6 Most Common Causes of Dull Skin


Achieving glowing skin might be difficult especially if you have very dry skin or oily pores. Dull skin can be provoked by plenty of factors, from environmental pollution to health issues. Therefore it’s wise to find the root cause of skin problems before you start wasting your money on expensive skincare products, which may not even help. 

We’ve collected a few causes of dull skin and some skincare and lifestyle tips that will help you fight skin issues: 

1. Too many dead skin cells

Actually, your epidermis consists of dead skin cells, and that's a good thing. These cells help protect other skin layers below. But sometimes the buildup of dead skin cells becomes excessive and can result in dullness, fine lines, and wrinkles. That’s why you need to take an essential step to prevent an excess of dead skin cells. To get rid of excess skin cells its essential to regularly exfoliate. Exfoliating will help you unclog your pores and remove pollutants, dirt, and bacteria from your dermis. You can exfoliate your skin once or twice a week. 

2. Chronic stress 

Chronic stress is another huge factor of dull and dry skin. Constantly high-stress levels may result in many skin issues like acne breakout or eczema. This is due to the fact that stress provokes the fight-or-flight response and thus blood flow is taken away from your skin and is diverted to vital organs like the heart, brain, and lungs. Chronic stress also causes cortisol spikes which provoke inflammation throughout the body. 

Your best bet is to manage your stress.  Try to enjoy valuable "me time" regularly, start meditating or enjoy downtime at home. You can also try another effective option called breathwork. 

3. Collagen loss  

Youthful skin usually has high levels of collagen, as well as elastin and hyaluronic acid. But with age, your skin reduces the production of collagen, hyaluronic acid, and elastin. In turn, the dermis becomes thinner and the complexion dulls. 

However, you still can slow the depletion of these essential proteins. Adding vitamin C to your diet will promote the synthesis of collagen and hyaluronic acid. Foods that are high in vitamin C include oranges, red peppers, kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and strawberries.

You may also increase natural collagen production by taking hydrolyzed collagen peptide supplements. Your dermatologist will help you choose a high-quality and most effective collagen supplement. Other collagen-rich foods include bone broth, egg whites, chicken, fish and shellfish, berries, and leafy greens. Keep in mind that foods containing refined carbs can damage collagen and provoke inflammation.

4. Skin microbiome imbalance 

In fact, your skin has its own microbiome consisting of millions of bacteria, fungi, and viruses. Maintaining a healthy skin microbiome is crucial for keeping your skin healthy. A balanced skin microbiome protects your skin from harmful organisms and makes your skin produce enough nutrients and keep a balanced pH. And skin microbiome imbalance can lead to different issues, like dull skin, acne, atopic dermatitis, etc. 

Your best bet is to choose pre- and probiotic skincare products and supplements. 

5. Poor diet

If your body doesn’t get enough minerals, antioxidants, and vitamins, it can’t properly neutralize free radicals which provoke oxidative stress. Oxidative stress can provoke chronic inflammation that can accelerate fine lines, wrinkles, and enlarged pores, as well as cause acute acne. 

Oxidative stress can occur due to many factors and the most common one is poor diet. Fortunately, mother nature has provided us with antioxidant-rich foods like blueberries, strawberries, artichokes, goji berries, raspberries, kale, red cabbage, beets, and spinach. You can also add a quality supplement that can help neutralize oxidative stress to your diet. 

6. Polluted air

Polluted air is very harmful to your skin as it contains toxic particles, like carbon monoxide or nitrogen oxide emissions from cars that dirty your face and block your pores reducing oxygen delivery. Environmental pollution also contributes to free radical formation on your skin which accelerates aging and promotes inflammation. That’s why it’s essential to wash your face properly every night before bed. Otherwise, you allow all those harmful toxic particles to remain on your skin all night.

7. Sleep problems

Poor sleep is a huge mess maker as it can lead to many health issues, hormonal imbalance, and even harm your skin. Lack of sleep particularly leads to dehydration and decreases your complexion's pH levels. When you sleep, your body works to remove dead blood cells and makes room for new cells and if you don’t get enough sleep, you deprive yourself of cell turnover. It’s wise to improve your sleep quality and quantity.   

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13 Apr 2020

By Amelia Grant