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Shake up your skincare routine

skincare

Everyday stresses – such as working long hours, spending too much time in the sun or just getting another year older – can wreak havoc on your complexion. The good news is you can bring back your radiance with the right regimen.

1. Lack of sleep

You’ve had a run of bad or late nights and have the bags to prove it. And for all its restorative powers, your morning coffee isn’t going to do much for puffy, bloodshot eyes and sleep-deprived pallor.

How does your skin look? 
Tired and grey with some serious dark under-eye circles.

What’s going on? 
Scientists now believe that skin cells regenerate while we sleep, so when you miss your nightly slumber, your skin suffers. 

New routine
Bring your face back to life by reducing fluid build-up around the eyes and brightening a sallow complexion. If you’re lacking ZZZs, use an alpha hydroxy scrub at least three times a week to get your circulation going. Eye gels will reduce puffiness, especially those with chamomile or cucumber. Faking a good night’s sleep is easier with makeup, so use light-reflecting concealers and foundations. 

2. You’re burnt out 

Working late and hitting the wine as soon you get home? Your skin could be impacted. 

How does your skin look?
Dry and parched. It’s also red and your wrinkles appear more pronounced.

What’s going on? 
Alcohol has a severe weakening effect on your skin and causes extreme sensitivity. Plus, whenever you’re emotionally stressed, your system becomes less efficient at pumping oxygen around the body, causing your complexion to become dull and tired. 

New routine
If you’re going through a stressful period in your life, it’s important to increase antioxidant levels to cut down on free radical damage. Use skincare products that offer a mix of antioxidants such as green tea, lycopene, grapeseed oil and co-enzyme Q10. 

3. It’s your hormones

If you’re suffering from a breakout on your chin and can’t work out why, it’s probably down to those pesky hormones that fluctuate all the time. 

How does your skin look?
Rough and uneven with spots and patches of pigmentation.

What’s going on?
When women experience hormonal changes, the level of oestrogen (the hormone that keeps skin plump and youthful) fluctuates and skin can become sensitive. 

New routine 
Keep your skin clean by cleansing twice a day and exfoliating every other day. Restore radiance with products that contain plant-based phytohormones to boost the natural levels of hormones in your skin. Red clover, soya, wild yam and black cohosh mimic oestrogen in the body to help skin work more effectively. Choose skincare that contains these four magic ingredients. A charcoal or clay mask will dry out blemishes and calm redness, so smear on weekly. 

4. Climate

The sun’s harmful UV rays can visibly burn and damage the skin, leading to premature ageing.

How does your skin look?
Inflamed with red scaly patches, pigmentation and dry areas.

What’s going on? 
“The combination of sun, humidity and heat will cause an increase in oil flow, which can lead to congested skin,” says Emma Hobson, education manager for the International Dermal Institute. She also blames air conditioning for stripping the skin of essential moisture and increased UV exposure for causing blotchy pigmentation and age spots. 

New routine
The first step is sun protection, so opt for a broad-spectrum product. Moisturising immediately after sun exposure will stop inflammation in its tracks, but make sure it contains hyaluronic acid, a potent hydrator. Dead skin cells, including those that have been ravaged by the weather, need to come off. The best way to get rid of them is to exfoliate daily with alpha hydroxy or lactic acids, or pick a product that contains both. Help fade pigmentation with a serum containing botanical lighteners like kojic acid or licorice root.