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Beauty Resolutions in association with Darphin
Ah, New Year, new resolutions. But your goals needn’t be all doom and gloom. Whilst we salute you for joining the gym (well hello, abs of steel) going vegan or for giving dry January a bash, have you considered the state of your skin? Seeing as you only get one skin in a lifetime, taking care of it can pay dividends – both now and in your later years. To make 2018 the year of great skin, we spoke to International Facialist and Skincare Expert Abigail James for the resolutions to make – and stick to.
Stress less: “Stress is the number three factor that impacts women’s skin, just behind hydration and UV exposure, therefore detoxifying your stress levels will benefit your skin,” says James. Whilst we can’t stop stressful situations themselves we can learn to manage stress better. An effective way to diffuse stress is to take time out for yourself each evening to re-charge. Stay off your phone for an hour before bedtime, swap your 30-minute Instagram scroll for a long bath or pick up that book you’ve been meaning to read for ages. This will not just benefit your complexion, but your health too.
Just as you’re slipping between the sheets, reach for skin restoring products that soothe the senses too. “Work Darphin’s Vetiver Essential Oil Elixir into your skin and benefit from the properties of the Majoram essential oil that is well known for its effect on both the mind and body,” says James. “The oil helps calm and soothe the skin as well as relieving stress and alleviating nervousness.” The winning combination of Vetiver, French Lavender, Geranium and Marjoram give a calming and uplifting aroma that helps to melt stress away and induce deeper, better quality sleep.
Then you have stress within the skin itself. This can usually rear its head in the form of redness, acne or eczema. These can flare up easily with the change of seasons, so it can be beneficial to seek expert advice that you’re using the right products for your skin for the season. Ideally, you’ll need products that protect and fortify then skin’s barrier to defend against inflammation. Visit a Darphin counter for recommendations for your skin type or book in for one of their personalized facials.
Practise lymphatic drainage
: Your lymph nodes carry nutrients and waste materials between your bloodstream and tissues, but occasionally these can become sluggish and lead to a smattering of breakouts, particularly around the chin and jawline. If you’re prone to acne (50% of adult women are), then this is a game changer – even for those painful, irritating under-the-skin spots that are seemingly impossible to rid. “Lymphatic face massage is great to get the circulation going in the skin. Start with deep massage moves followed by draining lymphatic methods to really detoxify the skin,” says James. To rid your face of breakouts, massaging the lymph paths is crucial.
Here’s how to do it:
1. In small circles, massage just below your ears to activate the lymph nodes and then, in one smooth movement, drain down your neck with your fingers.
2. Massage around the chin in a similar circular motion and then in a sweeping motion, move your fingers upwards along your jawline and up towards your ear.
3. Repeat step two a couple of time and finish by moving your fingers from your ears down your neck to drain waste away.
Repeat the steps each night (or whenever you have the urge to pick at a spot – it will help break the habit) to aid detoxification in your skin. It’s crucial to use an oil-based product during massage to avoid tugging the skin. “Use the Vetiver Detox Oil Mask and massage into the skin to impart radiance and awaken skin,” says James. By using oils on the skin’s surface, you’ll also send signals to your glands to produce less excessive oil, so you’ll eventually get less and less breakouts too.
Wear SPF: In the dead of winter?! That’s right. “You should always include an SPF in your regime for protection against UV rays,” says James. These are one of the biggest culprits of ageing (think sagging skin, wrinkles and stubborn pigmentation) and they are not just around during the sunnier months or when you jet off on your holiday. If there’s daylight, there are UV rays. They can even penetrate thick cloud and if you’re exposed every day, the damage really adds up over time. SPF has a rep for being heavy and sticky under make-up, but there are plenty of good SPFs around, such as Darphin’s Intral Shield SPF50 that offers both UV and pollution protection in a lightweight, non sticky fluid that won’t clog pores and just so happens to work brilliantly as a make-up primer too. No excuses now.
Feed your skin: You are what you eat, as the saying goes, and sadly Percy Pigs and crisps do not a glowing complexion make. Antioxidants, omegas and vitamins give your skin the best fighting chance at preventing ageing and looking its best. Try to incorporate fruits and vegetables (blueberries and carrots are great for snacking at your desk) while the omega 3s in oily fish, such as tuna or salmon, help keep your skin soft and supple. Take a two-pronged approach by feeding your skin antioxidants from the outside too, says James. “Remember to cleanse using antioxidants for protection and vitamins and minerals to support and feed. Vitamins such as A, B, C and E are perfect, while omega oils are essential for nourished, hydrated skin.” Darphin’s Ideal Resource Perfecting Smoothing Serum is a winner because it contains antioxidants to brighten dark spots, but also protects skin from environmental damage too. So you’re treating and protecting in one step.
Streamline your skincare: “The most common mistake I have noticed is when people use products based on what their friends use. Their skin is different to yours and what might work for them might be completely different for you,” says James. “Having a proper daily skincare routine is essential. We need to remind ourselves that it is not indulgence to be using five products morning and night if you want healthy skin.” So reign in your products to a good cleanser to remove make-up (a balm or oil is perfect), a second cleanser to clean your skin once your make-up if off (a gel or cream formula often works best for this) and a serum and moisturiser best suited to your skin type. You can then incorporate an acid toner or mask a couple of times a week to address specific needs of the skin. You’ll find that your skin will start to behave itself and will be far less reactive. Sometimes, simple is best.
And there you have it. While you’re here, find out what face mask your skin needs the most in 2018 with our match-making quiz…