Skincare is a very personal experience for everyone, with each of us placing importance on different steps in the routine based on our individual skin concerns. As our knowledge grows we find that we are introduced to new products and technologies from acids to a Dermasweep with great frequency.
The trouble is that it can be tricky to understand which trends are the right ones to follow. Here are seven tips for stepping up your skincare.
1. Custom care
It might seem like a no-brainer to recommend that individuals choose a custom skincare routine that suits their needs… but many of us tend to choose products based on other factors. There can sometimes be hype around a new active ingredient, brand launch or even a trend that seems to be working for a portion of the population. One of the best tips you can implement for your skincare is to choose a custom routine that addresses your own concerns and issues. Do your best to block out the noise and shop only for ingredients that will serve your skin health.
2. See a skin clinician
If you are serious about improving the health and appearance of your skin, then you may get value seeing a skin clinician. They will be able to use microscopic lenses’ and other technologies to assess your skin and make recommendations. Often we tend to draw conclusions from what we see in the mirror, but we fail to see what our skin needs at the skin barrier level. Seeing a skin clinician may be something you do once and action their advice thereafter.
We all know the evidence and have heard it all before – our skin is incredibly sensitive to the sun. Using 50+ sunscreen should be part of your skincare routine as it will protect your surface skin and skin barrier against skin cancer, but also against sun damage and other visual impacts. Get in the habit of putting on sunscreen under your makeup or even if you are not wearing makeup and plan on spending most of the day at home.
4. Trial and assessment
It’s hard to quickly assess whether a skincare product or technique is working for us, as we generally need to wait for a while to see results. One rule of thumb would be to stop using a product or technique if you see an immediate reaction – like a rash, stinging or anything unpleasant or painful. Where this can get complicated is that some active ingredients will have a tingling effect and it is not a sign of your skin rejecting the product necessarily. Before you start anything new, research to make sure it will be right for your skin and understand what you should be looking for when you first try it.
5. Address concerns for ‘right now’
It is quite uncommon that your skin will stray too much from its dry, oily, sensitive or combination skin profile. However, there are some lifestyle changes that can influence the look and feel of our skin. Pregnancy is a prime example of a lifestyle change that can significantly shift our skin. Some women can experience pigmentation during this time, and others may have dull skin or find they are facing acne. Another example would be using a new medication or moving to a vastly different location. Working with a skin clinician can assist with these lifestyle changes.
6. Quality over quantity
There is no benefit to using more skin products if they are not serving your skin needs. In fact, your skin is going to respond much better to a select collection of products. Generally speaking, you only need a cleanser (ideally an oil cleanser and a creamier, water-based cleanser), moisturiser, serum and skin oil. The rest are additional products that might be targeting specific areas (like under the eye). Do not get caught up in collecting skincare – just choose the essentials and choose quality.
7. Explore treatments that support your skincare
If we think about our skincare routine as our maintenance phase, then skin treatments can be the intervention method. Skin treatments can reveal great results and they are often immediately noticeable after the treatment. Treatments like dermabrasion, light therapy and lactic acid face massages can be a great boost to the health and appearance of your skin. Like any invasive or non-invasive treatment, you want to make sure it is right for you so seek guidance from a clinician or GP if you feel it necessary, and be sure to understand what the post-care procedure is.
We hope these seven tips will send you on your way to achieving brighter, healthier and happier skin. It’s easy to fall into a rut with our skincare so commit to stepping it up and being more intentional with your routine.
Zuella Montemayor did her degree in psychology at the University of Toronto. She is interested in mental health, wellness, and lifestyle.