You'll need to adjust the basics, based on the kind of skin you have. If you are older, you'll want to add serums and night creams. If you are younger, you'll want to take the best care of the skin you have now. If you've never taken care of your skin before, it's never too late to start! If you have tricky skin (rosacea, painful acne, extremely dry, flaky, or unusual-looking, textured skin), you are going to want to befriend a good dermatologist. Also, never underestimate the power of a great esthetician, a skin care pro who gives facials.
Here is the gist. Cleanse. Treat. Moisturize. Protect. Every day. This means wash your skin, give your skin an anti-aging (or anti-acne, etc) boost, moisturize and wear an SPF. Do it every day. I'll bet you still have questions, on the how and the whens and the whys. So let's discuss.
1. Wash your face in the morning and at night.
Never, ever go to bed without washing your face. As a last resort, better a cleansing cloth than nothing at all.
If your skin is dry, wash it with a cleanser at night and rinse it with water in the morning.
If your skin is oily, wash it in the morning and at night. Be sure to change your pillowcase nightly or place a soft towel that you wash daily on your pillow at night.
2. If you want to use a serum, apply it now, after washing, before your moisturizer.
Serums are like high-powered magic for the face. A quality serum soaks into the skin quickly, works quickly and makes a serious difference that you can see and feel very quickly. If you are over thirty, consider adding a serum to your routine. Apply them morning and night or however the directions suggest.
3. Follow up with a moisturizer that contains ingredients that benefit the skin.
You'll want to look for ingredients like retinol, hyaluronic acid, antioxidants or vitamin C. Pumps are better than jars so look for a pump (or anything you don't stick your fingers into). Apply this after washing your face in the morning and night.
4. If you are over 30, consider using a separate eye cream that addresses your needs.
Fine lines, puffiness, dark circles; there is something for everyone. The skin around the eyes is often one of the first places to wrinkle. Treat the skin around your eyes thoughtfully. Quality eye creams do make a difference. If you are under 30, your daily moisturizer is probably fine as an eye cream.
5. Wear an SPF every day, all day, until the moon comes out.
No treatment, laser or peel can fix as much as wearing a sunscreen can prevent. You need one 365 days a year. If you ever see daylight (even through a window) you need the protection if you want to slow down the aging process. If you don't wear a sunscreen daily, you are throwing away your money on anything you buy to make your skin look better. I can not emphasize this enough.
Well, it's not quite that easy.
Don't drink to excess, you'll get puffy.
Don't smoke, it ruins your skin. It's the equivalent of throwing wine on a wedding dress and wondering why it never looks perfect again. It yellows the skin, creates fine lines, damages skin structure and makes you look old.
Get plenty of rest and drink water.
If you use a washcloth, use a clean one every day.
Don't eat junk. Or if you do, eat some vegetables and take a vitamin.
Get some exercise or have safe sex. Or both. Either will boost radiance and make you feel great.
Looking for products? Here are three lines that basically don't make a bad product. Each of these can help you select the product that is best for your skin needs.
High end, anti-aging, based in science, relies on research, delivers exactly what you pay for. Their sunscreen is the best ever made. If you can afford it, you can't go wrong with anything in this line.
This line is priced between $15-50 per product. They don't waste your time or your money. Mario Badescu makes products for all skin types, in all life stages. I swear their Vitamin C serum fades difficult melasma better than any peel, laser or uber-expensive cream.
This drugstore brand leverages a lot of research to bring you affordable products that perform nicely. Plus, the company as a whole is globally responsible.
Down the road, I'll dive into each one of these steps in a little more detail, but for now, this is a great first step towards improving your skin. Got questions? Ask me! Send me an email or post a question below!
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