These ‘rules’ are purely my opinions and what might work for me, may not work for you! So you, do you!
The Rules I like to follow (in no particular order):
“Say no to makeup removing / facial wipes”
I have this as a rule for the following reasons:
- I don’t think that they do an excellent job at cleaning. As a result, wipes can encourage being rough and tugging away at the skin. Treat your skin gently, especially around the eyes!
- Generally, they contain a lot of surfactants (chemicals usually used to clean), which unless washed off, can be very drying and irritating to the skin. A typical double-cleanse will be much more effective.
“Sunscreen every morning is a must!”
A broad-spectrum (protects against UVA/UVB) sunscreen with a minimum level of protection of 30 is essential. Particularly important if you are treating hyperpigmentation or using any type of topical acids/retinol. This mantra happens to be one of the top rules in my book!
“Double-cleanse every day in the evening”
A double-cleanse in the evening gives a gentle and effective way of clearing any muck on your skin.
For more information about this technique, please read my article about double-cleansing, which you can find by clicking here.
As a general rule physical exfoliators (e.g. those scrubs with bits in it) can be quite rough on your skin. They work by buffing away the dead skin Think about using an acid exfoliator; instead, these work by loosening the bonds that attach the dead skin.
Exfoliating helps remove dead skin and can help prevent congested skin – be careful not to over-exfoliate!
“Listen to what your skin is telling you”
At different times of the year, your skin might change, and you should change your routine to reflect this. For example, in winter, you may need to use a heavier moisturiser, to combat the drying effects of the cold weather.
“Wash your face for at least one minute”
Washing your face for at least 60 seconds – it makes sense, the average person washes their face for about 10-20 seconds. Make sure you pat and not rub your face dry with a towel afterwards.
If you are using a cleanser with active ingredients, this method will give them some time to work their magic.
“Introduce new products slowly”
If you are changing several skincare products in your regime, make sure you add them in one at a time. That way if your skin is reacting badly to a product, you will be able to isolate the culprit.
“Generally, work from light to thick consistency”
If you are using multiple products, you usually go from the lightest consistency to the heaviest. E.g. after cleansing, toner, essence, serums, creams then oils. I prefer to use the smallest amount possible of each product – your skin can only absorb so much.
The main exception to this is if you are using prescribed topical medication. In many cases, you want this as close to your skin as possible. A further note on this, make sure your topical medication plays nicely with the rest of your skincare routine.
“Wash your face day and night”
Washing your face twice a day is non-negotiable! Your morning wash doesn’t need to be as intensive as your night wash. Again there this is another important rule.
“Don’t forget your neck!”
Any products you use in your face should also be used on your neck. No point having a lovely smooth face and a neck that tells all the secrets you have been trying to hide!
“Keep it simple!”
An important rule and it makes sense – if you have multiple skincare issues focus on the most important issues or the one that is the root cause of other problems. Trying to do too much in one go might be detrimental. For example, my main concerns are spots and hyperpigmentation; after some research, I decided the spots were the root cause. So, I put my efforts into sorting them out first.
To get my spots under control, I used products that were effective for that issue, then moved onto a maintenance regime which tackled the hyperpigmentation. A product such as retinol will help with both – so if possible look for products that will help with both issues (sometimes this is not possible).
When I first started my skincare journey, I was using a ridiculous amount of products. Some of the products were probably cancelling out each other (making it a waste of time), and your skin can only absorb a certain amount of product (again making it a waste of time).
For help with ingredients to look out for have a look at the Lab Muffin website – the author helps explain the science behind ingredients is an easily digestible way.
Do you have your own rules? Tell me about them in the comments section below.