Why You Should Have a Skincare Routine

Skin is our largest organ, it primary function is to act as a barrier against the outside world. Protecting us from things like toxins, radiation, UV rays and maintaining our body temperature. Starting a proper skincare routine is important to help maintain healthy and radiant skin. The better you take care of your skin, the better it will perform. Not only with protecting us from the outside world, but it will look great while doing so! Below you’ll find some helpful information on contributing factors to overall skin health and tips to start your own routine.

Diet

Our diets dictate a huge part of our over all well-being. Put good in, get good out. So it comes at no shocker that the food we eat and what we drink will play a part in our skin’s health. Drinking water is essential to help our bodies run properly, and rid our body of toxins and overall hydration of our cells. It is recommended that we drink at least eight cups of water a day. If water is not your thing, try avoiding caffeine and sugary beverages, green tea is a good alternative if you need a flavored drink and is full of antioxidants and other beneficial qualities. According to the Mayo Clinic, “some foods seem to be associated with skin damage. For example, some research suggests that a diet high in processed or refined sugars or other carbohydrates and unhealthy fats promotes skin aging.” You can read their article here, Mayo Clinic Healthy Skin.

Exfoliating

The removal of dead skin cells from the surface of our skin is called exfoliating. By exfoliating our skin we are helping to unclog pores, which in turn helps prevent acne. Also, when you exfoliate it helps skin care products absorb into our skin better. To exfoliate the body start by making small circular motions with your exfoliating tool or by using your hand and a body scrub. Be gentle, and you don’t want to over exfoliate your skin. Over exfoliating can cause dry, irritated skin. Same goes for your face, I exfoliate my face twice a week, I start with my Brush and my cleanser and lightly move in circular motions to wash away dead skin cells and any impurities. You can also skip the brush a use a face wash that helps exfoliate without a tool.

Cleansing

Like all other things, your skin needs to be properly cleaned every day. The purpose of a cleanser is to remove makeup, dirt and oils from the skin. Without properly washing your face it can leave the skin vulnerable to clogged pores and breakouts. {Yikes!} Chose a cleanser that best suits your skin, a proper cleanser will not leave your skin feeling tight or squeaky clean. You don’t want to strip your skins natural oils, doing so can cause an over production of oil. To find the right cleanser for you take this skin test. Soap can dry out your skin, face wash works with your skin’s natural pH balance better than standard soap. Meaning it’s less likely to strip your natural oils leaving your skin dry and irritated.

Toner

After cleansing the skin, toner is a great next step in a skin care routine. Toner is not a necessary step in all skin care routines but it does help people that have trouble with acne, oily or have aging skin. I started using a toner a couple of months ago, and I have noticed a positive change in my skin. I tend to be on the oily side and am prone to acne, so the toner helps clean and control my skin throughout the day and night. Toner is also good for enlarged pores, it helps tighten the skin back up and helps to restore our skin’s natural pH balance.

Antioxidant Serum

So like toner, this step isn’t necessary for some routines. It is mostly used as an anti-aging agent and to help calm inflammation. First signs of aging tend to hit in our late twenties or early thirties, so a serum is beneficial if you are trying to help reduce the signs of aging. There are other serums out there that will help with other skin concerns. I’ll attach a great article that breaks down the different serums and the vitamins that help with your skin concerns.

Eye Cream

Eye Cream is every tired person’s friend. Eye cream can help reduce puffiness around the eye caused by lack of sleep and help fight the signs of aging. The skin under and around our eyes is thin and sensitive, so we need a cream that will be gentle to it. A makeup lady once told me, “to apply eye cream use your ring finger. It’s not as strong as the other fingers thus making it the perfect finger to lightly put on an eye cream.” I don’t know how true that is, but I’ve done it ever since. I start at the corner closest to my nose and light dab my way up and out to the other side of my eye socket. Going a bit out of the eye area to make sure I cover it all. Just like another skin care product on the market, there are different types of eye creams. Pick one that will benefit your skin the best. Eye cream also works to help make up not set in the creases under your eyes, so it works sorta like a primer for the eyes.

Spot Treatment

As much as we try our hardest to avoid it, acne still has a way of sneaking on to your skin. Whether it be from a hormone change, to our genetic make up or we just simply have a clogged pore. It is bound to happen to us at some point. Well thankfully, there is a treatment for that. I don’t often get a breakout but when I do, my pimples are often large and very painful. So a spot treatment is a good way to get rid of them faster and painlessly. Spot treatments can also help with dark spots. Dark spots can be a few things, you can have a dark spot from acne scars, the scars are caused after the pimple is resolved, it can take a while for the spot to go away completely but over time it will fade. And age/sun spots, these spots are caused from sun damage, this tends to happen when you are older often times they are referred to as liver spots. A spot treatment solely targets the one affected area without having to put it all over the skin and waste product.

Moisturizer

One of the main reasons to moisturize our skin is to protect it from dryness. By keeping our skin hydrated, it will help fight the signs of aging, acne, and soothe our skin. Without a moisturizer our skin will start to become dried, cracked and more prone to aging. So it’s important to apply body lotion over most of your body and use a face moisturizer for your décolletage, neck and face. I apply lotion to my legs, arms, feet and hands after I shower at night. After I’ve finished the other steps in my nightly routine, I use a face moisturizer on my neck, chest and face. Depending on the type of skin you have or your preference, you may be able to just buy one moisturizer and use it morning and night. I have a heavier cream I use at night and a lighter one in the morning. Because I have oily skin, I feel like normal moisturizer is too heavy for me to wear under my makeup, so instead I use a moisturizing primer.

Sunscreen

This step is probably one of the most important of them all. Sunscreen helps block those harmful UV rays and prevent sunburns, sun damage such as dark spots and skin cancer, wrinkles and leather looking skin. Those are all reasons enough for me to wear it! I know some people don’t want to use sunscreen with a high SPF because they want to get a tan. If I want a nice tan, I opt for a sunless tanner. It’s safer alternative to actually laying out in the sun with tanning oil on. It’s also a whole easier, in this Louisiana heat and humidity I try to spend as little time as possible outside during this summer months. Pro Tip: exfoliating/moisturizing before applying self tanner helps the product to go more smooth and last longer. Some make-ups have sunscreen built in to their products but often times it’s not a good SPF coverage. I wouldn’t totally rely on your makeup to protect your face. A lightweight non-greasy sunscreen will still protect your skin and not interfere with your makeup application.

Face Masks/Facials

Not only do face masks and facials help our skin, but they are also really relaxing. Choose a face mask that best suits your skin’s need at the time. A charcoal mask is perfect for drawing out toxins and impurities from the skin. I use this type of mask when I’m having a breakout or needing an extra boost to help unclog my pores. Especially around my period, my skin tends to have a few pimples pop up. A hydrating mask is perfect for those that experience dry skin or if you notice your skin is looking a bit dull. A hydrating mask is full of vitamins that your skin will soak up, you’ll definitely be glowing after one of these masks. I love wearing a mask, my skin feels so soft and smooth after. There are so many face mask options out there that help with different areas of concerns. By taking the skin care test I attached above you’ll be able to find the right mask for you! If you feel like spoiling yourself and have some extra money, pay a visit to your local spa for a facial. Not only are professional facials great for your skin, but they are so relaxing. Face masks and facials are not something you do every day, but something you can do once or twice a week. I normally do a face mask on a night I exfoliate my face, this allows the skin to absorb the vitamins better or better clean my pores.

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