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Dull Skin: 8 Ways to Prevent and Brighten It ----- Back

28.01.20 - How To

Dull Skin: 8 Ways to Prevent and Brighten It

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Words by Antoinette Barnardo

If you have ever looked into the mirror and seen your lifeless visage staring back at you, you can likely relate to having dull skin. Skin dullness is a common concern among us and can be attributed to numerous factors like aging, pollution, and stress.

Whatever the reasons that are causing you to have dull skin, it's not the end of the world yet. In this article, we will dive into the causes of dull skin and what you can do to brighten up your complexion to achieve a dewy, radiant complexion.

What Is Dull Skin?

Dull skin is characterized by a lack of radiance, moisture, and firmness of the skin. A buildup of dead skin cells on the skin's surface further adds to a dull skin tone which can appear lifeless and sallow-looking. In a nutshell, dull skin is the opposite of glowing, youthful-looking skin.

Causes of Dull Skin

Dull skin can be caused by various internal and external factors. Here, we'll cover some of the most common causes of dull skin.

1. Aging 

As your skin ages, the cell turnover rate slows down due to decreased collagen synthesis, as explained by a 2013 study in the Journal of Advances in Wound Care. This translates into a loss of skin elasticity and vibrancy which leads to fine lines and dullness.

2. Buildup of Dead Skin Cells

Due to a slower cell turnover rate, dead cells tend to stay on top of the epidermis for a longer period. This results in a buildup of dead skin cells that are taking away your skin's natural radiance and making it appear dull and lackluster.

3. Dry Skin

Skin dryness could be the underlying cause of dull skin. When your skin is unable to retain moisture, it results in a loss of radiance and suppleness. The occurrence of dry skin can be due to falling temperatures, not moisturizing enough, or battling with a skin condition like eczema or psoriasis.

4. Using the Wrong Skincare Products

If your skincare routine encompasses oil-mattifying products, it might be time to donate them to a friend. These products strip away the natural oils and moisture from your skin which impairs your skin barrier, thereby contributing to a dull and dry skin tone.

5. Stress 

If your skin appears duller than usual, stress could be the culprit behind it. In a 2014 study published in the Journal of Inflammation & Allergy Drug Targets, it was discovered that stress can weaken skin cell proliferation and differentiation in the epidermis. This negatively affects the skin's natural exfoliation rate and leads to dullness.

6. Poor Blood Circulation

When your body's blood circulation is poor, this can limit blood flow to the epidermal cells in your face. Since blood contains an oxygen-carrying substance called hemoglobin, poorer blood flow will mean lesser oxygen supplied to the skin's surface. As such, you can expect paler, duller skin tone.

7. Environmental Pollutants 

Environmental pollutants such as cigarette smoke, smog, and radiation produce free radicals which make your skin look dull and sallow. According to a 1992 study performed by the Free Radical Research Group, free radicals speed up the process of photoaging and contribute to skin dullness.

How to Prevent and Brighten Dull Skin

To get glowing, radiant skin, these are the changes you can make to your daily skincare routine and lifestyle.

1. Exfoliate Regularly 

Since a buildup of dead skin cells is a common cause of dull skin, the solution is to remove them by exfoliating. Exfoliation is a great way to aid your skin's slowing cell turnover rate as it helps to slough off dead cells and other debris from the skin's surface.

As a rule of thumb, exfoliate two to three times a week with a physical or chemical exfoliant. Of course, this frequency may vary according to individual skin types. Try YORA's Revitalise Face Polish that contains alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) to remove dead skin cells and clarify congested pores for a more radiant complexion.

2. Moisturize Day and Night

Keeping your skin well-moisturized is key to preventing a dry and dull skin tone. You can easily accomplish this by applying a moisturizer day and night.

Introduce a day moisturizer like YORA's Revitalise Face Moisturiser into your morning skincare routine. Being a lightweight gel moisturizer, it's suitable for all skin types. It also contains mineral-rich Swiss glacier water, plant sugar derived squalene, and the brand's proprietary hyaluronic acid blend of PRIMALHYAL 50 and PrimalHyal™ 300 to moisturize the skin.

At night, consider using a hydrating moisturizer like the Rebalance Night Face Moisturiser. It's infused with HYDRACTIN® to boost the skin’s moisture levels and has SK-influx to provide long-lasting hydration.

3. Apply an Overnight Face Mask

For an additional hydrating boost, include an overnight face mask in your nightly skincare routine too. Overnight face masks are a great way to add moisture to your skin and often contain active ingredients to rejuvenate your skin while you sleep. Wake up to a brighter, more radiant complexion in the morning.

Formulated with Axolight®, YORA's Revitalise Face Mask minimizes the appearance of hyperpigmentation for a more radiant-looking complexion. This overnight gel mask also contains the T.R.U.E. Active Complex which consists of traditional Chinese herbs to moisturize the skin and minimize fine lines.

4. Use Brightening Skincare Ingredients

To help brighten dull skin, choose skincare products that contain brightening ingredients. These include:

  • Alpha-hydroxy acids like glycolic acid and lactic acid
  • Arbutin
  • Kojic acid
  • Licorice extract
  • Mulberry extrac
  • Niacinamide
  • Papain extract
  • Retinol
  • Vitamin C

YORA's Defence Face Concentrate is infused with retinol and lipochroman® to enliven dull skin and reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

5. Wear Sunscreen

Inadequate sun protection can lead to dry, sun-damaged skin while worsening existing hyperpigmentation. A 1995 study by the Swiss Institute for Experimental Cancer Research pointed out that UV rays generate free radicals which can speed up premature skin aging. As such, protecting against UV rays is essential in preventing your complexion from becoming lackluster in the first place.

Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 and above to keep dark spots and dullness at bay. Also, remember to reapply your sunscreen every two hours to keep your skin constantly protected.

6. Invest in Anti-Pollution Skincare Products

To further protect your skin from the harmful effects of environmental pollutants, consider using skincare products with anti-pollution benefits when you're out and about. For instance, YORA's Defence Face Serum is formulated with FILMEXEL® to protect your skin against external environmental factors. It also contains EPIDERMIST to promote radiant skin.

7. Do Gentle Face Massages

To improve your skin's blood flow to your face, you can do some gentle facial massages. A 2014 study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that a 10-minute massage session on a specific body area increases blood flow to that particular region.

Tip — use a jade roller or facial oils when massaging to reduce friction and prevent the formation of fine lines.

8. Keep Your Skin Hydrated

Besides loading up on moisturizing skincare products, there are other ways to keep your skin well hydrated too.

Drink at least six to eight glasses of fluid a day. This includes sugar-free drinks, coffee, tea, and milk. If you're not a fan of drinking that much fluid, you can still achieve your daily fluid intake by consuming fresh fruits and vegetables.

Low humidity can also affect your skin's hydration levels adversely. Keep a humidifier in your home and work area to keep your skin moisturized and happy.

Dull Skin Can Be a Thing of the Past 

Before you know it, you're well on your way to brighter, more radiant, glowing skin. Always be mindful of the type of skincare products you are using as well as the ingredients in them. Of course, your diet and the surrounding environment can have an impact on your skin vibrancy too.

Choosing the right products and making the necessary changes in your lifestyle and skincare regime will make dull skin a thing of the past.

Words by Antoinette Barnardo

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