When it comes to skin care, most of us focus on our face. This makes sense, because that’s the part of us that is most exposed to the rest of the world, and the one that makes the first impression. However, the rest of your skin also needs attention to remain healthy. Here are five do’s and don’ts to ensure that you care for your body as well as you care for your face.
DO protect yourself from the sun.
If you think you only need to wear sunscreen during days at the beach, you’re doing some serious damage to your skin. The sun emits harmful UV rays the entire year, and even on cloudy days you’re not safe from harm. This is why you should wear products containing sunscreen anytime you’re outside. Otherwise, you’re prematurely aging your skin, causing unsightly discolorations, and most importantly, you’re seriously increasing your chances of developing cancer.
DON’T use bar soap.
Unless you’ve been playing in the mud all day or running a marathon, your body doesn’t need to be cleansed with abrasive soap. When you use typical bar soap, you’re stripping away the natural oils your skin produces to protect you from the elements. And while you may think you’re getting extra clean by using a harsh, anti-bacterial soap, you’re actually killing off the good bacteria on your body that keeps you healthy while at the same time making it easier for germs to breed.
DO always moisturize.
No matter how much time you spend in it, your skin dries out when it comes in contact with water. Therefore, it’s extremely important that you use a good moisturizer after cleansing your skin. Even if you’re prone to breakouts on your body, you still need to maintain the moisture balance. Drier skin requires a thicker moisturizer, while oily skin benefits more from lotions that are gel-based.
DON’T take long, hot showers.
As soothing and relaxing as it may feel, you’re not doing your skin any favours when you stand under a hot shower for a long time. Like soap, it removes sebum, the natural oil that acts as a wall between you and external debris. Additionally, hot water causes blood circulation to surface at your skin, creating itching and even rashes. Ten minutes under a tepid shower, while probably not pleasant, is actually the best for your skin.
DO exfoliate twice a week.
The average person’s skin regenerates every 30 days. This means that there are plenty of dead skin cells hanging around, waiting to clog pores and cause blemishes. Using a salt or sugar scrub will rid you of those dead cells and promote growth of new ones.