Skin Care For Fall

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When summer turns into fall, it's a good time to assess your skin's condition. An active summer has likely caused damage to your skin, which should be repaired now in preparation for winter. During the summer, skin is exposed to many harmful influences, like pool chemicals, saltwater, sunburns, heat, and air conditioning. The damage from these things can be healed, or at least offset, with proper skin care.

Summer Damage Control

First, assess your skin and check for sun damage. Sun damage is caused by overexposure to ultraviolet radiation. Some effects are immediate, like sunburn; while others accumulate over time, including uneven pigmentation, early wrinkles, age spots, spots on the lower lip, and sagging skin. Fortunately, most of these conditions are reversible with proper care.

Moisturizers and masks can be a good start to repair some of the summer's skin damage. Vitamin C skin cream has been shown to help reduce fine lines in the skin. It works by boosting collagen synthesis which helps keep skin from sagging and looking worn. Since actual vitamin C isn't very stable, some cosmetics use vitamin C derivatives, which keep their strength longer. Antioxidants in general are also good ingredients for skin cream and other skin-repair products. They help stop damage from free radicals, allowing the skin to heal itself more efficiently. Retinoids, available in prescription and non-prescription strengths, are another tool that can help repair the skin. They
can reduce inflammation, help eliminate lesions, soften wrinkles, and firm the skin.

Even in the fall you should treat age spots and take precautions to help keep more from forming. Though it doesn't seem as sunny, keep wearing a sunscreen, since there is still enough sun to cause skin damage (some skin-care professionals recommend wearing some sunscreen year-round). To help treat age spots, which are actually caused by UV exposure rather than age, there are a variety of methods available. These range from fade creams all the way to having them frozen off in a doctor's office via cryotherapy. A doctor can also prescribe Retin-A or other high-strength prescription medicines, which are generally far more effective than over-the-counter creams.

Let the Moisturizing Begin...

In summer, controlling oil and helping the skin resist the effects of the sun and heat are priorities. Moving into fall, concentrate more on balancing the skin and repairing the previous season's damage. Once winter begins, the humidity in the air drops, cold winds blow, and the furnace starts to run. These things can lead to dry, sensitive skin. Therefore, concentrate on moisturizing your skin during this time.

Keeping the skin moist and healing already-dry skin is also important for both skin health and good looks. Dry skin ointments, which are made with oil, tend to be the most effective. These preparations, however, have an oily feel that many people would prefer to avoid. Creams are usually less oily, but as a tradeoff, they don't last quite as long. Lotions are water-based, which allows them to give fast relief, but the
effects are short-lived. Also, some of them are heavily perfumed which makes them unsuitable for those allergic to the ingredients used to make the scents. Creams and ointments are the best choice for longer-lasting results.

Water, Water, Everywhere

Improving your food and water intake helps your entire body, and your skin is no exception. Drinking more water has the immediate benefit of increased hydration. Well-hydrated skin looks younger-you can practically see the water in the skin of teenagers, and it's fairly easy to guess someone's age by how naturally moist their skin is. Break the pattern by making sure your skin is moist, no matter what your age.

Don't Forget Your Diet

Eating better food, of course, is also important for great looking skin. Look for healthy vegetables to add to your diet and cut down or eliminate fried foods. Unhealthy foods can clog pores as well as cause an overall sickly appearance in the skin. Choosing foods that are naturally ripe in the fall is a fun way to add more healthy choices to your diet. Carrots, sweet potatoes, and burdock are just some of the root vegetables that ripen around this time. Above-ground vegetables to consider include squashes, nuts, and of course, pumpkin. Try to
incorporate the pumpkin into something other than pie, however, or its benefits may be outweighed by the sugar and vegetable shortening which are also parts of pumpkin pie.

A Plan for All Seasons

While each season offers its own challenges to your skin, your fall skin regimen should focus on repairing damage from your fun in the sun, and preparation for the dry, cold months ahead.

About the Author:

Mark and Janet Davis are a husband and wife team, health and nutrition entrepreneurs and founders of MarkAndJanet.com, a website with uncompromising, premium products for your health conscious family. Are you looking for more information on natural skin care? Visit us at http://www.MarkAndJanet.com/ or check out our blog at http://www.MarkandJanetBlog.com

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