The Secrets to Glowing Skin
The skin is the body’s largest organ, and it does more than just shield our tissues, muscles and bones. “The skin can be a direct reflection of what’s going on inside the body,” says Sarasota, FL, Dermatologist Elizabeth F. Callahan, MD. Since we are all born with nearly perfect skin, obtaining a near flawless complexion can be had later on in life if the causes of your problems are properly diagnosed and addressed. Since age isn’t necessarily a determining factor in whether your skin is healthy or not, you may be able to transform it and actually have a healthier complexion than you did when you were younger.
The Look of Healthy Skin
Healthy skin not only looks and feels beautiful, it also heals quickly, is flexible to the touch, has small pores, appears dewy and isn’t in need of constant exfoliation. Healthy skin is even in color, free of breakouts and dryness, and has a smooth, cushiony texture.
How to Tell if Your Skin is Healthy
Gauging how long it takes for your skin to heal from a breakout can be an indicator of the state of its health.
“If, within four days after a breakout, the skin is clear and there’s little or no discoloration, then the skin is pretty healthy,” says celebrity aesthetician Nerida Joy.
“Depending on the skin color, if it takes longer for the blemish to subside and there’s dark pigmentation in the surrounding area, then your skin may not be in the best state,” says Joy.
Two Damaging Factors: Bar Soaps and Detergents
“The worst thing you can do to your skin is strip the acid mantle (the protective layer) of the skin,” Joy says. Bar soaps that dry out the skin and cleansers with detergents are the two main culprits that disrupt the acid mantle, but sweat can affect it, too. “Without the mantle intact, products are not properly absorbed, and the skin is open for damage,” she adds.