The holidays are a joyous time of year…and chaotic. There’s all that shopping, traveling and cooking to do, parties to attend, presents to wrap and family to be with. While it’s worth it in the end, the hectic holiday season can really take a toll on you and your skin. Whether it’s because of stress or indulging in a few too many desserts, these skin care tips will help you recover from the holiday madness and get your skin looking and feeling its best for the new year.
The toll stress takes on your skin
Common skin conditions like acne, psoriasis, rosacea and eczema can be exacerbated by stress. Now that the holidays are over, hopefully your stress levels are returning to normal. But if your skin is still suffering, here’s what you can do.
A combination of stress, dietary factors, and changing hormones can cause acne flares in adult women. If modifying your diet and stress reduction does not improve your breakouts, it’s time to visit a dermatologist for a topical or oral prescription medication.
You may think that because your skin is oily you need to dry it out. Not so! In fact, doing that can make your acne worse. Be sure to keep moisturizing but give your usual routine a boost with an acne friendly non-comedogenic moisturizer that won’t clog your pores.
Eczema, psoriasis and rosacea
Stress often aggravates eczema, psoriasis and rosacea. As with acne, a good moisturizer is an effective way to combat the itch and irritation that comes with flare-ups of these skin conditions. Be sure to choose gentle unscented lotions or creams that contain barrier repair lipids.
Skin conditions caused by diet and lifestyle
From cookies to pies, cakes and candy and cocktails, the holidays can wreak havoc on your otherwise healthy lifestyle. And that’s fine. Holiday indulgences are part of what the season’s all about. But now that the holidays are over it’s time to put healthy living front and center again.
Go on a health kick
Simple carbs cause insulin spikes, which can cause the collagen and elastin in your skin to breakdown. Why is that bad? Because collagen and elastin are what your skin needs to maintain its strength and elasticity. Cutting down on carb heavy foods is the first step to getting your skin back in shape.
The second is adding more of the nutrients your skin needs. Choose anti-aging foods like cashews, walnuts, cold water fish such as salmon, avocados and anti-inflammatory spices like turmeric. These foods can reduce the inflammation caused by insulin spikes. Fruits such as blackberries and raspberries, which are rich in antioxidants and high in zinc, are also great for your skin. Add whole grains, veggies, beans and lean proteins like chicken for extra skin recovery power.
Pair a healthy diet with daily use of an anti-aging cream that contains retinol for best results.
Cut back on the booze
The holidays are all about spirit—and spirits. From champagne toasts to mulled cider, spiced wines and any number of delicious cocktail recipes, there’s no shortage of seasonal beverages to help you make merry. The problem is that like cakes and candy, alcohol is loaded with sugar and simple carbs. It also dehydrates your body, including your skin, and deprives you of vitamins. The simple solution here is to cut back on the booze, which shouldn’t be a problem now that the holidays are over. Combine that with stress reduction and diet tips above, and your skin will be glowing again in no time.
Catch up on sleep
As fun as they are, the holidays are equally exhausting. Whether it’s from a lack of sleep or the amount of energy you put into all that shopping and running around, fatigue can lead to sallow skin, puffy eyes and dark circles under your eyes.
Now that the holidays are over, the best thing you can do is catch up on your sleep. In addition to that, be sure to cleanse your face each night before bedtime with a mild cleanser to remove dirt, excess oil and makeup. Once that’s done, moisturize. It will help your skin retain the water it loses while you sleep.
Now that you know how to help your skin recover from the holiday season, you’re ready to rock the new year.