We all want to have beautiful skin, that is probably one of the first things on our wish list, and I totally understand why, I can honestly say that you can find it on my wish list too. But as you may know, our daily habits have a big impact on what you see in the mirror. Caring for your skin is simply personal. When it comes to a gorgeous, glowing complexion, there are quite a few steps you could take in your skin care routine—but not all of them need to be done on a daily basis.
The right routine starts with knowing what kind of skin you have. Then you’ll know how to take care of it.
- Normal skin is balanced, clear, and not sensitive. “Your skin can be classified as normal if it isn’t particularly oily or dry, and anti-aging, acne and sensitivity aren’t concerns on your radar.” (Renée Rouleau)
- Oily skin is shiny, greasy, and may have big pores. “Oily skin is skin that has larger oil glands and a high sebum content. This is genetic. Oily-skinned women have built-in oil, so the goal is to lessen the oil activity by keeping your skin cells lightly hydrated.” (Renée Rouleau)
- Dry skin is flaky, scaly, or rough. “Dry skin has a damaged moisture barrier. Your skin has invisible cracks in it, and it allows moisture to escape and irritants to get in more easily.” (Renée Rouleau)
- Combination skin is dry in some spots (cheeks) and oily in others (forehead, nose, and chin). “The concept of combination skin is that you’re oily in some places and dry in others. You don’t necessarily want to use two different routines, but instead find one in the middle of the road.” (Renée Rouleau)
- Sensitive skin may sting, burn, or itch after you use some makeup or other products. “A lot of people think of sensitive skin as acne-prone, but I think of it as skin that gets red and irritated easily. It’s more delicate skin that you can’t be aggressive with.” (Renée Rouleau)
Renée Rouleau is a trusted and sought-after skin care expert and esthetician loved by celebrities, editors, bloggers and skincare obsessives everywhere.
Photo source: https://www.reneerouleau.com
Here is what you should do daily:
1. Wash your face. Clean skin is happy skin!
Dr. Carlos Charles, New York City dermatologist: “Our skin comes in contact with environmental pollutants, dirt and other factors each day that should be gently removed.”
Wash twice a day, morning and night, to avoid clogged pores, dullness and acne.
FIND YOUR FACIAL CLEANSER
- Normal skin: A sulfate-free cleanser with a gentle lather will help keep your skin blemish-free. (Renée Rouleau)
- Oily skin: Wash your skin three times a day if possible using a gel or foam cleanser that’s sulfate-free. (Renée Rouleau)
- Dry skin: A no-foam, no-lather, super-mild cleansing lotion is best for those with dry skin. (Renée Rouleau)
- Combination skin: See oily skin (if your skin starts getting too dry, you can switch to a cleansing lotion). (Renée Rouleau)
- Sensitive skin: A gentle, sulfate-free cleansing lotion. (Renée Rouleau)
2. Use a toner. After cleansing, swipe on an alcohol-free toner.
Jordana Mattioli, New York City aesthetician: “Toners should be done after cleansing and before putting on anything else”
These thin liquids deliver an extra shot of nutrients, helping the other products in your regimen absorb better, while still balancing your complexion.
All you have to do is put some toner on a cotton pad and swipe it across your face.
HOW TO USE TONER
- Normal skin: Avoid ingredients like SD alcohol 40, denatured alcohol, ethanol and isopropyl alcohol. (Renée Rouleau)
- Oily skin: Look for an alcohol-free toner that has ingredients like sodium PCA (a humectant to hold water to your skin), geranium (an essential oil good for cutting oil), and witch hazel (a natural ingredient with an astringent effect without the drying effects of alcohol). (Renée Rouleau)
- Dry skin: Avoid ingredients like SD alcohol 40, denatured alcohol, ethanol and isopropyl alcohol. (Renée Rouleau)
- Combination skin: See oily skin.
- Sensitive skin: Ingredients like white tea extract, green tea, chamomile and bisabolol are all calming anti-inflammatory ingredients to look for in toners (Renée Rouleau)
3. Apply serum. Serums generally are concentrated formulas that target specific skin issues.
Jordana Mattioli, New York City aesthetician: “Even if you don’t have any specific issues, everyone still needs a general antioxidant serum in the morning to protect from daily aggressors.”
Filled with concentrated doses of active ingredients, these elixirs can mitigate a number of issues, from dark spots to wrinkles.
Serum should be applied after cleansing but before putting on moisturizer.
HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT SERUM
- Normal skin: Look for an antioxidant serum with brightening ingredients like vitamin C and algae extract, as well as naturally revitalizing ingredients like rosemary and peppermint. (Renée Rouleau)
- Oily skin: Any serum with alpha-hydroxy acids or beta-hydroxy acids will help reduce the appearance of large pores as well as brighten dull spots. If you’re acne-prone, look for ingredients like salicylic acid and tea-tree oil to keep your skin clear. (Renée Rouleau)
- Dry skin: Use a highly potent antioxidant serum (look for vitamins E, A and C) during the daytime to help prevent collagen breakdown—just make sure to follow with SPF. (Renée Rouleau)
- Combination skin: See oily skin.
- Sensitive skin: If glycolic acid is too harsh, try a lactic acid product, it’s milder and better for sensitive skin. Use a lactic acid–based serum twice a week. (Renée Rouleau)
4. Moisturize. Using moisturizer twice daily is super-important, even if you have oily skin.
Dr. Carlos Charles, New York City dermatologist: “Essentially, moisturizers assist in preventing water loss through the outer layers of skin.”
The most basic function of a moisturizer is to hydrate and soften the skin.
HOW TO PICK A MOISTURIZER
- Normal skin: Moisturiser With SPF. When you moisturise, do two applications—one on the face and one on the neck. (Renée Rouleau)
- Oily skin: Oil-Free Moisturiser. Lest you think your skin’s oil production warrants skipping moisturizer, know this: Your skin can actually get oilier when it’s dehydrated by overcompensating. (Renée Rouleau)
- Dry skin: Moisturizer with SPF. A hydrating moisturiser with SPF is the final step in your a.m. skin routine. (Renée Rouleau)
- Combination skin: Lightweight Moisturiser. Combination skin doesn’t need an oil-free moisturiser, but it does need a lightweight one. (Renée Rouleau)
- Sensitive skin: Scent-Free Moisturiser. When it comes to choosing a moisturiser, make sure to find one that doesn’t contain synthetic fragrances, which can cause irritation and allergic reactions. (Renée Rouleau)
5. In the morning: Apply broad-spectrum sunscreen.
Dr. Carlos Charles, New York City dermatologist: “Daily and consistent sunscreen use helps to prevent the development of fine lines and wrinkles, textural imperfections, and changes in the appearance of pores over time. More importantly, daily sunscreen use can help to prevent the formation of certain skin cancers.”
Sunscreen is, hands down, the most crucial skin-care product. In the morning, apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher—after moisturizer but before applying makeup.
6. At night: Remove your makeup.
When you sleep in your makeup, it can mix with the dirt and oil on your skin, leading to clogged pores and cause acne. So wash it off with a gentle cleanser or makeup remover.
Here is what you should do weekly:
1. Scrub your way to smoother-looking skin.
Exfoliation—gently sloughing the surface of your skin—can help to get rid of dead skin cell buildup to reveal new, youthful-looking skin underneath. If the excess oil and dirt is removed from the root of the cause, the amount of breakouts will most likely reduce. By removing dirt, a rich moisturiser can provide the depths of your skin with the best nourishment.
2. Use a face mask.
The right face mask can help hydrate skin, remove excess oils and help improve the appearance of your pores. They’re also an excellent way to help pull out impurities. Apply an even layer to clean, dry skin, leave it on for 10-15 minutes, then rinse off thoroughly with lukewarm water. Use your choice of face mask 2-3 times a week for best results.