What causes dull skin and what can I do to fight it?

Winter loves to herald not only cold weather, but dry, ashy and dehydrated skin to boot. Even when we’re drinking all the water our bodies can hold and minding our own business.

So what causes lack of moisture and uneven tone and texture and how can you get that bright even glow you’ve been yearning for? No one wants to look or feel grey. 

According to Allure magazine, there could be a number of reasons that your skin is out of whack. Remember that it is your largest organ and a complex system built to protect you and your body so it’s not surprising that a few factors could come into play.

But don’t let it get you down. Having a number of reasons that may be the cause means a number of different solutions or fixes that you can try. 


QUESTION 1: Are you getting enough sleep?

ANSWER: Beauty sleep is not a myth. 


Your cells regenerate throughout the day but some research shows that this turnover increases at night and sleep is essential to keep the process going. Your circadian (biological) clock regulates your cell function including ageing, which if slow, means that dead skin cells build up and makes your skin look grey and dull. 

Studies show that well-rested people tend to have brighter eyes, a brighter complexion, clearer skin, fewer wrinkles and [an] improved skin condition”.


QUESTION 2: Do you wash your face every evening?

ANSWER: You need to cleanse your skin twice a day and exfoliate regularly. 


We live with so much pollution that carries dirt, toxins and more that form free radicals on the skin and break down important anti-agents like collagen. It’s not enough to cleanse your skin on waking up - you need to do the same after a day of being exposed to polluted air. It also gives you the opportunity to apply products that will work overnight with ingredients -- like retinol and glycolic acid -- and that may not be suitable for daytime use when your skin is more likely to be exposed to the sun. 

If you’re not catching enough zzz's then you need to make sure that you exfoliate because that will slough off that layer of grey, which prevents your skin from looking radiant. 


QUESTION 3: Which supplements are you taking?

ANSWER: Take all the help you can get. 


If you’re not eating a well balanced diet, try taking a multivitamin that has the following minerals in it -- copper, iron and zinc. These trace minerals help your body form natural antioxidants, which work hard to protect your skin against ageing and help give your skin a brighter complexion.


QUESTION 4: Is sunscreen your best beauty friend?

ANSWER: It’s time to make it part of your daily routine. 


Sun damage weakens your collagen, can cause dark spots and slows down your cell turnover which causes dull skin. Even if you find yourself mainly indoors or it’s winter, use an SPF of 30 or more to protect your skin against burning (UVB and cancer risk) and UVB (premature ageing).


QUESTION 5: Do you understand your flow?

ANSWER: Your hormones can affect your skin.


When your oestrogen levels drop, it compromises your moisture barrier, which leads to dry and sensitive skin. You may need to ask your dermatologist to recommend medication like the Pill to balance your hormones.


QUESTION 6: What are you applying on your skin?

ANSWER: Your skin needs moisturising ingredients.


Layer skin with a serum that contains hyaluronic acid and products with ingredients like green tea, liquorice and Vitamin C, which are great antioxidants. Well-hydrated skin reflects the sun so your skin glows.


SOURCES: 

https://www.allure.com/story/dull-skin-causes-and-treatments

https://www.refinery29.com/en-gb/beauty-sleep-benefits-good-for-skin 

https://www.byrdie.com/kick-ash-no-more-ashy-skin-2442889

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4441597/

https://www.nbcnews.com/better/health/why-beauty-sleep-real-according-doctors-ncna895801

https://nymag.com/strategist/article/best-sunscreen-for-face.html

https://www.wellandgood.com/antioxidants-for-skin-benefits/

https://www.allure.com/story/menopause-acne-hormonal-skin-effects

https://www.paulaschoice.com.au/expert-advice/skincare-advice/moisturizers/what-your-moisturizer-must-contain.html

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