Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Mercredi: The Art of Beauty

I am officially old.  I just had one of those “milestone” birthdays and now I finally have a good excuse for my behavior: I’m old.  That said, it was nice when the (young) lady at the pharmacy told me yesterday that I have “pretty skin”.  It reminded me that I do.  Part of it is genetic but part of it is keeping to a simple, effective regimen, preferably one started early in life.  So, because I am now old, here’s my advice for pretty skin.

Wash your face twice a day and moisturize after every washing.  I don’t care what the makeup companies say; sleeping with that stuff on your face is not good for your skin.

SPF 30 every day.  Until the sun disappears from the sky, there is nothing you can use topically that is better for your skin.

Two cups of green tea daily will keep free radicals from aging your skin, even later in life.  The good news here is that, like quitting smoking, you get almost instant benefits no matter whether you start drinking green tea when you are 2 or 102.

Also, don’t smoke.  If you do (and I did) quit now.

A nice warm – not hot – bath once a week (preferably on your day off and in the evening) with a calming essential oil like lavender or clary sage added to the water (15 to 20 drops) will help you relax and de-stress.  If you can enjoy a bath more frequently, so much the better.

Yes, you do need 8 hours of sleep a night.  Your tween or teen daughter needs 10.

A cup of nettle tisane every two weeks will gently flush your system of skin-ruining gunk.  If you can’t find nettle (health food stores usually carry it), try chamomile tea every other day, or nightly to help you sleep.

Exercise.  Reward yourself with something (like maybe that bath) once a week or so if you stick to your schedule.  Remember, beauty is a lot deeper than your skin.  A healthy heart and lungs make your face glow.

If you drink alcohol, take three consecutive days off the juice per week.  This cleansing ritual will help your body banish the negative side effects of a few too many now and then.  The exception here is one glass of red wine with your largest meal every day to help maintain a healthy cholesterol level, if that is an issue for you.

These are the things my Gran assured me would see me through to old age and so far she’s been right.  Remember though, if you have any health issues, ask your doctor before you start drinking herbal teas or training for a marathon.  Better safe than sorry.  A votre santé ~

Header:  Two Ancient Egyptian ladies who clearly drank their green tea and got enough sleep; I think I went to high school with the one on the left


Timmy! said...

All good advice, Pauline and most of it applies for men as well as women.

You may be old, but you'll never be as old as me and you will always be pretty.

Pauline said...

You're right; good advice for all genders and persuations. And thank you.