Good, healthy skin can boost confidence and help slow down the natural aging process; and it’s never too late to start caring for your skin. Better news: a skin care regimen doesn’t have to break the bank. Garlich Facial Plastics offers a number of skin care procedures and products, including chemical and laser peels, Jane Iredale skin care makeup, SkinCeuticals and gel peels. Below, however, are five basic skincare tips to get you on your way to beautiful skin.

  • Don’t smoke
    It’s as easy as that. Don’t start and, if you are a smoker, quit today. Smoking makes skin look older. The habit contributes to wrinkles by narrowing the tiny blood vessels in the outermost layers of the skin, which decreases blood flow. Skin is then depleted of oxygen and nutrients. Additionally, smoking damages the fibers known as collagen and elastin that give skin strength and elasticity. Expressions smokers’ make, like pursing the lips when inhaling or squinting the eyes to keep out smoke, contribute to wrinkles as well.
  • Protect skin from the sun
    Our skin needs sunlight, but sun exposure must be in moderation and while wearing protection. Overexposure over time can cause wrinkles, age spots and other problems; it also increases the risk of skin cancer. For protection, always use at least an SPF 15 sunscreen on all areas of exposed skin when outdoors; wear protective clothing (even a thin layer over arms will work); and find shade between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the sun’s rays are the most powerful.
  • Manage stress levels
    The mind is powerful and, when stressed, it can cause the body to react in strange ways. Constant stress for example can cause skin to become more sensitive–resulting in all sorts of skin problems, including acne breakouts. Take steps to manage stress, set limits and make time to enjoy life. Your skin will thank you.
  • Eat healthy and drink plenty of water
    What you put into your body can greatly impact how you look and feel. To ensure your skin looks its best, avoid greasy foods and sweets and eat lots of lean protein, fruits and vegetables. Some research indicates that a diet rich in vitamin C and low in unhealthy fats and processed foods promotes younger looking skin. Drink lots of water, too–at least eight 8-ounce glasses a day.
  • Be gentle
    We often are in a hurry and don’t take time to clean our skin appropriately, but gentle cleansing is key to healthy and younger looking skin. Take the following steps in treating your skin: avoid strong soaps and opt for a mild cleanser; use warm, not hot, water when bathing; limit bath and shower time; shave carefully and lightly with shaving cream and apply lotion afterward; pat try after bathing; and moisturize daily.