Finding a skin care routine that works for you can seem like a never-ending beauty quest. With so much skin care advice out there and multitudes of products to choose from, it can be difficult to know where to focus your attention. But underlining most skin care philosophies and theories are five basic steps that form the foundation of a good and smart skin care routine.
Cleansing the skin removes sweat, oil, dirt and other pollutants that your skin naturally collects throughout the day and night. It's the first step in a great skin care routine. Cleanse the skin in the morning and in the evening to keep your pores clear and your face fresh. Your cleanser may vary based on skin type, but with all cleansers, the general consensus is to apply them using an upward circular motion to prevent wrinkles from forming. Make sure your hands are clean in order to prevent excess dirt from entering your pores.
There is a lot of confusion around toner, and when you're first establishing a daily skin care routine, it may even seem unnecessary. But most experts agree that toning is an important addition to your skin care routine with beneficial effects for your skin. After you cleanse your skin of impurities, toner removes and residue left behind by the cleanser as well as any makeup or oils your cleanser might have missed. The added cleansing effects help prepare your skin to absorb moisturizer and minimize the appearance of pores. Some toners may have PH balancing and antiseptic effects as well. Apply toner right after you have cleansed your skin, while it is still damp. The best way to apply it is with a cotton pad or cotton ball, simply soaking the pads in the toner and wiping upwards, starting at your neck.
Our skin is constantly shedding million of skin cells everyday, but sometimes those cells can build up on the surface of our skin and need some extra help to be removed. Exfoliating removes these dead skin cells that have accumulated in our pores. If you struggle with blackheads, acne or breakouts you are not going to want to miss this step. It's best to exfoliate after toning and before moisturizing. Most dermatologists agree that you should exfoliate one to three times a week, but this depends on your skin type and how it reacts to exfoliation. Experiment and find what works best for you. There are chemical exfoliators and granule exfoliators. Both can be effective tools for removing dead skin cells, but chemical exfoliating ingredients are often more effective in getting deep into your pores and removing build up.
Moisturizing provides a protective layer to the skin that locks in moisture and keeps skin hydrated. This hydration is what gives your skin a smooth, luminous appearance. Needless to say, this is a step in your skin care routine you don't want to skip. Choose a moisturizer based on your skin type - it can be a cream, lotion, gel, or oil - and gently rub it into your skin in an upward motion, being careful not to tug on the delicate skin around your eyes. Once the moisturizer is applied, give it time to sink in so you receive its full benefits.
Apply Sun Protection Factor (SPF)
The sun in the the most damaging factor for skin and the leading cause of skin cancer. That's why using a moisturizer that contains SPF or applying a sunscreen after your moisturizer is the key for protecting yout skin from the sun's damaging UV rays and maintaining a youthful and healthy visage.