We’ve all been down that dreaded beauty aisle of any department store. It’s overwhelming because there are hundreds of products to choose from, and they all look the same. So how exactly do you know which ones to buy? And how do you know they will work for you?
While it may seem very intimidating at first, it’s actually not that big of a selection once you get to understand the products, their formulas, and how they are designed.
Different Products for Different Skin Types
The number one reason there are so many skincare products is because there are a lot of different skin types. The main skin types are: normal, oily, combination, dry, and sensitive. Additionally you can include acne prone. Everyone’s skin won’t just fall under one classification, as some people can be acne prone and sensitive, while others can be oily and acne prone.
Getting to know your skin will be the first step to understanding the huge selection of products. For example, if you have dry skin with frequent breakouts, this is known as dry, acne prone skin. And if you have oily skin with no breakouts, your skin is just normal to oily.
Now that you have a better understanding of skin types and their classifications, going deeper into a skincare routine will begin to make more sense.
1. Cleansing the Skin
Skin cleansers, whether you use foaming, soap, or liquid cleansers, they all carry the same purpose. That purpose is to cleanse the skin of dirty, excess oil and other impurities. Over the course of the day your skin comes in contact with many contaminants that can clog pores and lead to breakouts, or they can stick to your skin and make it appear oilier.
When using a skin cleanser, you simply wet your skin, apply a gentle cleanser that is formulated to your skin type, gently scrub in circular motions, wash off, and then pat dry. Once you’re done with the cleansing process, be sure to check that your skin does not feel excessively dry or tight. Even if you have oily skin you don’t want to completely strip it of all natural oils. Some oil is necessary for the skin to remain soft and hydrated.
If the cleanser you chose makes it feel dry, simply wash a little less vigorously or choose a new product.
2. Toning the Skin
Toners have been around forever, and nowadays they are almost an optional component to a skin care routines. Earlier when cosmetics were just coming out, some skin cleansers actually left a film or residue on the skin. This is because they were not water soluble. The purpose of toning was to completely remove all residue, and prepare the skin for the following step – exfoliation.
While it may be optional, don’t feel like it doesn’t have any benefit. Some people enjoy the fresh feeling that toners give to their skin. So if this is you, feel free to keep toning!
3. Exfoliating the Skin
Desquamation is a naturally process by which the skin sheds old skin cells. Millions of dead cells by the day are naturally taken off due to this process. However, due to either genetics, poor diet, sometimes this process can become damaged. Due to this, your skin will not be able to regularly desquamate, and these cells will accumulate over time.
The problem with excess dead skin cells is that they can eventually build up in your pores, causing blocked pores. Blocked pores can result in blackheads, pimples and other forms of acne.
This is why exfoliation can be helpful. Using a mild exfoliant such as salicylic acid, or glycolic acid, you can naturally enhance the desquamation process. By assisting your skin through removal and exfoliation of dead skin cells, you will reveal the beautiful and naturally even skin beneath.
4. Moisturizing the Skin
Moisturizers are an overlooked product. This is due to the stereotype that moisturizers make your skin sticky and oily and will cause acne. This is simply not true! Moisturizers can play a vital part at keeping your skin moisturizers, thus not oily.
Oily skin occurs as a result of dehydration. Your body notices the skin is dry and then overproduces more oil to compensate. By using a lightweight and gel moisturizer, you can expect your skin to be soft, sublet, and not oily. Not to mention, moisturizers make your skin look dewy and gives a natural glow to them.
As an added bonus, most moisturizers come in travel size. This allows you to fully try the product before you go ahead and purchase the full product.
Hopefully this information has cleared up some confusion about skincare routines and how skincare products work. One last thing to remember is there are plenty of over the counter products for you to enjoy. You don’t need to splurge on $50 and $100 products.