Components Of A Core Skincare Routine
Our skin collects sweat, oil, bacteria, and dirt. Cleaning that off every day is good for our skin - as long as it's done gently! Cleansing can also help treat acne and it prepares the skin for any actives or treatments that you may be using.
It's a good idea to use a cleanser at night, to wash off the gunk that builds up throughout the day. In the morning, depending on your skin's needs, you can use a cleanser or simply rinse with water.
A good cleanser is one that leaves your skin feeling soft and maybe a bit moisturized - not dry, tight, or ‘squeaky clean.’
Even when we have a wonderfully gentle cleanser that doesn't dry us out, it still removes some of the oils that help keep our skin supple and moisturized. To restore these, and add some other beneficial ingredients, we use a moisturizer.
A good moisturizer nourishes the skin and improves our skin's barrier. That helps treat and prevent obvious things like dryness, but also less-obvious concerns like oiliness, acne, fine lines, and leftover acne marks. It’s especially important to have a good moisturizer (or a few!) if you plan on using any potentially irritating actives in the future.
Whenever we're exposed to the sun, it affects our skin in different ways. Some are good - it can boost our mood and influences our sleep-wake rhythm. But some are more harmful; it causes skin cancer and sunburns, as well as fine lines and hyperpigmentation.
We don't want people to be scared of the sun, but we do encourage everyone to be smart and protect themselves. There are a lot of options nowadays of good sunscreens - not all of them are greasy, thick, and white!
There are also some actives that make your skin more sensitive to the sun (like retinoids, AHAs, and benzoyl peroxide); if you're planning on using those in the future, having a good sunscreen in your routine is a must.
So if you’re planning on using those in the future, or want to prevent skin cancer, fine lines, and hyperpigmentation, it’s important to use a good sunscreen!
Here’s a hypothetical routine with the products listed above - your routine may look different depending on the products you use and your skin concerns.
Rinse with water or use your Cleanser
Feel free to deviate from this as needed - for example, some people may not need to use a moisturizer in the AM (especially if their sunscreen is moisturizing!), and that’s ok! Do what works for you.