4 Signs You Are Over-Exfoliating Your Skin

over-exfoliating, signs of over-exfoliation

There’s no denying exfoliation is a wonderful thing for your skin. A good scrubbing session takes off dirt and excess oils, boosts circulation and leaves your face smooth and silky. But too much of a wonderful thing can be a bad thing. Over-exfoliating is the one skincare mistake almost all of us make. While we scrub and peel our faces in an attempt to keep our skin happy and healthy, too much of it is doing more harm than good. Here are the 5 signs of over-exfoliation to watch out for:

#1. Your face is too shiny

If your face shines like a disco ball, you need to give it a break from exfoliators. Light reflects off over-exfoliated skin easily, because its natural texture has been overly smoothed (yes, there is such a thing as too much smoothness).

#2. Your breakouts are getting worse

Excessive exfoliation strips your skin from its natural moisture which prompts your sebaceous glands to produce more oil to compensate for the loss of hydration. In addition, scrubbing too aggressively too often can disrupt skin’s lipid barrier and hinders its ability to protect the under-layers from bacteria and free radicals.

#3. Your skin feels like it was sunburned

Redness, itchiness, and puffiness are all inflammatory responses, signalling that your skin is in distress. The top layer of your epidermis acts like a shield against allergens, irritants and pollutants. When this natural exterior barrier is compromised, your skin becomes more susceptible to irritants and environmental damage.

#4 Your skin feels like crepe paper

When you are over-exfoliating, you are scrubbing away healthy skin cells and lipids that help your skin retain its natural hydration levels. If your skin feels flaky and fine lines suddenly become more visible, that’s a sure sign your skin doesn’t retain sufficient moisture.

Eat Your Way to a Flawless Complexion: 4 Essential Vitamins for Healthy Skin

When it comes to skin health, the old adage ‘you are what you eat’ holds true more than ever before. If you are hankering after spotless, radiant complexion, what you put in your body matters just as much (or even more) as what you put on your skin. Here are the 4 essential vitamins for healthy skin and foods that contain them:

1. Vitamin A

vitamins for healthy skin, vitamin A foods

Why is it good? 

Vitamin A is a miracle worker against fine lines, spots and wrinkles. Similar to retinoids, which are derived from it, vitamin A speeds up tissue repair and supports the healthy functioning of skin’s protective barrier.

It is also a great supplement for oily and acne-prone skin as it can help reduce excess sebum production and clear rough patches on your face.

Natural Sources of Vitamin A: 

  • Liver and liver products such as pâté (but no more than once a week, too much vitamin A can be harmful to your health, especially if you are pregnant or trying to conceive)
  • Eggs
  • Oily fish
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Carrots and leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale
  • Yellow fruit such as mango, papaya and apricots

Best Vitamin A Product: Ossential Advanced Radical Night Repair

vitamins for healthy skin, vitamin A, retinol

Ossential Advanced Radical Night Repair contains 1% retinol which is the highest retinol concentration you can find in over-the-counter products. Retinol is an active form of vitamin A that clears up uneven pigmentation and diminishes the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and pigmentation. Ossential Advanced Radical Night Repair is formulated with multiple antioxidants to neutralise free radicals and prevent future damage to your skin.

2. Vitamin C

vitamins for healthy skin, vitamin C

Why is it good?

We all know vitamin C can help us fight off colds and flu, but its antioxidant properties are great for skin, too. Vitamin C protects your complexion from free radical damage and boosts collagen production. Exposure to sunlight and pollutants depletes the amount of vitamin C in your skin, so add vitamin-rich foods to your diet to ensure you are getting your daily dose.

Natural Sources of vitamin C:

  • Oranges and orange juice
  • Strawberries
  • Broccoli
  • Red and green peppers
  • Blackcurrants

Best Vitamin C Product: Ossential® C-Bright Serum

Ossential C-bright Serum provides a potent dose of 10% pure, stabilised vitamin C to combat spots, dullness and wrinkles. The serum activates upon contact with the skin’s natural water content to maximise exfoliation and reveal radiant, even-toned skin.

3. Vitamin E

vitamins for healthy skin, vitamin E foods

Why is it good?

Vitamin E is another powerful antioxidant that reduces inflammation and neutralises free radicals before they harm the cells in the upper layers of your skin. Studies have shown that vitamin E protects better when it’s combined with vitamin C. When used together, vitamins C and E help reduce the damaging effects of UV radiation twice as effectively than when administered alone.

Natural Sources of Vitamin E:

  • Plant oils such as soya, corn and olive oil
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Wheatgerm – found in cereals and cereal products
  • Avocado
  • Olives

Best Vitamin E Product: Ossential C-bright Serum 

C-bright

 

To optimize the benefits of both vitamins, Ossential C-Bright Serum is formulated with 10% pure vitamin C, vitamin E and Q-10 to protect your skin from environmental damage and stimulate healthy collagen production.

4. Vitamin D

vitamins for healthy skin, vitamin D foods

Why is it good?

Vitamin D is vital for skin cell growth and repair. It prevents the onset of premature aging and enhances skin’s ability to retain and replenish moisture. Vitamin D plays a big role in fighting off bacteria and its deficiency is strongly linked to acne breakouts and inflammation.

Natural Sources of Vitamin D: 

  • Oily fish such as salmon, herring and fresh tuna
  • Mushrooms
  • Egg yolks
  • Fortified cereals
  • Red Meat

Best Vitamin D Product: Oclipse® Sunscreen + Primer SPF 30

vitamins for healthy skin, vitamin D, sun protection, SPF 30, oclipse sunscreen+primer SPF 30

Vitamin D is also known as the “sunshine vitamin” because our body synthesises it from sunlight exposure. However, letting the sun beat down on your face and body without SPF protection is not the right way to get your daily dose of vitamin D.

The World Health Organisation has identified solar UV radiation as a proven human carcinogen, linking to 90% of nonmelanoma skin cancers and about 86% of melanomas. Unprotected sun exposure is also the number one reason for premature skin ageing. So, is there a way to get vitamin D without abusing your skin and putting your health at risk?

Oclipse® Sunscreen + Primer SPF 30 protects your skin from the harmful effects of UV radiation and enhances skin barrier functions. SPF 30 keeps out 97 percent of UVB rays, which means that 2 to 7 percent of solar rays still reaching your skin; this is more than enough to get the vitamin D your body needs.

 

Hydration vs Moisture: What is the difference?

Do you know the difference between hydration and moisture? While these two words are often used interchangeably by beauty brands, they are not the same thing. Skin hydrators and moisturisers are two very different types of products and serve a different purpose for your skin. Here is everything you need to know to navigate successfully thought the maze of skincare products:

How to tell if your skin is dry or dehydrated?

Dry skin is a skin type characterised by a lack of skin oils and epidermal lipids. Common signs of dry skin are flakiness, tightness and increased sensitivity. You might have naturally dry skin, but it can also be due to environmental factors such as ultraviolet radiation and pollution.

Dehydrated skin, on the other hand, is a skin condition. Dehydrated skin has a lack of water in the top layer of the epidermis. It can affect all skin types, including oily and combination. Dehydrated skin shows accelerated signs of ageing such as fine lines, sagging and overall dull appearance.

How to treat dry skin

· Protect your skin from the elements

External elements such as ultraviolet light, heat and air pollution can zap the moisture from your complexion, exacerbate irritation and cause further damage to your skin’s lipid layer. So, the most important step in your skincare routine is sun protection.

zo skin health oclipse smart tone, hydration vs moisture, hydrating sunscreen

Oclipse® Smart Tone SPF 50 shields your skin from harmful UVA, UVB and HEV rays and restores healthy moisture levels. It’s enriched with antioxidants and skin barrier replenishers to help your skin stay soft, firm and hydrated.

· Help your skin keep its natural hydration

If your face is dry and flaky, your first instinct may be to scrub until it’s all smooth and soft, right? Wrong. The worst thing you can do to your dry and parched skin is use harsh, gritty exfoliators. Aggressive physical exfoliation will strip the epidermis from its already insufficient oils and leave your face tighter and drier.

OFFECTS HYDRATING CLEANSER zo skinhealth, hydration vs moisture

Wouldn’t it be nice to tackle cleansing and hydration all at once? Offects Hydrating Cleanser acts both as a cleanser and moisturiser. It removes dirt and dead cells from your skin and replenishes its natural moisture levels.

· Repair your skin barrier

When you have a healthy functioning skin barrier, your complexion is plump, soft and hydrated. The lipids in the protective layer of the skin fight off dehydration by locking water molecules inside the stratum corneum –the top layer of your epidermis–and protect your skin from external factors.

OMMERSE RENEWAL CREME zo skinhealth, hydration vs moisture

Ommerse Renewal Crème is packed with powerful ingredients to give your skin a major hydration boost. Formulated with sodium hyaluronate to restore the healthy functioning of your skin barrier, along with jojoba esters and antioxidants soothe irritation.

How to treat dehydrated skin

· Drink plenty of water (no, water in your coffee doesn’t count)

hydration vs moisture, treat dehydrated skin, drink water
All cells in your skin, especially those responsible for collagen production, require water to function properly. Inadequate water intake causes your skin to lose elasticity and makes wrinkles and pores more visible. So, drinking enough water is crucial to your skin looking and feeling great. Aim for eight to ten 8-ounce servings daily and try to spread them throughout the day as your body can only absorb 17 ounces each hour.

· Add a serum to your skincare routine

There is a tricky part with hydration – simply drinking water is not enough to fix your dehydrated complexion because it will reach all the organs inside your body before it goes to your skin. So, don’t skip topical hydrators, if you want to get rid of dull skin.

C-bright, hydration vs moisture, hydrating serum, dehydrated skin

The key to proper hydration lies in supplementing your skincare with moisture-enhancing serums that penetrate the deeper layers of the skin rather than sitting on the surface. Ossential® C-Bright Serum contains naturally occurring lipids that replenish hydration and boost skin barrier function.

· Cut back on alcohol

hydration vs moisture, alcohol, coctails, dehydrated skin

Cocktails and wine, like many other things we enjoy on a Friday night, can wreak havoc on our skin. Alcohol is a double whammy for your skin; it forces water out of your system and hinders the production of vasopressin – the hormone that helps your body (and your skin) restore its hydration levels. So, if your skin looks tired and sallow all the time, maybe it’s time to replace your glass of wine with a cup of green tea.

4 Mistakes That Are Giving You Dry Skin

Struggling with dry, flaky skin? Your skincare routine may be to blame. We break down the 4 most common mistakes that dry out your complexion and easy ways to avoid them:

#1 Skipping out on SPF

dry skin, winer sun protection, spf

You may think that wind and cold are the major causes for those cracks and flakes, but when it comes to weather, sunlight is the one to watch out for.Just because the sun rays don’t feel as strong as in summer months doesn’t mean you should leave your skin unprotected. If skin cancer risks and accelerated ageing aren’t reason enough for you, there’s another incentive to wear SPF all year round. Sunscreen doesn’t only protect you from harmful sun radiation but also reinforces skin’s protective barrier and helps your complexion withstand the harsh winter conditions.

#Soaking in a hot bath

dry skin, long hot bath

Yes, taking a long relaxing bath can be a glorious reward to a gruelling day at work, but it also might be the reason why your skin is tight and itchy. Hot water strips the natural oils in the epidermis that keep your skin smooth, soft and plump. So, if you want to get dewy, radiant complexion, you need to discover another way to find your zen and start taking short, lukewarm showers.

#Slathering on thick creams

dry skin, thick moisturiser, clogging pores

Getting more moisture is only half the battle with dry skin. You also want to use products that help your skin retain newly stored hydration. The molecules of thick moisturisers are too large for your pores to soak them up and penetrate the deeper layers of your skin.

Applying coats of thick, greasy creams will only lead to clogged pores, so instead grab a targeted product packed with active ingredients that hydrate your skin from within. Ommerse Renewal Crème is supercharged with hyaluronic acid and antioxidants to give your skin a major hydration boost and protect it from free radical damage. Willowherb extracts and jojoba esters minimise redness and soothe sensitised skin.

#Applying products in the wrong order

Finding the right products is only the battle with dry skin. Slathering creams and serums at random order will reduce their efficacy. So, layering is key.  

An easy rule of thumb to follow is to apply products with the thinnest consistency to thickest or from liquid to oil. Here’s the right order to apply your skincare products:

1.    Cleanse

dry skin, hydrating cleaser, offects hydrating cleanser

 

Offects Hydrating Cleanser will gently remove dirt and dead cell build-ups from your skin and restore moisture levels.

2.    Stimulate

C-bright, dry skin serum, C-bright serum plus, vitamin C

 

Ossential C-Bright Serum will penetrate the deeper layer of your skin and stimulate the healthy function of your skin’s protective barrier.

3.    Repair

OMMERSE RENEWAL CREME zo skinhealth, dry skin, hydrating creme

Ommerse Renewal Crème stimulates the skin’s DNA repair mechanism and helps retain newly stored hydration.

4.    Protect

zo skin health oclipse smart tone, dry skin, hydrating sun screen, SPF 50, winter sun protection

Oclipse Smart Tone SPF 50 protects the skin from the damaging effects of UVB, UVA and HEV light. It’s enriched with skin conditioners and antioxidants to support healthy moisture levels and protect the skin from free radical damage.

5 DIY Skincare Myths Debunked

DIY skincare recipes are all over the internet, boasting to miraculously solve skin problems with simple, cheap, available in your home ingredients. But is it really possible to banish acne with baking soda? Here the 5 most popular DIY skincare myths and the truth behind each one:

1. Lemon Juice

DIY skincare, lemon juice

Myth: Lemon juice clears up dark spots and brightens the skin.

Reality: The pH of the products you use is crucial for maintaining a healthy complexion. The natural pH of the skin is between 4.5 and 6.5.  Lemons have a pH of 2 which means they are highly acidic. Lemon juice will disturb the natural pH levels of your skin and damage its protective barrier. If you use it in your skincare routine regularly, you risk getting a chemical burn or developing hyperpigmentation. Lemons contain psoralen – a chemical that that makes your skin extremely sensitive to light and susceptible to photodamage.

2. Raw eggs

DIY egg mask

Myth: Egg masks reduce fine lines and tighten the skin.

Reality: The texture of raw eggs can clog your pores and trigger breakouts. If you are using egg whites, there’s also the risk of salmonella. Salmonella bacteria can get into your body through microscopic abrasions of the skin, so keep the eggs away from your face and make an omelette instead.

3. Baking soda

DIY skincare, baking soda exfoliation

Myth: Exfoliating with baking soda can remove acne scars, relief sunburns and soothe skin rashes.

Reality: Baking soda is not only ineffective but actually damaging to your skin.  A mix of baking soda and water has a pH of 8 which means it is alkaline. Alkaline products are extremely drying and damage the skin’s acid mantle. Baking soda disrupts the activity of enzymes in the upper layers of your skin which affects the healthy functioning of your skin cells. The worst part is that damage caused by alkaline products is cumulative – the longer you use them, the more harm they do.

4. Coconut oil

DIY skincare, coconut oil

Myth: Coconut oil is antibacterial and can help reduce acne. 

Reality: Coconut oil rose to fame in skincare blogs and magazines when studies showed that lauric acid may effectively fight against P acne bacteria. What beauty magazines and DIY gurus forget to mention is that the studies used purified acid, not the 50% mix of lauric and fatty acids which coconut oil contains. The truth is that coconut oil is highly comedogenic and far from being antibacterial. It is full of things bacteria feed on (lipids and caprylic acid) and its thick texture will clog your pores and make acne breakouts worse. 

5. Sugar

DIY skincare, sugar

Myth: Sugar scrubs remove dead skin cells and clean clogged pores.

Reality: Sugar crystals have uneven, jarred edges that will leave microscopic cuts on the top layer of your epidermis and disrupt the skin’s lipid barrier. Naturally, this will make your skin vulnerable to dryness, flakiness and irritation.

5 Ways to Get Rid of Dry Lips by Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is around the corner, but are your lips ready to pucker up?  If the bitter cold has left you with dry, chapped lips – we’ve got you covered! Here’s our action plan to make that special kiss smooth as silk:

Exfoliate

dry lips, lips exfoliation

Exfoliation is the first step to smooth, irresistibly kissable lips. Forget about sugar scrubs and chemical products and instead brush your lips with a gentle toothbrush or a soft washcloth. Regular exfoliation will not only banish dry, dead skin flakes but also improve your circulation and enhance the natural rosy colour of your lips.

Avoid lip balms in pots

dry lips, potted lip balm

Potted lip balms are not only unhygienic but potentially harmful to your health if you have severely chapped and cracked lips. Think about all the germy things you touch with your hands throughout the day! Every time you put your hand a door handle, press and ATM button or use your cell phone, your fingers pick up bacteria and transfer them to your balm pot. Cracks in the skin of your lips are open doors for infections and you increase your chances of picking one up when you rub lip balms with your fingers. Plus, some of the ingredients in lip balms provide an ideal breeding ground for germs, so they can survive in the pot for weeks or even months.

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!

Given that our skin comprises 63% water, it comes as no surprise that hydration is key for smooth and healthy lips. But there is a tricky part – simply drinking water means it will reach all the other organs of your body before it goes to your skin. So, adding topical hydration is crucial for treating and preventing dry and cracked lips.

Liprebuild zo medical, dry lips remedy

Liprebuild™ is an advanced lip treatment, formulated with peptide complex and antioxidants that soothe and restore sore, chapped lips. While most lip balms just sit on your lips as an impermanent shield to dry air, Liprebuild™ works actively to treat and prevent dryness. Its moisture-recycling technology replenishes the phospholipids and fatty acids in your skin and helps dry lips preserve newly stored hydration.

Use products with SPF

dry lips, lips spf protection

Lips can burn, get wrinkles and develop skin cancer like the rest of your skin. So, they need sun protection just as much. Make sure the products you use have an SPF of at least 15 to protect your lips from the damaging effects of sun rays.

Don’t lick your lips

dry lips, licking lips

As tempting as it is, don’t lick your dry lips. Saliva contains digestive enzymes such as amylase and maltase that break fats and proteins – basically what your lips are made of. So, licking dry, sore lips will only exacerbate the dehydration.

5 Easy Tricks to Get Fuller Lips Without Injections

Valentine’s Day is on the horizon, but are your lips ready to pucker up?

There aren’t any non-invasive permanent solutions for fuller lips, but these little tricks can help you get your prettiest pout for Valentine’s Day:

Smooth things out

Dry, flaky lips look smaller (and less kissable) because they don’t reflect light. The easiest way to get rid of the flakes is to exfoliate your lips with a gentle toothbrush.

fuller lips, lips exfoliation

The smoother your lips are, the more light they reflect, making them look thicker and more defined. Bonus point – the circular motions and the pressure, you apply while scrubbing, will improve your circulation and add a dash of natural pink to your lips.

Give your lips a drink

The key to the perfect pout is hydration, hydration, hydration! You would be surprised to find out how much fuller your lips will look if you add a powerful hydrator to your daily routine.

Liprebuild zo medical, fuller lips, lips hydration

Soothe dry, sore and chapped lips with Liprebuild. After just a few applications, its clinically proven, moisture-recycling technology will restore and plump your lips. Liprebuild is packed with plant stem cell antioxidants and vitamins to defend your lips from the drying effects of sunlight and pollutants.

Even it out

Before you uncap the red lipstick, prime your lips with foundation or a concealer.

fuller lips, lips foundation

A layer of foundation will give them a smoother finish and keep your lipstick intact all evening. Spread the foundation a little over your upper lip to create a larger canvas.

Fill and define

Nothing is going to help you emulate the Kylie Jenner pout more than a lip liner.

fuller lips, lip liner

Choose one that is one or two shades darker than your natural lip colour, then outline and fill in your entire lips. When doing the contour, trace the liner slightly outside your natural lip line to avoid the clown look.

Shimmer and sparkle

Dark shades may be super trendy, but dark lipstick will flatten the appearance of your mouth and make your lips look thinner.

fuller lips, pink lip stick, shimmery gloss

Instead, try a shimmery lip gloss in rosy shades; the sparkles will illuminate your lips and add dimension to your pout.