One of the most common reader questions that I get is on the topic of simplifying your skincare regimen. What do you REALLY need to use? How often? In what order? When? These are all completely valid questions, especially given the fact that beauty brands come out with dozens of new products every year. And, here’s a secret, a lot of the “new” products are really just the same formula with a new name and new product packaging! It’s true. So here, I break down exactly what you need: a simple skincare regimen with the fewest products possible. Of course, you can always add treatments (based on your specific concerns) into your regimen but this list is the bare necessities, and a few product recommendations. I’ve included high-end brands and drugstore brands, so you can decide where you want to splurge.
MORNING (in order of use):
Cleanse: If you have dry/sensitive skin you don’t necessarily HAVE to wash your face in the morning, but it is an option. I usually just splash some water on my face/take off last night’s eyeliner before applying my moisturizer since I have sensitive skin and don’t like to over-cleanse. Products I like:
Moisturize/Treat: Here’s the thing, you don’t have to use a product that actually says “moisturizer” on it. In fact, I recommend that you use something that has other benefits, aside from just moisturizing your skin. For example, plenty of serums and treatment lotions contain antioxidants, peptides, hyaluronic acid, etc. that gives you an extra boost. Products I like:
Protect: It’s ideal that your moisturizer/treatment (and even makeup!) will have some SPF in it, but they usually only have a small amount, such as SPF 15, which is NOT enough. If your moisturizer doesn’t have at least SPF 30, you should use a broad-spectrum, sunscreen that is at least SPF 30. Products I like:
Cleanse: Washing my face at night is probably one of the best feelings. It’s important to get off all your makeup and grime from the day so, even when you’re tired or drunk, try not to skip this step! Oh, and you can use the same cleanser that you use in the morning (if you do wash in the morning) OR you can use makeup removing/cleansing cloths, when you’re too tired for the full routine. Cleansing wipes I like:
Exfoliate: Depending on how sensitive your skin is, you shouldn’t do this EVERY night- try it out and see how your skin reacts. Personally, I exfoliate once or twice a week. The point is to basically get rid of excess and dead skin cells and unclog pores. Make sure to use a product that contains alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), which is one of the best ingredients to help reveal your fresh skin. Products I like:
Moisturize/Treat: Here’s where it gets a little tricky. You CAN use your morning moisturizer/treatment OR you can use a product that’s specifically designed for night time, your choice. Make sure to also add in a serum or lotion that contains Retinol, which is a key ingredient that will keep your skin looking young, AND an eye cream. Products I like: