Perfecting a skincare routine can be difficult when you’re unsure of the products best suited to you or how and when to apply them. We’ve put together a step-by-step guide to help you choose the best routine that will leave your skin glowing.
Know Your Skin Type
Learning what your skin type is can be half the battle when it comes to finding your perfect skincare regime. We’ve listed the most common ones below with their stereotypical features:
You go from good skin days to nightmare breakouts. You may find it difficult to choose the best products for your skin type as you contend with clear skin on good days, an oily T-zone, dry patches or blemishes across your forehead and nose.
Your skin feels tight or itchy and you often find uncomfortable flaky patches. No matter how much you moisturise, it never seems like enough and your skin often flares up after cleansing or toning, particularly if products are heavily perfumed.
Like many people, you may have had oily skin since your teenage years. You often find your make-up slipping down your face and struggle to maintain it all day with a shiny appearance and even adult acne. Your skincare routine can be a struggle, especially when it comes to using moisturisers for fear of producing more oil.
You find your skin flaring up in reaction to anything that’s not gentle, especially perfumed products. Applying certain products can sting, burn and make your skin feel itchy afterwards, sometimes causing flare-ups that can be hard to soothe.
Daily Routine Essentials
The routine below can be used for both women and men and can be adapted to suit your skin type:
Cleansing should be done twice a day: in the morning to deep clean and freshen up for the start of the day, and in the evening to remove any dirt and oil built up from the day. If you are wearing any make-up or similar products it’s advisable to remove these first, although many cleansers are able to remove all traces of these products as well. When choosing a cleanser, it’s important to pick one that matches your skin type; all reputable brands put details in their product labelling.
To keep skin fresh, reduce oil build-up and remove any leftover traces of product, you can incorporate a toner in your skincare routine. Like cleansers, toners can be used in both the morning and evening but those with dry or sensitive skin need to be careful as it can often cause skin to feel a little tighter and drier. This is especially the case if the toner is slightly perfumed.
To really deep clean and remove any dead skin cells it’s a great idea to exfoliate throughout the week. Gentle exfoliators can be used every day if your skin reacts well, however rougher formulas should be used sparingly, maybe 1–3 times a week. Again, there is a range of exfoliators to match different skin types. For those will oily and/or combination skin, using a rough texture will benefit your routine. However, those with a more sensitive skin type will need to be careful not to use too harsh a product that might cause damage.
Hydrate and rejuvenate your skin with a daily moisturiser. Everyone can benefit from using this product; it just needs to match your skin’s needs. Those of you with normal skin can use most moisturisers, however those of you with oily skin need to shop around for products that are oil-free and based on a gel formula. If you have dry skin, look for a product with a richer formula and creamy texture. Sensitive skin types respond differently to moisturisers: some react well to thick, creamy products where others prefer lighter, thinner balms.
Skin type can also affect the way you apply the product. For those struggling with blemishes or breakouts around the T-zone, it’s best to only apply the cream where your skin is dry and to pat it on lightly. Only a small, pea-sized amount should be enough for most people to apply morning and night following your cleanse and tone.
If you’re about to head out for the day, regardless of temperature or weather conditions, it’s vital that you apply sunscreen. Skin damage from exposure to the sun is on the rise and can cause serious issues if you don’t protect yourself. Many daytime moisturisers and make-up products contain a sun block so you may already be covered, however just ensure that, like all your other products, your sunscreen is suited to your skin type as you don’t want to ruin your skincare routine with this last step.
Used before moisturising, serums are easily absorbed and work to really rehydrate your skin cells, so they can be a great addition for those with dry skin.
These represent more of an intensive skincare treatment that you could incorporate in your regime once a week. Masks are designed for each skin type, ranging from hydrating mud masks to deep pore-cleansing peeling masks and oil-balancing fruity masks packed with vitamins. Choose according to your skin type and enjoy a pamper at home.
Eye creams, night creams, anti-ageing creams … the list of specialist products is endless. However each one is made for a specific job, such as reducing lines and wrinkles or the appearance of fatigue and puffiness. If you feel the need for an additional product in your routine it’s best to do some research and ask for guidance to ensure you buy a product that matches your needs and skin type.
For information on the products we love, visit our skin category page.