Wide awake beauty tips

Caroline Cassidy

Throughout the year, plenty of water and a healthy diet rich in fruit and vegetables will help to keep your skin clear and blemish free. But pollutants in the environment, the daily application of make-up and general dirt and grime can quickly take their toll on your skin. If yours is already beginning to look tired, give it a wake-up call with these detox tips.

wide awake beauty tips
wide awake beauty tips

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Pores that are blocked with dead skin cells can quickly turn into spots and blemishes but an exfoliator solves that problem. It's important to remember that in winter skin can often become more sensitive so gentle exfoliation is called for. If your skin is crying out for sensitive treatment, try something micro-exfoliant that won't irritate your skin or a cream exoliator to polish without pain.

Winter tends to dry the skin out and it's tempting to hide those problem areas behind a heavy moisturiser. However, those containing mineral oils can prevent the skin from breathing and end up trapping toxins beneath the surface, so a cream or lotion containing natural plant oils is a better choice for this time of year.

These more natural products will feel light on your skin, and moisturise instantly without clogging the pores, thereby giving you that fresh, dewy look.

Body scrub
Just as your face needs a helping hand to remove impurities, so too does the rest of your skin. All-over exfoliation not only allows toxins to be released and dead skin cells removed, but it will also give it a firmer, smoother texture.

Begin by dry brushing, always upwards and before you shower, to improve circulation and encourage lymph drainage. Then opt for an energising body scrub to finish the job.

Mask it
A face mask not only does your skin the power of good, it has the added benefit of feeling like a quick and easy at-home pampering session.

Clay masks have long been used to remove impurities, and will leave the skin brighter, tighter and softer for an more youthful appearance. For a moisture-boosting alternative, try SK-II's Facial Treatment Mask, which uses pitera for deep hydration and a clear, radiant glow.

All puffed out
Puffy eyes and dark circles are a big giveaway if you have been overdoing it, and there really is no replacement for plenty of water and a good night's sleep.

However, there are many products on the market aimed at giving you a quick-fix solution, not to mention the odd natural remedy. For instance, we've all heard of cooling cucumber slices as a cure for puffiness, but a slice of Granny Smith fresh from the fridge makes an excellent alternative, as the tannin in the apple will give your bags some anti-inflammatory relief.

Alternatively, applying a cream or gel that contains caffeine may do the job, as it draws water away from the skin to give it a tighter appearance.

What's your favourite skin detox product and why? Leave your comments below...