There is an interesting debate going on in the scientific world about whether drinking water actually helps the health of your skin. Frankly, I’m shocked that this topic would ever be up for debate. If we are being extremely literal, does drinking water instantly erase a wrinkle? Of course not. But, in the bigger picture, there are few things more important to health and longevity than proper hydration.
Every cell in the human body needs water to function. As we age, our cells start to deteriorate and lose water in the process. This makes it much more difficult for our cells to work efficiently in fighting off free radicals, the #1 cause of aging. Hydration also aids in digestion, helping to eliminate toxins from our system, another cause of cellular aging. Ever feel bloated? Your body will retain water when it’s dehydrated, the same way it will go into starvation mode when you severely cut calories. Our bodies are always working to achieve a balance when it comes to nutrition and hydration. Balance = healthy cells = younger looking and feeling you.
So, how much water do we need? The truth is, we actually get a fair amount of hydration from all the things we drink and eat over the course of a day. Does wine count? Yes. Coffee? Yes. BUT… alcohol and caffeine also dehydrate, so best to stick with good ‘ole H2O. Personally, I aim for 72 ounces a day, give or take. Hate drinking plain water? Join the club! I always think caffeine free iced tea is a good option if you are a tea drinker. To be clear, I’m talking natural unsweetened iced tea, not the pre-mixed, sugar and preservative laden stuff. Flavoring your water with something that also delivers essential vitamins is a great double whammy. Of course, I’m addicted to Glotrition’s Collagen Peptide Drink Mix, $85 found here. All-natural, sweetened with Stevia Leaf Extract and loaded with antioxidants and collagen peptides. (More about the skin benny’s of collagen in a later post)
I’m always surprised to learn how many women don’t routinely exfoliate their skin. Gentle exfoliation is one way we can help our skin to shed dead cells, more quickly uncovering fresh, new cells. As we age, this natural process of shedding the old and replacing with the new slows down considerably. All the more reason to give the process a boost!
How to exfoliate? Every beauty expert has a different recommendation, so here is mine. First, understand your skin. My routine may not work for your skin and vice versa. If you’ve never visited a dermatologist, this is a good reason to do so. A doctor can give you a detailed assessment of your skin type and make personalized recommendations that will work for you.
Personally, I like to mix up my exfoliation routine. I’ve used Retin-A in the past, but I found the shedding and peeling to be too unpredictable. It led to some scary mornings in front of the TV camera! Instead, I use a facial scrub every other night. I’m currently loving the Cellular Renewal Treatment by Beauty Bioscience, $75, found here. I am also a little obsessed with a product from the Jack Black line. This is marketed as skincare for men, but it’s one of the only over the counter products I’ve been able to find with a higher amount of glycolic acid, one of the best exfoliating ingredients available. Warning: test this stuff first. 8% glycolic can be a little harsh, but it works! Find Line Smoother by Jack Black, $30 here. When exfoliating, don’t forget about your body! There are so many salt scrubs or sugar scrubs out there. I’d suggest using one with a higher level of skin nourishing oils in it. I like this one from L’Occitane, $36.