Top 5 Reasons For Dull Skin And How to Fix It (No Plastic Surgeon Needed)

Fact: luminous, dewy skin never goes out of style, we know this. We also know that maintaining radiance isn't always easy.

Clear, bright, and flawless skin is every woman’s dream. Right from your teens, the quest for the perfect products for your skin type begins – and sometimes it feels like it never ends.

Our skin constantly sheds dead cells, but if the process isn’t working efficiently, your complexion can take on a dull, unhealthy, tired appearance that emphasizes wrinkles.

Dull skin is one of the most common skincare complaints. When people talk about dull skin, they generally are describing skin that lacks radiance or glow like that associated with young, healthy skin. Dull skin tone is often the catchall term used to also describe related issues like uneven skin texture or tone.

The good news? There are almost-effortless ways to get back your healthy glow. Keep reading to find out the most common reasons for dull skin and ways to fix the problem.

#1 Pollution

Be it the commute to work and back home or a short trip to the grocery store – you are constantly exposed to pollution.

Your environment could be dulling down your skin with air pollutants, low humidity, harsh winds, and UV exposure, which can wreak havoc on unprotected skin, researches note.

The smoke and dust suspended in the air can cause the skin pores to get clogged. Eventually, this can affect the natural glow of your skin and cause other skin-related issues like acne, pimples, and uneven skin tone.

You don’t have to relocate to keep your skin smooth and even. First, always wash your face before bed – otherwise, pollutant particles can clog pores while you sleep, dermatologists warn. Then, apply a good antioxidant product every morning to mop up the free radicals that we’re exposed to every day, which stops them from doing harm. Some of the best ones are green tea, white tea, vitamin C, and resveratrol.

And always wear SPF daily to shield skin from the sun and pollutants.

#2 Dehydration

Staying hydrated is key to good skin. It helps in making the skin look supple and replenished. Lack of hydration can make your skin look dehydrated and dull.

Experts explain that dehydration decreases the volume of blood flow to the skin, making you look pale and sickly. Dehydration may seem like a short-term problem solved by a glass of water, dermatologists encourage viewing skin dehydration as a long-term problem.

Consistently failing to give your skin the hydration it needs can cause lasting damage, like fine lines, sagging skin, and even scales and deep wrinkles from severe chronic dehydration.

Long story short: if you don't want wrinkles, drink up. Aim to drink eight glasses of water a day.

#3 Stress

It is the most common complaint today. What most people often overlook is its impact on health. Your skin shows clear signs of stress in the form of acne, pimples, and dullness of skin.

Stress plays a large role in the brilliance of your skin—or the lack thereof. Stress causes an increase in cortisol, which can affect blood flow to the skin and affect skin repair. Translation: whatever deadline, argument, or frustration it is you're holding onto could be what's standing between you and lustrous skin.

Stress management is crucial. Take time to de-stress at home. Adopting a more positive attitude was a common, important factor in "super-agers" (women who look 10+ years younger than their actual age) according to an Olay study.

Also, try learning strategies to calm your mind and manage stress, which will help improve your complexion now and in the future.

#4 Poor gut health

Glowing skin is not just determined by external factors, but is actually heavily influenced by your gut health. The skin has long been an indicator of numerous internal issues, and gut problems like indigestion or food intolerances tend to manifest in the skin.

Gut issues can affect the way your body absorbs nutrients, and if there is poor absorption of these key vitamins and minerals then your skin is bound to also look depleted.

The main culprits of poor gut health include processed foods, sugar, dairy and alcohol. Cutting these out is the first step, and a probiotic supplement to support digestive function is the second.

It’s also a good idea to keep a record of the foods that cause the issues in your gut to flare up. Once you figure out what works for you, and find a healthy, probiotic-rich, balanced diet, then your skin will reflect your happy belly.

#5 Skipping exfoliation

If exfoliation isn’t a regular part of your skincare routine, then that could be one reason why you have dull skin.

If you wash your face twice a day, great! But there's a very crucial step you need to add: exfoliation. Dryness is the most common cause of dull skin, and exfoliating creates a fresh canvas that allows topical products to penetrate better. The process removes the skin’s outer layer of dead cells so its surface is smoother and clearer and reflects light (glows!).

Incorporate one type of exfoliator at a time into your routine to avoid skin irritation and damage, experts recommend. (For instance, if you’re trying a chemical peel, don’t also use a physical scrub or a cleansing brush at the same time).

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