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5 Basics of a Youthful Complexion

Keep your complexion as youthful as ever by following our expert’s advice on the basics of healthy skin.

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“Skin care is really a lifestyle,” says Jon D. Morgan, MD, a dermatologist in Columbia, South Carolina, who has created his own line of skin care products. “It’s not just about putting things on your skin. It’s about nutrition, exercise, avoiding tobacco and alcohol, protecting your skin against sun damage, and thorough daily cleansing.” Here are five basic steps to maintaining a fresh complexion:

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1. Moisturize

Morgan recommends moisturizers with the antioxidant vitamins A and C, which may protect skin against cancer.

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2. Always Use Sunscreen

Use a sunscreen of 15 SPF (sun protection factor) or greater, and put it on an hour before going out in the sun for maximum effect. Using a sunscreen doesn’t mean you don’t have to worry about sun exposure, warns Morgan. You still have to take preventive measures, such as wearing a wide-brimmed hat and staying out of the sun during peak hours.

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3. Use AHAs

Alpha hydroxy acids – naturally occurring fruit and milk acids – will minimize sun damage by removing dead skin cells and deep moisturizing. They may even stimulate the production of collagen, a fiber that provides structure and a youthful look to the skin.

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4. Exercise Regularly

Exercise is excellent for your skin, since it improves blood flow and circulation to the skin’s surface. You can wipe away excess sweat with a clean cloth while you are working out.

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5. Butt Out

Smoking causes wrinkling, and increases the likelihood of developing skin cancer.

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