Five beauty habits to live by that will cost you nothing
Some of the best things in life are free.
Life is expensive. We all want to look and feel our best, but there’s only so much disposable income to go around. Luckily, you can increase your wellbeing without spending a cent.
There are a million wellness products out there that claim they will improve your life. From giving you more energy to sleeping better to glowier skin, you can spend a fortune on them and not see any improvements. So it’s nice to know that there are tried-and-tested strategies that will have you looking and feeling like the best version of yourself and they won’t cost you a thing.
They don’t call it beauty sleep for no reason. When we sleep, every cell in our body rejuvenates, including the cells in our skin. Lack of sleep or poor-quality sleep robs you of the so-called fountain of youth, the human growth hormone.
That’s why sleep deprivation affects wound healing, collagen production, skin hydration, and skin texture. Inflammation is also higher when you are sleep deprived due to an increase in cortisol, causing outbreaks of acne, eczema, psoriasis, and skin allergies.
Get seven to eight hours each night, don’t keep any electronic devices in your bedroom and open your window for some fresh air.
Healthy skin contains between 10-20% water. Skin dehydration (anything less than 10%) is one of the main reasons for premature skin ageing and sensitivity.
You don’t need a crazy expensive, fancy water to keep hydrated. Drink a minimum of three litres of any filtered water at room temperature daily and add a little bit of pink salt to it. Keep in mind that your body can only assimilate 500ml of water per hour or up to one litre in the most extreme heat conditions and exercise effort.
Don’t wait until you are very thirsty; that’s a sign of dehydration. You need to sip throughout the day and throughout the session. Scull down one litre of water in one go means you’ll end up with frequent loo visits instead of hydrating yourself adequately.
3. The right dose of sunshine
Too much sunshine will have a negative impact on your skin. Excessive UV rays trigger lots of free radicals, which literally blast your collagen fibres, leaving your skin dry, wrinkly and saggy.
Stay away from the harsh midday sun and prevent sunburn under any circumstances.
The sun produces Vitamin D, which is absorbed by the skin, but you need very little exposure to get enough according to a study published in the Medical Journal of Australia, which states: “In January, across Australia, 2–14 minutes of sun three to four times per week at 12:00 is sufficient to ensure recommended vitamin D production in fair-skinned people with 15% of the body exposed.”
4. Cold showers
A quick cold shower every morning and evening is probably the best, easiest and most efficient health and beauty habit. It improves your blood circulation, boosts your immune system, and stimulates your vagus nerve thus lowering inflammation and cortisol, the collagen-slayer.
In the morning it wakes you up and makes you feel alive without having to drink a coffee and in the evening it helps you to sleep better.
Start with one minute in the morning and one in the evening and build up to three minutes. More is better but you also want to save water.
Sex improves blood flow to the skin, leads to increased hydration and reduces the inflammatory stress hormone cortisol. It has pretty much the same effect as a cold shower but it’s way more pleasant.
It also boosts your oestrogen levels. Oestrogen stimulates collagen production in your skin, increasing your skin thickness and plumpness.
How much sex do you need for your beauty? You get the ‘sex afterglow’ just after one session. For long-lasting effects, such as brighter, clearer and youthful skin, you should aim for one to three sessions every week.
Libby Babet is a celebrity fitness trainer and former trainer for Channel TEN’s The Biggest Loser. She is also the founder of Agoga gym, BUF Girls, Eat Like A Chief and The Upbeat dance studio and created Beauty Food with nutritionist Veronika Larisova.