Causes of tired and dull skin - The ultimate list

Causes of tired and dull skin - The ultimate list

Causes of tired and dull skin - The ultimate list

If there’s one skin concern that pops up across all ages and skin types, it’s lacklustre, dull skin. Especially in winter months, you might find yourself staring into the bathroom mirror wondering “why does my tired and dull skin getting worse?” You might think you’re doing everything right, but your skincare routine could be missing a few key elements that are vital for skin with a healthy glow. Here are our top 5 reasons for tired and dull skin, and what you can do to get your glow back.

1 You’re not getting enough sleep

One of the most common causes of dull skin is not getting enough sleep - after all, there’s a reason why it’s called ‘getting your beauty sleep’. Our skin cells heal at nighttime, and not getting enough sleep is one of the biggest factors that can cause dull skin with a lifeless complexion - and there’s research to prove it.

A 2017 study found that sleep deprivation directly impedes your immune response, and your skin barrier’s ability to heal itself.

Try and aim for 7-8 hours of sleep per night, and try to avoid screen time for an hour before bed. This means no TV, laptops, tablets or smartphone use.

If scrolling mindlessly through your phone is an essential part of your nodding off routine, try turning down your screen brightness or altering your screen settings for less blue light. Alternatively, try a hot shower or meditation to wind down.

To liven up tired and dull skin, try using a targeted eye cream with potent ingredients. The Poko Correcting Eye Cream is full of potent, natural ingredients like raspberry extract, CBD and fig extract for a jolt of antioxidants. These brightening factors can also help to lighten dark under eye circles for a more radiant complexion.

Use the discount code DULLSKIN to get 10% off the Correcting Eye Cream. 

2 Your skin is dehydrated

Do you find your skin is looking way less plump, dewy and glowing than it was in the summer? Your skin could be dehydrated. When your skin is dehydrated, your complexion can look dull, tired and just ‘meh’ overall. Dehydrated skin is also less equipped to repair itself regardless of skin tone. As a result, you might notice more hyperpigmentation and acne scarring, which contributes to dullness.


While dry skin is a particular skin type, dehydrated skin is a skin care condition that anyone can have. In comparison to dry skin which lacks oil, dehydrated skin lacks water. Dehydrated skin can also experience flaking and break-outs at the same time, as your skin will overproduce oil to make up for the lack of water.

When your skin is dehydrated, it’s important to supplement your skincare routine with as many hydrating factors as possible. We recommend using a moisturiser that draws water out of the air and into your skin for 24-hour hydration. The Poko Ultra Hydrating Moisturiser contains glycerine and aloe vera juice which act humectants to draw moisture into the skin.

Use the discount code DULLSKIN to get 10% off the Ultra Hydrating Moisturiser. 

To fight, dehydrated, dull skin it is vital to hydrate from the inside out. This is especially the case in colder months when you have your heaters on full blast (great for keeping you warm, terrible for your skin). Make sure you’re drinking as many liquids as you can, and eating lots of seasonal fruits and vegetables with high water content (think apples, celery, broccoli and cabbage).

3 You’re not using SPF

Just because the sun isn’t out, doesn’t mean you don’t need sunscreen. SPF is the most important part of your skincare routine and should be worn all year round. Every time you are exposed to UV rays, you are leaving your skin open to potential damage.

While the burn-causing UVB rays may not be as abundant, UVA rays can penetrate through windows and clothing to cause damage to your skin cells. This damage (also known as photodamage) leads to dullness, uneven skin tone, and prematurely ageing and dead skin.

For mature skin that looks dull, SPF is even more important as the skin’s structure is weakened, making it more susceptible to damage. Sun damage also worsens many signs of ageing, such as wrinkles under eyes, fine lines and hyperpigmentation.

You’re not cleansing properly

Another common cause of dull skin is that you might not be cleansing properly. Not cleansing thoroughly enough can cause an accumulation of grime, dirt, makeup, and dead skin cells. This can result in blocked pores, congestion and dull skin.

If you wear makeup and SPF every day, you need to double cleanse at night to make sure you’re going to bed with a clean face. Use micellar water, makeup remover or an oil cleanser to remove makeup and surface grime, then follow up with a water-based cleanser to gently cleanse the skin.


Integrating some form of acid exfoliation into your cleansing routine is another quick way to boost radiance in the skin. Try following up with an acid toner or serum that contains AHAs (alphahydroxy acids) to slough away dead skin cells.

5 You’re not using antioxidants

Introducing antioxidants into your skincare routine is one of the best ways to give dull skin a little extra TLC. Antioxidants like vitamin A, C, E and D are among the most potent skin-loving compounds. These provide your skin with a multitude of healing benefits. 

Firstly, they protect the skin from environmental damage like UV rays which can lead to dull, dehydrated skin. Antioxidants like vitamin C exert a UV-protective effect over the skin by neutralizing free radicals. These free radicals can cause dark marks, fine lines and an overall lacklustre appearance.

They can also penetrate the skin to repair the damage that causes dullness - such as brightening dark marks and fading fine lines.

Look for products that contain vitamin C (L-ascorbic acid), vitamin E (tocopherol) and vitamin A derivatives (retinyl palmitate). Alternatively, seek out products with high levels of plant and fruit extracts, as these will be naturally rich in antioxidants.

The Poko Correcting Eye Cream is packed with plant extracts like aloe vera, fig extract, raspberry extract and CBD which contain potent antioxidants to get your skin glowing. Pair this moisturiser with your favourite sunscreen during the day for an extra level of UV protection.

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