For the skincare enthusiast like myself, building an extensive, multi-faceted routine can sound like a relaxing experience. But, for the skincare novices out there, the idea of a three-step routine can seem intimidating and overwhelming. Let me first start by staying, you don’t need tons of products to have a GOOD skincare routine.
I just recently posted my winter skincare routine, I know it was quite involved. I’m also testing and reviewing different products as part of my blog. But you don’t have to use so much. The more products and ingredients you incorporate in your routine, the higher the chance of irritation, especially if you don’t know how to use the products properly.
So, this blog post is intended to break it all down. We will discuss:
- Why you should have a skincare routine
- What to include in a basic skincare routine
- Extra skincare treatments you’d want to invest in
Let’s get started.
WHY SHOULD YOU HAVE A SKINCARE ROUTINE?
No matter your skin type, having a skincare routine is essential. Your skin is affected by pollution, harsh weather conditions, poor diet, stress, and even gravity. And your first line of defense against these internal and external elements is your skincare routine.
A skincare routine prevents and minimizes the chance of problems developing while helping to maintain overall skin health.
WHAT SHOULD YOU INCLUDE IN A BASIC SKINCARE ROUTINE?
When you start out your skincare routine, there are three essential steps:
Cleansers remove dirt, dust, oil, and any other residue on your skin that can lead to clogged pores and dullness. When your face is clean, the skincare products you apply afterward can actually penetrate into your skin and work better too. If you need a harsh reminder, check this out.
A good cleanser should be gentle and non-stripping. Your face shouldn’t feel stiff, irritated, dry, or tight after you wash your face. And since you’ll be wearing makeup, sunscreen, or both during the day, you should double-cleanse in the evening. This will ensure all traces of oil and makeup are removed before you go in and actually wash your face.
If you have oily, combination, or acne-prone skin, you’ll like gel or foam cleansers.
If you have normal, dry, or sensitive skin, you’ll enjoy milky or cream cleansers.
And since cleansing oils and balms break down excess oil while nourishing the skin, I’d recommend them for all skin types!
Your moisturizer is like your coat. It protects your skin from moisture loss. By protecting our skin from drying out, you’re able to keep your skin’s protective barrier safe. Used daily, moisturizers can improve the skin’s appearance, helping to keep it feeling smooth, plumped, and soft. And know that keeping your skin moisturized can help you have fewer eczema flares.
If you have oily, combination, or acne-prone skin, you’ll like a gel or lighter-weight moisturizer that won’t clog your pores.
If you have dry skin, you’ll enjoy a thicker, more emollient moisturizer formulas.
If you have sensitive skin, you’ll enjoy moisturizers with soothing properties and a “pure” ingredient list. So, no dyes, fragrances, or excessive alcohol should be listed.
If you have normal skin, you have a lot more freedom when choosing a moisturizer. But, make sure to select a formula that will keep your skin well-balanced and hydrated, even during changes in seasons and environmental conditions.
Protecting your skin from further sun damage allows it to look younger and healthier. With a liberal daily application, you will see fewer signs of aging and significantly cut your risk of skin cancer.
Honestly, no single factor is more important in preventing aging than avoiding excess sun exposure! UV light breaks down the elastin and collagen in your skin, causing discoloration, skin thinning and sagging…and ultimately wrinkles. So, sun protection should be a daily part of skincare. And you need to wear a sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher.
The same rules apply with sunscreens and moisturizers in terms of formulations that work best with your skin type.
EXTRA SKINCARE STEPS YOU’D WANT TO INVEST IN…
After being consistent with your routine for a month or so, you might be ready to take it to the next level. So, I’d recommend introducing an exfoliator and a treatment serum into your routine. Check out my blog post on skin texture as both exfoliators and treatments are included there.
Exfoliating is an incredibly important step among the skincare obsessed, but it’s also one that even beginners should get into. Exfoliants help to remove dead skin cells from your skin’s surface. If you have sensitive skin, look for PHAs or lactic acids. Mandelic acid is also recommended for sensitive skin; I just personally haven’t tried it yet. A glycolic acid is an excellent option if you can handle a little more.
Treatment serums address specific skin concerns, which can help you achieve specific skin goals. For example, if your skin is dehydrated, incorporate a serum with hyaluronic acid. Or if you’re focused on brightening, evening your skin tone and reducing hyperpigmentation scars, add a vitamin C serum to your routine. The options are endless when it comes to treatment serums!
FYI – If you’re not sure what to use or if your skin is intolerant, I’d recommend a niacinamide serum. It’s non-irritating, and it addresses a multitude of issues, like wrinkles, acne, hyperpigmentation, and dryness.
So, are you ready to build your skincare routine? Let me know below.