Eating for Beauty

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eating for beautyKeeping your skin in great condition doesn’t have to be a full-time job, providing you follow a targeted skincare regime for your skin type. There are also things that you can do from within to help your skin to look its best, such as adding certain foods to your diet. Here, we take a look at what you should be eating, based on your specific skin need.

Acne

Acne responds well to increased doses of vitamin A because this is the thing which helps to regulate the life cycles of your skin cells. In acne, dead skin cells combine with sebum to form the comedogenic plugs which look unsightly. Foods such as sweet potatoes, apricots and mangoes contain all the vitamin A you need, which you can combine with using Dermalogica Clear Start Breakout Clearing Kit to keep breakouts under control.

Hyperpigmentation

Hyperpigmentation usually happens to slightly older skin and can give your skin the appearance of being aged before its time. Foods which are green, such as broccoli and kale contain high levels of alpha lipoic acid (ALA) which is a potent fat-and-water-soluble antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, keeping hyper-pigmentation at bay.

Dryness

Using a moisturiser such as Dermalogica Skin Hydrating Booster to combat dryness is a no-brainer, but sometimes dryness has an underlying dietary cause which can be tackled, too. Often, dryness can be caused by a lack of essential fatty acids and omega 3 in the diet, so adding things like nuts, oily fish, coconut oil and avocado will help your skin immensely.

Lacking plumpness

Free radicals in your system can dull your skin reduce collagen production, which will leave your skin looking sallow and lacking fullness. Adding berries to your diet is a good idea to combat this as they contain antioxidants which will ward off any nasties, while a good plumping cream such as Decleor Lift Wrinkle Filler will target any deeper lines which may have formed.

Sun exposure

We all know that too much sun isn’t good for us, but that doesn’t stop us from wanting to get out in the warmth and soak up a few of those rays while they last. Adding more polyphenols to your diet will actually increase your skin’s natural defences against harmful rays, which will help your sunscreen to do an even better job, so adding pomegranate, cocoa powder and flaxseed is good if you plan on a spot of sun-worshipping.

Keep your sweet tooth at bay

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December is a time when we sit back, enjoy life and over indulge. Sugar is on pretty served on tap over the festive period and now many of us are looking to make some sensible, healthy swaps.

This said, you don’t have to live on water and dry crackers to get healthy but we have to tell you, the only way to kick a sugar habit is to cut right back.

This won’t be easy but over time your body will crave sugar less and you will feel so much better.

We have had a look at some delicious alternatives to sugary snacks and drinks that will keep your cravings for the white stuff at bay.

Porridge with sliced fruit isn’t just a brain boosting breakfast but can also be a filling snack. Keep a stash at work and you won’t be tempted to reach for that chocolate cake.

If you want a healthy snack with a naughty edge, go for rice cakes with peanut butter and chopped banana.

Popcorn can be a great, healthy treat. We aren’t talking about the mega buckets at the cinema but instead fresh popcorn made at home with a sprinkle of cinnamon. Give it a go; we think you will like it, a lot.

Organic oatcakes with hummus and slices of cucumber make a protein packed snack that will keep hunger locked up until lunchtime.

Bananas are great on cereal and smoothies but peel and chop ripe ones into bite-sized chunks and you have crunchy treats that are full of Vitamins B6 and C, potassium, and a serving of fibre too. Frozen grapes are pretty good too.

For an on the run snack that is as easy to make as it to eat, go for homemade trail mix. Throw together coconut flakes, dried fruit, goji berries, raw ruts and seeds and you have an instant, delicious snack that will keep you away from the vending machine. Just watch portion sizes.

Keep a stock of frozen berries in the freezer and add them to low-fat Greek yoghurt for an evening treat. This tastes great but it’s low in sugar and high in protein so will keep you fuller, for longer.

Chunks of melon, strawberries and grapes make tasty fruit kebabs and top up that all-important five a day quota.

Pumpkin and sunflower seeds with a handful of nuts are a cracking combination.

For a real taste bud tingle go for an ice-cold smoothie packed with mango, banana, kiwi, cucumber, spinach, a splash of coconut milk and a little lemongrass. Delicious and refreshing.

Low fat milk with a little honey can give you the sweet hit you need without blowing the plan out of the water.

For a sugar free savory winner, how about sliced apple and pear with a layer of low fat cream cheese?

If you are having a bad day and only chocolate will do, we will let you have a square or two of good quality dark chocolate, but don’t eat it all.

Got a winning combination? Let us know what healthy snacks work for you.

Team Pure-Beauty

Stretch Marks – What Are The Causes and How to Prevent Them

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stretch marksUnless you’re one of the lucky people who never get them, most of us are well acquainted with stretch marks, also known as striations of the skin. These unsightly marks occur during pregnancy, weight or muscle gain or sometimes if a teenager has a particularly rapid growth spurt after puberty, and are literally little tears of the dermis layer beneath the skin. The tears in the dermis allow the blood vessels below to show through, which is why stretch marks are often red or purple when they first appear.

Where Do Stretch Marks Appear?

The most common places for stretch marks to happen are on the hips, buttocks, inner thighs, breasts, upper arms, shoulders and sometimes vertically along the spine in people who’ve gained a few inches in height very quickly.

What Do They Look Like?

When stretch marks first appear, they’re usually an angry red or purple colour and look like lines of bruises. Over time they usually fade and will look like small white lines, however more severe stretch marks, like the ones which appear during pregnancy, sometimes still appear quite angry even years after giving birth.

Can They Be Prevented?

Keeping your skin well-hydrated and supple is the only way to try to avoid stretch marks, so using something deeply moisturising over your whole body and especially on the areas listed above will help. Opt for something like Dermalogica Ultra Rich Body Cream which is an ultra-rich, long-lasting body cream designed to help heal and relieve extra dry skin. This unique liquefying formula is also ideal for all-over, deeply-moisturising body massages.

What Can I Do If I Already Have Stretch Marks?

If you’ve already got stretch marks from a previous pregnancy or weight gain, fear not, there are things you can do to help. Obviously, losing weight healthily and on a balanced diet will prevent further striations from appearing. Decleor also produces the wonderful Sculpt Stretch Mark Restructuring Gel-Cream which deeply moisturises and nourishes the skin.

It’s a multi-functional product which prevents stretch marks from appearing but also helps the skin to repair and regenerate after damage has already happened. The best part is, all Decleor Perfect Sculpt products have undergone in vitro and ex vitro tests on the active ingredients, clinical tests on the boosting effect of AROMESSENCE™ Sculpt, and tests on pregnant women under the supervision of a gynaecologist and are proven to be totally safe for use in pregnancy.

What Happens to Your Body When you Give Up Sugar?

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benefits of quitting sugar

December is almost over which means that most of us are ready to switch out of ‘over-indulgence’ mode and into a far more virtuous mind-set. With Christmas goodies all around, it’s so easy to eat more sugar than during the whole rest of the year and January is a great time to think about seriously reducing your sugar intake, or even giving it up altogether. Today, we’re taking a look at what happens to your body when you quit sugar, to give you an idea of how it might benefit you.

Acne

When you suffer with acne, there are often one or a number of triggers which are personal to you, which can include hormones or any other number of things. However, most people who suffer with acne report a marked improvement when they cut all sugar out of their diet, so if you’re a sufferer it could be well worth a try to improve your outbreak frequency.

Anxiety

It’s been largely proven that the whole “sugar makes kids hyper” thing is a myth, but many adults report that high levels of sugar can really aggravate feelings of stress and anxiety and that cutting it out can improve anxiety levels overall. Reducing stress is important for your heart and overall health, so this could have a knock-on effect in other areas, too.

Weight Loss

In the past, we were taught that fat was the thing to cut down on if we wanted to lose weight, but the most up-to-date research shows that it’s actually sugar which needs to be cut out in order for our bodies to effectively shed weight. Quitting sugar and other simple carbs is the best way to lose weight, feel healthier and even possibly reverse type 2 diabetes.

Bloating

Eating a lot of sugar can encourage the body to hang on to excess fluid, leaving you feeling bloated and over-full. The good news is that as soon as you cut down, your body will release the excess fluid and help you to feel slimmer and less bloated almost immediately.

Energy

Eating large volumes of sugar floods your body, needing a high level of insulin to process it, which then causes your body to crash and feel super low. Sugar also interferes with cortisol production, which can affect your sleep cycle, leaving you feeling incredibly low on energy for the whole day. Quitting sugar and eating a high protein diet will help to keep you feeling energised.

Happiness Hacks for 2017

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We know that a start of a new year can be a time when many of us make endless resolutions so we can be the very best we can.

The thing is, January is cold and dark and even with the best will in the world, getting out of bed in the dark and running 10 miles to be super fit, can be, well, miserable.

So we have come up with a list of 50 really easy things you can do to make yourself happy in 2017 and to be honest, that’s what really matters.

  1. Smile.
  2. Write down three good things for each day in a journal – even on the hardest of days there is something good.
  3. Plan something fun to do each weekend.
  4. Don’t gossip.
  5. Say hello to your neighbours.
  6. Listen to your favourite song, everyday.
  7. Have a bath before you go to bed.
  8. Call your mum, sister, aunt, husband once in a while rather than just texting.
  9. Eat clean, or at least eat healthy.
  10. Go for a walk at lunchtime.
  11. Read a book.
  12. Donate to charity and give back.
  13. Really listen when someone is talking to do.
  14. Skip the news.
  15. Make a cake and eat it fresh from the over.
  16. Light candles.
  17. Get a dog.
  18. Take up a new sport.
  19. Don’t have the argument.
  20. Clear out the clutter.
  21. Send birthday cards don’t just post a message on Facebook.
  22. Drink hot water and lemon when you wake up.
  23. Don’t pop that spot on your chin, it’ll make it red and sore.
  24. Become a volunteer for a local cause close to your heart.
  25. Get on your bike and peddle your way to fitness.
  26. Have a manicure and feel polished.
  27. Turn the TV off and do something less boring instead.
  28. Start a blog.
  29. Wear a new lipstick.
  30. Don’t keep anything for best, life is short, live it.
  31. Go out in the sunshine and up your Vitamin D levels the next way.
  32. Tell someone you love them.
  33. Make use of your local library.
  34. Don’t gossip.
  35. Get a blender and make your own smoothies full of goodness and health benefits.
  36. Sign up for a challenge and stick to it.
  37. Meditate everyday, you will feel the benefits and it will become a part of your routine.
  38. Book a spa day for you and a friend and really relax as you catch up.
  39. Update your CV and get the job you have always really wanted.
  40. Ask your man to marry you – it isn’t a leap year but take control and get a date in the diary.
  41. Host a party and let your hair down.
  42. Apply to be on a talent show.
  43. Go on a digital detox and leave the world of social media behind, even for a few hours.
  44. Book a holiday and have something amazing to look forward to.
  45. Have a make over and only wear the clothes you love and the ones that make you feel great.
  46. Pay off that credit card bill.
  47. Write a letter.
  48. Buy lunch for someone who is sleeping rough.
  49. Go to the cinema in the middle of the day.
  50. Smile, did we say that already?

You see, all easy to do and all with great potential for making you happy.

Happy 2017.

Team Pure-Beauty