Sunday 14 November 2021

Skin Hangover Helpers

The festive season brings parties, dinners, and lots of drinking. Now, hangovers are to be expected; but skin hangovers, however, are often overlooked. Alcohol negatively effects the skin in several ways and, sadly, fixing the damage isn’t as simple as popping a paracetamol.

As Lisa Kordecki, Head Therapist at Skincity UK, explains “Alcohol is one of the skin’s greatest enemies, bringing inflammation and dehydration with every drink.

“Alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it actively draws water away from the body, significantly lowering the body’s water level, and dehydrating every inch of it. Dehydrated skin exposes fine lines and pores and encourages a sallow and dull complexion.

“In addition to dehydrating the skin, alcohol also dilates blood vessels and increases blood flow above normal levels, resulting in a puffy and bloated face. The sugar found in alcoholic drinks has also been shown to trigger the hormone IGF-1, which causes an overproduction of oil in the skin, resulting in breakouts.”

According to Lisa, good quality skincare will help your skin bounce back after a drinking binge (that and drinking lots of water!). She recommends arming yourself with products that contain particular skin-saving ingredients. Hyaluronic acid will instantly hydrate, while caffeine will compress blood vessels, reducing redness and flushing, as well as swelling and puffiness. Niacinamide and vitamin C will restore radiance, even skin tone, and soften fine lines and wrinkles, while charcoal will cleanse the skin, unclog pores, remove excess oil, and prevent breakouts. 

When it comes to which products to choose, I recommend these tried and tested hangover helpers...

You'll want to have a gentle cleanser on hand for removing makeup, dirt, and impurities in the days following a boozy night out. Clinique's Redness Solutions Soothing Cleanser (£19.50 is a great choice. It is a non-drying cream cleanser that helps to melt away makeup and impurities, all while helping to reduce the appearance of redness and irritation and supporting the skin’s moisture balance. Probiotics are used to strengthen the skin, whilst squalane, caffeine, and cucumber are included to hydrate, smooth, and depuff the skin.

Glow Recipe’s Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask (£41 is the ultimate post-party face mask. Loaded with hydrating watermelon and hyaluronic acid and exfoliating alpha-hydroxy acids, this ultra-nourishing lightweight mask restores the skin overnight. It is also able to soothe irritated and inflamed skin thanks to the vitamins, antioxidants, and amino acids found in its formulation. It has an interesting gel-like consistency that - luckily - doesn't end up all over your pillow while you snooze. However, if you're not down with overnight treatments, it can be used as a 10 minute rinse-off mask for a quick skin pick-me-up. 

Serums do a great job at targeting skin concerns and one of the best to use during a skin hangover is the Oskia Super C Smart Nutrient Beauty Capsules (£62 These capsules make for a potent skincare supplement that hydrates, boosts and illuminates the complexion. The formula features vitamins C and E, sweet almond oil, and a blend of nutrients and actives and helps to supercharge the complexion with every dose. Applied daily, the capsules deliver a superior complex of vitamins and minerals for effective results. Their single use dosage is contained in a protective coating that helps to preserve the integrity of the ingredients inside.

Another great serum is the Dr Irena Eris Tokyo Lift Illuminating & Protecting Day & Night Serum (£60, which is designed to instantly illuminate the skin, restoring a healthy and bright complexion. It is formulated with advanced Japanese activators and tocopherol to protect the skin from impurities and harmful environmental aggressors. Unique Primox-C complex is also included to intensively smooth and hydrate the skin, and restore elasticity. Finally, pearl powder is used to deliver a subtle light diffusing effect, making all imperfections and wrinkles less visible.

A good moisturiser is a must and one of the best for restoring the skin is the Oskia Rest Day Comfort Cream (£56 Designed to encourage the skin to rest and recuperate, the Rest Day Comfort Cream repairs and supports the skin’s natural barrier. It is a nurturing and hydrating moisturiser that is formulated with hyaluronic acid to draw in moisture and provide long-lasting hydration, as well as oat ceramides to replenish the skin’s barrier to prevent dryness. A blend of 16 soothing amino acids is also included to smooth, moisturise, and protect the skin. This medium-weight moisturiser is ideal for those with irritated, sun-damaged, or post-treatment skin.

The eye area is often most effected by a night of boozing, so using a targeted treatment is essential. To treat puffy morning-after eyes, you can't go wrong with the Peace Out Puffy Eyes Patches (£23 Boots). Unlike other under-eye patches that just hydrate the skin's surface, these bio-cellulose patches help awaken and soothe tired and irritated eyes for a more fresh and revitalised glow. Delivering results in just 15 minutes, these patches are formulated with caffeine to help reduce puffiness, niacinamide to minimise the look of dark circles, and hyaluronic acid to prevent skin-dehydration and deliver comfort to the eye area.

Finally, for most people, hungover skin equals attention-seeking pimples, so it is always best to have a good spot treatment in your beauty cabinet. One of the greatest products for tackling spots is the Zitsticka KILLA Spot Clarifying Patch Kit (£26.99 Boots). The kit contains 10 KILLA patches that cover, hide, protect, infuse, and improve the appearance of pimples. Designed to be used in the early stages of a spot's life, Zitsticka's famous transparent patch is layered with 24 self-dissolving microdarts that melt within two hours of application, flattening and calming a pimple at the source.

Another great spot treatment is the Wǒ Power TonIQ™ Anti-Blemish Essence (£15 Working best overnight, this skin treatment tackles pimples quickly by delivering immediate, targeted relief with its special skin SOS formulation. Featuring a blend of AHA and BHA skin resurfacing actives and clinically tested Swiss Alpine Complex, the Anti-Blemish Essence is able to unblock pores and minimise blemishes, whilst also helping to calm the area around breakouts.  

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