More and more people have been paying attention to their skin and establishing “skin care routines”. Good skin is in, and honestly, for good reason. And although getting into skin care for the first time can be really overwhelming— with the seemingly endless “steps” and products to choose from, the payoff is undeniable. A good routine can help improve the skin’s appearance (in turn, being a major confidence booster), significantly slow down the signs of aging, but most importantly, protects you from diseases like skin cancer.
It gets a bad rep for being too troublesome or high-maintenance, but it really doesn’t have to be. Here’s a quick guide on how to get started.
Step 1: Cleanse
Cleansing is the first step to any good skin care routine. It’s where you clean your skin off of the dirt and grime from the day. However, it’s also the most harmful step to your skin, because the same surfactants found in cleansers as the main cleansing component can also strip your skin of necessary moisture and healthy oils. This is why it’s extremely important to go with a gentle formula that won’t harm your skin. I recommend going for LaRoche Posay’s Toleriane Hydrating Gentle Facial Cleanser.
At $14.99 for a 400ml bottle, It’s affordable and fuss free, and has great ingredients that can clean your skin well without harming it.
Step 2: Moisturize
After exposing the skin to surfactants, it’s important to give back the moisture it’s lost in the process. If the skin is left to its own devices, it can either become too dry or too oily to overcompensate for the lack of moisture. Too dry can mean that it’s more irritable, rougher in texture, and even painful for some, while too oily can increase the chances for acne breakouts. Moisturizing is a step that helps the skin maintain its balance. An excellent and reliable moisturizer is CeraVe’s Daily Moisturizing Lotion. It’s light-weight, and has excellent ingredients for helping your skin hold the moisture while also addressing inflammation. It has no fragrance which can cause a lot of irritation in the long-run, and is even hypo-allergenic at $11.62 for a 355mL bottle.
Step 3: SPF
The last and probably most important step is sunscreen. There’s a misconception that we only need to wear sunscreen when we’re at the beach or when we’re anticipating prolonged direct exposure to the sun, but really, we need protection throughout the day. The sun emits UV A & UV B rays. UV A is the most dangerous, which can not only cause aging but also skin cancer. It can penetrate physical barriers, so being indoors doesn’t mean you’re fully protected. On the other hand, UV B is what causes sunburn, though it can be physically blocked.
The omnipresence of UV A is what makes wearing sunscreen an absolute must during the day, with experts even recommending re-application all throughout.
A great one is Klair’s Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50 PA ++++, at $23 for 80 mL.
It’s no secret that South Korea is at the forefront of the skin care industry, manufacturing amazing and innovative products at affordable prices. Klair’s is a popular skin care brand, and their sunscreen offers maximum protection while still being lightweight (the name says it all) and pleasant on the skin.
A great skin care routine doesn’t have to have a million steps, or involve a ton of flashy products. In fact, overdoing the number of steps and products can cause further harm and desensitization. It’s best to avoid products with fragrance, or ones that promise instant results. Sticking to key steps and using products with great ingredients is really all you need. The skin is smart and can self-regulate and usually doesn’t need much to be healthy. It’s about observing your skin, and making conscious choices about what to use.
Skin care can feel frivolous at times, but it’s about shifting one’s mindset from focusing on vanity, to focusing on skin health. Skin care is a form of taking care of yourself, and meeting your body’s needs while helping your appearance in the process. It’s always a great feeling to know you’re doing something good for yourself with not much effort.