and dryness. Salt also weakens your collagen supplies and can accelerate inflammation and sensitivities – all of which will stop your skin from glowing the way you’d like.
The answer, of course, is to reduce the amount of salt and sugar in your diet. If you need to sweeten your food and drinks, swap sugar for agave and avoid fizzy, sugar-laden pop as much as possible. Switch crisps for unsalted nuts and try not to add too much (if any) salt when cooking. All this will be super helpful when it comes to the health of your skin.
4. Get Your Daily Hit Of Vitamin C
As glow-getting ingredients go, vitamin C is up there with the absolute best. Firstly, vitamin C is an antioxidant which means it protects your skin from damaging free radicals. Free radicals are produced in your skin when it’s exposed to things like pollution, UV radiation and cigarette smoke.
They’re very bad news because they break down collagen and elastin, causing your skin to become less supple, soft and springy. And if it doesn’t have these assets up its sleeves, it will automatically lack radiance. It just will.
Vitamin C is also mildly exfoliating and can help brighten dark spots and patchy skin by inhibiting tyrosinase, the enzyme responsible for the production of melanin.
Get your daily C fix by applying Pre-Eminent Beauty Serum to cleansed skin which contains a gentle, but very effective form of vitamin C called sodium ascorbyl phosphate. This makes it a great choice for most skin types – yes, even sensitive skin.
5. Don’t Skimp On Your ZZZs
Getting regular, quality beauty sleep is easier said than done, but it’s super important if you want gorgeous, radiant-looking skin. Not only are your face and muscles at rest when you sleep, but your skin is away from all that damaging UV radiation meaning it’s a great time for it to restore itself.
This important time is when blood flow increases, toxins are removed and damaged cells are repaired and regenerated which is why a great night’s sleep often equates to fresh, glowy skin whereas a restless night or lack of zzzs results in the exact opposite.
The NHS recommends between six and nine hours of quality sleep every night, with the sweet spot being eight hours. Now we know that’s not always doable, but do the best you can by going to bed at a similar time each night.
Also, avoid your smartphone for at least an hour before bed and ensure your bedroom is dark, quiet and neither too hot nor too cold.
6. Enjoy A Facial Massage Before Bed
Speaking of bedtime, why not maximise this precious skin-rejuvenation time by massaging your face and neck with Organic Age-Defying Facial Oil before you hit the hay?
Botanical oils are a great way to revitalise dull skin and our facial oil contains 20 organic oils, which are chock-full of antioxidants, nutrients, vitamins and minerals. Throwing in a little facial massage as you apply your oil ramps up its benefits, increasing circulation and boosting lymphatic drainage to really help kick-start a sluggish, flagging complexion.
The good news is you don’t need tons of qualifications to effectively massage your skin. Simply warm a couple of drops of oil in the palms of your hands then smooth it all over clean skin.
Next, use your hands and the pads of your fingers to massage your face. Start at your forehead, pressing your fingers between your brows then sliding them up towards your hairline.
Repeat this a few times, ensuring you cover your whole forehead area, then press your fingertips either side of your nose and smooth them out to your ears. Again, repeat this a few times, before repeating the same action along your chin and jawline.
Finally, smooth your hands in vertical strokes from your collarbones, up towards your neck.
7. Hydrate AND Moisturise
While dryness and dehydration are not the same thing, both add up to dull, lacklustre skin. Dryness is caused by a lack of oils in your skin, whereas dehydration is due to a lack of water, and if you’re serious about maximising your glow you need to make sure you take care of both by hydrating AND moisturising twice daily.
The best way to do this is by making sure your skincare routine includes humectants as well as emollients. Humectants include things like aloe vera, glycerin and hyaluronic acid which draw water to the surface of the skin, while emollients are oilier substances that create a thin seal to lock in water.
Emollients like vitamin E, shea butter and jojoba oil also ensure your skin cells lie flat and therefore reflect light better for a more radiant glow.
Maintain hydrated, moisturised skin by applying Pre-Eminent Beauty Serum twice daily to cleansed, damp skin, followed by Imperial Moisturiser in the morning and Night Elixir before bed. And if your skin is seriously suffering, try our amazing Organic Hydration Gel!
8. Treat Skin To A Weekly Face Mask
Last, but not least, may we draw your attention to our awesome new Natural Element Clay Mask which is a real glow-getter – even if we do say so ourselves?
Packed with green and white clays to deeply cleanse your skin, hyaluronic acid to hydrate and botanical oils to nourish, moisturise and protect it’s a serious contender for multi-functional skincare product of the year.
It’s a fabulous way to brighten, soften and even out your complexion. Plus, who doesn’t love treating their skin to a weekly face mask – if nothing else but to steal some much-deserved me-time?