I bet you have never stopped to think how truly amazing our skin is. Did you know that your skin sheds about 30 000 to 40 000 skin cells per minute? Yes!… per minute. That’s about 4kg of skin per year.
Up close – super close … the surface of our skin looks like a scaly armour. This armour has the ability to renew and regenerate itself every month by constantly shedding its outer layer and allowing new cells to come to the surface. Of course, age and health as well as other factors contribute to how efficiently our skin regenerates but when you think about what your skin actually has to endure, each and every day, it’s absolutely mind blowing.
Get this… your skin is a waterproof barrier but it can still emit water – sweat. It is soft and pliable and can stretch as we move and grow but it’s strong enough to withstand all sorts of external attacks like heat, cold, bumps and bacterial invasion. And, even more amazingly, if something does manage to break through this barrier of awesomeness… then your skin is equipped with everything it needs to fight of the enemy and then heal right back up again.
Unfortunately, our modern way of living, puts a lot of stress on our skin. What we do or don’t do to our skin directly effects how efficiently it can do its job of protecting us. Think about the sun and our polluted environment, smoking, about the chemically/hormonally/genetically modified foods we eat, about the water we drink or don’t drink and about some of the things we put on or in our skin like tattoos, and spray tans, make up and cosmetics.
I’m sure you are already familiar with many of these but here are two random examples that you probably never gave a second thought to… and what we can do to counter act the effects each has on our skin…
When you think of the bad effects sugar has, most of us immediately think of weight management… but too much sugar in the body is super bad for your skin as well. Sugar causes insulin levels to spike causing a burst of inflammation throughout the body. In the skin, sugar molecules attach themselves to collagen and cause what is known as Glycation. Glycation causes wrinkling, sagging and stiffness of the skin as well as compromising the skin’s ability to create a defensive barrier against external environmental factors. Once the skin’s barrier function is compromised then problems, such as Acne, can develop.
Counter Act With
Products that have anti-inflammatory ingredients such as White Willow, Licorice Root, Horse Chestnut, Olive, Green Tea and Beta Glucan act as an anti-inflammatory on the skin and will help to calm the inflamed skin while ingredients such as Hyaluronic Acid, Bilberry Oil, Jojoba Oil, Aloe Vera and Manuka Honey will help with hydration.
In The Salon
A series of gentle Enzyme Peels will help to gently but effectively encourage the skin’s natural cell turn over – the shedding and renewing process of the skin – back into a healthy rhythm so that the skin will look fresh and renewed from the surface.
Your Pillow Case
Every night we pretty much sleep on a cesspool of bacteria, dust mites and fungus sprinkled with a generous covering of our own dead skin cells and maybe those of your pets. Although it sounds gross, most of it is quite harmless and poses no real threat to a healthy skin but if you skin’s outer barrier is already compromised such as with pimples, cuts or abrasions or even hair follicles that are sensitive after a recent waxing session, then your comfy pillow can suddenly become your worst nightmare.
Counter Act With
Change your pillowcase frequently. Once a week is fine if you do not have any particular skin issues. If you suffer from Acne, Eczema, and Psoriasis or have cuts or abrasions on your face or neck then you should sleep on a clean pillowcase every night. Sleep on one side the first night then flip and sleep on the other side the second night… then change your pillowcase and start again. Giving your skin a clean environment to rest on makes a big difference to how quickly your skin can recover from any kind of inflammation.
In The Salon
Be sure to get your skin deep cleansed at least every 6 weeks if you do not have any particular issues…. About every 2 – 4 weeks if you suffer from Acne or congested skin. Your Skin Therapist will exfoliate away dead skin cells that have accumulated on the surface of your skin and extract any blackheads, whiteheads or clogged pores. A good cleanse will help to restore a good balance of hydration and oils on the surface of the skin giving it the perfect opportunity for correct function.
Images Are Courtesy Of www.sciencesetavenir.fr And www.airwayallergyclinic.com.au