Our skin tone is one of the most important factors in judging the overall appearance of our skin. When someone has a beautiful, even face tone, it’s automatic to think they have overall great skin. It encompasses a wide range of qualities—brightness, the appearance of acne, fine lines, and dark spots. There are a lot of nuances, then, when it comes to naturally improving your skin tone.
There are four major factors that impact skin tone: hyper pigmentation, dullness, acne, and inflammation. In this post we’ll go through each of these ailments and give you tips on how to reverse their effects.
What's Hyper pigmentation?
This one should be easy for you if you read our recent post on dark spots. Because of that, we’ll only touch on the major points (definitely check out the post for the full details).
Dark spots, age spots, and sun spots are all terms for when our skin produces more melanin in an area than usual. They’re harmless, but can also be very noticeable and take a long time to fade without intervention. This makes our skin tone appear less even, and because of their “age spot” connotation, older.
One of the best treatments for hyper pigmentation and dark spots, no matter their cause, are vitamins A and C. Vitamin A is also known as retinol. These two vitamins help reduce signs of aging, including dark spots. Vitamin C in particular assists in the production of collagen, which helps skin appear more youthful, while inhibiting the production of melanin.
Our Facial Recovery Elixir contains high amounts of vitamin A (and vitamin E). We recommend using it at night, as any ingredient with vitamin A. This is because they increase sun sensitivity (ironically, UV exposure is also one of the main causes of dark spots). In addition, our Radiance Boosting Face Serum utilizes vitamin C. We think the name is pretty appropriate!
Fighting Skin Dullness
If you find yourself thinking your skin looks less vibrant and a bit flat, then you may be contending with skin dullness. This can be caused by a few different things.
The first cause of dullness is dehydration. This is true if your body is dehydrated overall, or if you’ve been skipping out on your moisturizer. The solve here is pretty easy! Make sure you’re drinking the recommended eight cups of water per day—more if you live in a hot, dry climate, or on days where you exercise. Especially during the summer, our body can sweat out moisture quickly.
If you live in a humid climate, then there is more natural moisture in the air than in other months. If this is the case, then scale down to a lighter moisturizer. However, it’s still an important part of your daily skin care routine, morning and night. Be additionally careful if you spend a lot of time in front of the A/C. This cooled air is very drying on the skin.
Another cause of skin dullness is a buildup of dead skin cells. Our skin cells have a natural turnover, but this process slows down as we age. These older cells aren’t as fresh and luminous as new once, hence causing a duller skin tone.
Exfoliation here is key. More than cleansing or removing your makeup, exfoliation helps remove dead skin cells from our face. An emollient like our Deeply Cleansing Milk helps to gently cleanse your skin without stripping of it's natural oils, prepping it perfectly for our Radiance Boosting Serum - to naturally (and gently) exfoliate your skin with plant-based AHA's. There are a lot of harsh exfoliator in the market. We do not recommend physical exfoliation, but if you chose this route, only use it in routine a few times a week. Daily strong exfoliation does more harm than good. In addition, make sure to avoid ingredients like walnut shells, which can cause micro abrasions.
Finally, your diet can be a factor in skin dullness. If your body isn’t getting proper nutrients, then your overall health suffers, including your skin. Your skin loves rich, natural fats and vitamins found in fruits and vegetables.
Speaking of diet, acne is the next cause of poor skin tone we’re discussing. And your diet can have a huge impact on acne.
Sugar, especially, has been shown to increase acne. Sugar causes your body to produce more insulin, which in turn signals the production of more oils that can then clog pores. This isn’t just the sugar in candy bars, but those found in starches like potatoes.
Be aware of food intolerance, as well. We’re attuned to how allergies or sensitivities make up feel internally, but we may not be thinking about their external effects. Many people are lactose intolerant, and some research has shown a connection between dairy and acne. This may be because of the hormones occurring naturally in milk products.
A fix for some acne that’s simpler than switching up your diet is taking time to clean your makeup brushes more frequently. While you may wash your face daily, chances are you’re probably neglecting to wash your brushes as often as you should. Some people recommend every three months. However, we say once a week.
Acne-causing bacteria can build up on brushes and then jump to our skin, especially if they’re not stored properly. Fortunately, you don’t even need a commercial brush cleaner to stay sanitary. Using a mix of olive oil and shampoo will keep your brushes feeling soft but also squeaky clean. Let then dry upside down to prevent damaging the brush.
Finally, we have inflammation, which is influenced by all of the above. A poor diet, acne, and too external stimulants can all cause skin inflammation. Your skin tone may not look dull, but you can look too flushed.
Here, we love pH-balancing toners and serums. As a double benefit, they usually help to calm the skin, as long as they’re alcohol-free. A product like our Radiance Boosting Face Serum is perfect for this. Not only does it speed up natural skin-renewal, but it also helps to reduce the appearance of pores. All of this creates a more even, smoother skin tone.
Another technique we love to help reduce face inflammation is face rolling and tapping. Stone rollers (like jade and pink quartz) improve healthy blood flow and are naturally cool, which reduces inflammation automatically. Face tapping is much the same idea, but with no tool required.
Feel like it’s a lot to keep track of? Overall, an even face tone is all about treating your skin the best you can. The better the general health of your skin, the better face tone you’ll see.