Is being vegan good for your skin?


More and more people are giving up meat and dairy for all manner of reasons – whether that’s ethical, environmental or health. In fact half a million have signed up to take the 31-day Veganuary challenge this year, up 100,000 on 2020. So can a vegan diet benefit your complexion? Heaven Skincare founder Deborah Mitchells

One of the benefits of a good – and I stress good – vegan diet is that it can be great for your skin because it encourages you to eat more fruits and vegetables which are high in antioxidants.

Meat can have a toxic effect on our complexion, especially when teamed with too much alcohol over Christmas and New Year, so giving it up – even for a couple of weeks – allows our bodies to detox in a healthy way.

When we detox, changes take place in our skin: the jaw line becomes more defined as fluid is released; and the under-eye area becomes less swollen as the high salts in animal protein are no longer present to retain water.

If you’re not ready to give up meat entirely, you can instead ditch diary – especially if you suffer from eczema or acne – to improve texture and tone. There are many plant-based alternatives readily available and almond milk, for example, is naturally free of cholesterol, lactose and saturated fat, while being rich in calcium and essential vitamins A, D and E.

However, you do need to be aware of the downsides when opting for a restrictive diet like veganism. Simply replacing meat with carbohydrates, bingeing on sugary snacks or eating the same processed meals day in day out and you’ll miss out on healthy nutrients and protein and this can have a negative affect the skin.

A lack of iron and vitamin B12 can cause dark circles under eyes as well as brittle hair and nails.

Maybe try and go vegan for a month to start with, but promise yourself you’ll combine it with a varied diet, exercise and an effective skin care regime and in a couple of weeks you’ll notice healthier, brighter skin and you may even lose a few pounds too. Win win!

If you’re already a fully-fledged vegan or thinking of going meat-free you can introduce these plant-powered Heaven Skincare essentials into your daily routine.

Nettle Venom Anti-Ageing Cream, £64: Traditionally, vegan ingredients haven’t made very effective anti-ageing creams but with the patented NETTATOXIN the power comes from the skin’s own rebuilding system to tighten and renew. With regular use the skin continues this healing action, smoothing lines as it does so. See here.

Nettle Venom Eyes, £55: When you apply around the delicate eye area the body’s natural defence starts to heal; of course there’s no damage but the skin is tricked into thinking there has been. By using it daily, it tackles dark circles and fine lines. See here.

Designed to be used morning and evening as part of your regular skin care routine, a little goes a long way; simply apply one of two drops to face. Alternatively, you can add a small amount to the Nettle Venom Anti-Ageing Cream for super-charges results. See here.

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Nettle Venom Shoots supplements, £37: The leaves and roots of nettles contain a wide range of nutrients, including vitamins A, C and K, as well as several B vitamins. They also contain calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and sodium. Together, these act as antioxidants inside your body to defend against damage from free radicals, which affect the development and survival of cells. See here.

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