Skin care is not just skin deep!
The biggest organ in your body (your skin!) requires a multi-dimensional and holistic approach that cares for both mind and body. When we give our skin the TLC it deserves, it livens up, it radiates and boy does it glow! Luminous skin flows from within, and reflects that we care for ourselves from the inside out.
Skin TLC looks different for each of us, as we each have unique skin that likes its own particular treatment. Your personal care approach will be, remarkably just that – yours! However, there are some guidelines that can serve as sources of direction and items of inspiration.
The strong relationship between the food we eat and the health of our skin is becoming ever more apparent. What goes on within can most definitely come out! Clean, whole, and organic foods that are rich in vitamins, nutrients, antioxidants can help to promote skin’s immunity, elasticity, resilience, and its ability to repair itself.
Fruits and Veggies
Vitamin and nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables are best served whole, organic, and of course – deliciously. Check out this “What’s in a Label?” and CleanEatingMonth.com to find some good, clean food .Give fruits and veggies the adoration they deserve, and experiment with a delicious vegan or vegetarian recipe.
Whole Grains – Whole grains are nutrient rich and promote healthy digestion. Healthy digestive functioning promotes skin health by removing toxins from the body. Less toxins inside of our body = less toxins outside of our body. Happy stomach, happy face! Rice, oats, quinoa, wheat, rye, barley, and whole corn can easily be incorporated into tasty and well-balanced meals.
Leafy greens – Broccoli, lettuce, cabbage, and mustard greens, are rich in iron and calcium, which nourish the skin and tissue. Certain dark leafy greens, such as kale, swiss chard, and spinach, are also packed with beta-carotene, an antioxidant that helps replenish skin cells. Nourished, resilient, rejuvenated skin will glow. Further proof that you can never go wrong with “green”.
Herbs and spices – Many contain essential vitamins and minerals, boost immunity, and promote circulation. Circulation carries necessary blood and oxygen your skin needs to restore, replenish, and rejuvenate itself, and to mightily protect you from harmful bacteria. Try adding cumin, fennel, black pepper basil, turmeric, rosemary, thyme, sage, oregano, ginger, and mint to your herbal arsenal. They will pack an extra punch in any recipe.
Skin care regimens should include a cleanser, toner, and moisturizer to clean out pores and restore the skin to a healthy pH balance. Selected skin care products should be all-natural and compatible with skin type. To ensure effectiveness, it is important to practice skin care on a consistent basis.
Do not hesitate to include oil massage to your personal skin care regimen! It has remarkable health benefits for your body and mind. Oil massages nourish and nurture skin, and can reduce tension and stress.
Yoga and Meditation
Asana (poses) and meditation energize, rejuvenate, and restore our bodies. They promote circulation, aid digestion, and may help to remove toxins from your system. While any good yoga session will naturally take care of skin, there are certain poses that will be especially helpful (Click on the links for further information, instruction, and guidance for each pose)
Surya Namaskar (Sun salutations)– Surya Namaskar is a sequence of 12 asanas that are linked with the breath. The broad physical range of these poses combined with full, controlled breath dynamically revitalize the body.
Twists- Try Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Lord of the Fishes), Marichyasana III (Marichi’s Pose), Janu Sirsana (Head-of-the-Knee Pose), or Parivrtta Parsvakonasana (Revolved Side Angle Pose). Twists are great digestive aids. While in the twists of these poses, be sure to breathe deeply, both in and out. This will massage your stomach and back, and assist in better digestion.
Inversions- Inversions will reverse your blood flow, bring a helpful dose of blood to your head and face, and will improve circulation. They work the parasympathetic nervous systems, and bring steadiness in the breath and true endurance in the body. Try Viparita Karani (Legs up the Wall Pose), Salamba Sirsasana (Supported Headstand), or Salamba Sarvangasana (Supported Shoulderstand).
Chest Openers- Try Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose), Salabhasana (Locust Pose), Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose), and Balasana (Child’s Pose). Chest opening poses promote circulation and oxygenation to the head and body.
Note: Poses should be practiced after the body is warmed up and prepared, and within capability. Those new to yoga should seek the guidance of an accomplished and certified yoga instructor.
Meditation is skin-friendly on a subtler, but very important level. With a consistent meditation practice, you will help to connect with your breath, mind, and subtle body. This connection renders a state of liveliness, ease, and wellbeing that will radiate through your skin!
There are many ways to practice skin care, and that is the fun of it! Try playing with a new delicious and nutritious meal, play with an interesting natural soap or lotion, try a new yoga pose, or try a few moments of meditation. Our bodies and minds will appreciate all the ways we take care, and will show us from inside out. We will glow!