The cold weather can often wreak havoc on our skin, particularly on our faces. Your face is your most utilised asset in terms of your appearance so let’s look at three fundamentals of making the most of it and giving it a helping hand to prepare for the warmer months.
- YOUR SKIN
One of the most important aspects of aesthetic beauty is to have young looking, radiant, firm, and glowing skin. Unfortunately, it is a scientific fact that you will age – and no matter what creams you use or cosmetic surgical operations you endure, there is no getting away from aging skin.
At the most extreme end you could consider cosmetic surgery and a variety of non-surgical facial enhancing procedures, or, perhaps a better way is to nurture your skin with natural products such as aloe vera, aromatherapy oils, and nutrient rich moisturising oils such as jojoba and coconut.
One of the most overlooked aspects of keeping healthy skin, however, is to consider the naturopathic view that your skin is an external reflection of your internal biosphere; a good example to highlight this is to consider the skin condition ‘psoriasis’ which is often a stress response to an emotional trigger or event. You need to keep an eye on your nutrition. There are plenty of foods that feed your skin; many of which are tasty and inexpensive.
You’ll often hear people asking a question like “why is my skin so dry” and whilst this could be due to a multitude of factors such as air conditioning, dehydration, poor nutrition or even spending too long staring at a computer screen – a better question to ask, is how to make your skin less dry.
The first step is to ensure you are well hydrated. We’ve already discussed the importance of nutrition in terms of the skin being a mirror that reflects our inner environment, so just like if a plant were to be drying out, we would ensure an adequate supply of water each day – you need to do this too. This is moisturising from the inside out; though we can add moisture from the outside in too… there are many natural substances such as coconut oil or aloe vera that will be absorbed by dry skin like sand in the desert, and will start to hydrate your skin at a cellular level, rather than rehydrating the top two layers of (dead) skin cells which is as far as most moisturisers are able to penetrate without a pharmaceutical licence.
In summary, you’ll want to make sure you are moisturised from both the inside out and outside in; and don’t forget the impact of your lifestyle choices in terms of looking after your skin, particularly with regard to diet and hydration.
- YOUR EYES
Eyes are often referred to as the ‘windows to your soul’ – this is the place people go to “connect” with you on an emotional level. Radiant and refreshed sparkling eyes would subconsciously infer a happy, radiant and bright personality resides behind the mask that is your face… whereas tired, aggravated red eyes, with dark circles around them could make someone subconsciously associate this with a more lethargic, depleted, and down in the dumps type of personality.
There are many natural ways to keep your eyes looking refreshed, one of the most simple is to ensure you give your eyes the chance to relax throughout the day, simply by averting your gaze from a screen (of any description), closing your eyes, and placing your hands over your eyes in order to fully block out the light for a few minutes.
Another popular technique is to place chilled cucumber or cold tea bags over your eyes in order to reduce puffiness. The best approach is to place two chamomile or green tea bags in hot water for one minute (just enough time to release the antioxidants and tannins) then refrigerate the tea bags for ten minutes – putting them on your eyes for around fifteen minutes. A less well known alternative to cucumber and tea bags is to use potato slices, though many would argue that potatoes don’t contain the rich antioxidant properties of green tea or cucumber, if you’re in a hurry and don’t happen to have any cucumber to hand, chilled potato will do a good job at reducing puffiness and redness.
- YOUR SMILE
Dental hygiene should be an absolute priority in terms of making the most out of your facial appearance. The preventable issue of losing teeth or having several fillings is something we often don’t start taking full care of until it’s too late, however, keeping a healthy and attractive smile is easy to maintain.
If you would like straighter and whiter teeth then you might wish to visit a specialist dentist that can professionally whiten and straighten your teeth using specialist orthodontic procedures, however, there are many ways you can naturally whiten your teeth and enhance the brightness of your smile at home.
Several factors cause teeth to lose their whiteness; in particular, foods such as red wine stain the enamel and plaque naturally builds up on your teeth, which causes them to look yellow. The most important advice is to regularly visit a dental hygienist who will remove the plaque that builds up on and around your teeth in a much deeper way than you can do yourself. There are, however, a number of preventative natural remedies you can use to whiten your teeth, such as oil pulling, apple cider vinegar, hydrogen peroxide and baking soda.
Oil pulling with coconut oil is a fashionable new trend, yet oil pulling itself, is a traditional Indian remedy that’s been around for hundreds of years. The process is to keep the oil in your mouth for around 15-20 minutes, pulling it through your teeth, as this is known to remove bacteria, which is what turns your teeth yellow.
Apple cider vinegar is a natural disinfectant that effectively kills bacterial. The antibacterial properties make it very useful in terms of keeping a healthy mouth and whitening your teeth. It’s best used as a mouthwash – diluted with water; but It’s important to rinse your mouth out with water afterwards in order to remove any residue of acetic acid left by the apple cider vinegar; as this has the potential to soften your teeth.
Hydrogen peroxide is a natural bleaching agent that people have used for centuries to disinfect wounds. The name may sound a little off-putting but the majority of commercial toothpastes contain hydrogen peroxide as it can be very effective in whitening your teeth; again, this remedy is best used as a mouthwash before you brush your teeth.
Baking soda is a natural whitener that is used in many commercial toothpastes due to its ability to whiten teeth. It’s a mild abrasive that creates an alkaline environment in your mouth – preventing bacteria from growing. The best way to use baking soda is to make a homemade toothpaste with 1 teaspoon of baking soda and 2 teaspoons of water, to be used a few times a week in addition to your regular teeth cleaning regime.
In summary, your face is your most noticeable asset in terms of your personal appearance and whilst there are other aspects to consider than just your skin, teeth and eyes (such as hair and make up) these three factors are intrinsic to everyone and are the most focused on aspects of appearance that apply to everyone regardless of age or gender.