When we were younger, we thought that we were utterly impervious to all damage, and that included harm to our skin and bodies. We would swim in chlorinated pools and not wash our skin and hair off afterward; perish the thought of moisturizing! We would lie in the sun on the beach all day with as little SPF on our faces and bodies as possible because we wanted to be as brown as we could, never sparing a thought for the sunspots and potential damage that could follow later in life. We applied too much makeup without a primer and went to sleep with it on, we chewed our chapped lips instead of exfoliating them, and we squeezed our blackheads with far too much force. Now that we’re a little older and wiser and have all the information that we could ever need available to us via the internet and social media, we know better!
New beauty products that are suited for a broader range of skin types and colors have come onto the market. We understand more about our skin and what it needs, and we have access to professionals who can help us out if we need it. Before we take it that far, though, we should have a skincare routine that we follow religiously, day after day, with no exceptions. There are a few essential steps that every beauty routine must have, and we’ve rounded up seven of the most important for you to try out.
1. Always Cleanse
The first, most basic, and essential step is always to cleanse your face. Different skin types will require different types of cleansing and other frequencies as well. Still, we recommend cleansing in the morning and especially evening to ensure that all the dirt and grime that has accumulated during the day, as well as any makeup, is completely removed. If you do not complete this step correctly, there’s no point in taking any other steps as they will not work as well as they should.
2. Use An Eye Cream
The skin around your eyes is fragile and sensitive; you MUST use a cream or gel explicitly developed for this area, and not one developed to use on the rest of your face. Use this cream both morning and night, or get specialized options for daytime and nighttime moisturizing and treatment.
This is non-negotiable. While our skin does derive a certain amount of moisture from our bodies and the water stored within them, an external source of moisture is vital. As with eye cream or gel, you may either use one moisturizer both morning and night or obtain specialized creams for daytime and nighttime. You’ll need to understand your skin type and its condition to know which moisturizer will be of most benefit.
Another non-negotiable. Many people think that the low SPF present in many moisturizing creams is sufficient to keep your skin safe from the sun’s harsh rays, but it’s not. An SPF of at least 30 is necessary every day, even when you won’t be spending a lot of time outside. Those rays come in through your car or house windows and find your skin wherever it is, so keep it protected at all times.
5. Chemical Exfoliant
Exfoliation is critical, but stay away from physical exfoliants and opt for a chemical one instead. This is where it might be a good idea to get a professional’s opinion before purchasing or visiting a professional for exfoliating treatments once every few weeks. Chemical exfoliants come in various strengths suited for different needs and skin types. These should be used once every ten days to two weeks; under no circumstances should you use them daily.
6. Treat Your Spots
Acne or pimples following you into adult life is not nearly as uncommon as you might think. If you treat these spots and do not squeeze them, they should disappear with time; for more severe acne cases, visiting a professional is a good idea.
7. Drink Enough Water
You can do everything you want to your skin, but it will never make a difference if you don’t drink enough water every day. So much of the human body is made up of water, and that balance is so delicate that it is essential to keep enough clean, delicious water flowing into your body.
These steps are simple, and they don’t have to be expensive. If you keep up with these basics every day, your skin will certainly thank you in the long run.