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Save Your Skin From The Sun…
We all know that the sun has some not-so-pretty (and seriously damaging) effects on your skin: wrinkles, spots, cancer. So be smart about your exposure and develop good SPF habits. Using a broad-spectrum formula with at least SPF 30 is great, but you also have to be diligent about reapplication, says Richie Lin, MD, a dermatologist in Short Hills, NJ. Reapply every two hours and whenever you come out of the water or get super sweaty; set an automatic timer on your phone as a reminder if you think you'll forget.
Sun-protective clothing that shields your skin, like hats and rash guards, is a great option, too, says Dr. Lin. (Consider it a cute accessory to that new bikini.) It’s also a smart move to stay indoors or seek shade between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Schedule your time in the sand and surf for the early morning or late afternoon, and take a siesta or enjoy a leisurely brunch midday. Now go ahead and enjoy that well-deserved beach vacay.
...And Everything Else
Sadly, the sun isn't the only thing that takes a toll on your complexion, so you're not off the hook yet. All day, every day, you’re exposed to a veritable onslaught of skin saboteurs: pollution, smoke, stress, and more. But here's the good news — moisturizing (yes, that oh-so-easy skin-care step) can go a long way to help mitigate this damage. Plus, “balanced, moisturized skin always looks healthier,” says Dr. Lin.
For even more beauty benefits, look for a moisturizer with antioxidants, like Clarins Multi-Active Day SPF 20. Consider these power players like little Pac-Men, destroying the damaging free radicals that form when skin is exposed to sun, smog, and more. Bonus points for this multitasking formula, which also touts sun protection, boosts radiance, and helps fight the effects of stress on your skin. It even makes fine lines or wrinkles appear smoother. We'll take it.
Feel Great After A Night Of Partying
Want to prevent a hangover? Rule number one: Don't skip meals. It's tempting to snack less when you know you’ll be sipping lots of liquid calories later on, but it’s far smarter to eat strategically throughout the day. “Focus on eating high-protein foods — like eggs and nuts — so you go into your night with stable blood-sugar levels,” advises Taz Bhatia, MD, an integrative health expert. “This will help you feel better the night of and the next morning.”
Also, before going to bed, pop a B-Complex vitamin, as alcohol depletes your body of B vitamins, says Dr. Bhatia. When you wake up, order a green smoothie
instead of with that bacon-and-egg sandwich. “When you juice or blend greens, they release glutathione, an antioxidant that helps to detoxify and repair the liver,” she explains. You’ll be up and ready for that morning yoga class as if last night never happened.
Satisfy A Sweet Tooth
We’ve all been there, out to dinner and making smart choices…until the dessert menu rolls around. Granted, chowing down on cheesecake every night isn’t healthy, but there’s no way we’re going to ditch desserts for good. One simple switch that will make you feel slightly more virtuous: Choose milk- or egg-based sweets (think ice cream or flan) over flour-based ones (like cake or cookies), suggests Dr. Bhatia. This ensures that you don’t get a double hit of refined carbs from both flour and sugar.
By the way, if you’ve ever felt like once you get on the dessert train you just can’t stop, it’s not necessarily a lack of willpower that’s to blame. Eating sugar actually triggers cravings for more sugar. To quickly put an end to that sinister cycle, try sipping on a glass of grapefruit juice after you’ve had your one sweet treat; it reduces cravings, says Dr. Bhatia.
Be Strategic About TV Time
Who doesn’t love crashing on the couch, remote in hand, after a long day at work? After all, is there any better way to decompress than by losing yourself in the latest reality-show drama? Still, too much tube time isn’t good for you. “It’s an artificial form of relaxation that can actually overstimulate your brain,” explains Dr. Bhatia. “The flickering light can impede the production of melatonin, the calming hormone, keeping you awake at night.” Thankfully, there’s no need to turn off the TV for good. A much better (and more realistic) bet is to limit viewing to one hour a night. If that sounds too hard, watch your favorite shows at the gym, while you’re on the elliptical or treadmill, so at least you’re getting some exercise at the same time, says Dr. Bhatia. And binge-watching isn't completely off the table — just do it during the day on weekends, so it doesn't interfere with your sleep patterns. Play next episode, please.