There are so many products for skin care in the marketplace that it makes deciding on the best routine for your skin seem overwhelming and confusing at times. What should your regimen be in the morning and how might that change for your bedtime routine?
In this blog space, we share what dermatologists think should make up a winning skin care routine that will result in a healthy and glowing complexion for your skin. As dermatologists diagnose and treat their patient’s skin for a living, who better to ask about effective ways to treat your skin than these experts. Their approaches vary from quick and easy to layered and savvy.
They reveal their recommended day and nighttime routines. For example, they suggest that you should focus on protecting your skin from the pollution, sun, and various light waves that you will be exposed to during daylight hours.
In the evening, apply regenerative ingredients, or what board-certified dermatologist Mona Gohara refers to as the “worker bees.” Gohara adds that it is at night when the skin naturally regenerates itself. As a result, “that is when you put on the actives, not the protectors.” This is why you should opt for including a retinoid formula in your nighttime skin care routine that brings about cellular turnover and assists in smoothing the surface of your skin.
Recommendations from Leading Dermatologists for Best Skin Care Routine
Despite what advertising and social media channels might influence you to think, you don’t need a complex skin care routine that includes myriad products to pamper and nourish your skin. In fact, when it comes to developing your skin care regimen, it is all about returning to the basics, according to Doctor Paul Jarrod Frank, Cosmetic Dermatologist, Chief Medical Officer and Founder of PFRANKMD.
Doctor Frank says that a common misconception is that you should use a bunch of products to achieve your best look. This is the main mistake that too many people make when establishing a skin care routine.
Here are some simple steps you can take for optimal skin care as recommended by renowned dermatologists.
Step 1: Begin with Cleansing
Cleansing is the initial step for any effective skin care routine. However, before applying a cleanser to your face, rinse your skin with lukewarm water. Then use a cleanser that is suitable for your skin type. Find a formula that allows for cell turnover for oily or lackluster skin, or an oil cleanser for drier skin types, explains Doctor Frank.
When it comes to choosing the right cleanser, select a cleanser that is gentle to your skin. And don’t cleanse too frequently as this could compromise the health of your skin.
“Too many people cleanse too much or too often or with a cleanser that’s too harsh, and it will actually break down your skin barrier,” says Doctor Ashley Magovern, a board-certified dermatologist and owner and founder of Manhattan Dermatology.
Step 2: Apply a Moisturizer
When searching for the right moisturizer for your skin, look for products that contain hyaluronic acids to enhance the moisture in your skin.
“I like hyaluronic acids to boost moisture or rose water for anti-inflammation and to soothe sensitive skin,” says Doctor Frank. “Gently apply to the face in a circular, upward motion.”
Consider using a lightweight gel cream that is infused with plenty of hyaluronic acids that thoroughly moisturize your skin. The right moisturizing product will give you a dewy, plumped-looking skin without the irritation.
Step 3: Tone Your Skin
Although toner could be an optional step, it is an ideal way to balance your skin’s pH, according to Doctor Magovern. Take into account your unique skin type when deciding on which toner to purchase. For example, if you have acne-prone skin, search for a toner that is formulated for acne with ingredients such as salicylic acid to tamp down breakouts. Conversely, if you tend to have dry or sensitive skin, choose a hydrating toner to soothe dry skin.
There are quite a few benefits to a skin toner if you use the appropriate toner for your skin type. After using toner for a while, you should notice a refreshing difference in the tone and overall health of your skin. Alcohol free toner is better for sensitive skin, and even all skin types, as it helps to rejuvenate your skin without over-drying.
Additional benefits of using skin toner include:
- Helping to prevent breakouts by absorbing excess oil and cleaning pores.
- Cleaning skin and refining and shrinking pores. This results in evening out your skin tone.
- By removing oil build up, it helps reduce blemishes, leaving your skin surface smooth and clean.
- Removing traces of makeup and debris, and also helping to repair and soothe your skin.
Step 4: Vitamin C Serum
Using Vitamin C is good for your skin no matter what your age, even if you are young.
“It helps reverse a lot of the damage that we get from the sun and pollution,” says Doctor Magovern.
You want to make sure it is a stable form of vitamin C so it adequately soaks into your skin. If you have a darker skin tone, you could experience hyperpigmentation. By using vitamin C serum in the morning, you can mitigate these dark spots, says Jennifer David, D.O., a dermatologist in Philadelphia and founder of Skin & Scripts Virtual Dermatology.
Step 5: Eye Cream
If applied correctly, eye cream can rejuvenate your skin and give it a youthful glow, as well as an even skin tone, and lessen the appearance of dark circles and puffiness. Eye cream is also perfect for prepping your skin for makeup.
Be sure to gently apply a small amount of eye cream to the area below your eyes using your ring finger – your weakest finger – so you do not unintentionally cause damage to your eye area. Start in the innermost corner when applying eye cream, and move outward, avoiding contact with your eyes.
Eye cream can be a vital part of a balanced, nourishing skin care routine.
Step 6: Apply Sunscreen
You should consider sunscreen application the most important part of your skin care routine.
“If you don’t wear sunscreen, it’s like you might as well not do any of those other steps,” says Doctor Magovern. “The sun is the number one reason why people’s skin will age prematurely.”
When searching for this all-important sun skin protector product, look for a formula that has “broad spectrum” listed on the bottle. This translates into UVB and UVA coverage and
SPF 30 or higher. Dermatologists recommend putting on sunscreen after your moisturizer has soaked in.
For total sun protection, dermatologists suggest you cover not only your face, but your neck and the backs of your hands, as well.
Don’t be lulled into thinking you’re protected from the sun if you stay indoors. UV rays can still come in through windows, including during the winter months when the sun is lower in the sky.
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