The world of skincare is quite like chocolate – you never know great it is, until you try it! We know how eager you are to start incorporating all the products you’ve been reading about, but like all good things, patience is the key. To stop your skin from freaking out due to a sudden product overload, we’ve listed out a way to ease yourself into that 5-step routine you dream of.
Week One –
Congratulations on to your foray into the magical realm of skincare! Although you may find this week a bit basic, it is the only time where you incorporate 3 products at once.
To start with, buy a product for your skin type. You need to cleanse your skin, both in the morning and at night. Dry complexions require a moisturising or creamy formula, whilst normal-to-oily skinned people need a sulfate-free gel. If you fall in the sensitive category, opt for a cleansing milk. Use a cleansing oil at night if you’ve worn a full face of makeup or try double cleansing.
Before patting your face dry, apply your moisturiser to your face, neck and chest. Drier skin can go for heavier creams, whilst normal-to-oily complexions should use gel-based lotions. Yes, even oily skin needs hydration or else it will overcompensate the dehydration by producing more oil! Do this step twice a day, post cleansing.
This step is non-negotiable during the day. Before stepping out, liberally (and we mean, liberally!) apply sunscreen to your face and body. Remember to reapply every 2-3 hours. If you hate the greasy film that most formulas provide, go for one with zinc oxide as it leaves a matte finish.
Week Two –
Here comes the fun part! Since you’ve become a pro at the above steps, you can start addressing your skin’s problem areas.
Immediately after cleansing and before moisturising, pat on a face serum. Select a product that has ingredients, which target your concerns. For example, those with parched skin need a serum with hyaluronic acid, whilst mature skin will benefit from one with antioxidants. If acne is your main worry, go for a product with salicylic acid. If you just need a quick pick-me-up, opt for a vitamin C serum to amp up your glow. You can either use the same serum during the day and night, or use different ones.
Week Three –
If you’ve been wondering when you can start exfoliating, this week will be the most exciting time for you.
Skip the gritty scrubs (they are bad for you and the environment), and stock up on a chemical exfoliant. Glycolic acid and lactic acid are the best ones for the job as they gently slough off dead skin. Although it’s tempting to exfoliate every day, do it just once this week so that your skin does not react badly. To avoid redness, follow this step at night, post cleansing.
Week Four –
Welcome to the final week of your basic skincare routine! In this week, you will be problem solving specific areas of concern.
You can finally post a #selfie of you wearing a face mask! For oily skin, clay-based masks work wonders, whilst acne-prone complexions should opt for sulfur or charcoal-based masks. Dry-to-normal complexions can refresh their skin with a light, hydrating formula. Again, refrain from masking more than once this week so as to prevent any flare-ups. Do this step prior to cleansing to get best results.
If all goes well, by the end of the month you will be flaunting a better complexion! Once you’ve built your way up, you can begin exfoliating and masking twice a week. However, keep an eye out to see if any ingredients are breaking you out or irritating your skin. It’s always best to run the products by your dermatologist once to see if they will suit your skin.