In the quest for better skin, some people turn to extreme measures in hopes that big efforts will also yield big results. But you don't have to shell out a ton of cash, time or energy to get brighter, healthier, glowing skin, says dermatologist Jessica Wu. As she tells #OWNSHOW, making a few small changes to your daily habits can have a huge impact on how your skin looks not just now, but also in the future.
1. Eat a rainbow of fruits and vegetables.
We often hear about the health benefits of eating lots of dark green veggies, but don't forget about all the wonderful colorful produce, Wu advises. "Brightly colored fruits and veggies contain carotenoids," she explains. "Research shows that eating more of them can actually help your skin tone look brighter and more glowy."
2. Wear big sunglasses.
Ditch the Lennon-like shades and instead channel your inner Audrey Hepburn. "Choose large, glamorous frames that help to shield that delicate area around your eyes from UV rays," Wu says. "It will also protect the collagen in that think-skinned area."
3. Treat your chest like your face.
With the focus on the face, we often neglect another important area. "The chest is an indicator of a person's age because sun damage and discoloration -- and just normal aging -- can make your chest look really weathered," Wu says. "Any product that you use on your face, whether it's skincare and anti-aging product or especially sunscreen, you should also use on your chest as well. Just remember to do a small patch test on your chest, because the skin there can be a little more sensitive than the rest of your body."
4. Sleep on your back.
Sleeping with your face smashed against a pillow might have been fine when you were a kid, but now, it creates creases that seem to linger long after you wake. "When you were younger, your skin had a lot of elasticity, so it bounced back into position as soon as you woke up. Not so now that you're older," Wu says. "Sleeping on your back will help prevent those sleep creases from turning into deep, permanent wrinkles."
5. Stop drinking from a straw.
Similar to smoking, drinking from a straw can create vertical lines above your upper lip, Wu says. "Anything that makes you pucker your mouth, it makes the muscles crease the skin. Over time, as you lose elasticity, those lines become deeper and more permanent," she explains. "Instead, it's better to drink from a regular cup."
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