We all know that one key to good skin, hair and nails is to eat a healthy and well-balanced diet, which makes us feel great as well as look good. In reality, no matter how many lifestyle magazines we read, many of us don’t eat anywhere close to the amount of fresh fruit, vegetables and good, healthy, skin soothing fats that we should do.
The typical Western diet falls down on providing the recommended daily intake of some of the important nutrients needed to keep skin looking healthy skin and prevent premature ageing, but what can you do if you think your skin might be vitamin-deprived?
Many people turn to topical vitamins – that is vitamins applied to the skin in product form. A good quality product can certainly have a great effect on skin radiance and health. Most skin creams and serums that include vitamins have proven anti-aging benefits and can solve a multitude of problems, improving skin texture and tone and fading under-eye circles. If you include a good quality product as part of a facial treatment with targeted massage and nourishing oils, it will definitely benefit your skin as the oils sink in to your skin and the massaging action helps to boost the effect of the products.
Taking supplements is another popular way of getting vitamins into your system, and the latest skincare micro-trend is using targeted skincare products that work from the inside out. Many people have added a skin supplement to their daily routine and the US market has seen sales of face supplements grow more than fivefold over the past two years.*
It’s easy to see why. The natural thing to do if you think your diet is a little low in essential vitamins and minerals is to try and boost it with a healthy sounding supplement (and a product that tackles the problems externally, too). There are some fabulously high tech sounding skincare supplements on the market so teaming them with a good quality topical skincare product gives you that double whammy of looking after your skin from both angles.
All in the delivery
If you’re choosing a topical vitamin product, you also need to take into account the way it’s delivered. Vitamins in creams and serums are lovely and will make your skin feel fantastic, but how deeply does the good stuff penetrate your skin? You can take it one step further with transdermal vitamin patches which promise to infuse your skin with any number of vitamins.
Anything from Vitamin C to CoQ10 patches are available for when your body feels in need of a vitamin boost, and the fact that it’s being taken in through your skin means that the nutrients aren’t affected by stomach acid in the way that they can be if taken as a food supplement. Do they work?
Apparently they do, and they release the vitamins slowly, all day long rather than in one big hit like a food supplement.
If you’re visiting a spa or salon, you’ll also have the option to try facials that involve different ways of ‘delivering’ vitamins and other active ingredients to the deeper layers of the skin.
- Ultrasound facial treatments – these are sometimes used along with microdermabrasion to increase the absorption of vitamin enriched skincare products.
- High frequency facials – these use an electrical current to help the vitamins and other active ingredients penetrate the skin, while gently stimulating it at the same time. This technique is known to really help with penetration of skincare products because the current boosts the blood flow, re-energizing stressed skin.
- Galvanic currents – not used as often as the others but they work by taking a galvanic current on the positive polarity and using it to apply a low electrical current which is applied to the skin. The force that’s created pushes charged molecules deep into the skin. This type of treatment works well on more mature skin as it helps to push anti-ageing ingredients deeper into the skin.