For as long as I could remember, everyone always said “You have such beautiful skin”, and it was not until I got older and had to put in real effort to keep it that way that I appreciated that statement. Honestly, I have to thank Almighty God for the combination that is my parents and the genes that they passed on. So, have I been free of breakouts and pimples? Pshhhh, yeah right! I wish I could say that I have always had the blessing of perfect skin, but as we all know, age and life happens. And before you know it, bacteria and hormones start creating little villages on your face.
However though, outside of the food sensitivities, stress, hormonal changes, falling asleep with makeup on (*hides face* you did not hear that from me), and all the other factors that cause breakouts, I’ve come to realize that a simple regimen can help tear down those villages even before they start. Read below for my everyday skin care routine for overall clear skin.
- This is for all my female readers (the ones that wear makeup at least) – never, ever, ever go to bed with your makeup on, you are just asking for trouble. Always take your makeup off, even before washing your face. I personally like to use makeup remover cloths, any brand you choose, once they are moist towelettes. Or, there is a new favorite of mine – makeup removing oils. Now, I always thought this was counterproductive, doesn’t adding oil to a made up face just make things sticky and impossible? NOPE. Oils actually dissolve the makeup and cuts your routine time in half.
- Once you chisel away the top layer, now it’s time to cleanse. Here you can use the cleanser of your choice; gel, exfoliating, foaming, cream whatever you choose, once it gets the job done. I always say, you can’t clean your face with dirty hands so ensure your hands are clean before you start. Oh, and stay away from excessively hot water, it can strip your face of much needed oils. And I need to stress, even if you don’t wear makeup during the day, still wash your face before bed. Dirt and grimy nastiness from the environment can follow you home by sticking onto your skin, and you should definitely wash those away.
- Have you ever washed your face thinking that you got all the makeup off, only to pat it dry and realize that you still see your foundation or eye color on the towel? Well first of all, if that happens, repeat the cleansing process, then proceed to this step. Tone. Toners, in simple terms, further cleanse your face by getting all the dirt and makeup your cleanser left behind, it also removes lingering cleanser residue. Especially if you have oily skin, toners keep the oil under control and it helps in minimizing pores.
- Moisturize. This is usually the final step of face prep, whether morning or night time. I have a few moisturizers that I love (more on those later in my product reviews section) and no matter your skin type – oily, combination, dry – you need to invest in a moisturizer. After using cleansers to remove dirt and oil from the skin, you need to replenish the moisture, and this is where moisturizers come in. Oily skin sufferers often say they don’t need to add the extra oils, but on the contrary! When you fail to properly moisturize, your skin feels the need to overcompensate and secretes excess oils to replace what you removed; and the result? Slick, oily, acne breeding skin.
When you follow these simple steps, you put yourself in a position to see impressive results in your overall skin health. Will this regimen cure severe acne breakouts? Probably not, and you may need to see a dermatologist for that, but for nagging pop ups, this should definitely do the trick.
BONUS: like I said, the above regimen is my everyday, but I do have other things I add as needed or as I remember.
- Serum – these are a concentrated additions to your routine that can enhance the power of your moisturizer. Apply serums after you tone and before you moisturize for added skin benefits.
- Masks – there are soooo many masks on the market right now, but me, I usually make my own concoction (these diy recipes are coming soon to the hello beautiful page). I use clay masks, for example, to further control oil and to minimize pores. Charcoal masks are great for drawing out “gunk” from your pores and leaving you squeaky clean.
- Exfoliation – very necessary in removing dead skin cells and revealing glowing skin. See my exfoliation post here