Get a safe summer glow.
As home-schooling and comfy pants recently became a family-staple in most Hong Kong homes, there are other elements of the daily routine that might have (but probably should not) change. We’re talking about your family’s skincare regime. Even though you might be chilling indoors, it pays to maintain these handy tips, when it comes to healthy skin.
Skin Care: Use An SPF/UV Sun Cream
Yes – even indoors! While it’s important for you and the kids to soak up some rays to boost vitamin D (keeping bones, teeth and muscles healthy…and improving your mood!), it’s also essential to remember that just because you’re indoors, or popping outside for short periods of time, it doesn’t mean that your skin is automatically protected. Damage from ultraviolet light exposure can lead to premature ageing and in some cases skin cancer (UVA rays penetrate deep in the skin breaking down natural elasticity, while UVB cause surface damage) so it’s imperative to remain vigilant.
If the kids play area is flooded in sunlight, your favourite reading spot is a window seat, or perhaps the kids’ homework desk sits in a prime sun-trap, make sure to apply your go-to SPF and UV protection suncream. Look for one that is easy to apply (especially if your little ones never sit still!), is suitable for sensitive skin, waterproof (just in case) and has a minimum sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 – although most will reach straight for factor-50 when it comes to children’s sensitive skin.
Skin Care: Hydrate
As the saying goes, water is the source of all life – and there’s truth in that when it comes to our bodies which are made up of up to 60% water. Water flushes the body of toxins, keeps our joints lubricated, supports our kidney function and other organs. It also has a positive impact on our skin. So how does upping your intake help? While indoors, it’s easy to carry on with our daily tasks forgetting to have a drink in hand or close by. Dehydration can cause our skin to become more vulnerable, dry and – again – lead to premature ageing (gah!). So while it’s important for the kids to rehydrate if they’ve been tearing around the house all day, mama and papa should also reach for a drop of the good stuff (read: water) to stay healthy and youthful!
It’s recommended that 5 to 8-year-olds should drink around five glasses (1 litre), 9 to 12-year-olds seven glasses (1.5 litres), and children 13 years and over (and adults) should have approximately 8 to 10 glasses (2 litres) a day.
Skin Care: Detox And Moisturise
So you’ve got drinking plenty of water down, which is ideal for the next tip: detoxing. All that fluid will help flush your skin clean of toxins and help towards a more even and bright complexion. Alongside drinking more fluids, another top tip for mamas while indoors is to keep up with a moisturising routine. Ensuring you find a cream that fits your skin type, face creams are a great way to boost hydration for your skin as they help to lock in moisture. Just because you’re inside and not exposed to the outdoor elements, it’s still important to treat your skin with some TLC!
While giving your face an aqua boost, try taking a breather from makeup as well. Though using makeup if heading outside can help to add an extra layer of protection from the sun’s harmful rays (when using an SPF based foundation for example), it doesn’t hurt to lay off tampering with your appearance too much while at home. By letting your skin simply be for a while, you’ll also give it a break from upsetting its delicate ph balance.
Skin Care: Clean Your Makeup Brushes
You wouldn’t put your knives and forks away without cleaning them, would you? So ask yourself, when was last time you cleaned your make up brushes? One for the tweens, teens and mamas, this is a useful reminder that your makeup brushes are akin to your hands while applying your favourite beauty products – so washing is a must. It doesn’t bear thinking about how much bacteria might be gathering on those bristles! If you knew, you probably wouldn’t want to then rub them all over your face.
The best way to clean these items is in warm, soapy water (a gentle shampoo is perfect). Swirl them around in the suds before rinsing with clean water, squeeze them out as much as possible without damaging and lay them flat to dry.
Skin Care: Limit Screen Time
Finally, although we’re loving the chance to binge-watch our Netflix favourites (let’s be honest here), lose ourselves with online shopping (essential items only, of course), chilling on the tablet or scrolling through social media on your phone, just be aware that too much screen time and the blue light it emits might also be damaging to the skin.
Though slightly misleading as the light we’re talking about isn’t always blue to the naked eye, this high-energy visible light (HEV) from our gadgets is a similar to the rays we get from the sun. Although research is limited into how blue light from devices might damage the skin, it’s worth keeping in mind that it might if you’re exposed for too long. Not only does it interfere with eye strain, but studies suggest that blue light can increase free radicles in the skin (molecules that cause damage cells in the body) which can cause a breakdown in collagen, contributing to premature ageing, and also hyperpigmentation (the darkening of the skin when exposed to too much melanin).
So what can you do at home? Try opting for no (or low) blue light bulbs and switch to different screen modes where possible. Apple, for example, has introduced a new night-shift light that has a warmer screen tone. It’s thought that antioxidants can help, so try a vitamin C face cream or serum, as well as sunscreens with iron oxides that could protect against prolonged exposure. The other option, switch off the tech and reach for Monopoly for an evening of good old family fun!