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7 Commandments That Will Help You Achieve Your Skin Care Goals in 2018

BY LINDSAY TIGAR · JANUARY 2, 2018

As you start to dream about the vacations you’ll book in 2018 with friends and loved ones, cross your fingers (and toes and arms and legs!) that this will finally be the year you find love and consider where your career is going—add one more New Year’s to-do to your list: take great care of your skin. While most people remember to book their annual physical, their check-in at the gyno and their teeth cleaning, getting a skin screening and taking care of your face and body are often overlooked. Especially for those who have never struggled with acne or other types of ailments like psoriasis or rosacea, seeing a dermatologist might not even occur to you. But if you’re in your 20s and 30s, it’s time to book an appointment stat—if nothing else, make it a resolution.

“In general the end of the year/beginning of the new year is a time to reflect on yourself, your life and the past year and resolve to make positive changes,” explains dermatologist Dr. Sejal Shah, M.D. “Just as many people make resolutions to improve their general health (e.g. eat healthier, lose weight, exercise more), the new year is a good time to assess your skin health, set goals for the upcoming year and plan on how you will accomplish those goals.”

Here are some commandments to make for your skin for the next 365 days:

1. Wear sunscreen every day

Yes, even in the winter. Even when it’s snowing. No matter what, no exceptions. No matter how young or old you are, sunscreen protects against harmful rays that are always present in the atmosphere, regardless of temperature or season. “If there is a single commandment you pick up in the new year, it should be applying sunscreen daily. Sunscreen is the foundation of any good skin care regimen. Ultraviolet radiation (UVR) is extremely damaging to the skin and contributes not only to skin aging (wrinkles, skin sagging, brown spots) but also the development of skin cancer,” Shah says. “Sunscreen, which protects the skin against harmful UVR, is crucial to protecting the skin.”

2. Wash off your makeup

You can blame it on too many glasses of vino during girl’s night, a last-minute request from your boss that required you to stay up late or that Netflix binge, but your skin is the one that suffers. Makeup left on the skin overnight can not only clog pores and breed bacteria, but it doesn’t ever give your skin a moment to recharge. “It’s really tempting after a long day at work or a long night out to go straight to bed without cleansing your face, but washing your face before you the hit the sack is a must. Sleep is time for the skin to repair and renew itself,” Shah says. “Makeup or other impurities left on the skin do not allow this self-repair process to occur effectively; therefore accelerating the aging process. Furthermore, it can clog pores leading to acne or cause flaky red irritated skin.”

3. Incorporate a vitamin C antioxidant serum to your skin care routine

When you’re starting to feel under the weather, what’s the first thing you think to do? Down some vitamin C, right? As a proactive measure to keep your skin’s elasticity and health, make this the year when you really, truly start to look at the ingredients in your products. “After sunscreen, a vitamin C antioxidant serum is one the most important anti-aging products available. Free radicals from the environment (for example from UVR and pollution) contribute to skin damage and skin aging,” Shah says. “An antioxidant serum neutralizes these damaging free radicals and protects the skin. Unlike some harsher anti-aging ingredients, such as retinoids, antioxidant serums are generally tolerated by all skin types.”

4. Wash your makeup brushes regularly

Fess up, babe: when was the last time you actually cleaned off those makeup brushes you use every single day (sometimes more than once a day)? We won’t judge you for how long it’s been, but make it a priority to ensure you’re cleaning those babies. “People often overlook washing their makeup brushes/applicators regularly but this is a big no-no,” Shah says. “Besides makeup, brushes collect oil, dust, dead skin cells, residue of other products that may be on your face or hair, and other debris. Just imagine transferring all this onto your face! Dirty brushes can contribute to acne, skin infections and skin irritation. Additionally, your makeup may not go on as smoothly and the color may not look perfect.”

5. Give your skin a workout

Just because you can’t go to the spa on the regular doesn’t mean you can’t reap all the same benefits in the comfort of your own home. Enter the Jade Roller. If you haven’t heard, the Jade Roller is the most buzzed-about beauty buy and a favorite among spa owners, top models and editors. Crafted from pure Xiuyan jade stone, this handheld facial tool boosts collagen production, contours cheekbones and jawline, eases headaches and smooths the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Perfect for achieving both instant and long-term results, this remarkable facial took will have you flaunting supple, glowing skin in 2018.

6. Give your liver a much-needed detox

In addition to sugary treats, too many holiday drinks can also wreak havoc on your skin. After a night of drinking, reach for HUM Nutrition Wing Man, the dietary supplement that detoxifies your liver and protects your body from toxins. Silymarin, an extract of milk thistle, has been proven to help your body resist chronic liver diseases brought on by stress or alcohol consumption.

7. Take a probiotic

If you’re already taking a multivitamin, adding in a probiotic isn’t a bad idea, according to Dr. Jessie Cheung, Cheung Dermatology & Aesthetics, Willowbrook, IL and NYC. “These are the good bacteria that colonize your gut and help with digestion, your immune system and serotonin—the happy hormone, which is mostly made in your gut! Your skin reflects the health of your gut,” she explains.

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