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Skin Happy

7 Habits that could be sabotaging your healthy skin efforts

A woman looks in the mirror at her skin
Liz Thompson
Liz Thompson October, 30, 2019

Freelance writer, green beauty expert, coffee drinker, beach bum wannabe

You probably make it a point to give your skin lots of TLC during your morning and nighttime routines to maintain radiance and protect it from damage. But have you considered how your daily activities could be causing issues?

Some day-to-day lifestyle habits (even incredibly common ones) can lead to breakouts, wrinkles and irritation!

Thankfully, warding off these skin saboteurs doesn't have to mean more steps in your skincare regimen. After identifying the actions that could be doing you more harm than good, it's only a matter of making a few small changes to enjoy healthy skin again.

Here are seven daily habits that can negatively affect skin all over your body — and the simple ways to fix them.

1. Skipping a shower after hitting the gym

Working up a sweat on the regular is a good thing, no doubt. But sweat that's left on skin for too long can lead to rashes, irritation, clogged pores, breakouts and itching. So, it's best to wash sweaty skin as soon as possible. Since this isn't always an option, you can blot sweat from skin and wear loose clothing in a pinch. It's also wise to wash your workout gear each time you use it.

woman in bikini and sun hat relaxing at sunny beach. remote tropical beaches and countries. travel concept2. Not using enough SPF

Do you use a facial sunscreen in the morning but skip your chest and arms? Maybe you don't SPF your legs at the beach, or forget to reapply. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that adults apply about one ounce of sunscreen to all exposed skin. This includes the backs of hands, tops of feet, ears and neck!

3. Skimping on the right foods

Wondering why your stellar skincare efforts aren't providing glowing results? It could be your diet. Make sure you include gut-balancing probiotics and omega-3 fatty acids in your meals for happy skin. An easy way to get your daily dose of the right stuff is with a detox smoothie. Simply combine antioxidant-rich berries, avocados and yogurt in a blender for a breakfast with beauty benefits.

4. Lacking on liquids

Dry, irritated skin is often dehydrated. Make sure to drink plenty of fresh water throughout the day to keep your skin looking plump and clear. Prefer to sip a cup of tea? Rooibos is more than just tasty: Research shows it can also help to prevent the appearance of wrinkles and aging skin. Of course, green tea packs a powerful antioxidant punch, making it perfect for maintaining youthful, healthy skin.

5. Depriving skin of moisture

Applying moisturizer is probably a significant part of how you care for your skin. Are you hitting all the right places? Feet, knees and elbows have thicker skin

that tends to become dry and callused. For soft skin all over, use an emollient moisturizer on these areas right before hopping into bed each night.

6. Denying your skin its beauty sleep

You know how you feel balanced and clear-headed after a good night's sleep? Well, it's just as important for your skin to get rest. While you sleep, your cells

are busy regenerating, helping to diminish signs of skin aging.

Not getting enough sleep means your skin doesn't have enough time for proper cell turnover and is left looking saggy and sallow. Keep skin plump by shooting for a solid seven to nine hours a night!

7. Letting stress get the best of your skin

You may think the worst stress can do is cause dark circles and breakouts, but letting stress go unchecked can actually cause a long list of skin issues. Try to regularly make time for yourself to read, walk or meditate. A few minutes a day of doing something that brings you joy helps your skin stay happy and healthy!

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