Body hygiene and body care are key to our overall health and wellbeing. Quality skincare products will help you to cleanse and care for the skin on your body and protect it from damaging external influences such as the sun and hot and cold climates. They can also be used to calm disturbed skin and treat any concerns that you may have. A good skincare routine helps to restore your skin’s natural balance and keep it looking and feeling healthy.
LOOKING AFTER THE SKIN ON YOUR BODY
There are three basic steps to caring for the skin on your body: cleanse, care and protect.
Thorough cleansing is the first step in effective skincare. Cleansing removes dirt, sebum, sweat and other residues to keep skin feeling clean and healthy.
Care products moisturise and replenish skin. Use a cream or lotion to hydrate your body after cleansing and to treat any specific skin concerns (such as dryness). Care products can also be applied on certain areas of the body such as the hands and feet, armpits and scalp.
Sun protection is important for days when your skin is going to be exposed to harmful UV rays: the main cause of premature ageing of the skin. Body skin is not exposed to UV rays as frequently as facial skin, so this is not an essential daily step, but should be included in a skincare routine when appropriate.
Find out more about looking after facial skin in a daily skincare routine for the face.
ALL ABOUT CLEANSING THE BODY
The fundamental reason for body cleansing is to remove dirt and sweat to keep skin clean and healthy and prevent unpleasant body odour. Showers and baths also play an important role in our overall wellbeing, helping us to feel refreshed, reinvigorated and relaxed.
How to cleanse
A strong awareness of hygiene, combined with today’s active lifestyles, has increased the frequency of cleansing. Over-exposure to water, as well as to harsh cleansing products, can dry out skin and weaken its barrier function. The following cleansing suggestions will help to keep skin healthy:
- Reduce bath time and water temperature: Hot water and long showers or baths remove oils from the skin.
- Choose a cleanser that is gentle on skin.
- Pat rather than rub skin dry so that it retains some moisture (oil based products are most effective when applied to damp skin).
- Moisturise well after cleansing.
How to choose an appropriate cleanser
Choose a body wash or cleanser that:
- will be gentle on your skin and will not dry it out
- has a pH value that corresponds to that of healthy skin
- contains lipid replenishing components. This not only compensates for lost lipids, but ensures that fewer lipids are lost during cleansing
- has been formulated for your specific skin type and concern
- has been thoroughly tested and is, ideally, compatible with sensitive skin
ALL ABOUT CARING FOR THE SKIN ON YOUR BODY
Care products shall hydrate and replenish skin, preventing it from drying out. Moisturising your skin not only increases its water content, but protects it and encourages orderly desquamation (the process by which skin sheds dead cells) leaving it feeling smooth, soft and comfortable.
Care products can also be used to target specific skin concerns. For example, very dry skin is caused by the fact that the skin’s barrier function is impaired. Care products can help to address this concern by supplimenting missing lipids.
How to care
Care products should be applied after cleansing as cleansed skin is better able to absorb the active ingredients. Regular moisturisation after bathing will help to keep your skin hydrated and healthy.
Which care products are right for my body?
Choose a body moisturiser that:
- has been formulated for your specific skin type.
- targets any specific concerns that you may have.
- has been thoroughly tested and, ideally, is proven to be compatible with sensitive skin.
The structure of our skin differs slightly according to where it is on our body. Different parts of our body are also treated differently and receive different levels of exposure to external forces. As a result, some areas of the body such as our hands, feet, armpits and scalp benefit from particular care and dedicated products. Read more in skin on different parts of the body.
Skin benefits from special care after it has been exposed to the sun. After Sun Lotions can help to cool and regenerate sun-stressed skin.
ALL ABOUT PROTECTING THE BODY FROM UV RAYS
Sunlight has many positive effects on the body:
It increases our vitality and well‐being, promotes circulation and metabolic processes and activates vitamin D production. But we only need a small dose.
The body is able to produce its own protective mechanisms to help against the negative effects of UV radiation – pigmentation, thickening of the external layers of skin, producing antioxidants and the formulation of UV filtering substances such as urocanic acid. But skin needs time and low dosages of UV to be able to protect itself and benefits from additional protection. Read more in how sun affects skin.
Over exposure to UV rays is one of the main causes of premature ageing of the skin and can lead to pathological changes of the skin – in the worst cases to skin cancer. The application of a cream or lotion with added Sun Protection Factor (SPF) is highly recommended to protect the body when it is exposed to UV rays.
How to protect
Sun protection should be applied after, or instead of, your normal moisturiser. Apply it well in advance of exposure to the sun so that your skin has time to absorb the active ingredients. Reapply the product regularly or as guided by the pack. Read more in using sunscreen correctly.
Which sun protection products are right for my body?
The choice of sun protection factor depends on the pigmentation and sensitivity of your skin and your skin type. It also depends on the season and on the level and duration of exposure that your body is going to have. Read more in sun protection.
Eucerin offer a wide range of sun protection products and varying SPF’s to suit all skin types and textural preferences. If you are in any doubt as to which products will be best for you then contact a dermatologist to seek their advice.