4 basics for beautiful skin that require zero knowledge
Recently on Instagram I’ve been bombarded with private messages about skincare. The problems are nothing new, it’s something that all of us struggle with - acne, pigmentation, dark circles. But for me the real problem is that everyone wants an instant solution - products that work like a quick-fix to immediately clear skin or calm breakouts. I have no problem with quick fixes, and trust me I’ve tried everything (except surgery and injectables) in my pursuit of perfection. The only thing is that you can never take a pill in the long term, or apply a steroid cream (which will immediately calm breakouts) for more than a week.
When I ask my readers about their diets, the answer invariably is that there is no time, or their lives are busy or that it takes too much effort. Of course at the outset it does seem like too much effort - changing habits is hard work. So I get it. But take it from someone who’s tried the most potent and expensive skincare - if you’re not resolving the problem from within then there’s never going to be long-term improvement.
With that in mind, here are the habits that will give you beautiful skin. And remember, products are just the icing on the cake.
Forget about your skin or weight, eating toxic food completely throws your hormones out of whack. And the proof is in the numbers. What is it, every second or third girl who has PCOD or PCOS? Aren’t there young women in their 20s now with thyroid? Why do you think all this is happening? There are environmental toxins, pollutants in our food and water, and more than anything there’s more junk food in the world today than ever before. While it’s perfectly fine to indulge in a pizza or cake once in a while remember that these are treats and not food. Refined sugars, refined oils, refined flours will disrupt your hormones. So, for the sake of your hormones, be aware of what you’re eating and make healthy choices. Eat seasonal and local, mostly plants and whole foods. Drink three litres of water in a day - it’s a habit that you’ll have to develop. Remember that your skin is a reflection of good health. You’ll realise the value of eating healthy when you’re in your late 30s looking better than you did in your 20s.
I have seen so many girls who have PCOS or PCOD say that they cannot shed the weight because of hormones, but their diets are full of sugary, refined foods. And they don’t exercise. Many years back I was told by my gyno that I would never lose weight. I had gone form a size 6 to 14 because I was injected with many hormones to get my endometriosis in control. She told me that I just had to accept my new body. I did accept my weight but I kept eating healthy and doing yoga because I didn’t want my hormones to get even more imbalanced. And slowly (over a few years) I did lose all the weight. If I can do it so can you. But don’t use hormones as an excuse to not eat healthy or exercise. Exercising balances your hormones, especially if you have PCOD or PCOS - ask your gynaec if you don’t believe me. It also makes you sweat, which detoxifies your pores. Lastly it increases blood circulation. When the circulation increases all the nutrients from healthy food reach your skin. Exercise isn’t just about weight - it’s about balancing your hormones, feeling happier, getting better sleep, and respecting your body.
SLEEP & MEDITATION
The Dalai Lama once said that sleep is the best form of meditation. Unfortunately we aren’t getting much these days. There’s so much external stimuli (Netflix, Instagram, Snapchat) that we lose the connection with what our bodies need. I’ve been there too. In fact one of my new year resolution is to not waste time on social media. Instagram is like like digital heroin, you keep scrolling, looking that posts that are worth nothing, you know you need to stop but somehow you can’t. I’ve just stopped looking at my phone or the computer after 10. I either read a book or meditate. If you can find a good teacher who can guide you towards a meditation practice, then I would strongly encourage you to go for it. Most sages have the best skin, clear and radiant. Meditating regularly helps you find inner peace. It won’t happen in a month or two or even six. But year after year as you practice you find that you’ve changed. The things that trouble you earlier aren’t important anymore, you’re more accepting of yourself and others, you’re better at your work, and more confident about your decisions. When you’re relaxed your skin will be better - it’s not rocket science, its common sense.
Lead Image: Shutterstock