It’s time to pay attention to your skin. You may not realize it, but your skin reveals a lot about your overall health. With November being National Healthy Skin Month, we thought we’d celebrate by bringing you the top 6 tips for healthy skin from the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) themselves. Your skin is your body’s largest organ— let’s treat it with love.

  1. Wash your face everyday.

This may sound simple, but the AAD included it on their list for a reason. Wash your face when you wake up, before bed, and after exercising—no excuses! We recommend a 2-step process for cleansing. First, use a cleansing wipe or makeup remover followed by a wash with a cleanser to remove any remaining makeup, dirt, grime or pollution left on the skin. Cleansing brushes work better than just using your hands to wash your face. Use a mild cleanser (unless told otherwise by your dermatologist) and lukewarm water.

  1. Determine your skin type.

Everyone falls into one of 5 skin types. Therefore, you probably shouldn’t be using the same skin product as someone with completely different skin concerns. Are you oily, dry, combination, normal (lucky you!), or sensitive? Choose skin care products tailored to that type.

  1. Examine your skin.

Check your skin periodically for new or unusual spots, as well as anything changing, itching, or bleeding. Remember to look for the ABCDE (Asymmetry, Border, Color, Diameter, Evolution) signs of melanoma, and if you see one or more, make an appointment with your dermatologist immediately.

  1. Protect your skin.

Even if you have practiced sun safety all summer, it is important to continue being cautious about your skin in the fall and winter months. UVA rays are responsible for about 95% of the UV radiation that reaches the Earth’s surface and are present all year long, even when it’s cloudy! Protect your skin from the sun by seeking shade, wearing protective clothing, and using a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.

  1. Consider using petroleum jelly.

Vaseline petroleum jelly is a simple remedy that is never outdated. Try using it to treat minor injuries and to moisturize dry skin (hands, feet, or elbows) and brittle nails. Vaseline can protect against moisture loss, help prevent dryness and heal cracked skin. I never leave my house without a mini jar of Vaseline to soothe chapped lips and dry cuticles!

  1. Moisturize daily.

Apply lotion or cream while your skin is still damp from bathing to lock in moisture and get the best results. It would be nice to slather on one lotion and be done with it, but body lotion should never be applied to your face. The skin on your face has different needs than your body and therefore needs a separate moisturizer. Don’t forget to pick the right facial moisturizer for your skin type!

Visit us at Sheperd Integrative Dermatology to learn more about how to take great care of your skin.