There are many ways to get brighter, smoother-looking skin, but the first step to all of these methods starts with a firm commitment to your skin, your health and your happiness. Whether that includes seeking a consultation from a skin clinic or making some small changes to your lifestyle, here are five pledges you can make to boost your skincare game this year. Drink More Water Drinking more water is very good for your skin, but not for the reasons you may expect. Most people do not drink enough water, and whilst the eight glasses a day mantra is largely a myth, it is true that we need to keep our bodies hydrated to keep them healthy. Whilst gulping down a glass of water won’t plump your skin up like a dermal filler or give you a healthy, even skin tone, it will prevent dehydration, and this in combination with moisturising, avoiding sun damage and staying away from vices that may harm your skin is important. Don’t Smoke Or Drink Many people decide to quit smoking or drinking at the start of the year, which is part of the reason why Dry January is such a popular annual event. With that said, whilst the effects of smoking on our health and our skin are exceptionally well documented, the effects of alcohol can be somewhat profound as well. Alcohol can cause dehydration and affect people’s sleep, both of which affect their skin in the short term. However, long-term heavy drinking can cause a greater risk of skin infections and even skin cancer, as well as the jaundiced appearance characteristic of liver disease. Wear Sunscreen Every Day Sunscreen should be the final part of your beauty routine every day, whether it is the dead of winter or the height of summer, as the sun’s UV rays can still affect your skin even on colder days and under cloud cover. It is best not to take the risk, especially since intense sun damage is irreversible. If you are still using a sunbed, now is the time to quit that too. Stay The Course Over the past few years, many people have experimented on their skin, continually changing and altering their routines. They add products, take some away and generally overcomplicate and confuse their skin. Ultimately, our bodies love consistency, so find a simple, effective routine and stick to it. If you are experimenting with your routine, try to give your products at least a month so that your skin gets used to them. This could be a good time to adopt skinimalism, limiting your day and night routines to just a few products you know work perfectly for you. Having too many active ingredients on your skin at once can disrupt the skin barrier, make your skin redder and cause potential sensitivities you did not have before. Try Layering It is not always about the skincare products you use but the way you use them that matters and this is where layering comes in. Start with a cleanser and then layer your products from lightest to heaviest, as each layer seals in the last.