What to Include in Your Skincare Routine
It seems like a new skincare product comes along almost every day to tempt you. It can be downright difficult to decide what products to include in your skincare routine and what you can do without. Don’t feel overwhelmed! The truth is that you don’t have to put a cap on how many products to include in your routine—as long as you make sure to include certain skincare products. In other words, as long as you have these essentials in your skincare routine, you can’t go wrong.
Where to Start
At The Skin Spot, we know that one of the most popular questions, when embarking on a serious skincare routine or considering changing up an existing routine, is where you should start. The best place to start is with your skin type since that impacts the type of products you should choose as part of your routine.
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Before you buy any products for your skin, identify what type of skin you have. Here’s how you can identify your skin type easily:
If you have normal skin, you don’t have a lot of experience with breakouts. Oh, sure, you get a rogue blemish here or there, but for the most part, your skin doesn’t react negatively to changes in the weather or changes in skincare products. You also don’t feel as if your skin is constantly dry or oily and may even often admire in the mirror how firm your skin is without a wrinkle or fine line in sight.
If you are blessed with normal skin, you don’t need to worry about buying special products for sensitive, oily, or dry skin. Your skin can tolerate most ingredients in skincare products, so you can experiment until you find the right products for your skincare routine.
There’s dry skin, and then there’s dehydrated skin. These are two very different issues with very similar symptoms. It’s important to tell them apart so you know what skincare products to use.
To identify which type your skin is, first understand how the two differ:
- Dehydration -This occurs when your skin doesn’t retain enough moisture. It leaves your skin feeling tight, and fine lines are more noticeable. Dehydrated skin also has a paper-like texture.
- Dryness – This occurs when your skin doesn’t have enough oil, resulting in sensitive, itchy, and flaky skin that may crack easily. Sometimes, it can be caused by skin conditions (such as eczema) or by environmental conditions.
If you have dry skin, it’s important to moisturize your skin—sometimes several times per day. It also helps to keep the air in your home moist and avoid using harsh products on your skin, especially anything with fragrance.
For dehydrated skin, water-based products are your best friend. Oil-based products can make things worse, so avoid them. And don’t forget to drink plenty of water throughout the day!
Oily skin may look like it’s always glowing—but for all the wrong reasons. If you have oily skin, chances are you’re intimately familiar with mattifying powders and blotting sheets to help absorb excess oil. You may also notice that your pores are large and visible.
If you have oily skin, don’t despair. Chances are you don’t have a lot of fine lines and wrinkles to contend with, but you do need to take care in choosing the products for your skincare routine. Avoid anything with alcohol in it, as well as petroleum and mineral oil. Anything labeled as “non-comedogenic” is a good choice since these products don’t contain ingredients clog pores.
Don’t avoid moisturizers and make sure you don’t over-wash your face in an attempt to remove excess oil since this can cause your skin to produce even more oil in the long run.
Sensitive skin is usually pretty easy to spot because your skin doesn’t let you miss it! People who have sensitive skin often experience:
- Patches of irritated, flaky, or dry skin
- Frequent rashes
- Reactions to products with fragrance
- Skin flushing
- Burning or stinging after using a skincare product
If you have sensitive skin, it’s important to choose products for your skincare routine carefully. You never want to use products with common irritants like alcohol or fragrance. Look for products that are approved for sensitive skin, since those often have fewer additives that can irritate.
Frequent breakouts, or a breakout that never seems to go away, mean you likely have acne-prone skin. Your pores can clog quite easily and make you more susceptible to blemishes than other skin types. Your skin can be dry or oily and still be prone to acne.
If you have acne-prone skin, make sure to use products specifically formulated for acne. Moisturizers and exfoliants are very important in your skincare routine to help reduce breakouts and lighten scars that acne can leave behind.
If you have combination skin, then chances are you’ve read a couple of these descriptions and thought, “That sounds like me!” That’s because combination skin is pretty much exactly what it sounds like—a combination of a couple of different skin types. Most people with combination skin have oily skin across their forehead and down their nose but have normal skin everywhere else. Of course, any combination can make things a bit trickier.
If you have combination skin, you want to stay away from products that contain ingredients you don’t want for each of your skin types. Balance is what you want to aim for, isolating problem areas and using products that bring balance to your skin all over.
Everyone’s skin ages just a bit differently but the signs of mature skin are quite universal. Wrinkles, dryness, dehydration, dark spots, and dullness are often the hallmarks of skin that has seen a few trips around the sun.
If you have mature skin, it’s important to treat damage and prevent it in the future. Restorative treatments are key to help boost your skin’s collagen production and protect your skin against environmental irritants that can accelerate the aging process.
Skincare Routine Must-Haves
The specific products you choose are up to you, but your skincare routine needs a few important products to be complete. Make sure at the bare minimum, you are using these products daily.
This is an obvious first step and, if adopted daily, can change your skin for the better. Cleaning your skin removes dirt, oil, and makeup to lay the groundwork for the products you apply after. Just make sure to steer clear of using regular soap for this. Its pH level is too basic and will dry out your skin.
As far as what type of cleanser you need, you may want to try something that is targeted to your overall skin concern (e.g. dryness, acne, or sensitivity). A great overall cleanser for all skin types is Revision Skincare Papaya Enzyme Cleanser.
Another skincare product that shouldn’t be overlooked is toner. Some people feel toner is overkill as part of a regular skincare routine, but it’s a really important step that no one should miss. It removes makeup residue and oil, but more importantly preps your clean skin for the treatments that you apply next. It shouldn’t be thought of as toner, but more of a pre-moisturizer or pre-serum treatment.
The best toners are gentle on the skin. Choose a non-alcohol based formula to help calm and heal your skin. Nazarian Skincare Soothe is a great choice in a toner. This mist is alcohol-free and contains natural ingredients that help to soothe and calm the skin, such as chamomile and green tea.
Another crucial ingredient in your skincare routine is an exfoliator. This isn’t an item that needs to be used daily; about two times per week will get you the results you want.
If you have sensitive skin, a chemical exfoliator such as Nazarian Skincare Clear 1 should be your go-to. Physical exfoliators that have abrasive ingredients in them are good for flaky or dry skin. Try ZO Skin-Exfoliating Polish for a physical exfoliating experience.
Do you take daily vitamins to keep your body healthy? Well, think of a facial serum as a powerful vitamin just for your skin that can be applied every day. It’s one of the most important parts of any healthy skincare routine.
Serums can help to brighten skin as they hydrate, repair, and even help you fight back the years. Some are formulated specifically to target trouble areas, while others address multiple skin issues at once. You can layer serums or pick just one to address your biggest concern. Just know that you don’t need to use a lot of serum to make a difference in how your skin looks and feels.
Epionce Intense Defense Serum is a great choice if you want to target fine lines and wrinkles. Revision Skincare Vitamin K Serum is a great choice if you’re looking for a serum to soothe, calm, and moisturize your skin.
What is your biggest skincare concern? Is it dark spots? How about blemishes or large pores? Whatever your concerns, targeted treatments are a great addition to any skincare routine. These treatments are often best used at night to address issues you have about your skin. Anti-aging treatments such as Nazarian Skincare Retinol + or acne treatments such as Nazarian Skincare Zap fall into this category. You can also add in a mask to your nighttime skincare routine as a targeted treatment, such as ZO Skin Sulfur Masque, to help keep pores clean and smooth out your skin’s texture.
This is another essential step in any quality skincare routine because your skin is a lot like anyone watching a movie with Thor in it—it’s thirsty. Every single skin type can benefit from using a good moisturizer daily.
You can find many different moisturizers for all skin types on the market. You can even find moisturizing facial oils, such as Lumity Complete Facial Oil, that are good for all skin types. For dry skin, EltaMD Barrier Renewal Complex is a great choice. If you have acne-prone skin, Obagi On the Go Cleaning Wipes for Oily or Acne-Prone Skin is a winner.
Sunscreen isn’t simply for the beach or a day at an amusement park—it’s an essential part of your daily skincare routine. Apply it after you moisturize but before you apply any makeup to help protect your skin from the damaging rays of the sun. You can even find a tinted moisturizer to serve as a foundation for your makeup, such as Alastin Skincare Hydratint Pro Mineral Broad Spectrum Sunscreen. Whatever sunscreen you choose, the important thing is to remember to use it every day, no matter what season or how sunny it is. Sun damage is something that is hard work to reverse, so it’s best if you can avoid it in the first place.
Hit the Spot
Your skin is your body’s largest organ. You should take care of it just as you do any other part of your body. After all, you work out to keep your heart and lungs strong, see the doctor regularly for checkups, and go to the dentist for oral health—why neglect your skin when setting up a skincare routine is so easy?
Remember, a good skincare routine can be the difference between glowing, clear skin and, well, dull skin that may have more than a few issues. It can be incredibly easy to begin a skincare routine as long as you know where to start. Luckily, The Skin Spot has you covered and can help you to get started today.