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Why You Should Give Your Skin a Detox & How You Can Do It

I think it’s safe to say that a lot of us have experienced a lot of change this year, and it hasn’t exactly been a relaxing time – for you or your skin. Especially when you add in the seasonal changes to your skincare routine. I feel like everywhere you look, people are detoxing their diets, homes, relationships, etc. Basically removing anything that’s toxic from your life. Scientifically, detoxing refers to the removal of toxins – and your organs do just that on their own by filtering them from the blood.

Now when it comes to detoxing the skin, the word “detox” is used in a metaphorical sense since your skin doesn’t actually remove toxins from the body. It’s become more of a trendy buzzword than anything – but you can’t deny there are days when your skin could use a detox. Some days our skin is extra dull or breaking out, especially when we experience mental, physical and emotional stress and anxiety. These stressors can manifest and show up on your skin, but the good news is, there are a lot of different ways you can approach this – from cutting back on refined sugars and decreasing coffee intake to going makeup-free and exfoliating more frequently to remove dead skin cell build-up.

A skin detox helps give your skin a fresh, clean start by cleansing the skin from any impurities, pollutants, free radicals and DNA damage. It stimulates a healthier environment for your skin, which can improve the skin barrier and boost collagen and elastin production, cell turnover and cell metabolism. Here are 7 ways you can detox your skin.

Add beauty foods to your diet

Glowing, radiant skin starts from within, so it’s important to look into your diet during your skin detox. Foods like dairy, refined sugars and coffee can be triggering, while alkaline-rich fruits and veggies and healthy fats help you glow from the inside out. The key is to implement foods you enjoyed from your detox into your everyday life to ensure you continue to see results even after your detox is over. Here are some foods to add to your diet for healthy skin!

Incorporate detoxifying ingredients into your skincare

Masks are the easiest ways to incorporate key ingredients into your skincare routine. Depending on your skin needs, bentonite clay, charcoal, mud, vitamin C and algae are a few of my favorites. Bentonite clay, charcoal and mud all work to draw out impurities from the skin, control shine, decongest pores and tighten the appearance of pores. These ingredients are great for those with oily skin!

Purifying congested pores isn’t the only way to detox your skin. Vitamin C is a must-have in my morning skincare routine. Rich in antioxidants, it helps neutralize free radicals and prevent free radical damage. Free radicals are environmental aggressors that can lead to fine lines, wrinkles, dull skin and other signs of premature aging. Algae is another ingredient I like to include in my skincare routine – and it’s great for those who need a boost of hydration. It adds moisture to the skin by improving cell membranes, and it contains multiple antioxidants, essential amino acids and omega-3 fatty acids. So, protecting the skin is another great way to detoxify!

Double cleanse

Double cleansing at the end of the day is the best way to give your skin a clean slate – and it’s especially a must after a long day of wearing makeup. First, use an oil-based cleanser to melt off oil-based makeup residue. Then, follow up with your normal cleanser. This is an important step in detoxing your skin and vital to a clear complexion!


Exfoliating your skin will help remove the build-up of dead skin cells. This will help your cleanser do its job and bring back your baby-soft skin. It’s important to avoid any harsh, grainy exfoliators as they’ll only irritate your skin. As you’re transitioning your summer skincare routine to fall and winter, it’s also important to note that excess exfoliation can increase dehydration by stripping the skin’s natural oils. Unless you have visible flakiness, it’s recommended that you chemically or physically exfoliate once or twice a week.

Steam your face

A DIY facial steam treats your pores, releasing any toxins, dirt and debris. It also does a great job of softening your skin and increasing circulation. I love adding this step to my at-home facials – and you don’t need a facial steamer! Fill a bowl with hot water, add lemon slices, tea, herbs or essential oils and hover your face over the bowl for 5-10 minutes. Covering your head with a towel will help trap the steam in.

Stay hydrated

Staying hydrated helps eliminate toxins from your body and rejuvenate your skin. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine recommend about 15.5 cups of fluids for men and about 11.5 cups of fluids for women daily – but very few actually get this much, and on top of that, they’re drinking dehydrating liquids like coffee, sugary juices and alcohol. While your detoxing your skin, swap your morning cup of coffee for a hydrating and skin-clearing green tea and try to avoid sugary juices and alcohol to meet your daily recommendation.

Let your skin breathe

Quarantine is the perfect time to let your skin breathe and go makeup-free – or just less heavy on the makeup if that’s what you prefer. If you like having a layer of coverage, swap your foundation for a light oil-free tinted moisturizer.

Have you ever detoxed your skin, and how did it make you feel? I’d love to hear your experiences and tips!