What better way to kick off your new year than by giving your skin the pampering it deserves?
Today, we’ll show you how to give your skin a rejuvenating detox to help it bounce back to its former glowy glory.
Why Are the Holidays So Hard on Our Skin?
Now that you can start winding down from the holiday hubbub, you might notice that your skin looks less radiant than usual.
You’re not alone! Our skin can take a beating during a season that’s all about enjoying an extra glass of bubbly and treating yourself to sugary-sweet treats.
So, what are the main culprits?
- Dairy has been linked to increased acne breakouts, so those extra glasses of eggnog may leave your skin looking worse for the wear. The ADA shared a study that found that women who drink two or more glasses of milk daily are 44% more likely to have acne.
- While all those delicious holiday treats are tempting, they’re also hard on our skin. Foods high in sugar can cause glycation, in which sugar-related inflammation breaks down the collagen in the skin.
- Late nights spent prepping for parties and wrapping gifts mean you lack the quality sleep necessary for your skin to repair and rejuvenate itself. Sleep deprivation increases the levels of the stress hormone cortisol in your body, which causes inflammation, further breaking down collagen. It also inhibits the immune response, leaving your skin barrier compromised and you more vulnerable to pollutants.
- When you couple the dry, cold air with the diuretic effects of alcohol, you’re dealing with a double dose of dehydration. A lack of moisture leaves your skin flaky, uncomfortably tight, and lacking its usual supple bounciness.
Lucky for us, our skin is an incredibly resilient organ, and with a little extra TLC, we can take it from dull and dry to supple and spry.
A Holiday Detox How-To
If you want to get your skin back on track after the holidays, you’ll need to take a targeted approach to address the most likely culprits behind your less-than-stellar complexion.
Rehydrate Inside and Out
First and foremost, you need to rehydrate. Drinking enough water helps your body flush out toxins and gives your skin a youthful plumpness, while dehydration leaves it dull and lacking elasticity.
As for the outside, treat your complexion to hydrating moisturizers with ingredients like hyaluronic acid, ceramides and cholesterol. A rich cream gives your skin an instant quench, while the humectants continue to draw water from the environment to keep you hydrated all day. SkinCeuticals carries several hyaluronic products, including Hydrating B5 Gel, H.A. Intensifier and Retexturizing Activator. SkinCeuticals Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2 is an excellent moisturizer delivery ceramides and cholesterol. Revision Skincare DEJ Face Cream is an advanced skin-renewing moisturizer that firms, lifts and smooths the skin while improving the skin’s natural skin barrier.
Cleanse With Detoxifying Skincare Ingredients
Next, your skin needs a gentle cleanser to draw impurities out of your pores without stripping away excess oil.
- Glycolic Acid is excellent for its ability to attract dirt from pores and sloughing dead skin, removing blackheads while continuing to fight acne, even out skin tone, brighten skin tone and smooth out rough skin. NeoStrata Foaming Glycolic Wash AHA 20%, Revision Skincare Brightening Facial Wash and SkinCeuticals Glycolic 10 Renew Overnight are all excellent choices for incorporating a glycolic wash into your skincare routine.
- Green tea is rich in antioxidants to protect your vulnerable skin from further damage. It’s also excellent for soothing inflammation to get reactive skin back under control. To help clear up post-drinking puffiness and improve overall skin texture, try Advanced Skin Therapeutics Triple Action Green Tea Cream.
- Clay can help clear up excess sebum while removing impurities so your skin feels wonderfully refreshed and rejuvenated. Revision Skincare’s® Pore Purifying Clay Mask is an intensive mask that purifies and soothes your skin with the unique properties of silt derived from European freshwater lakes. NuCelle Glacial Clay Deep Cleansing Masque is a refined light clay treatment containing NuCelle’s proprietary Mandelic Marine Complex, which draws out impurities and deep cleans pores.
- Vitamin C helps brighten up dullness and provides antioxidant protection. Revision Skincare Brightening Facial Wash Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids plus brightening vitamin C and licorice root removes both the day’s impurities and dead surface cells, leaving skin bright, clean, hydrated and smooth.
- Salicylic acid is a BHA for deep exfoliation and pore cleansing. Revision Skincare Papaya Enzyme Cleanser contains Papaya Fruit Extract which lifts away impurities, gently polishes away dead skin cells, and nourishes skin with vitamins and minerals. Leaving all skin types feeling soft, clean and moisture-balanced. Advanced Skin Therapeutics 2% Glycolic/2% Salicylic Acid Pads are specially formulated to unclog pores and accelerate the removal of dead skin cells that interfere with oil drainage.
Exfoliate to Speed Up Cell Turnover
Once your skin is clean, you’ll want to slough away the old, dull, dead skin to make way for new cell growth. Stick with a mild chemical exfoliant with AHA or BHA once or twice a week, depending on your skin type. You’ll immediately notice that your complexion looks fresher and more polished, but keeping up with the routine in the long term is important.
We love NeoStrata Smooth Surface Glycolic Peel®, which contains 10% AHA to enhance skin clarity and texture while reducing the signs of aging, like fine lines and wrinkles. Also, Advanced Skin Therapeutics Enriched 15% Glycolic Pads with vitamins A, C, E, green tea and CoQ10 to nourish and calm the skin as they gently exfoliate, moisturize and assist in the removal of oil and residue on the skin.
Another excellent choice is NeoStrata Exfoliating Wash is a revitalizing foaming facial wash that exfoliates without over drying, preparing the skin for optimal treatment benefits. Polyhydroxy Acids, including Gluconolactone and Maltobionic Acid, stimulate cell turnover and remove debris from pores, enhancing skin texture and clarity.
Restore pH Balance
Now that your skin is free of the evidence of holiday indulgences, the final step is getting your moisture barrier back to its natural pH, between 4.5 and 5.5.
We walk you through how to test your skin’s acidity in full detail in Balancing Act: How pH Affects Your Skin Health, but to recap:
4.5 to 5.5: Your skin is likely well-balanced, helping to protect against environmental threats and maintain moisture.
Below 4.5: Your skin is overly acidic, which could lead to it being excessively oily and prone to breakouts.
Above 5.5: Your skin is overly alkaline or basic, which could mean it is dry and more susceptible to signs of aging like wrinkles and fine lines.
The pH of your products can determine how your skin reacts to them. More acidic products are excellent for exfoliation, while more basic products are better for moisturizing. However, it’s best to choose products labeled as “pH-balanced” for everyday use.
One of the best things you can do for your skin after the holidays is commit to regular appointments with your dermatologist. Not only can the experts at Advanced Dermatology & Cosmetic Institute help you address specific concerns, like dryness or acne, but also ensure long-term skin health with regular checkups.
Make 2024 your best skincare year ever by scheduling an appointment!