How many steps do I really need in my routine?
The cosmetic industry can be overwhelming. Whether you're in search of the right skincare products or exploring different tools and techniques different professionals and companies alike all have something to say. The noise is more than confusing.
The most important thing to remember is to check in with yourself. You know your skin better than anyone else. Make it a daily practice to evaluate how your skin feels and looks. Take into consideration if there were any changes in your routine that day, or week, and if you introduced anything new topically (think skincare and haircare) or into your diet.
The second thing to remember is how dynamic skin really is. We rely on it everyday to protect us from outside pathogens and pollution, as well as demonstrating, for some, the ability to be a canvas for makeup. Everyday we inundate our largest organ with so much and without the proper care our skin can fall prey to damage like irritation and sensitivity, under and over production of sebum, premature aging, microtears, hyperpigmentation and so on.
Although there is not one routine that works for everyone, there are general steps to follow. We like to keep it simple topically and focus on our skin from the inside-out with nutrient dense diets and pre- and probiotics. Below we've given a general step-by-step baseline for a simple, unproblematic, routine.
1) Cleanse with a pH balanced cleanser
In the morning we recommend using a non-bubbling cleanser, like our Daily Face Polish that is an enzymatic cleanser. This product helps to gently buff the layers of skin that sloughed throughout the night making way for new products to be applied without leftover product or cellular buildup in the way.
At the end of your day we recommend using a surfactant (bubbling) cleanser as surfactants are important to incorporate to lift pollution, cellular debris and products like SPF and makeup from skin. Having your skin properly cleansed in the evening mitigates breakout and premature aging as it rids skin of toxins.
2) Once a Week: Exfoliate
We recommend exfoliating once a week with a non-granule clay mask. This remains gentle on skin reducing damage, like microtears, while extracting impurities. Super simple with great results.
It is important to note that exfoliating can be easily over done by everyday actions we don't even bat an eye at. Masks, peels, microdermabrasion, retinol, scrubs, Clarisonic, wash cloths, facial brushing and more are ALL considered exfoliation when treating the skin. So when incorporating a new mask, be sure to swap it with your current exfoliator that week. Over exfoliation can lead to breakout, redness, excess sebum production and sensitivity to name a few.
3) Use a Toner
Toners can seem unnecessary and frivolous, but when sourcing nutrient dense and pH balanced toners you will soon notice a difference in your skin.
We recommend a generous mist over face, neck and upper chest in the morning and gently patting into skin for absorption.
In the evening, to get the most out of your toner, saturate a cotton round and sweep over your freshly cleansed skin. Not only are you stabilizing your acid mantle, the cotton round is delicately catching any stubborn buildup that your cleanser may have left behind.
4) Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize
Hydration is essential for the health and vitality of skin. When seeking a moisturizer you want to look for something both hydrating and occlusive, meaning to have something that hydrates the dermis while providing a protective barrier on the epidermis that protects against transepidermal water loss (TEWL).
Skin is a lipid bilayer and is only properly nourished with lipids (oils). Although, over the years oils have received criticism and unwarranted backlash for less than enjoyable skincare results, they are not the issue. Nutrient dense oils are the key to your skin's suppleness and health as you age. If you have specific questions or need help in making the switch from petroleum based products please contact us for personalized routine recommendations.
Take your age, daily habits, products and the climate you live in into consideration while working toward your skincare goals. Each of these play a pivotal role when deciding which products will work best for you and at what frequency.
Don't hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions or would like help with product recommendations, we are here to help.
Chloe Carrington, Lead Esthetician