Healthy skin can feel like a blessing. Our environment affects our skin on a daily basis, sometimes leaving it dry or irritated. As much as it seems as though we have no control over how our skin looks and feels, you can have the skin you want!

Seeing a dermatologist can be incredibly helpful in developing a skincare plan, as skin varies from person to person. But taking care of your skin at home is the first step.

Here are a range of tips, from lifestyle to products, to keep your skin healthy:

  • Avoid harsh cleansers – Your skin needs a soft touch to stay smooth. Use facial and body scrubs sparingly. And be sure that your soap is pH balanced to prevent reactions to acidic or basic solutions.
  • Toss the toner – In the past, toner was used to balance the pH levels of your skin after using unbalanced cleansers. Now, many more products are already balanced, eliminating the need for toner. And who needs more products?!
  • Choose fragrance-free soaps and lotions – More than you may realized, your skin reacts to the fragrance in your skincare products. Especially if you have sensitive skin, skip the floral or fruity concoctions.
  • Be gentle with your skin – Too often we get into routines that may or may not be good for our skin, sometimes leaving out important skincare habits. Keep these ideas in mind:
    • Use warm instead of hot bathwater.
    • Limit bath time to avoid drying out your skin.
    • There’s no need to shave your legs daily.
    • Lubricate before and moisturize after shaving.
  • Use sun protection – Sun exposure expedites the aging process of the skin. It can also cause skin cancer. Be sure to avoid being in the sun midday, reapply sunscreen every two hours when exposed, and wear clothing that covers your skin.
  • Eat healthy – Fresh and healthy foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein are great for maintaining skin that appears younger.
  • Quit smoking – While smoking causes a slew of additional health issues, the habit rapidly ages the skin. Smoking narrows the blood vessels at the surface of the skin, creating wrinkles and depleting the nutrients your skin needs to stay healthy.
  • Keep stress to a minimum – Stress affects your skin health more than you might think. High stress levels cause breakouts and leave your skin susceptible to other skin conditions.