Some people might think that being skilled in applying cosmetic products compensates for having bad skin. Sure, the best foundations and concealers might do a great job in hiding pimples and blemishes, but it’s still easy to tell if you’re covering up bumps and imperfections. With a solid skin care routine, however, you can turn your skin into the perfect canvas for makeup.
The only caveat? Working on your skin can be quite tricky. It’s a frustrating ordeal as having ‘normal skin’ isn’t exactly the norm. With about 80% of folks aged 11 to 30 experience acne breakouts from time to time, it’s easier to find someone with acne-prone skin than with a normal skin type.
If you want to improve your skin’s quality by creating an effective beauty regimen, make sure to keep the tips below in mind.
Before you start buying skincare products, here are some of the most important things that you need to know if you want your skin to improve:
A lot of people do not realize that even if they do not have sensitive skin, they should still care for and be gentle to their skin. There are tons of ways how you can damage your skin, ranging from discoloration and clogged pores to micro tears and actual wounds.
Being kind to your skin involves avoiding the use of harsh ingredients. Some folks believe that feeling some stinging or tightening on their skin after cleansing is a sign of thorough cleaning. This isn’t true, though. If your skin feels uncomfortable after washing, there’s a good chance that you used a harsh product on it. Tightening is actually a sign of drying while stinging can mean your skin is slightly burning.
This can also explain why dermatologists tell you to use soap-free cleansers.
Not everyone is a fan of spending a good deal of money on a specialist to tell them that they should wash their skin with a mild cleanser. However, it’s one of the first steps to having better skin because it’s also one of the best ways to be kinder to your skin. Switching to best foundation for sensitive skin is a good start!
Another very important thing that you should learn while trying to figure out how to start a skincare routine is the fact that you can’t really expect your skin to change overnight. The skin does not work that way, so you need to be patient.
With the skin having a cell turnover rate at 27 to 30 days, you can’t just expect changes to show after a few days of using a product or even getting a treatment. In fact, even those zits that feel like they pop out at the slightest provocation take a while to form. It’s said that it takes 8 weeks for a pimple to become visible, so the dairy that you consumed yesterday is highly likely not the reason why you have a zit today. Some products, however, can seriously irritate your skin and that’s the only time when your skin will break out.
This also means that you shouldn’t ditch a new product if you haven’t seen a change within a week. This is particularly true for acne treatments as they usually take effect at about four to eight weeks.
The most potent anti-acne ingredients won’t miraculously erase your zits in a week. And if they do, it would most likely be at the detriment of your skin.
This doesn’t mean, however, that you should stick with a product if it’s breaking you out. There are different ways how your skin can react to various products. It can improve, stay the same, break you out, purge your skin, or cause an allergic reaction. It would be best to learn the difference of each so you can tell right away if a product is harming your skin or not.
Speaking of product reactions, it’s very important to learn the difference between purging, breakouts, and allergic reactions. If you want to know how to take care of face skin, you should be able to tell apart these three negative ways your skin can react to a certain skin product.
How do you tell them apart? Here’s a quick guide that should help you:
This reaction is exclusively limited to ingredients that can speed up your skin’s cell turnover. So if you tried a new exfoliant or any product with active ingredients, there’s a good chance that they can cause purging.
With their ability to speed up skin cell turnover, they can also expedite the surfacing of the zits that are waiting at the deeper layers of your skin. This can then explain why some people get some zits after using acids and retinol before their skin completely clears out after.
Breakouts are often caused by irritation so they can be caused by just about any ingredient used in skincare products. If you add new items in your skin routine or makeup process, you’ll automatically be in danger of experiencing a breakout.
These irritations often make the waiting pimples to come out in worse conditions. Experts say that with the wrong product, your regular acne lesions can turn into large cystic acne.
How are they any different from the zits that result from purging? Breakouts are often large, inflamed, and painful. On the flip side, purging zits are small, bumpy, and shouldn’t hurt.
This reaction doesn’t always manifest itself as acne lesions, blackheads, or whiteheads. Sometimes, they’re characterized as tender, inflamed, and red skin. It can also look like a mild burn in some cases.
Among the three, this is probably the easiest one to spot. Discontinue the use of the item right away if you experience this.
Seeing a dermatologist is always highly recommended if you want to learn about the best how to basics for face care. They will be able to help you determine your skin issues and give you ways how to address them accordingly.
Not a lot of people is a fan of this step as seeing a doctor can be costly, time-consuming, and even frustrating, but it’s seriously the best way to improve your skin. Celebrities wouldn’t have their own go-to skincare specialists if this isn’t the case.
Aside from skin experts, you might also want to address other conditions that might be causing your skin issues. For example, some people are acne prone because of hormonal imbalance. Others have dry skin because they take certain medications. There are also some prescription medications that aggravate acne breakouts. Addressing these can also help you manage your skin problems effectively.
It will be hard to create and execute an effective skincare routine without the right information. You’ll at least need to know which ingredients are good for your skin type and overall health to get good results.
This is especially true for acne prone skin. As not all breakouts and pimples are caused by the same thing, it shouldn’t be surprising to learn that different ingredients work for them. For example, BHA or salicylic acid are most effective on blackheads and whiteheads due to their keratolytic properties. They won’t work as effectively on cystic acids but they can help keep them clean and unclog the pores.
If you’re going to use actives, you should also know which products react with each other. Acids and retinoids can’t be worn with vitamin C as they can cause redness and irritation, for example.
While oil-based and water-based skincare should be used together wisely. Ample research will also let you know about the most potent ingredients that can help you address your skin issue.
So in case you intend to create an anti aging skin care routine, you’ll know that you’ll need retinoids, niacinamide, and antioxidants to your product list.
This may seem like a daunting task but don’t be discouraged. If you learn the ropes in caring for your skin, things will be a lot easier as you go. It can also be a very fascinating topic to learn more about, especially if you are successful in applying the information you’ve learned.
Make sure to stick to scientific information, though. There are tons of myths about skin care, so it’s important to only go for what has been studied and tested by experts. If there are claims that are not substantiated by a study, take it with a grain of salt.
Note, too, that some experts will have contrasting ideas about skin care. Some dermatologists will tell you one thing then another will tell you the exact opposite of it. This can be very confusing and overwhelming but it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t trust any expert at all. Knowing your skin will help you make the right decisions in such cases.
This may be a no-brainer tip for most people but some folks tend to miss this fact, so it bears repeating that you should create a beauty regimen that suits your skin type.
For example, you have dry skin, you should create a routine that focuses on moisturizing and hydrating your skin. If your skin is oily, you should try to manage its sebum production and keep your pores clean and clog-free. Those with sensitive skin should take extra care for their skin as they might just flare up at the slightest provocation.
How would you know which skin type you have? Seeing a specialist will help. You can also find tips on how to determine your skin type with some research.
You can’t just put on products on your face without giving it much thought. This will prevent you from making the most out of the ingredients they contain so you should know about the right skin care routine order.
A general rule is that you should start from the thinnest products to the thickest ones. The thick ones can prevent the thin ones from penetrating your skin properly, so you should be very mindful of the order you’re going to layer your skincare products.
The simplest order post-cleansing should be tone, moisturize, and then wear sunscreen. If you want to give the 10-step K-beauty craze, the idea is still pretty much the same.
They just have more specialized items, but you’ll still need to go from the thinnest to the thickest product to ensure full absorption.
Don’t forget to give the products some time to sink into your skin before proceeding to the next step, though.
This is an absolute must that you should never take shortcuts in if you want to make the most out of your face care routine. New ingredients will make your skin react, so you shouldn’t really overwhelm it if you don’t want to deal with a serious problem later on.
Whether you have sensitive skin or not, you should always do a patch test, opt to introduce a product slowly into your routine, or avoid using several new items at the same time. Doing so will help you prevent severe reactions in case the new product contains an irritant.
A patch test will tell you easily if the product is damaging to your skin. Introducing a product carefully into your routine, on the other hand, will prevent overwhelming your skin. While adding new items to your routine one by one will help you learn which ingredients or products you’re sensitive to.
Most skin types will benefit from regular exfoliation as it helps renew your skin and unclog your pores. However, it’s crucial that you do it carefully as it can also be damaging to your skin. As it will remove dead skin from the surface of your skin, it can also easily damage your it in the process.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, not every skin type will react the same way from the different exfoliation methods.
This is why it’s important to know which method works best for your skin type so you can make the most out of the process.
For example, retinoids and benzoyl peroxide are less suitable for those with dry skin as it can cause severe dryness. This can result in acne breakouts as well. They’re actually better off with mild chemical exfoliators or a washcloth instead.
You should also remember to apply a moisturizer after exfoliating. Since this products tend to dry out your skin and leave it rather raw, you have to put some protection to keep your skin in great shape.
Some experts say that if there’s one thing that should be in everyone’s beauty regimen, even men's skin care routine, all year round, it should be sun protection.
Everyone needs to protect their skin from harmful UV rays as it can cause serious skin damage. In some cases, it can even cause skin cancer.
This is why even if you want the most minimal approach to caring for your skin, you should use a product that can shield your skin from the sun.
Choosing a sunscreen product, however, is no easy feat. First off, you have to choose between sunscreens and sunblocks. What’s the difference? Let us elaborate below:
Simply put, sunscreen is something you should wear daily while you should wear sunblock when you’re spending long periods under the sun. You should also wear the latter on your entire body.
This may sound like the most cliche thing out there, but it’s true: a healthy lifestyle can result in clear and healthy skin. A good body care routine including the right and healthy diet, exercise, and ample sleep can do wonders in clearing your skin. Add to this the cure-all technique of drinking lots of water and you’ll soon see improvements in your skin.
Another popular technique that you should add in your skin care routine for acne would be to stop touching your face. Your hands have oils, germs, and bacteria that can further clog your pores and irritate your skin that can result in breakouts, so it shouldn’t really find its way to your face. Your nails are also packed with gross stuff that can transfer to your pores, so you should make a conscious effort against touching and picking at your face.
Some celebrity and model skin care routine also includes air-drying their face after cleansing and bathing. Bath towels tend to have acne-causing bacteria, so you also shouldn’t put it on your face. Using hand towels, even if you intend to change them every day, isn’t recommended as well. Aside from being too abrasive to your skin, the detergent you use can also irritate your skin.
Whether it’s an anti aging skin care routine or an anti-acne regimen, you should also make sure to care for your neck and decolletage. This will help you achieve even results.
Neglecting will definitely show which areas you prioritized as you age. This is why a lot of older celebrities actually insist that you always pay close attention to these areas as well when you execute a skin care regimen. You can even get neck creams to get the job done but you can always just use the items you use on your face on your neck as well.
For the best results, care for the skin on your entire body as well. Do not forget to exfoliate and moisturize. You should also use sun protection on the areas that regularly get exposed to the sun.
Cleaning your makeup tools should be a no-brainer skincare technique but lots of people also fail to do this regularly. You should actually consider this more as a hygiene thing more than anything else because it’s practically the same thing as washing your clothes and pillowcases.
Experts say that you should wash your brushes weekly. Not only does this ensure that they’re clean and won’t be teeming with acne-causing bacteria but it can also prevent product buildup.
If you want to completely eliminate the need of having tools touching your face, you can also just opt for the best airbrush makeup. You will still need to clean the stylus after every use, though, to prevent product buildup and ensure its flawless performance.
This is another tip that you shouldn’t forget to include in your daily skin care routine at home. If you wear makeup, you should always remove it at the end of the day. This will help prevent the cosmetics from clogging your pores and irritating your skin.
There are tons of different products that can help you do this. Japanese skin care made oil cleansing a big hit a few years back and now the whole world finds it to be one of the most efficient makeup remover out there. You can also use micellar water or the best makeup remover wipes if you want a more convenient way to take off your makeup after a tiring day. Some cleansers and natural face washes can also get the job done.
We also recommend reading our how to reduce pore size guide!
Now that you know the most important concepts in building a good skincare routine, the next thing that you might want to know about is how exactly can you create one that will work for you. Generally, you have two ways to go about it:
This will help you figure out what your skin issues are and will let you take targeted steps to deal with them. These specialists will also be more than willing and capable of creating a routine that they believe, based on their expertise, will suit your skin best. They can help you have a solid anti-acne or anti aging skin care routine without breaking a sweat.
In most cases, they’ll recommend the products for you. They’ll give you a beauty routine checklist and all you’ll need to do is to get them and use them according to the instructions of your doctor. Your skin’s improvement will then be closely monitored so adjustments can also be made with ease.
It’s a seriously convenient method since your doctor will already do the bulk of the work for you. However, it can be a very costly affair. Doctor appointments alone can already be expensive on their own and the products they’ll tell you to get can get pricey as well. This is why a lot of people opt out of this method. But if you really want to care for your skin the best way possible, this might just be the best option for you.
Lots of people around the globe also DIYs their skincare routines so you shouldn’t worry about doing the same thing. This might be a very challenging task, however, as skin care is a particularly tricky area to navigate in. It even gets more complex if you have zero idea where to start. It can be done, though, since information is now easily available online.
The best thing about being able to create your own regimen is that you have free reign in which products to use. You can be very particular with the ingredients and manufacturing process of the items that will go to your cart.
If you don’t want to patronize the brands that test on animals, you can easily do so in this method. It’s also up to you if you want to use an all-natural skin care routine for acne. You can even go all out and just choose the products made from organic ingredients.
You can also have great flexibility by creating your own skincare routine. You can mix and match drugstore and high-end products. You can experiment with the latest trends to see if they work for you.
However, don’t expect this method to be a quick one. This might require a serious case of trial and error and since you can’t see results from a product immediately, it might take a while for you to find the best products and routine for you. It will teach you a lot about your skin, though, so it can still be well worth the effort.
For some issues like stretch marks, you can also try home remedies like we explained in our guide to how to get rid of stretch marks naturally.