When you look good, you feel good. It’s something that you can feel, and it has been proven in psychological research related to self-perception. Self-perception is the way you see yourself, based on your beliefs about yourself, what you see in the mirror, and what other people think. It affects everything you do, how you feel about yourself, how you behave, and even what you can achieve.
When you take care of yourself physically, you subconsciously radiate confidence in every facet of your life, from work to personal relationships. If you’re looking for tips on how to improve your physical appearance, you’ve come to the right place! Here are 8 simple tips that will help you put your best foot forward:
1. Stand Tall
Good posture is essential to looking (and feeling) your best. Unfortunately, all the hours you spend hunched over a computer at work can take a toll on your posture. Make a conscious effort to straighten up — push your shoulders back, puff your chest out, and hold your chin up. Not only will you look more confident, but you’ll also seem taller and more slender.
2. Exercise Regularly
Looking good isn’t just about appearances — it’s also about being healthy inside and out. A regular exercise routine will help increase energy levels, improve mental clarity, and reduce stress. And the best part? You don’t have to spend hours at the gym to see results. A moderate 30-minute workout 3-5 times a week is all it takes! Here are some to get you started:
- 25 jumping jacks.
- 15 bodyweight squats.
- 20-30 second plank.
- 20 walking lunges — 10 per side.
- 10 push-ups (on knees if you need to)
- 30 seconds running in place with high knees.
3. Eat a Healthy Diet
What we put into our bodies shows on the outside. Eating nutritious foods helps improve skin tone and texture, strengthens nails and hair, and gives you an overall healthy glow. Aim for a diet that is rich in lean proteins, fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats. Having a simple salad made out of romaine lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, cucumber, white onion, red wine vinegar, and olive oil with every meal makes a big difference in the long run!
4. Get Ample Sleep
Getting enough sleep is crucial for both your mental and physical health. When you don’t get enough rest, it shows on your face in the form of dark circles and puffiness. On top of that, you tend to have less energy and focus throughout the day — not ideal when trying to juggle work with a personal life. Most adults need 7-9 hours of sleep per night — make sure you’re getting yours!
5. Drink Plenty of Water
Staying hydrated is key to keeping your body functioning properly inside and out. Drinking plenty of water promotes clear skin, flushes out toxins, improves digestion, and aids in weight loss (among other things!). The recommended daily intake for adults is 8 glasses per day — make sure you hit your mark!
6. Limit Alcohol and Nicotine Consumption
Excessive alcohol intake can lead to dehydration, which can then cause dull skin, wrinkles, and bags under the eyes. It can also contribute to weight gain — not exactly the look most people want for themselves! If you do drink alcohol regularly, make sure you offset each drink with a glass or two of water.
In addition, smokers are more likely to develop wrinkles at an earlier age due to the reduction of blood flow to the skin. The heat and smoke dry out your skin, too, and the chemicals may have unknown effects on your cells at a molecular level. If you currently smoke tobacco products, consider quitting (for your health AND your appearance). Your skin, mouth, throat, and lungs will thank you!
7. Take Care of Your Oral Health
When you’re happy with the way you look, it shows in every aspect of your demeanor, from the way you walk to the way you speak. One of the simplest (and most affordable) ways to boost your confidence is to take care of your oral health. Regular brushing and flossing help keep your teeth and gums healthy, while dental checkups help ensure there are no problems lurking beneath the surface. If your teeth have suffered from damage, people stare at them, and that will make you feel conscious about smiling. It’s not a good experience, so think about getting veneers, dentures, or having your teeth replaced. A confident smile not only looks good — it also makes you feel good!
8. Wear Sunscreen Every Day
Sunscreen isn’t just for beach days — it should be worn year-round! Not only does sunscreen protect against harmful UV rays that can cause skin cancer, but it also helps prevent premature aging such as fine lines and wrinkles. Look for sunscreens above 60 SPF if you spend a lot of time outdoors, such as La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-In Milk Sunscreen SPF 60 priced at about $37. If you do not take too long out in the sun or if you have sensitive skin, try Aveeno Mineral Sensitive Skin Sunscreen, which is SPF 50 and priced at only $10. Make sure to apply sunscreen every day, even when it’s cloudy outside!
Making an effort to improve your physical appearance can do wonders for your self-perception — not to mention your health! By following these 8 simple tips, you’ll be on your way to looking (and feeling) your best in no time. So what are you waiting for? Get started today!