Everyone has had to deal with one skin issue or another at some point in their lives, whether it’s acne, dryness, sensitivity, oiliness, discoloration or wrinkles.
While it’s impossible to avoid or eliminate most of these issues entirely, you can take steps to minimize and manage them. Achieve the healthiest possible skin by developing a good skincare routine.
You can also troubleshoot specific skin problems as they arise with the right products or medications. Finally, take care of your skin and your entire body by maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
METHOD ONE (1)
DEVELOPING A SKINCARE ROUTINE.
1. Figure out your skin type
The first step to perfect skin is to figure out a skincare routine that works for you. Everybody’s skin is unique, so what works for another person may not work for you.
Take a long, hard look at your skin and decide whether it’s normal, sensitive, dry, oily, or a combination.
If you have normal skin you’re lucky! Your skin doesn’t get oily, your pores are small, your skin tone looks even and you rarely suffer from breakouts.
Sensitive skin tend to be very reactive – it may become dry, itchy or irritated depending on the weather, your lifestyle, and the products you use.
Dry skin usually feels tight after cleansing and can suffer from roughness or flakiness, especially when exposed to cold weather or dry air. Dry skin is prone to wrinkling, and tends to have no visible pores.
Oily skin can become greasy and shiny-looking within an hour after washing. The oil may even seep through your makeup and cause it to slide off. Oily skin is prone to blemishes and breakouts, and has visible pores.
Combination skin means that your skin can be dry and oily. It might be flaky and rough around the edges, but oily along the t-zone (forehead, nose, and chin). Combination skin tends to have visible pores only in the t-zone area.
In addition, whether you have a light skin tone, medium skin tone or dark skin tone will also dictate what issues your skin is prone to, and should be taken into consideration when choosing skincare products.
2.Wash your face twice a day.
Washing your face is super important as it cleans away dirt, oil, bacteria and traces of make-up that would otherwise be left sitting on your skin.
Stick to washing your face twice a day – once in the morning to cleanse any oil that has built up overnight, and once in the evening to remove any dirt and make-up from the day.
If you don’t use makeup, you may not need to wash your face twice a day.
Pin your hair back before you begin washing, to ensure that you have access to all the edges of your face.
To cleanse your face, splash your face with warm water. Hot water can be too harsh and drying on your skin, but warm water is perfect as it opens the pores.
Squirt some of the cleanser into your hands and use your fingers to work it into your face using gentle, circular motions.
Work up and out, starting with your chin. Make sure to cleanse your entire face and neck.
Give extra attention to the folds and crevices of your face, like the folds along the edges of the nose.
Then rinse your face with cold water (to close the pores), making sure that you get all of the product off.
Use a clean towel to gently pat your face dry (rubbing is too rough on your skin). Or – even better – allow your face to dry naturally.
3.Use a cleanser that is suited to your skin type (should be stated clearly on the bottle).
When possible, try to avoid using cleansers that are scented, colored, or full of harsh chemicals, as these can be irritating on your skin, or just ineffective.
When it comes to choosing products for your face, the simpler the better.
If you have dry skin, you may wish to use an oil-based makeup remover rather than a cleanser during your evening routine. This will reduce the dryness and irritation that can result from over-cleansing.
4. Use toner
Toner is the most overlooked product in skincare, and the step that many people skip. And while it’s not absolutely necessary in your skincare routine, toning has many benefits, such as removing dirt that cleansers leave behind, restoring your skin’s pH balance, and nourishing your skin.
Toner can also help your skin absorb any products (like moisturizers, serums and sunscreens) that you apply afterwards.
Most toners come in liquid form and are very easy to use. Simply squirt a little of the toner onto a clean cotton pad and gently swipe over the face and neck. Leave the toner on the skin. There’s no need to wipe it off.
If you have blemish-prone skin, use toners containing beta and alpha hydroxy acids, which exfoliate the skin.
If you have dry skin, opt for moisturizing toners containing vitamin E or aloe vera.
If you are looking for anti-aging benefits, use toners containing anti-oxidants (to repair the skin) and retinoids (to combat wrinkles).
If you have dry or sensitive skin, avoid using alcohol-based toners, as these can be too harsh and drying.
Keep in mind that a toner is not recommended for young kids and teens. It would be best to start using a toner after the age of 17 or 18.
5. Apply moisturizer
No matter what your skin type, moisturizing is one of the most important steps in any skincare routine. Moisturizers hydrate the skin by holding water in the outermost layer of the skin.
They also protect the skin and improve skin tone and texture. However, like with other skincare products, the moisturizer you choose will vary greatly depending on your skin type.
If you’ve used a toner, give your skin a few minutes to dry before applying moisturizer.
People with normal skin should opt for a water-based moisturizer which will not upset the skin’s balance.
The moisturizer should feel lightweight and non-greasy on your skin. Moisturizers for normal skin usually contain lightweight oils such as cetyl alcohol and cyclomethicone.
People with dry skin need a heavier moisturizer for deep hydration. As a result, moisturizers for dry skin are usually oil-based, which is better for locking moisture into the skin.
Look for particularly hydrating ingredients such as grape seed oil and dimethicone (a type of silicone oil).
Oily and blemish-prone skin still needs to be moisturized, especially if you tend to use drying cleansers and toners.
Look for very lightweight, water-based formulas, and choose products that are labeled “non-comedogenic” which means that they won’t clog pores.
Sensitive skin requires a very simple moisturizer that won’t irritate the skin. Avoid colored or scented moisturizers and steer clear of any products which contain acids. Instead, look for soothing ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile and cucumber.
Aging skin tends to dry out easily, so look for a richer, oil or petroleum based moisturizer. You should also look for added benefits of ingredients like antioxidants, retinoids and alpha hydroxy acids to plump out the skin and minimize wrinkles.
Use an oil-free or gel-based/water-based moisturizer if you have oily skin. If you have normal skin, you should use a cream-based moisturizer. Oil-based moisturizers are best for.
6. Exfoliate regularly
Regular exfoliation sloughs off dead skin cells and leaves skin fresh, smooth and glowing. That’s why it’s important to exfoliate at least once a week, or more (depending on your skin type).
However, many people make the mistake of believing that exfoliation means scrubbing skin to within an inch of its life. This is untrue and can actual be harmful to your skin, as intense scrubbing or rough exfoliators can cause micro-tears in the skin.
Skin (especially the skin on your face) is sensitive and requires a little more love and care than people tend to give it.
Therefore, if you decide to purchase an exfoliating product, choose one with small beads, not large granules.
Alternatively, you can buy cleansers with exfoliating ingredients like alpha hydroxy acids which remove dead skin cells without the need to scrub.
Or you can simply use a clean, damp washcloth to gently rub your face – this works as well as any product and is pretty cost effective!
7. Always remove your makeup
It may sound like the simplest thing in the world, but you should never underestimate the importance of completely removing your makeup every single night.
It’s a pain, and there will definitely be nights when it’s the last thing you’ll feel like doing, but your skin will thank you for it!
If makeup is left on the skin overnight it can clog the pores, while also denying skin the opportunity to repair itself from the stresses of the day.
This opens the door to blackheads, breakouts, excess oil and all manner of undesirable issues! Research has shown that if you don’t remove your makeup properly, your skin can age 7 times faster.
In addition, makeup can trap free radicals that your skin is exposed to during the day. If your skin is not cleansed properly at night, these free radicals remain on the skin.
This is not good, as free radicals break down collagen in the skin, leading to fine lines and wrinkles.
8. KEEP CLEANSING WIPES ON HAND.
Although the full cleanse, tone, and moisturize (CTM) routine is preferable, in case of emergencies you should keep a pack of cleansing wipes beside your bed, along with some eye makeup remover pads.
Then you just need to give your face a quick wipe to remove the bulk of the make-up before your head hits the pillow.
9. GET RID OF OLD MAKEUP
Go through your makeup bag at least every six months and throw away any products that have been hanging around for a while.
Makeup is a haven for bacteria, so using lumpy foundation and gunky mascara can lead to clogged pores and breakouts. Avoid using expired makeup.
11. Don’t forget the sunscreen!
The importance of wearing sunscreen cannot be overstated. Sunscreen protects your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays, which contribute to a whole plethora of skin issues.
Sunscreen has been proven to significantly reduce the risk of developing skin cancer, which is reason enough to wear protection in itself.
Sunscreen will also protect you from the skin-aging effects of sun exposure, including fine lines, wrinkles, brown spots, red veins, and discoloration.
You should look for sunscreen with an SPF (sun protection factor) of at least 30, especially if you’re fair-skinned and have red or blonde hair.
Many daily moisturizers and foundations come with an SPF already included, which helps to simplify your morning routine. Not applying sunscreen can cause skin cancer.
Remember to wear sunscreen every day, not just over the summer or when it’s sunny. UV rays are just as strong when the weather is cold and can even penetrate clouds and rain.
You can provide further sun protection by wearing sunglasses and a fashionable hat, when necessary.
Never use old or expired sunscreen. Its protective benefits have essentially worn away, so it will not prevent burns or skin damage.
In addition, the formulation of sunscreen often changes once it expires and can cause skin irritation and itching.
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