Asian businesswoman meditating at work

The skin is the largest organ in the human body as well as its fiercest protector. When the weather is cold, your skin keeps you warm. When the weather is hot, your skin secretes sweat to cool you down. It shields you from bacteria and chemicals. It holds all your other organs in and allows you to feel touch. The skin is so good at its job that sometimes you forget it's doing work at all. It deserves all the TLC it can get. Here are self-care ideas to show your skin some appreciation.

Use a Gentle Cleanser in the Morning

Don’t skip cleanser in the morning. You may think that your skin is still clean because all you did was sleep, but it’s not. Your pillows and sheets can have dead skin, dirt, oils, and bacteria that can transfer onto your skin and clog your pores. Wash off creams and serums from the night before to prepare your skin for your morning routine. It allows your skin to reap maximum benefits from your skin care.

Some say washing your face in the morning can strip the skin of natural oils, but it all depends on your skin’s needs. The best route for all skin types is to use a gentle, hydrating cleanser. POND’S Aloe Vera Jelly Cleanser is a unique formula that refreshes and hydrates the skin with natural aloe vera and vitamin B3. This gentle cleanser minimizes the appearance of pores and gives your skin a glowing, healthy start. Follow with POND’S Aloe Vera Jelly Moisturizer for a fresh, glass skin effect.

Drink Water on an Empty Stomach

Start your day right by drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning.

This is one of the easiest self-care ideas to follow. After all, every little thing the body does requires water — even breathing while you sleep. This means, for eight hours, you're expending precious hydration without taking it back in. Drinking water upon waking up refreshes your body as well as replenishes your reserves. According to an article in the US National Library of Medicine, this can help you feel more energized and focused. It also helps with detoxifying the body and strengthening the skin.

Don't Forget to Reapply Sunscreen

Reapplying sunscreen is just as important as applying it the first time. A study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology reveals that sunscreens that are readily removed from the skin, whether by water, sweat, or rubbing, don’t offer that much protection no matter how often they are reapplied. The study, therefore, suggests applying sunscreen 15 to 30 minutes before sun exposure and reapplying every 15 to 30 minutes after sun exposure begins.

If you’re wearing sunscreen even if you’re not going out (we see you, bestie), reapply every two to three hours.

You Might Want to Skip Dessert

This is probably one of the most unwelcome self-care ideas, but it may also be the one you need. According to the Journal of Advances in Dermatology and Allergology, eating too much sugar can induce an insulin spike. This can break down collagen fibers, put sebaceous glands in overdrive, and cause acne and inflammation. It can aggravate breakouts, speed up the skin sagging and wrinkles, and even make eczema worse.

Need some skin-friendly dietary suggestions? According to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, people who consume more fish, olive oil, and legumes were less prone to breakouts than those who ate more sugar, high-fat dairy, and meat. The study also found that soft drinks and pastries are most associated with wrinkles. You’ve been warned!

Keep Your Hands Off Your Face

Love your skin? Stop touching your face to keep it clean and healthy.

Newsflash: Your hands are filthy. No matter how often you sanitize, you’re bound to touch something that’s contaminated with dirt and bacteria, such as your phone, laptop, or fridge door handle! Avoid touching your face, especially if you have oily, acne-prone skin. Introducing dirt into the mix can trigger breakouts. Resist the temptation to pick at your blackheads and whiteheads or pop a pimple. It can lead to inflammation, infection, and scarring — all of which look way worse than a blackhead.

Manage Your Stress

Are you running out of self-care ideas? Chill out. Increased levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, can lead to dull, oily skin. It messes with your skin’s moisture levels and triggers excess sebum production, which can lead to breakouts. It can also cause red, inflamed skin and exacerbate skin conditions such as eczema and rosacea.

On high-pressure days, consider taking short meditation breaks just to quiet the mind and relax. Exercise can also bring down cortisol levels. Try taking a quick run or a pleasant afternoon stroll to stretch your legs and get some fresh air. 

Double Cleanse at Night

Your skin collects a lot of dirt during the day. Your makeup can also mix with sebum, sweat, and bacteria that may clog your pores. Double cleansing in the evening will remove all traces of dirt and products from your skin. Instead of using harsh makeup removers and soaps, this involves using an oil-based cleanser to lift dirt, and a water-based product to cleanse the skin of oil. The two-step process is much gentler on the skin and leaves it softer and ready to absorb your nighttime skincare products.

Practice these self-care ideas throughout the day to give your skin much-deserved support and appreciation. The best part is doing these will make your skin look even better. It’s a win-win.