Caring for you Skin

Skin - shoulder

Throughout the month of May we are celebrating Head to Toe Beauty with the ladies from F.A.B Women. Every week we’ll update with information on taking care of a different part of your body. Today’s topic is focusing on your head and shoulders, or more specifically your décolletage.

As you look at your face, you’ll see your head, neck and chest, which are all supposed to be a part of your skin care routine. you don’t want to grow older with beautiful skin on your face and wrinkles in your neck, giving away your age. So to prevent that, treat the rest of you décolletage and neck area with the same care as your face.

The first question people usually have about skin care is when to start and the answer to this one is actually quite simple. As soon as the hormones start the skin care routine needs to start. So as soon as you hit puberty, you need to start taking care of your skin as today’s sunburn will result in tomorrow’s wrinkles so to speak. We don’t wait for the effects to show on our skin, before we start treating them. As they say, prevention is better than cure and when it comes to the incurable, such as wrinkles, blotches and aged skin, it is definitely the better option.

Now you ask how to go about getting your skin care routine in place and the first step is to get your skin analysed, so that you know what you are dealing with. In your analysis you will find out what your skin type is and from there if you have any specific conditions that need to be dealt with. If you don’t know your skin type and you are using the incorrect products, it is possible to cause skin conditions which could have been avoided. So let’s start with the basic’s first.

Your skin type it is actually very simple and people tend to over complicate it, it’s all about your genes. You usually have a combination of the following three types:

  • Dry – This skin type has very fine pores is usually light in colouring with an almost see through looking skin. Dry skin    types usually age quickly and easily as they don’t produce enough oils to help against the anti-ageing process.
  • Oily – This skin type has larger pores is usually more yellow of colour and has an almost leather effect on the skin. Oily skin is also not always a bad thing to have as it doesn’t age as easily as the pores are bigger and releases more oils to help against the anti-ageing process.
  • Normal – This skin type is not often seen as it’s almost to good to be true. The oil balance is perfect with no pimples or blackheads and this can be accredited to either regular spa treatments or really good genes.

Skin conditions on the other hand are conditions that develop as a result of the treatment or lack there of that your skin has received. We are only going to look at the three most common ones as there really are a lot and they can get very scientific, but the basic ones we see often are:

  • Dehydration – Which occurs especially here in Nelson Mandela Bay as we are right by the ocean and are blessed with African sunshine which contributes to drying out our skin. You might think you have a dry skin type, but it’s actually dehydrated and all you need is a good moisturizer  Here you need to be careful to not over do it, which will lead to pimples and oiliness, but rather see a specialist that can guide you to put the right amount of moisture back into your skin. This is why it’s so important to get your skin analysed, so that you know what you are dealing with and how to go about treating it with the right products.
  • Acne – This is not only a condition for teenagers, but actually found on babies and adults as well. If you have quite a bad case of pimples, it doesn’t mean it’s acne. Acne is an inflammatory condition that needs proper care to clear up. Lately teenagers tend to go the chemical route to clear it up, which isn’t always necessary as you can get rid of skin conditions, by being patient and dedicating yourself to a good skin care routine. There are cases where you might need the help of antibiotics to clear up a bacteria, but for the most part the right routine will work. If you are struggling with this conditions, go see a specialist before you go the chemical route and see if you can get it sorted out the natural way.
  • Pigmentation – Often pigmentation only shows up later in life and it’s important to take care of your skin when you are younger to prevent this from happening. However if you have pigmentation and would like to get rid of it, you’ll have to go see a specialist in this field as they’ll be able to give you more details specific to your need. If it’s a couple of freckles, try bathing in buttermilk as they use to do in the old days and keep out of the sun.

Now that you have an idea of where you stand with your skin, it is time for us to have a look at the basic things you need to make part of your skin care routine to ensure a healthy skin:

  • Cleanse everyday – Keep in mind that you won’t wash you dishes with just water everyday, you’ll at a cleansing agent. The same goes for your skin, you need to cleanse it properly every day. Don’t use soap for this task as it is made with caustic soda which is quite harsh on your skin. Rather use a glycerine based soap if you prefer the soap form to a liquid. Otherwise there are different cleansers on the market that you can try as your needs change. The first one is a foam cleanser, which leaves your skin feeling squeaky clean. This will be for the younger ladies as it strips the oil off which you need as you get older. If you have a more mature skin, a cream based cleanser will be better for you. Keep your eyes open for a cleanser that lifts as it cleanses if you are older, as we sometimes need that extra boost when our gravity works against us.
  • Tone – An astringent/toner helps with your skin’s oil balance and to keep it feeling fresh. You get ones with and without alcohol  If you have an oily skin, the one with alcohol is a good option as it clears up the oiliness and also sterilise your skin. Otherwise you can get a normal freshener, which doesn’t contain alcohol  but serves the same purpose as a toner. Keep your eyes open for one that helps with broken capillaries (little red veins), it will contain a bit of alcohol which helps to restrict them.
  • Moisturizer and Nourisher – This is a topic all on its own, so to keep it simple I’ll remind you about what I said earlier. Go see a professional that can help you choose the right product. Not an over the counter job, but someone who can start with the basic analysis and take it from there. You don’t want to break out in pimples because the moisturizer is to heavy for you, but you also don’t want to have dehydrated skin.

When you start putting your skin care routine together, keep it simple at first, otherwise it can get quite overwhelming. Start with these three basic products, some you even get two in ones which are great. As you get used to it, you’ll see where you need more products, like eye-creams or primers, but for now just keep it simple.

One big tip I’d like to leave you with this reminder, don’t over cleanse. If you have oily skin, you might feel the need to clean your face three times a day, but keep in mind that the more you clean it the more oil will be produced, which leads to a more oily skin. Same goes for scrubbing, so rather under stimulate the oil glands in this case, to ensure a healthier skin.

Zelmarie and Karen from F.A.B Women are sharing the beauty basics from head to toe with us this month. For more information you can go have a look at their site and tune into Kingfisher FM every Monday between 11:00 and 11:30