How to achieve and maintain youthful skin

Youthful skin is all about increasing cell turnover, but you don’t need a cabinet full of drugstore purchases to achieve that glowy, fresh-faced look. Like much of the human body’s other parts and processes, the body’s largest organ, the skin, is constantly in flux. As the lower layers of the skin travel to the surface to replace old skin cells on top, the skin sheds itself of build-up and debris on its surface.

Every minute you shed an incredible 30,000 skin flakes each minute, adding up to 0.3-0.9 grams per hour and approximately 35kg of skin throughout your lifetime. How it works is that enzymes in your skin degrade the glue that holds skin cells together known as desmosomes to allow the cells to shed. It normally takes 4-6 weeks for old skin cells to shed and be replaced with younger, softer skin but the true length of time varies depending on your age, your diet, and your health.

What ages the skin?

The cell renewal process is an amazing feat of the human body, but it’s not an imperfect one. As we age, the process becomes less efficient, and it may take longer for skin cells to shed. Other factors such as skin disease, inflammation or other skin conditions make it difficult for the skin to renew, leading to a build-up of dead skin cells. The result is dull congested skin, and an uneven skin tone and texture.

Other habits that cause premature skin aging include skimping on the SPF, pollution, stress, and not enough sleep. As the skin renews itself mostly at night, poor sleep is strongly associated with poorer skin barrier function and aging skin. Stress on the other hand is known to release the major stress hormone cortisol which can lead to the breakdown of collagen and speed up the aging process thanks to the increase in inflammation.

How to boost skin cell turnover for healthy and youthful skin

Here are three tips to score healthy, supple skin – no nasty chemicals or harsh treatments needed!

1. Diet

To get enviably youthful skin it helps to start from the inside out. Thankfully eating for healthy skin has benefits for the entire body and mind. A collagen-rich diet has been found to increase the skin’s elasticity and helps maintain plump and pliant skin. Seafood, eggs and meat – particularly bone broth are major sources of collagen but spirulina is an excellent vegan source too.

Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel and herring contain plenty of omega-3 fatty acids which reduce inflammation and helps the skin stay thick and supple. It also contains zinc, a mineral that is vital to the production of new skin cells and the skin’s overall health.

Eating a rainbow of fruits and veggies is another must-do if you want to maintain the skin’s youthful appearance. Avocados are a super food for the skin thanks to the concentration of healthy fats and vitamins E and C. Studies show that a diet of fruit and veggies can change the skin’s pigment, making you look healthier and more attractive.

2. Exfoliation

Exfoliation removes the layer of dirt, impurities, and dead skin cells from the skin’s surface to allow newer cells to break through. It should be done 2-3 times a week as part of your regular skin care routine but those with dry or sensitive skin should stick to twice a week at most.

You can slough off the debris using our gentle but effective Green Detox Face Mask. Just add a little water to make a paste and scrub in a circular motion. Leave the mask on for a few minutes longer to enjoy the purifying effects of the clay mask. Green Detox Mask is especially formulated to purge the skin of dead skin cells, oils and impurities and stimulate cell regeneration through star ingredients Australian green clay, kale, wheatgrass, and hemp seed powder.

3. Break up a sweat

Not only is exercise a positive mood booster, but it can also help speed up cell turnover. Regular exercise can have a direct impact on the tone, texture, and overall health of the skin by increasing circulation to the skin. This increased flow of blood and oxygen flushes out free radicals which are known to contribute to the signs of aging.

One study of sedentary subjects with regular exercisers showed that those who regularly break up a sweat had younger looking skin than those who didn’t. The good news is it only takes three months of regular exercise for the skin layers to show improvement!