Health

Edit your routine for clearer skin

Form good habits such as keeping hair out of your face and washing your sheets and pillow case regularly for better skin

TAME YOUR TRESSES

Healthy skin actually begins with good hair hygiene.

Sweat, dirt and bacteria collect in your hair daily, so it makes sense to wash them out before hitting the sack.

However, even if you have the habit of showering daily before bed, your tresses could still be sabotaging your skincare regimen.

Leave-in hair products are chock-full of chemicals, oils and fragrances, many of which are not formulated for prolonged contact with your skin.

They can irritate your skin, clog pores and contribute to inflammation and zits. So keep your hair out of your face at night in a loose ponytail.

ORDER PLEASE

Rethink your shower routine.

Hair masks and conditioners contain many rich conditioning agents that work their magic to resuscitate fried strands and even revive dull hair colour. But these are not meant to come into contact with your delicate skin.

So always wash your face after you wash your hair to cleanse away these hair products - not the other way round.

DO THE LAUNDRY

Doing laundry is never a favourite activity, but it is necessary.

Your wet towels are breeding grounds for bacteria. So are your pillowcases, which you press your hair and face to all night. Wash them once a week to prevent this bacteria from transferring to your face and causing ghastly breakouts.

PHONE ETIQUETTE

If you are like most people, your mobile phone is practically an extension of your face. You wash your face about twice a day, so why would you clean your mobile phone less than once a year?

Make-up, sweat and sebum transfer from your face to your phone whenever you use it, and bacteria builds up when you touch it with your hands.

Many experts suggest your mobile phone may be dirtier than the toilet seat. So clean it weekly with an alcohol wipe.

Do the same for your glasses, sunglasses and anything else that touches your face.

CLEAN MAKE-UP BRUSHES

Don't leave your brushes contaminated with month-old make-up, bacteria and dust - this is a sure-fire way to give yourself a bad case of acne.

Wash your brushes with a brush cleanser or gentle facial cleanser. Dry your brushes with their bristles facing up in a container, not facing down so as not to distort their natural shape.

WEATHER-PROOF YOUR SKINCARE

You don't have to give your skincare regimen an overhaul - just use the more lightweight products during the day to avoid clogged pores, and save your richer products for overnight use when your skin will benefit more from them anyway.

SWEAT IT OUT

The best detox you can get is a good workout. Exercise improves blood circulation, delivering oxygen and nutrients to your cells.

It also flushes out toxins, giving you clear skin. Just be sure to cleanse off all that grime and sweat after your workout.

WHEN LIFE GIVES YOU LEMONS…

You are probably tired of hearing beauty experts extol the benefits of drinking lots of water.

You can always one-up them with hot lemon water. This is believed to cleanse the digestive system and rehydrate the body for healthy skin. It also infuses your body with vitamin C - a powerful antioxidant for bonus anti-ageing benefits.

GO GREEN

Filling your plate with green leafy vegetables can also improve your digestive health for better detoxification and more balanced skin. Probiotic supplements can also achieve the same effect.

BANISH DAIRY

Did you know that cow's milk may contribute to inflammation? The hormones present can also over-stimulate oil glands, exacerbate already oily skin and result in an acne attack.

So scale back on ice cream, milk and cheese, or save them for cheat days.

This article first appeared on

Her World Online (www.HerWorld.com)

WELLNESS & BEAUTY