Starting a new skincare regimen or adding new products to your routine can be overwhelming at first. With so many options, it's hard to know where to begin. But with a little bit of guidance, you can create a skincare routine that works specifically for you.
Determine your skin type
Before you start any skincare regimen, it's important to know your skin type. Is it dry, oily, combination, sensitive, or normal? Your skin might be dry if it appears dull and feels rough or flaky. Your skin could be oily if you have shiny or excess oil around your forehead, nose, or chin. You might have combination skin if your cheeks are dry and your T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin) are oily. If you have sensitive skin, your skin may appear red or feel like it’s itching or burning when trying new products or when exposed to certain elements such as sun or heat. Normal skin tends to not have very distinct characteristics like the other skin types, but still requires a proper skincare regimen. Knowing your skin type will help you choose the most effective products that are right for your skin.
Start with the basics
When you're beginning a new skincare regimen, it's best to start with the basics. A good cleanser, moisturizer, and sunscreen are essential. For dry skin, try a more hydrating cleanser or hydrating cream, a more thick and emollient moisturizer, and a more creamy and hydrating liquid SPF. For oily skin, try a gel or foam cleanser, a lightweight gel moisturizer, and a gel or liquid SPF. For sensitive skin, try fragrance-free versions (cleanser, lightweight moisturizer, and mineral SPF). Look for gentle, fragrance-free products that are designed for your skin type.
Introduce new products slowly
Once you have the basics down, you can start to introduce other products into your regimen, such as serums or toners. However, it's important to introduce new products slowly to avoid overwhelming your skin. Start with one new product at a time, and give your skin a few weeks to adjust to each new product before adding additional products a few weeks at a time.
Consistency is key when it comes to skincare. It's important to use your products every day, both morning and night unless otherwise recommended. This will help you see the best results from your skincare regimen.
Listen to your skin
Your skin will tell you what it needs. When using any new product, begin by spot checking it before applying to your entire face. You can do this by applying the product to a test area on the underside of your arm or the bend of your elbow twice daily for 7 to 10 days. If a product is causing irritation or breakouts, stop using it. Pay attention to how your skin reacts to different products and adjust your regimen accordingly.
Common causes for sensitivity
Sensitive skin is often inherited genetically. However, there are other triggers that can cause skin sensitivity, such as preservatives and fragrances in soaps, beauty products and laundry detergents, certain plants, exposure to heat, and hot water, etc. Despite the many causes, not all hope is lost. Sensitive skin can be soothed by selecting products that are specifically formulated for sensitive skin along with incorporating products that help nourish and protect your skin’s natural barrier function.
Skincare ingredient combinations to watch out for
When adding new products to your skincare regimen, keep a lookout for skincare ingredients that don’t click. Certain ingredients can cause more skin sensitivity when mixed together. Some examples may include:
- Retinol + Alpha Hydroxy Acid
- Retinol + Vitamin C
- Retinol + Salicylic Acid
- Niacinamide + Vitamin C
However, you are still able to include all these ingredients in your regimen. How? We suggest only using either ingredient on one day, and then using the other the next day. Alternating between using these ingredients on a daily basis allows you to enjoy the skincare benefits of these products without any of the irritation.
Starting a new skincare routine can be a little intimidating, but with these tips, you can create a routine that works for you. Remember to be patient, consistent, and listen to your skin. With time, you'll see the results you're looking for.