When fall is in the air, the holidays can't be far away. The winter season is a time for family, friends, and festivity, but no matter how you celebrate, the year-end holiday season can turn routines upside down and causing a long list of holiday-related skin problems, including puffiness; red, irritated eyes; and dry, dull skin. Watching out for common skin stressors and keeping up healthy habits can keep your skin glowing throughout the holidays and beyond.
Drink Plenty of Water
If you're rushing to get things done and doing a lot of socializing, it's easy to become dehydrated. Alcohol, caffeinated drinks and simply being too busy to stop and drink some water can deplete the body's moisture and make your skin dry and dull. You don't have to gulp down eight glasses of water, though. Just make sure you add plenty of non-caffeinated beverages, such as herbal teas and mineral waters, to the mix, especially if you've enjoyed a few glasses of wine at a party.
Cut the Salt
Holiday parties and dinners bring out an array of unfamiliar foods that are often high in sodium. Cheeses, processed meats, chips, crackers and even many desserts contain considerable amounts of salt. Even if your blood pressure is fine, sodium can cause water retention, which can make your face puffy. The solution? Avoid indulging in too many salty foods and make sure you stay hydrated.
Cleanse and Moisturize
In the round of holiday activity, skin care routines can fall by the wayside. It's all too easy to fall asleep without removing makeup, be too rushed to apply moisturizers, or skip other parts of your usual regimen. But that can lead to problems such as red, irritated eyes, breakouts, and dry skin. Cold weather, too, can increase your chances of chapped lips and hands.
Even if you're busy, make sure to keep your skin clean and moisturized. To instantly hydrate and brighten your skin, try AHAVA's hydration cream mask. Apply directly to your face 1-2 times a week before bed and leave on for 1-3 minutes. For those extra dry days, leave the mask on all night to lock in moisture and wake up perfectly glowing and refreshed.
To reduce eye redness, place cotton balls soaked in cold water on your closed lids and rest your eyes for about 10 minutes. Treat breakouts with topical ointments and soaps containing benzoyl peroxide, and use extra rich lip balm and skin creams liberally.
Balance Your Diet
Even if you find yourself overindulging in holiday goodies from November to January, make sure your overall diet is a healthy one that includes plenty of "good" oils and fats, complex carbs, and vegetables. Skin problems such as breakouts and dryness may be due to a shortage of key nutrients, and holiday overindulgences can worsen those problems.
Take Time to Rest
Late nights, long visits and early outings can disrupt sleep routines and rob you of needed quiet time. But your skin needs rest, too. Getting enough sleep reduces eye puffiness and redness and nourishes skin cells. If you've been on your feet all day running errands or doing holiday shopping and cooking, it's important to give your feet a rest to reduce ankle puffiness and relieve sore muscles.
Even if you're enjoying the seasonal bustle, it's easy to feel stressed. Stress triggers the release of the hormones adrenaline and cortisol, which can contribute to poor skin condition and dullness. Taking just a few moments to sit quietly and breathe deeply can reduce the effect of these "stress hormones" on your skin.
When you're happy and healthy, your skin tells the world. This holiday season, try to avoid skin-stressing triggers and stick to a few healthy habits. You'll keep your skin glowing and your energy high, ready for whatever joys the season may bring.