Tips from Maura Bright in London
Keeping your face looking its best is a matter of many elements.
Let’s start with the physical
- The ageing process of your face can be slowed down by Facial Exercises. A world renowned cosmetic surgeon in London’s Harley Street, when asked what worked other that going under the knife, replied: ‘Face Exercises, but you have to do them everyday for the rest of your life’. If you can spend 10 minutes per day on exercising the muscles of your face, then Eva Fraser’s Face Exercises are the one to go for http://www.evafraser.com. This workout keeps the jowls at bay, the neck soft, improves the circulation to the skin and stimulates the meridians of the face which gives your face a constant boost of Qi – beauty energy.
Please look at FaceWorkshops comments re: different types of facial exercises on this blog.
Firstly, stop the sugar: it’s a no-no if you want to preserve your collagen. Sugar adversely affect the production of collagen which keeps your fibres taut and prevents lack of tone. Sugar in your bloodstream from cakes, chocolate, pasta, bread, pastries, and high glycemic carbs , potatoes and fruit juice creates inflammation throughout the whole body which damages the tissues and contributes to ageing.
In Chinese medicine, sugar weakens the spleen function which controls the muscles. If your tongue is pale and swollen with teeth marks around the edges, your spleen energy is deficient. Keeping blood sugar levels steady is key to all the ageing markers : strength, muscle mass, glucose tolerance and insulin resistance, blood pressure, lipid ratios, aerobic capacity and immune function. 80% of our ability maintain normal blood sugar levels comes from a balanced diet, 20% comes from exercise. Increased insulin in the blood stream over a long period of time increases cell turnover which increases the chances of DNA damage – and ageing.
Next, hydration, hydration!
It’s not just a question of drinking 2 litres of water per day which for some people might be drowning their system. Dehydration happens at a cellular level, and contributes to inflammation which is part of a complex inter-relationship of ageing. Hydration at a cellular level depends on the proper balance of sodium and potassium, hormonal balance, trace minerals and the proper oils. A lot has been written about the benefits of essential fatty acids (EFAs) and eating lots of oily fish, nuts and taking omega 3-6-9 supplements. It’s also important to stop the trans fats and hydrogenated fats which go into junk food. These fats clog up the receptors in the cells which absorb biophotons, mess up hormones, affect the body’s electrolyte balance and generally clog up your system. Your cells can’t then stay hydrated and, more importantly, can’t absorb light – and we are beings of light! So, junk the junk food, drink pure water, make sure you get your EFAs in olive oil, oily fish and an organic Omega 3-6-9 oil supplement, eat sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds for minerals, lots of organic fruit and veg. Drinking pure water then has a more beneficial effect. (I know – drinking water is boring, but it works!).
Detox and calorie restriction
Ok, so no-one want to detox! However, Springtime is a great time to give your body a rest and to get rid of the effects of heavier wnter foods. 3 – 6 days on fruit and veg only (a mixture of cooked and raw), combined with a freshly squeezed juice every day is great for your skin.
Combine with Dry skin Brushing before your shower to boost your lymphatic system and clear the toxins. Add some seeds and nuts if you like, some olive oil/lemon juice dressing, and take a little Milk Thistle tincture in water every day to help your liver in the detox process.
A session of Colonic Hydrotherapy helps remove toxins and speeds up the process. Make sure you go back to eating more substantial meals slowly: add a little rice, then protein over the course of a few days. Calorie restriction : the terms used for underfeeding poor lab mice in the course of research into anti-ageing. It’s true to say though that a good diet is also a low calorie diet. Reduced calorie intake has positive effects on the biological markers of ageing. Diet should be nutrient rich, providing adequate (but not excess) protein, fat, carbs and plentiful use of low glycaemic foods. Eat organic when possible to get the micro nutrients missing in so much food now. Eat lots of veg, of all colours: red, orange, yellow, green, blue/purple – this will help to keep your body alkaline.
The Chinese have a saying: ‘breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and give your supper to your enemy’.
The digestive system has the most energy in the morning, and the least in the evening. So avoid those big dinners! As much as possible avoid foods which clog up the system – bread, pasta, milk, cheese, deep fried foods and, of course, sugar.
If your neck and shoulder muscles are tense and your shoulders are around your ears, this creates the opposite effect around the front : jowls and loose neck. Neck tension also creates eye tension and headaches. Learning proper posture helps you avoid a whole range of complaints that make you look older. Getting regular shoulder massage and doing yoga neck rolls and stretches helps to release tension.
- Don’t use shoulder bags…one shoulder has to hunch up and creates unnecessary strain.
- When you sit don’t cross your legs and is puts stress on the spine. Always have your feet on the floor and make sure your back is supported so your body doesn’t sag in the front, dragging your neck with it.
- Avoid tilting your head while you are on the phone, and keep your neck, spine and head aligned when in front of the computer. Position your screen so that it is directly in front of your eyes. Let your shoulders drop down and relax when working. Use a page holder at the same height as the monitor.
- Yoga’s Lion Pose is good for the neck and the shoulders and relaxing the face.
- Distortions of your hips and lower back will influence your posture. If you have had any accidents, or problems with your hips, visit a Teacher of the Alexander Technique, Feldenkrais Method or good Cranial Osteopath.
The differentiating point of my blog is the science and serious approach to skincare. However, if you would like to read something a little lighter, there are some great beauty blogs. However, please note that all of the bloggers are fairly young and don’t have any formal education in skincare – they express their personal opinions.
Makeup Savvy @ http://www.makeupsavvy.co.uk/
Written by Fiona Houghton, this high street focused blog is about being savvy and finding products at low cost and, what Fiona considers to be, good quality. She writes “nail of the day posts” and informs her readers about the latest offers and magazine freebies.
blogmebeautiful @ http://www.blog-me-beautiful.com/
Written by Emily Yarwood who claims that everybody needs a little glamour in their lives, this blog is about sharing beauty tips for the busy girl on the go or a typical beauty junkie.
I Am Fabulicious @ http://iamfabulicious.blogspot.com/
Written by Sarah Berryman with sensitive skin type, she is introducing new brands that are particularly sensitive skin friendly. This blog has a celebrity beauty section – news and interviews.
Beauty Geek UK @ http://www.beautygeekuk.com/
Written by Sascha Taylor-Curtis with oily skin type, this blog comments on skincare, haircare and make-up. She had a long battle with problem skin and have blogged about her experiences with skincare products.
Vex in the City @ http://www.vexinthecity.com/
Written by Yinka Echols, this is a place to share her frivolous loves & loathes with like-minded people. She is addicted to decorative cosmetics, particularly blusher.