Busy lifestyles can get in the way of our skincare routines, and it’s easy to go to bed without cleansing, or removing your makeup after a long night out. Unfortunately, this can wreak havoc on our skin, so it’s best to figure out a skincare routine that is so simple, you won’t be tempted to skip it!
Going to sleep with makeup can cause eye irritation, eye infections, dry skin, damage your eyelashes, dry your lips and increase the visibility of fine lines and wrinkles. Improving the look and feel of your skin can be effortlessly obtained with a simple and quick skincare routine. It can also be tailored to your skin type and lifestyle without putting a dent in your wallet. There are many different options, opinions and suggestions for skin care, and if you follow beauty bloggers or Instagrammers you will be even more aware of this. The arsenal of skincare products out there can be intimidating and slightly overwhelming. Don’t let the overload of options discourage you from finding the perfect fit for you, as everybody's skin is different and whatever works for you won't necessarily work for someone else. Even if you have a similar skin type as someone, there’s also a variety of outside factors that affect your skin health. Finding the right skincare routine can be an evolving process as skin changes with time, so the best thing to do is to know your skin and work towards finding the best solution for it.
A good skincare routine doesn't have to be complicated, once you get used to the routine it will become second nature. Let’s take a look at the most basic skin care routine you can adapt to ensure you stay on top of caring for your skin.
Cleansing properly is the key to radiant looking skin, not only does it remove the build-up of grime accumulated throughout the day, it also increases hydration.Hydration is so important, as dehydrated skin can look older than it is, and have a rough texture. Cleansing decreases the chances of breakouts, controls overproduction of natural oils, helps to maintain proper pore size and increases the effectiveness of follow up products.
A good tip after a long night is to use organic coconut oil (or any other oil you are comfortable with) to cleanse and remove your makeup. Oil cleansing might sound daunting, especially if you have oily or combination skin but fear-not, the right oil will help remove grime while also reducing the production of the skin's natural oils. This reduction in oil production should encourage clearer skin.Make sure you rub the oil between your hands and apply in a circular motion to dry/ dirty face, with a hot damp cloth remove the oil from the skin (Cleanse twice if you are wearing makeup )
If oil cleansing is too much for you can opt for an oil-free gentle cream-based cleanser like Sönd Clean Slate Cream Cleanser which has ingredients such as shea and cocoa butter which don’t strip the skin of natural oils. Ingredients such as extracts of marigold and chamomile will provide moisture and soothe your skin.
No matter what type of cleanser you use it’s important to cleanse your face twice a day to remove dirt and oil buildup that has been accumulated throughout the day on your skin. Removing this dirt and oil before bed will give your skin a chance to breathe and heal overnight. Ideally, you should cleanse your face in the morning and night, but if you manage to do it only once a day - make it at night!
What exactly is toner? Toners, for the most part, are simply a lotion or wash to cleanse the skin and tighten pores. Using a toner can add extra benefits to your skin especially for combination, oily skins and acne prone skin as it removes excess oil, dirt and reduces enlarged pores, redness and flaking. Toner lifts up every last bit of makeup left over from cleansing, dissolving dead skin cells while providing another layer of moisture, and some toner is specifically designed to balance the skin’s pH. There are three categories of toners to look out for.
Skin bracers/fresheners usually containing little to no alcohol and more water and humectants locking moisture in the top layers of the skin like glycerine or rose water. Best suited for dry, normal and sensitive skin.
Skin Tonics are higher in alcohol content and also contain water and humectants like Orange flower water. Best suited for normal, combination and oily skin.
Astringents have the highest level of alcohol content, antiseptic, water and humectants and can be damaging to the skin since as it can strip the protective layer of the skin.
There are many options in the market as well as natural options for toners, ultimately is important to find the toner that works for you, choose a toner with skin-repairing ingredients to hydrate your skin, and reduce the appearance of pores. It’s best to use a toner after every cleanse.
As there are so many moisterisers to choose from, this is where a skincare routine can get complicated! Eye cream, night cream, moisturiser with green tea, oil-free moisturiser, natural oils - the list goes on and on! There are a lot of products on the market promising to do a multitude of things. Choose from some that match your skin type and budget, and try to get hold of samples to try out. If you like the feel of the product on your skin and you don’t have a reaction to it then that’s a perfect choice for you.
Dr. Isabel Sharkar recommends using alkaline skincare.
‘Alkaline skincare is about using products that help keep your skin in its natural pH (potential for hydrogen) range where it is at its healthiest.
When skin care products are applied to and absorbed by the skin they will push it to be either more acidic or alkaline. By using skin care products that allow for the most optimal skin pH, cells are able to properly defend against bacteria, regulate natural oil production and increase cell regeneration.’
It’s best to moisturise twice a day, but if you feel your skin needs it, don’t be afraid to top up your moisturiser during the day especially during the cold months.
Looking after your skin externally is not the whole of your skin care routine - you need to nourish your skin from within too! Dr. Sharkar says changing the way you eat can have a hugely positive impact on sensitive skin, and on your overall health in general. A clean diet also balances hormones, which affect acne. Eat organic vegetables to make up 75% of your plate each meal, eat high-quality fats. Increase your antioxidant levels in your body. It can also help to take supplements to increase your nutritional intake and support your skin. Stay hydrated and drink 2 litres of water a day improving the look and feel of your skin.
You can also try out some supplements to top up on the important minerals and vitamins that keep your skin healthy - silica, magnesium and vitamin C supplements are great for all-around skin strengtheners.
We've used Zack Minor's photograpy for this blog post, see more of his work on zackography.com.