Having dry, irritated skin or oily, acne-prone skin is no fun. Nobody wants to wake up with blotchy red spots or pimples.
So if you’re tired of dealing with those headaches, it’s time to develop the best skin care routine that tailors to your skin needs. The right skin care routine can help prevent acne and lead to radiant, healthier-looking skin that will improve your appearance as well as your everyday confidence.
We’re going to tell you all about how to develop a go-to skin care routine. But first, it’s important to know your skin type.
Oily skin is more susceptible to acne breakouts and is characterized by its greasy appearance. It is the result of heightened sebum production.
Dry skin is flaky, rough, and at times can feel tight. People with dry skin produce less sebum than people with normal skin, which makes it harder for the skin to protect itself.
If you have sensitive skin, it will be easily irritated and could cause allergic reactions such as a rash.
Normal skin isn’t too oily or too dry, it’s just right. People with normal skin have a healthy circulation and smooth texture with balanced sebum production.
Now that you know your skin type, let’s go over what you’ll need to put your skin care routine together.
Skin Care Routine
Perhaps the most important part of a consistent skin care regimen is cleansing. Using a gentle cleanser removes oil, dirt, dead skin cells, and other unwanted elements from your face while hydrating.
It’s crucial to choose a cleanser that matches your skin needs. For example, if you have dry skin, you want to choose a cleanser that avoids sulfates. Those with oily skin may want to try a mild exfoliating cleanser that contains salicylic acid.
When and how to cleanse
Generally, it is best to cleanse once in the morning and once at night, but it varies from person to person. You want to avoid over-cleansing as it can cause irritation to the skin.
Once finished with cleansing, pat your skin dry with a clean towel and move on to the next step.
After cleansing, a toner can help to unclog your pores and further hydrate your skin. While toners are considered optional, they can provide a boost to your replenished skin and help with other skin concerns.
Toners usually are meant for people with oily skin that is necessary to exfoliate. Those with oily skin should use toners containing glycolic or salicylic acid.
How to tone
Apply your toner by using a damp cotton pad. Gently spread the toner across your face, avoiding the eyes and mouth.
An antioxidant serum is used to go deeper into the skin’s layers and provide healthier-looking skin. Although serum isn’t a necessity to improve skin health, it is a great tool for those who want to go the extra mile preventing skin damage caused by daytime stressors such as free radicals and sun damage (caused by UV rays) or pollutants.
It is recommended that you use a vitamin C serum. Other ingredients to look for are hyaluronic acid for moisture, alpha and beta hydroxy acids (AHAs and BHAs) to boost collagen production, and niacinamide to reduce redness.
When and how to use serum
Typically, a serum is applied after toning and prior to moisturizing. To apply serum, use your fingers to smooth the product over your entire face.
Retinol helps to boost collagen production and increase the rate of cell turnover. It also reduces fine lines and pore size while being a useful tool to prevent acne breakouts.
When and how to use retinol
It is recommended to only use retinol at night as it is a strong ingredient that can irritate the skin with overuse, especially for those with dry skin. Usually, retinol is used after serum and before moisturizing.
Another imperative step in any skin care routine, moisturizing hydrates the skin and leaves it soft to the touch. Some moisturizers also have an SPF to offer sun protection.
When and how to moisturize
Moisturizer can be applied either once in the morning or at night. When applying, use your fingers to dab the moisturizer on areas such as your forehead, chin, nose, and cheeks. Be sure to allow the moisturizer to absorb into your skin.
Eye cream is commonly used once in the morning and once at night to prevent wrinkles and fine lines under the eyes. Eye creams help to moisturize and hydrate, and could be useful to those who experience puffiness or wrinkles around the eye area.
There are many hyaluronic acid benefits so look for eye creams with that as one of the active ingredients, in addition to ceramides and brightening caffeine.
Sunscreen is extremely important for — you guessed it — sun protection. Not only does sunscreen help prevent fine lines and wrinkles, it can also help to decrease one’s chances of developing skin cancer.
Ideally, you want to use a sunscreen with at least SPF 30 in it.