Before going into this posting, let me ask you a few questions.
- Are you suffering from irritated skin that’s prone to redness?
- Does your skin feel extremely tight after cleansing?
- Do you have red bumps and pimples even when your skin feels dry?
- Do you often feel that your makeup does not stay on and tends to “ball up” and “peel off”?
If you answered yes to more than 2-3 of these questions, then you’re very likely to be suffocating your skin by using too many products that are not being absorbed into the skin or the ingredients that should not be used together are hurting your skin.
We all know about the basic skincare steps. First, a cleanser, followed by a toner. Then a serum, lotion, cream, or just a moisturizer. Others might add another serum for specific skin concerns before and after this basic skincare step.
But is this routine really basic and necessary for your skin?
The answer is a firm NO.
We have on our skin a protective barrier to keep our skin moisturized. It is made up of natural oil from our body to prevent loss of moisture and a natural moisturizing factor (NMF), which draws moisture in from the air around us. Each morning and night, we use a cleanser (sometimes with a makeup remover at night) to remove impurities. But oftentimes, we use a strong cleanser, which not only removes impurities but also this moisture barrier, making your skin feel squeaky clean, but dry afterward. That’s why we use moisturizing products afterwards to put moisture back in, such as a serum, lotion, and/or moisturizing cream.
But even the most expensive and most effective products can backfire if you are piling too much. They can ball up and get peeled off the skin without getting absorbed; they cause pimples and breakouts even when your skin feels tight. and your skin becomes so irritated and red with seemingly no reason at all.
To understand why this is happening, we need to look at what these products are composed of. They are usually made up of active ingredients, non-active ingredients, preservatives to keep the products from going bad, stabilizers to prevent separation of the ingredients, alcohol, fragrances, and other ingredients that could cause an allergic reaction. So if you layer different products on the skin, these ingredients would be overaccumulated, and your skin would be exposed to a higher risk of harmful ingredients. In addition, your skin might not be able to absorb everything if you put too much. Instead, you would end up clogging your pores and causing pimples, acne and other skin troubles all the while your skin would not feel any moisturized and feels dry inside. It’s like your skin is literally throwing up the stuff you put on it in a form of a breakout. Another problem is that you run into the risk of layering active ingredients that can interact with each other and irritate the skin.
For these reasons, simply adding on product after product without checking whether they get absorbed and what kind of ingredients they have is a definite skin care no-no.
Then what should you do?
First, you need to figure out what your skin type is. Depending on your skin type, your daily skincare routine, and the products you use would be different. Then you follow the following simple skin care routine.
- Wash your face with a mild, pH-balanced cleanser in the morning. (Click here to find out what pH balanced cleanser is and why it is important for our skin.)
- Some people tend to just dab water on the face without using a proper cleanser in the morning. I was one of those people. But this is the quickest way to clogging your pores. During the night, your skin repairs itself and while it does that, toxins and oil are secreted from the skin. So if you don’t remove them, the daytime products you use won’t get absorbed well and could even ball up and clog the pores.
- Moisturize. Now that your skin is clean, it is ready to absorb moisture. Be sure not to layer on your moisturizer because your skin will create oil throughout the day. So just make sure that it is well hydrated, but not too much.
- Use a sunblock. Not wearing sunblock is one of the fastest ways to age your skin. So make sure to use sunblock every day. Yes, even during winter when the sun is not out as much because it is still out.
- Remove makeup with a makeup remover. One that contains jojoba oil or jojoba wax, such as our Exfoliating Cleansing Cream, will melt extra oil on your face. So make sure to pick one up with jojoba oil or jojoba ester. Don’t worry about clogging your pores when you use jojoba oil because it’s non-comedogenic. Follow with a gentle, pH-balanced cleanser, such as our Mild Face Cleanser, to remove any impurities that the makeup remover might have left. Doing so will also ensure that a day’s worth of pollutants and oil are removed properly.
- Moisturize. Make sure that you apply slightly more than you did in the morning. Between 10 pm and 2 am, your skin goes into regeneration mode and needs lots of nutrients to regenerate the damaged cells and fight off free radicals created during the day. That is why antioxidants and anti-aging products, such as our Vitamin C Serum, are the most effective during the night. And your skin tends to lose moisture when you are asleep because more oil is secreted than is produced to create a protective layer. And without that protective layer produced by this oil, our skin loses water fast. That is why it is recommended that you put more at night than in the morning.
If you want to target specific concerns such as age spots and wrinkles, you can use extra products, such as our Dark Spot Serum, just on the concerned areas. And for age spots and wrinkle care, it is best to use special products at night for the reasons mentioned above. You can always pick up a product with ingredients that not only moisturize the skin but also have anti-aging and brightening benefits. Usually, products with strong antioxidants such as ascorbic acid, which is natural vitamin C, or berry extracts with strong antioxidant properties such as Indian gooseberries, can offer both of these benefits so you don’t have to layer on different products for anti-aging and brightening effects. But make sure that a moisturizing ingredient such as natural, plant-based glycerin and/or hyaluronic acid is included as well.