Navigating the intricate world of skincare can be somewhat overwhelming, with a plethora of products available and endless recommendations for the perfect complexion, it’s hard to know what exactly we should or shouldn’t be doing. Cleansers, toners, scrubs and masks aside, there are a few changes we can all make and easy steps to follow to ensure our skin is getting the love and care it deserves.
Yes, even in the winter! We all know we need to protect our skin when we’re soaking up the sun on the beach, but incorporating a sun protection factor of 30 or above into your daily regime gives our skin the protection it needs from invisible everyday radiation. Harmful ultraviolet A and B rays are present all year round and penetrate through the cloudiest skies. Smoothing an SPF cream on to your complexion in the morning, and not just relying on your moisturiser, can prevent your facial skin from premature ageing and discolouration.
This mistake should need no explanation. Although tempting to simply dive under the covers after a busy day at work or late night on the town, your skin really won’t forgive you for this one. Prolonged wear and non-removal of base make ups like foundation or concealer leads to clogged pores and subsequently blackheads and acne from buildup of oil. Not to mention orange sheets!
The lack of thorough cleansing at night, and in the morning, means dirt and oil can sit on the surface of your skin and easily transfer to your pillowcase, becoming a breeding ground for blemishes. Don’t just rely on the convenience of make-up wipes, make sure to double cleanse to first remove your cosmetics and then to clean your skin underneath.
If there’s one thing worth investing in, it’s a silk pillowcase. The machine-washable, frictionless material absorbs less moisture to prevent and minimise fine lines, with many users claiming they experience sleeker hair, too. As they come into direct contact with delicate skin more often than bed sheets, dermatologists recommend washing or replacing them every few days to prevent bacterial build-up.
Though you may think the physical scrubbing sensation of exfoliation is removing your skin of all impurities, over-exfoliating or using an abrasive formula can remove the protective top layer of your skin and even create micro-tears, leading to dry and sensitive skin. If you’re after that squeaky clean feeling, look for AHA or BHA chemical exfoliators to effectively achieve the same effect.
And on the other hand, there’s such a thing as not enough. Some of us need a helping hand to shed the dead surface skin cells and reveal a smooth, glowy complexion underneath. Don’t be put off if you have a dry skin type, as dehydrated cell build up can prevent products from permeating the skin barrier! It’s recommended that you practice exfoliating but limit it to once or twice a week, adapting this to your personal skin type and needs.
Skincare terminology isn’t always beginner-friendly which makes understanding the “dos and don’ts” somewhat tricky for novices. Take some time to indulge in the library of resources out there – research keywords that crop up and complete a quiz to determine your skin type to start learning what you should be putting on your skin, i.e. look out for non-comedogenic if you don’t want clogged pores and avoid oil-based formulas if you’ve got a particularly shiny T-zone!