How to inject life back into post-holiday dull skin

Skin got a case of the back-to-work blues?

Without a shadow of a doubt, the December holiday season is our favourite time of the year. Once December hits, boozy events and sugar-laden treats are aplenty. And it would be outright rude not to indulge in a few celebratory drinks at the end of the year—right? However, come January, all of that alcohol, sugar and greasy food can start to show up on your face, in the form of acne, puffy eyes, dark circles and generally dull skin.(Disclaimer: That's not to say we regret any of our Christmas season indulging. We would do it all again. Nay, we will do it all again when December 2018 rolls around…) Here, a few skincare hacks that will inject life back into your post-holiday dull skin:

If your skin is breaking out 

We love sugar but unfortunately, it doesn't love us back. Consuming sugar spikes blood sugar levels, which causes the body to respond with a surge of insulin. In turn, this process can lead to hormonal acne.

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What's a girl to do? For starters, try a spot treatment, such as Eve Lom Dynaspot, Rs, 2,609 at Mecca or cult-favourite Mario Badescu Drying Lotion, Rs, 1,527 at Mecca.

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For a more all-over approach to acne, switch to a salicylic acid-based cleanser—i.e. Dermalogica Clearing Skin Wash, Rs, 5,156 at AdoreBeauty. "Salicylic acid is a very good [active ingredient] for people who have acne, because it exfoliates the top layer much more than anything else," Dr Joseph Hkeik, from All Saints Skin Clinics in Sydney explains.

If you have dark circles 

The best way to get rid of those dark circles? Sleep! Seriously—a good night's sleep will work wonders on under-eye circles. If a day of rest isn't an option, invest in an eye cream containing retinol. As New York-based dermatologist Rachel Nazarian explained to Allure: "With repeated use, retinol can stimulate the production of collagen, making the skin less thin and improving the dark circles. They are easy to find at the [chemist]."

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The Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Anti-ageing Night Moisturiser is a bestseller in the US and at Rs 2,546, it won't break the bank. Olay Eyes Pro-Retinol Eye Treatment, Rs 3,119 at Priceline will also do the trick.

If your eyes are puffy

To de-puff eyes in a hurry, you need to nix the inflammation that caused the area to puff up in the first place.

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This situation calls for a jade roller. Over the past few months, the humble facial massage roller saw a sudden surge in popularity. To decrease puffiness and encourage lymphatic drainage, pop your jade roller in the fridge overnight, allowing it to cool down. In the morning, use it to massage the face and eye area, always in an upwards direction. The cooling sensation and a massaging motion work together to lower the swelling and fluid build-up around the eyes. We love the Jade Facial Massage Roller, Rs 1,718 at I Am Natural Store.

If your complexion is dull

Skin looking not quite… right? Often, a dull complexion is the result of dehydration.

Fortunately, there are a helluva lot of super hydrating, super nourishing products out there. Bonus points if they contain hyaluronic acid. According to Dr Joseph Hkeik from All Saints Clinics in Sydney: "Hyaluronic acid is abundant inside the eye, inside the joint, and is a very important product for us to keep water in our system—as you know we are 75 per cent water."

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Start with a weekly sheet mask, such as Dr Jart + Mask Water Jet Vital Hydra Solution, Rs 2,291 for a set of 5 at Sephora. You could also incorporate a hyaluronic acid serum into your daily routine. Try Hylamide Low-Molecular HA Booster, Rs 1,909 at RY.