Your skin is the largest organ in your body. It plays a vital role in protecting you from disease and greatly affects the way you look. For these reasons, it’s important to develop healthy skin habits. Here are the best ways to protect your skin.
Excessive sun exposure and severe sunburns before age 18 are the primary causes of skin cancer. Here’s how The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends protecting your skin:
Wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher every day. For extended outdoor activity, protect your skin with SPF 30 or higher.
Seek shade when spending time outside between 10 am and 4 pm.
Wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, a wide-brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses.
Don’t visit tanning salons, which are just as harmful to your skin as direct sunlight.
Hydrate Your Skin
Moist skin is important for looking your best and maintaining an unbroken barrier against bacteria and fungus. Follow these tips to hydrate your skin each day:
Drink plenty of water and other fluids. Start out the day with a tall glass of water or tea to rehydrate after sleeping. Then, strive to drink at least eight cups of water throughout the day.
Take warm, not hot, showers or baths lasting no longer than five to 10 minutes.
Apply moisturizer after showering or washing your face to lock in moisture.
Run a portable humidifier in your bedroom while you sleep.
Keep Your Skin Clean
Washing your face removes dirt, germs, oil, makeup and dead skin cells. Complete this personal hygiene task when you wake up and again before you go to bed. Follow these tips for the best results:
Wash your hands first.
Use warm water and a mild facial cleanser.
Gently massage your face with your fingers. Use small, circular motions, not harsh scrubbing movements.
Rinse thoroughly with warm water to remove all soapy residue.
Pat, don’t rub, your face dry with a clean, soft washcloth.
Apply moisturizer to your slightly damp skin.
Prevent Sores and Infections
Because facial skin is so sensitive, it’s more vulnerable to sores and infections than other parts of your body. Take the following precautions to protect your skin:
Avoid sharing personal items, such as makeup, lip balm, toothbrushes and
Don’t share drinks with other people.
Avoid touching your face with your hands throughout the day.
Don’t pick at cold sores, pimples and other lesions. Get help from a dermatologist to treat these conditions.
Seek prompt attention for bug bites and animal scratches. To prevent infection, apply antibiotic ointment, bandage the area and clean the site twice a day as it heals.
Please Note: Because everyone’s body is unique, individual patient results and experience may vary. Disclaimer: This information is provided as a public service. SCS assumes no liability, legal, financial or otherwise for the accuracy of this information or the manner in which it is used. This information is being provided for informational purposes only and should not be used to replace professional medical advice from your physician or qualified health care professional.