Did you know consumers spent about $250 billion on anti-aging creams and cosmetics that contain loads of toxins, chemicals and parabens? Unfortunately, many of these products yield little to no benefits in reversing the aging process. They often cover up at a superficial level or cause further skin damage. What is the best strategy for radiant, youthful skin? How do you maintain long term healthy skin?

To start, here are the top 3 things that I recommend you should avoid doing.

1. Harmful rays Although sunlight is the biggest culprit to pre-mature aging, we can’t completely avoid it. Lets be realistic, I think it’s too extreme when we’re told to completely avoid the sun. Vitamin D is just as vital to our bones, bodies and mental health as any other vitamins. Without it, we would all have the blues and our bones would ache. It’s all about using the right protection. Using the right amount of SPF and reapplying every 2-3 hours can help protect your skin.

There are also certain foods and supplements that can protect your skin from the inside. Green leafy vegetables like kale, spinach, and collards, as well as yellow-orange vegetables like carrots and peppers, contain potent antioxidants called lutein and zeaxanthin. Blueberries and blackberries are also great. These important antioxidants accumulate in skin layers and directly protect against the damaging effects of free radicals.

2. Touch or Pick your skin constantly Bacteria, bacteria, bacteria! You can’t see it but it’s there.  You get enough of bacteria and germs just being in the subway, walking on the streets or sitting in your office. Be aware and mindful of what you’re doing  if you are a picker. Put a sticky note on your bathroom wall or office computer with big letters saying  “DON’T TOUCH YOUR FACE” or  “DON’T PICK”. This actually worked for several of my clients.

3. Over layering products Less is more when it comes to maintaining the prefect complexion. It’s really not about how many products you use on your skin. It’s using the right products for your skin type (I think I’ve said this hundreds of times). Most of the time, people use all sorts of products to try to make their skin look better, only to make things worse in the long run.You put your skin into overdrive and  causing clogged pores and irritation that wouldn’t be there if you had just stuck to the simple regimen in the beginning.

For example: don’t layer 3 different types of serums at the same time. This doesn’t work and your skin doesn’t get any benefits from this.