From the skin care industry to neuroscientists, people are talking about the circadian rhythm. We look into why it's important and what it means for keeping your skin healthy and glowing.
What is the circadian rhythm?
Think of it like our body's 24-hour internal clock that sends signals from the brain to synchronise the body's systems and organs. This clock is crucial as it affects systems such as our digestion and skin health. It naturally follows the day-night cycle, resting and moving, and light and darkness. Circadian rhythms optimise the body's processes at different times throughout the day and night. The term "circadian" comes from the Latin phrase "circa diem," meaning "around a day."
Our bodies and systems, like the immune system, reproductive system, GUT, hormones, heart, and skin, have an optimal time to be active and rest. This "clock" guides them from morning to night. When we go out in the morning sun, our brain tells our body to wake up by releasing chemicals like cortisol and melatonin. This is the switch ‘on’.
How do I ensure my body clock is in sync for optimal health?
Our body's sleep and wake cycle are a very important circadian rhythm. It's influenced by light, such as sunlight and moonlight. Throughout the day and night, different parts of our body go from being active to resting and renewing. For example, our digestive system works best at certain times to process food and provide energy to our cells. If our digestion feels off, it can affect how we feel, like causing sleep problems, headaches, or low energy. It will also impact our skin, leading to problems like acne, dullness, and premature aging.
Adjust your 24-hour clock for improved sleep, radiant skin, and overall wellness. Follow our tips to get in sync!
- Day Light –– Backed by neuroscience, getting out early in the morning and the exposure to natural daylight is the ‘ON’ switch for your clock, releasing cortisol, melatonin (benefits also our mental health). The ganglion cells in our eyes perceive light, LUX is a measure of light energy. Light through a window is 50 times less effective compared to natural daylight.
*Consider this: if you're in a rush in the morning, can you take your morning call during a walk to work or school? Find ways to incorporate natural light into your morning routine— even during winter, it's better than artificial light.
- The air that we breathe – air quality is measured in negative ions. Studies show that in a closed room in a modern city centre building there may be less than 50 negative ions per square foot and in the mountain of same size 5,000. Get out to the hills when you can!
*Consider this: Move your morning meeting outdoors for fresh air and light, modify your routine by reducing morning screen time, and avoid getting lost in endless scrolling.
- Mealtime: Your digestive system is fired up and ready earlier in the day rather than later.
- Consider this: Eat a good breakfast, a wholesome lunch, and a light dinner. Avoid eating after 6pm since it will affect your skin. At night, if a heavy meal has been had, the focus will go to digestion, your skin is cheated of this vital time to regenerate.
- Get moving: Daily activity will stimulate lymph flow, circulation, brings a positive mindset and sense of wellbeing. Neuroscience shows that when we experience strong emotions, it has moved from the rationality of the head to the feeling in the body. When we move, walk, exercise, we feel into the feeling and it becomes lighter, as a result we make better decisions every day.
- Stimulants: Everyone is different, but if you are having trouble sleeping at night, you should avoid caffeine after noon.
- Make the bedroom conducive to sleep: Your bedroom setting can influence your sleep habits and the quality of your sleep at night. Invest in a comfortable mattress and bedding.
- Bedtime: Experts advise dimming the lights and putting down electric devices at least two hours before bedtime (buy an alarm clock and keep your room device free). A chaotic bed and waking time will hinder your body’s ability to adjust to a stable circadian rhythm, leaving you feeling sluggish and effecting your mood daily.
- Consider this: Instead of scrolling, introduce a relaxing skincare routine pre bedtime. If you have trouble falling asleep, try listening to free and widely available Yoga Nidra recordings designed for deep relaxation. Studies have found that this practice helps release tension in the body and mind.
Understand your skin's natural rhythms to improve your skincare routine for better results.
The skin clock is important for keeping your skin healthy and glowing. By knowing you can use specific natural skincare products with powerful plant-based ingredients to meet your skin's needs at different times of the day. This proactive method helps maintain your skin's natural radiance, overall health, and vitality, and prevents premature aging.
The body and skin are connected. Skin cells work in a daily cycle and have various functions. Skin needs protection during the day.
First thing in the morning, it may appear sluggish as it yearns for the morning daylight, the movement to get lymph flowing and blood circulation bringing life and colour to sleepy skin. Hydration increases with a peak of sebum early afternoon. Have your ever experienced that oily shine around this time, the sebaceous gland (oil gland) is at its most active phase on the clock.
By day the skin is the mediating organ between our internal and external environment, actively protecting against environmental influence; pollution, pathogens and it is also absorbing this vital light for vitamin D production. It is a sensory organ and responds very much to stimuli with skin receptors. When we are in sync with the natural rhythm of the skin, we experience a newfound radiance and this prevents premature wrinkles, dryness, loss of structure and problematic skin conditions.
A skincare routine before bed is essential to skin’s cellular regeneration (cell regeneration is most active between approx. 11pm - 3am). Prior to bed, we will feel the benefit of bringing ritual and letting go of the day, the shedding phase felt both in our energy body as we wind down and with a gentle face care exfoliant. We begin to gently slough away dead skin cells and allow for breath and aliveness to flow through our skin while we sleep. If we overburden the skin at night-time with heavy night creams our skin is struggling to experience the lightness it requires to regenerate and it will struggle to renew. In the case of irregular sleep, the collagen level of the skin deteriorates. Over time, skin shows signs of fatigue: dark circles, wrinkles, and loss of elasticity.
It's simple: we don't need heavy oils during the night. Switch to oil-free serums and toning lotions for skin renewal and regeneration.
Dr. Hauschka's products have been designed to work with the skin's circadian rhythm since 1967.
Internal care includes a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet, enough sleep, exercise, fresh air, and moderate sun exposure. External care involves using skin care products that directly impact the skin's metabolism, helping to balance its functions. Skin care covers various methods and aspects, dividing the skin into different conditions and treating them with special products. Dr.Hauschka Skin Care aim to address the skin as a whole organ and support its healthy functions. They are formulated with medicinal herbs and natural ingredients to help the skin regain balance. Skin care products work for various skin types and conditions. The entire Dr. Hauschka Skin Care line is designed to be comprehensive. Product usage considers the skin's circadian rhythm and has done since 1967.
Adapt your skin care to the skin clock, you will feel and see a visible difference:
Use your skincare in line with the circadian clock of the skin’s health and longevity. When we work with the skin we are in sync.
Our skin clock first thing in the morning needs aliveness, blood flow and lymph flow. We also look at how we effectively remove and nourish the skin in preparation for the day ahead in the elements, both internal and external environment (think pollution, air conditioning, heating etc.)
Morning Care - Dr.Hauschka Cleansing Balm, Facial Toner and Day Care Moisturiser.
Your skin is active throughout the night in the renewing and regenerating phase and come morning a gentle effective cleanse is required to prepare your skin for the protective time of day. Remember, the skin is not the kitchen floor! Avoid harsh scrubs as it will impact the PH balance of the skin and disturb the protective acid-mantle layer which is vital for protection throughout the day. We recommend using Dr.Hauschka Cleansing Balm, for all skin conditions (also for the most sensitive of skin), rich in cleansing Rugen chalk and organic apricot kernel oil which nourishes the skin and makes it supple, while extracts of anthyllis, birch and calendula give it a revitalising boost. Great to use in the shower for those under time pressure.
A leave-on Facial Toner:
Follow with our facial toner, a daisy and witch-hazel rich leave on tonic for the skin, giving strength and support for the day ahead.
Moisturise and protect: Follow with a Dr.Hauschka selected moisturiser, from rose wax rich to the lighter apricot or quince, depending on how your skin is at this time (seasons, time of life, skin will change, and our moisturisers are specially formulated to meet the demands on the skin at all stages in life, from teens to mature skin). Use Dr.Hauschka SPF30 over your day care, it has a magnificent golden tint.
*Protect the skin around the eyes and the lips, much thinner skin than the rest of the face (Dr.Hauschka Eye Balm/Daily Hydrating Eye Cream or Regenerating Eye Cream for over 40’s and lip care stick).
Multi-purpose products, our top tips!
- The skin clock throughout the day is actively working, you may notice for eg a shine early afternoon (this is when the sebaceous gland is over producing sebum/oil), we recommend gently patting with a tissue and spritzing with facial toner, with natural astringents to take down the shine or dehydrated and tight come 3pm onwards, this is post lunch and the digestive system is using a lot of energy. Keep well hydrated throughout the day and use a smaller amount of moisturiser warm into the hands and gently press into the skin, even over make up this is a magic solution!
Evening and Bedtime skin care: Dr.Hauschka Cleansing products, Toning lotions and Night Serums.
- A time of letting go and the shedding phase, approx. 5pm, skin cells that have now reached their 28-day peak are ready to be sloughed away. Energetically felt in the body, come evening our body’s clock is signalling the beginning of the slow down, cleansing is a cue to begin this process. Dr.Hauschka Cleansing Cream, used every evening is a cult favourite with organic skin care devotees. Gently removing dirt particles, excess oils, and the remnants of negative vibes from your skin as you use pressing and rolling movements with this sweet almond paste, rich botanical oils. Find mindful time, start with five minutes if you are time starved, you’ll begin over time to yearn for this evening ritual.
- Top tip, add in Dr.Hauschka Moor- Lavender Bath Essence to your cleansing water, a great way to bring the sensory overload from your day in check.
- Support the skin clock by night with Dr.Hauschka Night Serum, the feminine quality of the moon, cooling, calming and quiet. Restorative and regenerating time, this wonderfully fragrant formulation with apple fruit hydrosol and apple blossom extract supports the skin’s natural clock-rhythm while guiding it through its essential night-time work. Supported by witch hazel extracts, Night Serum tones all skin conditions for a fresh, radiant complexion come morning.
- For an extra boost during a change of season try Dr.Hauschka Renewing Night Conditioner , keep, used every night for 28 nights to support the skins renewal process, we recommend 4-5 time per year for all skin conditions.
Living in harmony with the natural rhythms around you connects you with nature, all living things, and the world. Next time you're out for an early morning walk and see a rosebud unfurling in the sunlight, take note - there's a lot to be learned from the power of flowers!