Brighten Up: 8 Tips to Really Get Radiant Skin

Janell M. Hickman
Barbara Bui bbt S14 019


One of the key steps to looking healthy, beautiful and happy in 2015 is making sure your skin shows it.  But after a busy holiday season, many of us suffer from lackluster complexions courtesy of  late nights, early mornings and jam-packed schedules all-around. Now, you can say goodbye to dull, lifeless skin and get glowing with expert skincare advice. We promise, radiant skin is one resolution you’ll be able to keep!

Use SPF Year Round
“What’s particularly shocking are all of the ways we keep ourselves from having radiant skin—the number one reason being sun damage,” explains Bryan Barron, Research and Content Director for “Daily exposure to UV light plays a major role in every sign of aging from wrinkles to brown spots to large pores and even to delayed healing of red marks from breakouts—not to mention skin cancer. UVA and UVB protection keep skin looking and acting younger [for much] longer.”

Go Easy On Exfoliation
“Exfoliation is good in moderation, but keep in mind that scrubs can often be too abrasive,” shares L’Oréal Paris Consulting Dermatologist, Dr. Gervaise Gerstner. “If you are interested in giving your skin a deeper cleanse, Clarisonic devices are the perfect, gentle choice. The devices actually do not exfoliate, but rather oscillate back and forth to free pores of dirt, makeup, etc. six times better than hands alone, as well as pollution particles 30 times better than your hands.”

MORE: 10 Things No One Ever Tells You About Washing Your Face

When In Doubt, Use A Mask
“Facial masks work by stimulating the skin, bringing circulation to the surface,” shares Cecilia Wong, founder of Cecelia Wong Skincare. “When searching for a mask, look for ingredients like spearmint, peppermint, grapefruit and tumeric.” Wong recommends her namesake Rescue Blemish Peel Mask which only requires 3-minutes of your time and provides the benefits of both a mask and a peel.

Peels Can Reveal Your Inner Glow
“At-home peels are becoming more and more popular,” shares Linda Wang, founder and president of Karuna Skin. “I highly recommend testing the product on your arm or a small area first to test your sensitivity to the active ingredients. If you’ve had reactions to the active ingredients (like glycolic acid or mandelic acid) previously, then you should proceed with caution.” Post-peel, Wang recommends adding moisture back into your skin with a sheet mask like Karuna Hydrating+ Face Mask.

Use Serum Nightly
“There’s no reason in the world not to use a well-formulated serum—unless you aren’t concerned about reducing the signs of aging or repairing sun-damaged skin (which most of us have),” shares Barron. “From my perspective, [using serum daily] is a major do! Look for products containing ingredients like antioxidants (there’s no single ‘best’ antioxidant—just lots of good ones), hyaluronic acid, peptides, retinol, and anti-irritants such as those derived from curcumin and licorice.” He recommends Nuance Salma Hayek Overnight Time-Release Retinol Capsules or Estee Lauder Perfectionist CP+R Wrinkle Lifting/Firming Serum.

MORE: 7 Reasons Toner Should Be In Your Skincare Routine

Add An Extra Step
“Radiant skin is when skin looks very hydrated, even-toned and dewy,” shares Wang whose line of sheet masks includes fans like Julia Roberts and Stacy Kiebler. “Toner also helps to cleanse the residues of your skin after washing. It can be worth [the extra step].”

Microdermabrasion is an Option
“Benefits of microdermabrasion include a reduction in scarring, the elimination of dead, flaky skin leading to smoother skin texture, unclogged pores, and the minimization of fine lines,” says Wong. “Drawbacks from overdoing it can include damaging skin tissue and irritation causing redness and sensitivity.”

Banish Hyperpigmentation
“[You should use] a two-step process of sunscreen rated SPF 30 (and higher) and a well-formulated skin-lightening product (like Black Opal Eve True Tone Correct Fade Crème and Paula’s Choice Resist C15 Super Booster) that contains one or more ingredients [like hydroquinone or vitamin C] proven to reduce excess melanin production,” shares Barron. “Without sunscreen, no skin-lightening product can be very effective. You should also consider sun avoidance when possible or, when outdoors, be sure to wear sunglasses, a hat, and protective clothing. Essentially, anything you can do to protect discolored skin from further UV light exposure will help.”