Establishing an effective skin care routine doesn't have to be a complex or overly burdensome process. In today's beauty and self-care hype, there is a tendency to get caught up in the extensive marketing and consumerism that pervades the industry. But you don't need the overwhelming majority of products being marketed to you. And elaborate routines are not fundamental necessities for maintaining healthy skin.
An efficient and beneficial skin care routine can be distilled down to a few key steps. A minimalist approach, focusing on consistency rather than complexity, can yield significant results. This pared-down methodology does not only streamline the process but also ensures that the skin is not overwhelmed with an array of products, some of which may have counterproductive effects.
A "skinimalist" approach aligns with the principles of dermatological science, which advocate for simplicity and consistency in skin care. The key steps you need in your skin care routine—cleanse, treat, hydrate, and protect—play a crucial role in maintaining the skin's health and vitality. Keep reading for our useful tips on how to adapt this approach from our treatment rooms to your bathroom.
Choosing the right cleanser is arguably the most important part of your skin care routine. Cleansers do a lot of heavy lifting that we may not realize. Outside of helping to remove dead skin, oils, dirt, and pollution from the day, cleansers can be extremely helpful in helping to treat certain skin conditions as well. But so many of us are using our cleansers wrong! And to be fair, marketing is all the blame. So many commercials exist of someone washing their face for 10 seconds and then splashing with water to remove. That's a great way to not actually clean anything!
The best way to utilize a cleanser is to be sure to massage it into the skin for at least one minute. From there, you want to take a warm washcloth and wipe to remove any cleanser (and dirt) from your face. You can follow up with a splash rinse if you'd like. Why follow this method though? Because gently wiping away the cleanser will also remove any dead skin and debris that may keep your pores clogged.
Now, we recommend most of our clients have two cleansers (one for the morning, and one for the evening) but you could just stick to one if you prefer. If you do not have any skin concerns/blemishes, then you want a gentle cleanser. Gentle cleansers can be found in oil, milk, balm, jelly, and even some low-suds gel forms. Our go-to gentle cleanser recommendations are Magic Milk, Calming Cleanse, and the Epicutis Cleansing Oil. If you do have some blemishes and skin concerns, then you want to have at least one active cleanser in your routine. Most active cleansers are going to be in the form of foams, gels, or powders and typically will have alpha hydroxy acids/beta hydroxy acids in their formulation. We typically recommend our clients to utilize their active cleansers at night only to avoid overexfoliation. Most of our clients LOVE the Cleansing Gel with Mandelic Acid from Circadia.
Cleansers do a lot of heavy lifting but they can't do it all. To truly correct your skin care concerns you have to use treatments specific to the issues you are experiencing. This almost always will come in the form of a serum but can also be a mask. Serums are best applied onto freshly cleansed skin. And a little goes a long way—think 1-2 pumps or 3-5 drops each use.
Serums exist for nearly every skin care concern whether it's acne, hyperpigmentation, aging, inflammation, sensitivity... you name it! Our go-to serums are the Majestic series which primarily help with acne but can assist with hyperpigmentation as well. It's possible that you don't have to use serums daily. Exfoliating serums might be utilized best every other day vs. daily. Of course, everyone's skin is different and your personal esthetician will recommend what is best for you.
No, this isn't about drinking water. Keeping the skin hydrated is key to maintaining your overall skin health. Adequately hydrated skin demonstrates enhanced elasticity, reduced appearance of fine lines, and a balanced complexion. These products, often enriched with humectants like hyaluronic acid, attract moisture, fortifying the skin's natural barrier. This barrier protection is vital in shielding the skin from environmental stressors, thereby promoting a youthful and radiant appearance, and preventing premature aging.
A great skin hydrator can come in the form of a serum, essence, toner, or moisturizer. All of these are great places to start if hydration is an overall focus in your skin care routine. But the only essential hydrator you need is a good, hydrating moisturizer. Epicutis Hyvia Creme is a good one but not exactly acne-safe. Clearskin by PCA Skin and the moisturizer by AnteAge are great hydrators as well.
Lastly, you want to keep your skin protected. For most people, this is a daytime step only and you keep your skin protected by wearing (and reapplying!) SPF. We are not picky about sunscreens at all. Whichever one you will wear is the one we recommend! Everyone loves the ClearChoice Sports Shield SPF at GLOWDEGA but the Hawaiian Tropic Weightless Hydration for Face and Aveeno Protect & Hydrate are great choices too!
Sunscreen is the one skin care product that you will find yourself purchasing monthly when used correctly. If you'd like to avoid purchasing that frequently, we recommend getting the 4oz. size in the ClearChoice SPF.
Well, now you have the basics down. Let us know how you put your routine together in the comments below!