The Best Routine for Your Skin

What is a good skin care routine and how to get one for yourself |

The two things that come to mind when discussing the best skin care routine for your skin are:

Defining what makes a skin care routine good and how to get a good skin care routine for yourself will help you understand what exactly is needed to make your skin the most beautiful it can be. We'll talk about the importance of a good skin regimen here and discuss how to get one on the next page.

Part 1: What exactly is a good skin care routine?

I have spent so much money and so much time trying to figure out a good skin care routine that if I had invested that amount of money in savings and spent that amount of time reading books, I would probably be thousands of dollars richer and have a book collection far more reaching than Dr. Seuss. But, hey, I really enjoyed There's a Wocket in My Pocket and Fox in Socks!

Anyway, back to skin. Everyone should follow a good skin care routine. You want to take care of your skin, whether you have acne or not, because your skin is the largest organ on your body that protects you from the sun, wind, and rain. Not only that, a good regimen will help prevent premature aging and suspicious cancerous lesions.

A basic skin care routine has four steps, performed twice a day (once in the morning and once at night without the sunscreen component):

  1. Cleanse:

    Keeping your skin clean will help it stay blemish-free. A light cleanse in the morning will remove any sweat, oily build-up, dead skin cells, and pillow grunge from the night before. It’ll also give you a fresh palette for makeup application the next day. Cleansing in the evening is even more important because it removes makeup, sunscreen, pollution, and other grime you’ve accumulated from the day so your skin can “breathe” and stay fresh while you sleep. Personal hygiene aside, it’s also essential to wash your face because most treatment products penetrate the best when applied to clean, bare skin. Keep in mind that any cleanser you use should not be overly drying or stripping. If a cleanser makes your skin feel tight after washing, it is too harsh and you should find something gentler.

  2. Treat:

    Treatments products are used to “treat” certain conditions of your skin. For example, if you get acne, then you’ll want to include a BHA or other acne treatment of some sort. If wrinkles are your main concern, you may want to include Vitamin C products or retinoids. Treatment products vary according to what “problem” you want to fix. They should also be the first thing applied to clean skin in order to ensure maximum effectiveness and skin penetration.

  3. Moisturize:

    Using moisturizers can help boost your skin’s overall performance. Moisturizers seal in your skin’s natural moisture, while adding extra hydration so your skin can function at its best. Moisturizers also ease the discomfort of dry or taut skin and can be an additional layer of protection against everyday wear and tear.

  4. Protect (sunscreen):

    Sun protection is a must. The sun emits harmful UV rays that cause photoaging (wrinkles, hyperpigmentation) and even skin cancer. It’s been said that 80% of sun damage is accumulated before the age of 20, so children need to wear sunscreen too! Wearing a photostable, broad-spectrum sunscreen will help prevent premature aging and guard you against other dangers of the sun.

However, these four steps are just a general guideline. If your skin is oily and moisturizer makes it even oilier, then you can skip that part of your routine. If you don’t use any treatment products, then it’s okay to just follow cleansing with moisturizer. There are no strict rules for a good skin care routine. It all depends on your skin type and what your skin likes.

Often, people like to include toners, scrubs, or masks in their daily regimen. In my opinion, these steps are optional because your routine will be fine without them. While toners can help remove anything your cleanser fails to clean, they are just an extra dent in my wallet.

I also tend to think of masks as just something fun to use, but lots of people like using them to keep their skin balanced. Scrubs, on the other hand, can usually be skipped because treatment products often contain acids and other chemical exfoliants that do the job. With that being said, manually exfoliating your skin can make it look better because you are actually scrubbing away the surface layer (which is mostly sebum and dead skin cells). However, if you exfoliate too much or too harshly, you could end up making things much worse. And you definitely don’t want a skin care routine that makes your skin worse. A skin care routine should make your skin better!

Therefore, although all skin care routines are customized to individual needs, cleansing, moisturizing, treating (if you have anything to treat), and protecting are the crucial steps. Figuring out how to get your perfect skin care routine and choosing the right products is the next thing to do.

Last updated: October 9, 2012

Next »

How to Get the Best Routine for Your Skin: Part 2

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