Everything’s connected and the state of our skin is as much, if more about our lifestyle as a whole, than the creams we put on our face. Holistic skincare considers the whole being. How are we feeding and hydrating ourselves? How are we treating ourselves as a whole? Good skin reflects what’s going on inside and radiates out.
Here are eight holistic skincare ideas to try:
Massage encourages lymph to circulate and the body to detox. You can use just your hands to do this, or facial tools like gua cha or skin brushes if you prefer. It's an opportunity to connect back to your body, show some self-love. Glowing skin is an added bonus. Massage is also tones the vagus nerve, which is known to lower stress levels.
Our skin is teeming with a universe of microbial life. Similar to our gut, it has its own ‘microbiome’ and when looked after, controls dead skin cell build up and protects from bacteria. Modern skin routines and cleansers with surfactants can strip the skin of its natural oils, damaging the protective layer and making it harder to maintain its moisture. The oil cleansing method has been practised since the Roman Empire and is a gentle way to remove dirt and debris from the skin without disrupting the skin barrier.
Vitamin D (in the right amount) and time outside
Working inside most of the week is the norm in our world, so making time to get outside regularly and soak in some vitamin D from the sun is so important for general wellbeing. For pale skin, 15 minutes in the sun three times a week with the arms, back and belly exposed provides the optimum levels of vitamin D according to studies. Beyond that, more time in the sun doesn't increase vitamin D levels and provide added benefit — so protecting your skin with a daily chemical-filter-free SPF important to maintain the skin’s collagen and hydration levels.
Not only are they relaxing, but a great way to keep your entire body in good health. They draw out toxins through sweating and encourage additional oxygen and nutrients to the skin's surface, leaving you with a healthy glow glow.
Ocean swims or mineral baths
Compared to other natural bodies of water like rivers and lakes, the ocean contains high amounts of minerals like sodium, magnesium and calcium that are soothing for the skin. Bathing in mineral rich water has long been used for people with sensitive skin conditions like psoriasis. If you don't have the ocean nearby, mineral baths are a great alternative.
Antioxidant rich foods
We all know that we are what we eat. If we put vitamins and antioxidants on our face, we should eat them too. Berries, carrots, walnuts, fatty fish, green tea and dark chocolate are all high in antioxidants and will reap great benefits for your skin if eaten regularly.
Hydration primarily happens from the inside out, so drinking water is the first and most logical step for hydrated skin. Tip: adding lemon to your water makes it easier to drink and also aids digestion, which reflects on the outside as glowing skin.Gentle exfoliationInfrequently dry brushing the face with a face brush or Konjac sponge helps to remove dead skin cells and stimulate circulation, leading to firmer appearance of the skin. Fruit enzymes are naturally exfoliating for the skin, so making fruit-based masks are another way to exfoliate the skin.