Dull Skin
Skin, Lip and Body Care

5 Causes of Dull Skin and How to Get a Glowing Complexion

+ CV Skinlabs Team

With all the stress of the holidays and harsh winter weather, it’s common to find yourself suffering from dull skin.

But no one wants to have dull skin on New Year’s Eve, and certainly, no one wants to start the new year looking tired and lifeless!

So let’s fix it. Below you’ll find five common reasons why your skin may be looking dull and what you can do to reclaim that radiant, youthful glow you want!

5 Reasons Why You May Have Dull Skin

When we’re talking about dull skin, we usually mean skin that looks dry, patchy, ashy, or uneven. It lacks radiance and can’t reflect light well. It makes you look older than you are.

Dull Skin Cause 1: Dead Skin Cells

Dead skin cells naturally accumulate on the surface of the skin over time. That’s because the skin pushes old, dead skin cells up to the surface while growing new, younger skin cells in the deeper layers.

Skin looks dull when those dead skin cells accumulate on the surface rather than sloughing off as they should. As we age, the skin’s ability to turn over that layer of dead skin cells slows down. As the dead skin cells multiply, they get in the way of bright, glowing skin underneath. They can also clog pores and make skin look dry and dull.

Dull Skin Solution: Exfoliate Regularly

To fix this cause of dull skin, all you have to do is step up your exfoliation. It sloughs off those dead skin cells and other impurities to reveal softer, smoother skin underneath. You can do this in two ways:

  • Chemical exfoliation: Use alpha and beta hydroxy acids like glycolic, mandelic, and salicylic acid products to break up and remove dead skin cells. This method is gentler than physical exfoliation and is best for sensitive skin.
  • Physical exfoliation: Use tools like brushes, sponges, washcloths, and scrubs to manually scrub away dead skin cells. Soft brushes can be very effective even for sensitive skin, but scrubs are often too harsh and can cause microtears in the skin that may encourage inflammation and acne breakouts.

Dull Skin Cause 2: Aging

As we get older, things change in the skin. For one, cell turnover slows down, which is why you may need to exfoliate more often. Collagen production also decreases, leading to more sagging and bagging, and natural wear and tear on the skin can lead to increased dryness.

Dull Skin Solution: Try Retinol

Retinol is a form of vitamin A that helps delay the appearance of aging on the skin. It fights fine lines and wrinkles, increases cell turnover, and fades dark spots. It can cause dryness and irritation in those with sensitive skin, though. If you’ve found it difficult to use retinol in the past, try skin cycling.

Dull Skin Age

Cause 3: Dryness

If your skin is dry, it’s going to look dull. Indeed, dryness is the most common cause of dull skin. It creates cracks in the skin’s surface and allows dead skin cells to build up more quickly.

As to why your skin is dry, there are many potential reasons. Age, climate, weather, heat, air conditioning, your diet, and the moisturizer you’re using can all play a role.

Dull Skin Solution: Moisturize with a Quality Product

You can moisturize multiple times a day with a lackluster product and see no improvement in your dull skin. To truly solve the problem, you need a product that not only helps moisturize your skin but also helps repair the outer barrier so that skin can hold onto the moisture it has.

We recommend our Calming Moisture and Body Repair Lotion. Calming Moisture contains beta-glucan, aloe vera, and oat extract to reduce redness and irritation, and many natural oils like jojoba and sunflower to penetrate deeply into the skin and plump and smooth.

Better yet, this moisturizer will leave your skin with a radiant glow the first time you try it! Makeup artists love it underneath foundation for that reason.

Our Body Repair Lotion is similar, containing beta-glucan and St. John’s Wort to boost collagen production along with calendula and aloe to calm and soothe dry, inflamed skin.

Dull Skin Cause 4: Environmental Factors

Dry weather, harsh winds, pollution, sun damage, dirt and grime, and more can have negative effects on the skin, causing dryness and often, dullness. They strip the skin of its natural moisture, damage the cells underneath, and often accelerate the appearance of aging.

Dull Skin Solution: Protect the Skin

Start with a physical sunscreen (zinc oxide or titanium dioxide) with an SPF of 30 or higher. Add hats, scarves, gloves, and other protective types of clothing when the weather warrants it.

Always wash your face thoroughly before bed at night to get rid of all the environmental microbes that have deposited on your skin during the day. Finally, look for antioxidants in your skincare products. These ingredients help neutralize free radicals from the environment, protecting your skin from oxidative stress that can cause damage and dullness.

Good antioxidant ingredients include vitamins C and E, natural oils (like olive and jojoba), turmeric, and reishi mushroom.

Dull Skin CV Skinlabs

Dull Skin Cause 5: Stress

Scientists have discovered an intricate relationship between psychological stress and the onset or aggravation of many skin diseases like eczema, rosacea, and psoriasis as well as skin problems like dullness and dryness.

When you’re under stress, your brain stimulates the release of stress hormones like cortisol, adrenaline, and norepinephrine. These hormones increase immune changes that can lead to inflammation, blemishes, and rashes.

High cortisol levels—particularly those that persist for weeks or months—are also associated with impaired skin barrier function and premature aging.

Dull Skin Solution: Ease Stressed Skin

When going through a stressful period (like the holidays!), find a daily activity that you can do to shed the stress. If you have a healthy way to release it, your skin won’t suffer so much (and neither will the rest of you). Good options include going for a walk, doing yoga, meditating, journaling, spending time with a pet, or listening to calming music.

Next, practice healthy habits like eating well (avoiding excess sugar) and getting 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Drink more water to hydrate the skin from the inside out, consume more tea (it helps relieve stress and is good for your skin), and make sure to stick with your regular skincare routine.

Finally, use the right products overnight to help your skin recover. We recommend our CVSkinlabs product line because it gives you safe, nourishing formulas with our Tri-Rescue Complex that will help counteract the effects of stress on your skin.

How do you treat dull skin?

No Comments