Pregnancy Glow or Pregnancy Low?

pregnant-ladyAfter the wonderful news that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting the pitter patter of tiny royal feet, we thought we would give some tips on skincare during pregnancy. This is a time when hormones go wild and for some it means a healthy pregnancy ‘glow’, but for others it can mean a pregnancy low.

Here are some tips and tricks to keep your skin looking beautiful and radiant during pregnancy:

Acne and Spots
Pregnancy has a funny way of clearing up problem skin and muddling up clear skin. Hormonal shifts during pregnancy increase androgens in the body and can cause the sebaceous glands to go into overdrive, boosting the production of sebum which can block your pores and lead to inflammation and breakouts.

Make sure to cleanse, treat and moisturise your face in the morning and again at night to rid skin of dirt and bacteria. Look for sulphur-based topical products, like the Blemish Spot Treatment, as well as products containing AHAs or glycolic acid to encourage cell turnover, like the AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser.

If you find your skin is particularly oily, use a moisturiser to balance oil production and leave skin looking matte, like the Oil Control Mattifier SPF 15, and make sure your make-up won’t clog pores. Use the Skin Perfecting Primer – Blemish and Shine Control for a perfectly matte and shine-free finish.

Dryness/Itchiness
From a dry face to an itchy belly, you can thank hormonal shifts and stretching skin for these pregnancy skin concerns. Many women also find that they have an increased sensitivity to conditions that normally only make them feel slightly itchy, such as eczema and food allergies.

Wear loose cotton clothing, since perspiration can increase itching. Use mild products to avoid reactions to fragrance and harsh ingredients like our Redness Therapy Range which soothes and hydrates skin providing instant relief from irritation.

Melasma
Also known as “the mask of pregnancy,” melasma is typically characterised by discolouration on the forehead, upper cheeks, nose and/or upper lip. It is commonly believed to be caused by hormonal shifts during pregnancy.

Use an SPF religiously! Sun exposure can worsen the effects of melasma. Try Pomphenol Sunguard Dietary Supplements which are 100% pure pomegranate. Pomegranate extract has been shown to increase the SPF of topical sunscreens, plus it has great antioxidants to help fight free radical damage but as always, ask your doctor before taking any internal supplements.

Stretch Marks
More than half of all pregnant women get stretch marks during their pregnancy. Usually appearing during the later months of pregnancy, stretch marks are caused by small tears in the connective tissue that supports the skin.

Keep your belly well hydrated as it grows. Look for a lotion that contains shea butter and Vitamin E to help hydrate, and Vitamin C to enhance skin’s elasticity, like our Body Firming Cream. Also, keep your weight in check by gaining the healthy amount recommended by your doctor, and avoid sudden weight gains if possible.

Eat Your Water
As always, eating a varied and healthy diet is extremely important not only for your skin but for the developing foetus inside you. Fruit and green leafy vegetables are loaded with essential vitamins and nutrients which will boost your overall health and your baby’s.
.
Remember: Always talk to your doctor before taking any internal supplements.

Managing Your Skin During Winter

During the colder weather skin is exposed to many stresses; outside you have the skin drying winds and freezing cold temperatures while indoors you have dehydrating heaters. Keeping your skin in tip-top condition can be a challenge, especially if you suffer from skin conditions such as eczema. Here at Murad we have compiled some top tips to manage your skin during winter and prevent dry skin flare-ups.

Avoid scalding hot showers and baths.
As tempting as they can be, hot water can lead to a loss in moisture by breaking down lipid barriers in your skin. Instead, opt for warm, quick showers.

.

Moisturise immediately after showering.
Switch your lotion to a body cream. Like your face, your body requires more moisture in the dry winter months. Using a luxurious body cream every day before bed and after you shower will make your skin supple, youthful and glowing. Try our Body Firming Cream to increase skin’s elasticity and radiance while restoring maximum moisture.

.

Use sun block. 
We may be more aware of the sun during the summer months, but UV rays are just as strong during the winter season too. Make sure you are using a moisturiser like the Perfecting Day Cream SPF 30 PA+++ during the day to keep your skin protected and avoid damaging and ageing UVA rays.

Don’t Forget Your Lips.
It’s very important to not forget about the lips. Winter months can wreak havoc on your lips, causing dry, chapped areas of the mouth. Applying a lip balm with vitamin E like our Soothing Skin and Lip Care will soothe this. Also, try gently rubbing your lips with a toothbrush, which will de-flake the area, allowing your lips to look and feel softer, smoother and moisturised.

.

Use a Humidifier. 
As heaters are turned up and windows stay closed in winter, indoor air can become extremely dry. This can become extremely problematic if you have particularly sensitive skin or suffer from eczema.  If you don’t have a humidifier, you could leave a bowl of water on your radiators to keep the air moist, thereby reducing the symptoms of eczema.

.

Use the Right Products
During the colder months, you skin can become much more sensitive, dry, red and flaky. Use products formulated to reduce sensitivity and infuse skin with moisture like our Redness Therapy Range. The Correcting Moisturizer SPF 15 is particularly fantastic at counteracting any redness you might be experience, keeping your complexion looking and feeling beautiful and healthy.

Eat your water-rich foods!
Hydration is absolutely essential to maintaining skin’s moisture throughout the winter months. Think of the 80/20 rule: 20% of your skin is in the epidermis, reachable by topical products, while 80% of the skin is the dermis, treatable by what you ingest. Not only will this strategy help you keep your body hydrated, but you’ll also move towards a healthier lifestyle without having to stick to a rigorous diet that you’ll want to abandon after a few weeks.

Skincare Ingredients – What do they really mean?

Looking after your skin is a must but when you hear words like Hyaluronic Acid and Peptides, it can all become rather daunting. So what exactly do all these scientific words mean and which ones should you be looking out for? The skincare experts at Murad explain all…

Retinol is a popular ingredient in many anti-ageing products and one that you may already be familiar with. It is an active form of the vitamin A molecule and often described as an anti-ageing wonder ingredient.  It is a powerful exfoliant that encourages dead skin to shed and turn over younger, healthier cells. Using retinols can improve the firmness of skin, reverse the signs of sun and environmental damage, treat acne, reduce hyperpigmentation, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It also increases the production of collagen and hyaluronic acid making skin look smooth, youthful and supple.

Hyaluronic Acid can sound scary but it is a naturally occurring and essential substance in the human body that regulates cell renewal, lubricates connective tissue and maintains the skin’s natural moisture and elasticity. When used topically, it creates a moisture barrier on the skin, making it feel smoother and softer.

.

.

Ceramides are the glue that hold your cells together, forming a protective layer that plumps the skin and helps retain moisture. They are used to replenish the natural lipids that are lost from exposure to harsh environmental factors such as drying winds, sun damage and also during the ageing process. They restore moisture, fortify the skin’s natural barrier and help protect it against harm from foreign elements. Ceramides are also particularly effective in treating eczema and are great for your hair too, protecting and preventing breakages.

Peptides are segments of active proteins that communicate with cells and instruct them to behave in certain ways. Peptides are often used in anti-ageing products to encourage skin to produce collagen, reduce redness or signal muscles to relax reducing wrinkles.  Other peptides don’t actually stimulate your skin at all but are so small they are used to penetrate deep into the layers of the skin and deliver other ingredients.

.

Alpha Hydroxy Acid and Beta Hydroxy Acid are organic acids that act as exfoliants. AHA’s are derived from fruit and milk and include glycolic acid, lactic acid and malic acid among others. BHA refers to Salicylic Acid, which is derived from plants. While they both exfoliate, AHA are small molecules and penetrate deep down into pores removing dead skin cells, smoothing lines and wrinkles, refining pores and stimulating cell turnover. BHA’s are much larger and work the surface of the skin. The result is that they stay in the pore and continue to work, functioning to break down the build up that is responsible for enlarged pores, acne and inflammatory conditions.

Halloween Skincare Tips and Tricks

Halloween is upon us and that means dressing up, painting our faces and eating several days worth of sugar in one sitting. Halloween can be a blast, but it can also be hard on your skin. Take the right steps to make sure that your amazing Halloween costume doesn’t leave you with dull, lifeless skin right before the holidays.

1. Don’t Buy Cheap Costume Makeup
This is one instance when it’s worth spending a little bit more, even though it’s just for one night, on premium costume makeup. Cheap makeup is greasy and will clog pores leading to breakouts, allergic reactions and dry skin. Is it really worth doing that to your skin for just one night? If you do cause damage to your skin, use the Redness Therapy range to re-hydrate and soothe irritated skin.

.

2. Remove Makeup Before Bed
No matter how exhausted you are when you arrive home after your Halloween party or gathering, make sure you wash off your makeup! If you don’t it can lead to breakouts and skin will look dull in the days to come. Use a good skin cleanser like the Refreshing Cleanser to remove all traces of makeup and impurities. Bare in mind, if your makeup is thick you maay have to double cleanse to ensure everything is removed and skin can breathe.

.

3. Use a Moisturiser
Applying a good moisturiser to your face, like the Perfecting Day Cream SPF 30, before your put on your makeup will not only help your face stay fresh and hydrated, but it will also give your makeup a more finished look that lasts all night. At night, use the Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture to re-hydrate skin and make sure you don’t wake up with skin that still resembles a zombies.

.

4. Stay Hydrated
Although there are plenty of sweets and treats to be had on Halloween, make sure you stay hydrated by eating lots of fruit and vegetables and drink plenty of water too!

.

.

5. Avoid Frightful Blemishes
After removing your makeup, use a face mask to deep clean pores and remove the last traces of molecules of makeup. The Clarifying Mask draws out impurities and reduces breakouts by delivering powerful medication and absorbing pore clogging dirt and oil.

.

Clear away cobwebs after the Halloween celebrations with Murad’s Ageless Beauty Starter Kit which contains great products to keep your skin looking beautiful and bright right  up to the festive season!

Dr. Murad’s Top 10 Skincare Tips

Cleanse Your Skin Before Bed
Without proper cleansing, bacteria can survive (and thrive) on your skin, leading to breakouts. Also, the free radicals your skin encounters during the day, from pollution, sun and environmental exposure, can build up, causing tissue damage which leads to accelerated ageing.

Toners Are Important
They help your treatment product be absorbed deeper and faster. Plus, they’re refreshing and refining pores.

Oily Skin Needs Moisture
Everyone should use a moisturiser regardless of their skin type. Moisturisers add water to the skin, not oil.

Embrace Anti-ageing Products
You’re never too young or too old to start taking care of your skin.

Eat Your Water
We challenge you to replace one glass of water a day with raw fruit/veg to hydrate your skin from within.

Exfoliate Right
One of the most common mistakes people make with their skincare is too much or too little exfoliation! If in doubt, stick to the twice a week rule.

Relax – Stress Ages You
Take care of yourself emotionally – get the rest you need, have fun, get massages, facials or other activities that help you to relax and take your stress down a notch. Did you know stress is a close second to UV for damaging your skin and making you appear prematurely old?!

Be Imperfect; Live Longer!
Don’t be so hard on yourself. Trying to be perfect everyday causes stress that speeds up the ageing process.

You Are What You Eat
Skin health is 80% internal care, so consuming the right foods and supplements is most important. Topical care reaches the remaining 20% of skin.

Smile!
When you feel your best you will look your best!

Post-Summer Skincare Tips

Ok, so it’s not time to get out the winter coats just yet but the evenings are getting darker and the mornings are feeling a little chilly wouldn’t you agree? The colder season brings with it skin-drying winds, free-radical damage and other conditions which can be harmful and irritating to your skin. After all, preparation is everything and now is the best time to consider how your skin will change during the colder months.

Here are our top skincare tips for the coming winter months:

Don’t forget to apply SPF if you are spending time outdoors. It might be cold out but the sun is still shining and UV rays can still damage your skin! During the day use a moisturiser rich in antioxidants such as the Essential-C Day Moisture SPF30 | PA+++ to protect skin from free-radical damage and repair skin which has previously been damaged during the warmer weather. Don’t forget about your eyes too! Use the Essential-C Eye Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 15 | PA++ to ensure your peepers are properly protected.

Use a rich moisturiser which contains super-hydrating and anti-inflammatory agents like the Hydro-Dynamic™ Ultimate Moisture. Look for ingredients such as avocado, sunflower and olive fruit oils for optimal hydration and licorice extract to reduce redness and skin irritation.

In summer you might use a stronger cleanser to deal with excess oil and impurities. However, in the autumn and the coming winter months it’s important to switch to a gentle foaming cleanser like the Refreshing Cleanser instead.

Exfoliate! Continuously moving from the warmth of central heating to the chilly outdoors can cause skin to go a bit haywire and increases cell turnover. Use the AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser once a week to increase cell renewal and remove dead skin cells to leave your skin looking radiant and smooth.

Tip: You can use the AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser to exfoliate your whole body too!

Give your lips a bit of extra TLC. Lips don’t have sweat glands and so the skin can dry out much more easily. Use the Soothing Lip, Skin and Cuticle Care to exfoliate away dead skin cells while locking in optimal moisture, keeping your lips soft and kissable!

Hydrating your skin from within is the way forward! Dr Murad always advises to eat your water and this is just as important throughout the winter months. Eat lots of raw fruit and vegetables to ensure skin stays hydrated and looking its best. Make sure you are taking the right supplements to ensure you are getting all the vitamins and nutrients your body needs too!

If your skin is starting to look a bit pasty, use a bronzer! Let’s face it, glowing skin looks great with Autumn colours but avoid sun beds at all costs. Instead get a beautiful glow with Murad’s Absolute Bronzing Boost SPF 15. This oil-free bronzer protects as it firms, all while giving you a gorgeous, guilt-free glow!