clear skin tipsGood skin care not only helps you look your best, it also keeps you healthy. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, explain that there is a direct correlation between a society’s general cleanliness and its quality of health. A proper skin care regimen includes keeping your skin clean, moisturized and protected from the elements. If you suffer from skin conditions such as eczema or acne, talk to your dermatologist about your ideal skin care regimen.

A proper skin care regimen can prevent the spread of contact infections by reducing the amount of bacteria and viruses on the surface of the skin. However, the CDC explains that washing too frequently and vigorously can actually damage skin and increase the risk of spreading infectious agents. Excessive sun exposure is a large contributor to premature aging, according to MedlinePlus. Regular use of sunscreen may help prevent age spots, wrinkles and rough patches of skin.

Basic Skin Cleansing Supplies

A basic skin care regimen for healthy skin requires nothing more than soap and water, and on some parts of your body, even the soap is optional. During a conference sponsored by the American Academy of Dermatologists, Dr. Brian Adams of the University of Cincinnati explained that unless you suffer from very oily skin or work with oils and gases, plain water is enough to clean most of your body. Adams recommends using soap on the hands, face, underarms and groin area. Excessive use of soap on other areas can dry out your skin, especially as you age. Extras, such as moisturizer and deep cleansers, depend on your skin care needs. Talk to your dermatologist to determine the best products.

Customizing Your Routine

Certain skin conditions, including acne and dry skin, require a little more attention than basic soap and water can provide. Oily skin care and dry skin care are very different. Oily skin, which is more prone to acne, may need cleansing more than once a day, followed by a lightweight moisturizer. Dry skin can benefit from a balanced night cream made specifically for overnight moisturizing. Those with sensitive skin should avoid products containing fragrances or alcohol and cleanse only once a day with a mild cleanser. All skin types should wear sunscreen all year long when spending time outdoors, even on a cloudy day.

Take extra care of your skin during the cold winter months, when itchy dry skin is more common. MedlinePlus recommends keeping your showers or baths shorter and using warm water instead of scalding hot water. Switch to a milder cleanser, use soap only where needed and pat your skin thoroughly dry. Follow up with a creamy moisturizer or body oil. A healthy skin care regime also includes what you eat and drink, so drink plenty of fluids to hydrate your skin from the inside out.

Additional Clear Skin Tips

A good skin care regimen focuses on what goes into your body as much as what goes on your skin. Smoking, for example, can increase your risk of developing wrinkles by narrowing your blood vessels and reducing your blood flow. MayoClinic.com explains that a diet rich in vitamin C and low in carbohydrates and fat may help you keep younger looking skin. Stress can play a role in aggravating certain conditions so it’s important to take time out to relax as often as possible.