img_5321Oh fall. The time of year when skin gets dry and ruddy from the wind and cold. Creams, masks, and serums abound in the beauty marketplace to help salve the cold weather’s attack on our skin, but there are easier and cheaper ways to help your skin get moisturized and glowing right now.

These two skincare hacks are sure to keep your skin healthy and hydrated well into the holiday season.

1. Drink More Water

It seems so simple, non? But, one of the oldest tricks in the book can really do wonders for your face’s appearance of youth and vitality. Why?

Water Flushes out Toxins. If you don’t drink enough water, your kidneys don’t do their thing, namely having enough liquid to flush toxins out through the bladder. Where do those toxins go when you’re dehydrated? Nowhere. Your body holds on to them. This elevated toxin level will be apparent in your physical feelings and your skin.

Feeling low or energy or skin looking dull? Get thee some water stat. Adequate water helps these toxins pass through your body the normal way, and it balances the oil and water on your skin. Meaning? Hydration decreases the number of breakouts. Some studies show that dehydration can actually cause and worsen breakouts and skin irritation.

Your skin’s largest organ will reflect the good or bad things happening inside your body. Drinking enough water is an easy way to make sure everything runs smoothly.

Water Hydrates You from the Inside Out. When you’re dehydrated, it’s scientifically proven that your skin looks duller, your pores look larger, and your wrinkles look more prominent. Just getting the right amount of water plumps skin and decreases the appearance of pores and fine lines, and it supports crucial structures in the skin that create collagen, one of the key building blocks to a firm, youthful appearance. Fun fact: it can also help sunburns clear up more quickly.

Also, when you’re properly hydrated, skin is more elastic and less likely to crack and allow in particles that can cause irritations and blemishes. It helps strengthen your skin’s natural defenses.

Okay, so it’s clear that you need to be hydrated to maintain glowing skin, but how can you do that right?

The App. iHydrate is my favorite, free hydration app. After downloading it, you fill out information about your age and weight to help the app determine your optimal hydration needs aka how many ounces of fluid you need a day to stay in tip top condition. The general consensus is that you should be drinking half your body weight in ounces, but that number can increase depending on your physical activity level. Get in a super intense workout? Up your ounces by 15-20 to make up the difference.

Every time you drink something, the app has a user-friendly pie chart to add and track your progress. It also calculates your hydration based on a bevy of beverages: milk, juice, soda, alcohol, you can keep track of it all. And, it’s really satisfying to input your data and watch your chart fill up all day long.

One important thing to note is that chugging your water needs at the very end of the day won’t get you the results you’re looking for. Your body can only absorb so much H2O every hour, so you need to space it out throughout the day. A good way to do this is to mark hours of the day on your water bottle or buy one that’s already labeled. This way, you are flushing your body with water all day long and not drowning it between 8-10 pm.

Fancier Water Alternatives.  Let’s face it — drinking plain water all day every day can be boring. However, sweetened drinks can counteract all of water’s positive effects.

These are my suggestions to keep things exciting in the water department: la croix flavored sparkling water (I like the lime one); unsweetened, hot teas; homemade mint watermelon spritzer; or kombucha. I start every day with a 36 ounce of tea to get things moving. All of these options will add variety to your beverage options and keep you good and hydrated.

2. Eat More Healthy Fats

Oh no! That evil word: fats. Thankfully, fat’s bad rep has begun to diminish in recent years and for good reason. The good fats aren’t actually as malicious as we’ve been told. And, they’re vital for healthy skin and proper nutrition.

Building Blocks. When people talk about healthy fats, they’re typically singling out omega-3. One of the main reasons is that this fat decreases inflammation, helps plump the skin, and can decrease blemishes. In addition, studies show that healthy fats like omega-3 are key to skin functioning properly. Without them, participants in fat-based nutrition studies showed skin that had higher levels of dryness, cracking or flaking; dullness; dandruff; inflammation; redness; breakouts; flare-ups of psoriasis, rosacea and eczema; sagging; and premature aging. That’s a long list of symptoms that I sure don’t want to develop or increase!

Benefits. By upping your healthy fat, studies show that you will experience a reduction in inflammation and skin flare-ups; a reduction in breakouts; and a better hydration because your cell membranes are intact and functioning properly to be able to flush out toxins and keep in moisture.

They’re like an internal moisturizer. If you have oily or dry skin, eating fats will help balance your skin’s oil from the inside. You might find that you no longer need to apply that heavy balm or stripping cleanser a month after incorporating more healthy fats into your diet. Your skin will begin to find its natural balance. Also, you’ll be saving money on all those costly skincare products!

What to Eat. Like with most nutrition advice, eat whole foods. Fat in Doritos isn’t going to get your glowing skin. In particular, choose whole foods high in omega-3 fatty acids — grassfed options are key to getting a high level or omega-3. I recommend grassfed ghee, whole grassfed yogurt or cream if you can tolerate dairy, grassfed butter, avocado (and all of the delicious recipes you can use it in), whole eggs, high quality coconut oil, high quality olive oil, high quality olives, grassfed beef, and fatty fish.

What to Avoid. The bad skin culprits on this list aren’t surprising. Avoid fats combined with large amounts of sugar like those in baked goods. Avoid the fats in processed snacks, processed cheese, large amounts of cheese, fats in fried foods, and fats processed creamers and margarines. All of these can lead to inflammation and detrimental effects on your overall skin health and appearance.

So, skincare couldn’t be easier or cheaper than turning on your faucet and enjoying some homemade guacamole. Implement these easy and cheap tips into your beauty routine today and enjoy the glowing skin benefits.