Do you have a go-to skincare routine? With all the advice around skincare steps, things can start feeling confusing quickly. Let’s face it, sometimes all we want is simplistic skincare, that makes sense. Such a thing does exist! Read on to find out how to build a skincare routine in six easy steps.
1. Remove makeup and cleanse
Experts always tell us to cleanse before applying products even in a basic skincare routine. Why? Because for maximum absorption and benefit, your skin needs to be grime-free. Dirt, pollution and sweat are just some of the things that build up on your face over 24 hours. So, even if you don’t apply makeup, you still need to remove this and start with a clean base.
Pick a gentle cleanser that will remove dirt without stripping your skin. And if you’re wondering, the rule of thumb is to cleanse morning and evening. If you wear makeup, consider a double step, using a makeup remover first, followed by a gentle cleanser. This could be a cleansing wash or a hot cloth cleanser. Both of these offer gentle ways to remove nasty particles from the skin.
There’s some debate over toners these days. Truth be told, dermatologists are divided over the issue. But here it is, on our list, at step two.
Here’s why. Certain toners with the right ingredients have an important place in your morning and evening regime. Toners with naturally occurring acids (alpha hydroxy acid or beta hydroxy acid are common examples) gently buff the skin. At Facetheory, we also use ingredients like niacinamide in our toners to balance oil among other benefits.
3. Apply serum
If you’re wondering what to do with that serum, you’re not alone. Despite being championed by skin care experts, they still leave people feeling puzzled. You’ll also notice that certain types, like vitamin C serum, pop up time and again in the best skincare routine search.
What’s that all about? Well, serums are packed with highly concentrated ingredients which penetrate the layers of the skin, giving you deep down benefits. Different serums have different jobs, depending on what’s in them. Some people use one serum as part of their morning skincare routine, and another at night. Other serums target specific skincare issues, like dryness or acne.
4. Apply facial oil
Often considered an optional skincare step, there is more than one reason to consider adding this to your skincare regime. But first, what are the benefits of facial oils? Interestingly, they don’t moisturise your skin themselves, but what they do work on, is keeping those products you’ve applied in steps one to four in place, rather than evaporating into thin air.
And here’s another nice-to-know fact. Although this makes facial oils an obvious go-to for people with dry skin, they are also known to help people with other skin complaints. For instance, rosehip oil can help to soothe most skin types, and oils with Moroccan argan oil can calm inflamed skin.
Everybody knows the importance of moisturising. The bit people become unstuck on is knowing which moisturiser to choose. What’s best for your skin, should you use a different one depending on the time of day, or the seasons?
The good news is that there is most definitely a product out there for you. There are formulations to target any problem. The easiest way to wade through the recommendations is to keep your skin type in mind. What does it need? What problems do you need to target? Generally speaking, your morning skincare routine requires a lighter, easier to absorb moisturiser. Pre-bed, opt for something that boosts your skin’s natural efforts to repair and regenerate as your skin gets busy while you sleep.
6. Apply SPF
If you know a bit about skincare order, you may arch an eyebrow here. Facial oils come last, always but always. Right? Well, not always. It depends on the products you're using. But here's one quick, universal tip. SPF always comes last. Even after oils and moisturisers.
You want your SPF to sit on top of your skin and act as a barrier, and this is why it needs to be the final step. When choosing an SPF, always pick one made for your face, as they are less heavy and greasy, and go for a higher factor to prevent sun damage and premature ageing.