How to stay youthful: our top skincare tips

We all know how important it is to look after our skin, especially on our face, which is thinner and more fragile than anywhere else on the body. It’s also the first place where our good – and bad – habits show themselves. Changes in our hormones, the weather and other environmental factors all take their toll too, making dullness, red patches and flakiness all-too-common concerns. To help protect your skin from the elements and daily stresses, and attain a silky smooth complexion, follow these easy skincare tips.

Buffing away dry top skin will make way for the healthy, glowing layer underneath. Dip a flannel in warm water and rub your skin in circles, applying gentle pressure, from your neck up to your forehead. Invest in a chemical-free facial exfoliator to intensify the process. Do not exfoliate more than two times a week, or you might risk irritating sensitive skin.

If your skin is dry and flaky, it simply isn't getting enough moisture. It might be that extreme weather or harsh products are stripping it of natural oils. Avoid foaming cleansers, which can be drying, and plump instead for one with a creamy or oily consistency. Choose a rich night moisturiser to replenish parched skin while you sleep.

When it comes to skin, never think twice about pampering yourself. Once a week, introduce a nourishing facemask into your skincare routine. Look for products that contain vitamin E or hyaluronic acid, and take time to apply the product and enjoy watching it to go to work. Also consider avoiding clay masks – while great at drawing out impurities, they can dry skin.

Your skin is a reflection of your general health, which begins with a good night's sleep. Your body heals itself at night, so if you’re burning the candle at both ends, you're not giving your skin the time it needs to recover and replenish. Try to stick to a regular bedtime, turn your phone and other digital devices off at least an hour before that time and have a warm evening bath. All of these things will help you unwind, regulate your body clock and increase the quality of your shut-eye.

Give your skin the nutrients it needs at mealtimes. Fish such as mackerel, salmon and herring, as well as flaxseed and rapeseed oils, contain omega-3 essential fatty acids, which will help you to hold onto those all-important natural oils. Vitamin C-rich fruits including blueberries, oranges and strawberries are super antioxidants and help produce collagen. Almonds, avocado and hazelnuts contain vitamin E, which supports healthy skin growth. And Selenium-heavy foods such as eggs, tomatoes and broccoli protect against sun damage and age spots.

Last but by no means least, drink plenty of water. Even mild dehydration will result in a dull, grey complexion. Aim to drink eight glasses of water a day and avoid caffeine and alcohol if you want to look and feel your best.