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How to Turn a Dull Complexion Into Radiant Skin

May 04, 2022

Skin Care

The solution for a dull complexion might seem as simple as slathering on a moisturizer, but that’s a little like painting concealer over a zit. Rather than solely disguising the symptom, you want to address the root cause. You want the glow to radiate from your skin, not just the glossy finish of a product.

While dullness can be frustrating to deal with, the first step is to manage your stress — too much of it will make your skin even more lackluster and possibly even break out. In fact, there’s no reason to worry because a luminous complexion simply requires a few tweaks to your skincare ritual. In other words, it’s a feasible goal no matter what your skin is going through. Read on to get glowing!

Routine for a glowing complexion

The first step to radiant skin is to solidify — and commit to — a glow-giving skincare routine. Here’s how to choose the right skincare products and how often to use them to maximize effectiveness and visible results.

1. Exfoliate

When it comes to reversing dullness, exfoliation is instant gratification in a bottle. It sloughs off dead skin cells as well as excess oil buildup and other pore-clogging impurities that have accumulated on the surface of your skin.

The key to exfoliation is to find a formula that does its job well without disrupting your skin’s delicate skin barrier, the outermost layer that protects your skin from external aggressors while holding in moisture. Many exfoliating agents, such as crushed Walnut Shells, are much too harsh for the skin and cause irritation, triggering a cascade of issues. On the product label, look for words like “anti-inflammatory,” “soothing,” and “gentle.” Our Glow Activating Exfoliator contains Shea Nut Shell Powder, which sweeps away dead skin cells without compromising the skin barrier, while Honey intensely hydrates, Kaolin clears pores, and Neem and Turmeric infuse their antioxidant power into skin.

Frequency: Start by exfoliating once a week. Then, depending on your skin’s dryness and sensitivity levels, move up to two or three times each week.

2. Use a toner first

After cleansing and exfoliating, use a gentle toner to prepare your skin for following skincare treatments. Hydrated, damp skin absorbs product better than completely dried skin, and will allow the beneficial ingredients in your serums and moisturizers to penetrate and perform more effectively.

On top of that, toner can help restore skin to its ideal pH. Many experts agree that healthy skin has a slightly acidic pH, at around 4.5. Because washing your face can shift your skin’s pH to become more alkaline, a toner can bring your skin back to a healthy pH level.

Frequency: Tone twice a day, morning and evening, right after cleansing and exfoliating. Make sure your skin is still damp when you move onto applying a facial serum.

3. Massage your face

When applying a serum, an intentional two-minute massage can make a world of difference. Not only does it allow you to slow down, take deep breaths, and relieve tension, but a massage can help stimulate circulation, which in turn gives skin a rosy, revitalized glow. Using a facial roller, such as our Rollmate Facial Roller, can even help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles when used consistently over a long period.

Our alcohol-free Balance Restoring Serum, which clarifies and replenishes your natural moisture barrier, also acts as a toner. This makes it so you can massage your face with this product without the additional step of toning, perfect for those who are on the go.

For a thorough massage, use your clean fingers or our Rollmate Facial Roller to apply comfortable pressure in outward, upward strokes.

Frequency: At least once a day.

4. Keep your skin hydrated

Hydrating (replenishing water) and moisturizing (replenishing oil) are both imperative to a radiant complexion. Though we mentioned that layering on a shiny moisturizing product doesn’t suffice alone, it’s still an essential part of a comprehensive regimen. After all, skin naturally contains water and oil.

Cleansing and exfoliating, as well as the long-term effects of aging and environmental factors, all contribute to dehydrated and dry skin. After nourishing your skin with a serum, apply a moisturizer, such as our Moisturizing Hydra-Cream, which is lightweight and won’t leave a greasy look for the daytime, but will keep your skin richly moisturized through the night. As an added benefit, you won’t have to switch around between lotions and creams for each season, as it works well in both hot summers and frigid winters, and everything in between.

Frequency: Twice a day, morning and evening.

5. Protect your skin from the sun

UV rays are considered the top cause of extrinsic aging among experts, but what many people might not realize is overexposure to the sun also makes your skin appear duller. Using a broad-spectrum sunscreen that shields skin from both UVA and UVB rays will help protect your skin from the damaging effects of UV light, while allowing you to enjoy the golden rays.

Frequency: Apply sunscreen as the final step to your morning skin care routine. Sunscreen doesn’t stay effective all day long, so it’s important to reapply every couple of hours, especially during the afternoon or if you’re outdoors. If this sounds unrealistic to you, you’re not alone. A good way to ensure sunscreen reapplication is to blot on a layer of pressed powder formulated with built-in SPF.

General tips for flawless skin

Now that your skin care routine is locked in place, adopt these healthy habits to take your newfound radiance to the next level.

Cleanse morning & night

While cleansing at night might seem like a no-brainer, cleansing in the morning is good practice as well. You might argue that sleeping with freshly washed skin doesn’t require a wash, but the truth is you can still produce oil, sweat, and “pick up” bacteria from your pillowcase while you slumber. If your skin is on the dry and/or sensitive side, choose a soothing hydrating cleanser that won’t leave an oily residue.

Look for Vitamin C & Turmeric

If radiance is your goal, you can’t go without Vitamin C or Turmeric. Vitamin C is one of the most clinically researched and proven skin care ingredients available, with dermatologists and estheticians alike raving over its benefits. Chief among them is its ability to help reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation and protect from sun damage with its potent antioxidant properties, both of which contribute the even-toned, brighter-looking skin. 

Turmeric, an ancient ingredient used in India for wellness and beauty purposes, is best known for its anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant properties. It’s a powerhouse ingredient that helps with alleviating the appearance of redness, roughness, dryness, and irritation, paving the way for a luminous complexion — all reasons why it’s the primary ingredient in our Glow Activating Exfoliator.

Make masks a daily ritual

For an extra-lackluster complexion, consider using a hydrating mask every day to supercharge your radiance efforts. Whether it’s a sheet mask featuring Hyaluronic Acid or a thick cream mask blended with plant oils and butters, a daily treatment can help expedite your way to naturally dewy-looking skin.

Cool off

There’s a marked difference between a rosy complexion and a red complexion. Too much heat can make your skin appear flushed and irritated. With this in mind, keep any water that comes into contact with your skin, including sink water and showers, on the cooler side of lukewarm (or colder than that if you can help it). On hot days, spritz your face with a hydrating facial mist or periodically run ice over your face. The cold can help depuff the appearance of your skin and unveil a naturally healthy glow.


Overheating might not be great for your skin, but you don’t want to avoid sweat altogether. Getting your blood flowing is a fantastic way to stay healthy — and keep your skin radiant. Even a moderate amount can help release toxins from the skin, improve blood circulation, and reduce stress, which is linked to breakouts. Just make sure you shower afterward to wash away pore-clogging debris from your skin, then follow with your regular skin care ritual.

Foods for glowing skin

There’s a reason why people with flawless complexions always seem to mention their diets. What we consume makes a visible difference to our skin, the largest organ of the human body.

Focus on antioxidant-rich foods, such as grapes, berries, broccoli, bell peppers, mangoes, carrots, eggs, tuna, and brown rice. What’s arguably more important than the foods themselves is variety. Eating many colors of the rainbow ensures you’re getting a mix of nutrients into your body, as opposed to just a few. So next time you make a meal, consider a smoothie or salad on the side with several of these ingredients.

You might also want to add a bit more of certain foods based on your individual concerns. For example, sweet potatoes (and other orange-fleshed foods) contain high concentrations of Vitamin A, which have been linked to decreasing excess oil production. Avocados, on the other hand, are chock full of fatty acids and Vitamin E, which can help alleviate dry skin and impart a natural radiance. Like with skin care routines, consuming these foods regularly over the long term is key to seeing results.

Start your path to glowing skin today

The first step to glowing skin is a consistent routine with the right products accompanied by some simple healthy habits. Get started with our gentle, yet powerful, rejuvenating, and high-performance products to see the impacts of ancient rituals and modern science — and pass on the glowing wisdom to someone else!



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