I used to struggle so much with my skin up until a year ago when I decided to dive into the skincare world and really educated myself on this topicGrowing up I didn’t have clear skin at all, actually quite the opposite. I had frequent visits to the dermatologist and nothing seemed to work for me. That’s a whole story that I can get into another day but I just wanted you to know that I’ve truly struggled since my teen years until my early 20s. When I moved to Los Angeles, for the first time I had to rely on myself for buying my own skincare products. No more prescriptions from the dermatologist and to be honest I was completely lost since I was always “told” what to do with my skin. I, of course, bought everything for acne-prone skin since I was still breaking out. One random day I decided to start buying products for one certain skin type, THIS change my life and it’s my secret for clear skin; SENSITIVE SKIN!
If you only take one thing from this post, is to buy products for sensitive skin, I don’t care if your skin is oily, dry, acne-prone, combo… You need to buy products targeted for SENSITIVE SKIN. That’s my secret, even if you have breakouts and you feel the urge to buy something with salicylic acid or benzol peroxide, don’t! Just trust me on this one, do this for a month, see the transformation on your skin and thank me later haha.
So let’s talk about the essential steps for a complete skincare routine; I want to clarify that I am in no way an expert, I’m probably a 7 or 8 out of 10 when it comes to knowledge of skincare. I know there are people out there that their whole blog or Instagram is dedicated to this but I want to be able to help you guys and share what works for me.
If you wear makeup you HAVE to do a double cleanse. Don’t believe in cleansers that claim to take all the dirt and makeup off in one wash. This extra step was one of the things that were essential for my skin to start clearing up. What you have to do is the following:
1. “Melt” your makeup with a “Makeup-Breakup” type of product.
These usually come in the form of liquid oil or a balm. What this does is that it literally melts your makeup off your face, I honestly can’t explain in detail the science behind this but these type of products are meant to break off your makeup with their oil base, better than any soap or cleanser. You use this product on your dry face, since it’s oily it will slide and move easily, after you massage it for a while you rinse it with warm water. You’ll notice that when you rinse it the water looks all white almost like milk, that is all the makeup and dirt that was on your face. Yup.
2. Regular face Cleanser
After your makeup is all gone. Now it’s time to actually cleanse your face. The cool part about using a melter first is that you skin is clear of all grossness and it actually can absorb the benefits of your cleanser. So please use a gentle cleanser, preferably with natural ingredients because when you double cleanse, you want to make sure you don’t dry out your skin.
For my morning routine, I only cleanse my face with Micellar water. There’s no need to use a facial cleanser since it will only do damage to your skin. I soak a cotton round with Micellar water and clean any leftover product from the night before.
I used to think this wasn’t a necessary step but ever since I started incorporating this I also noticed a huge difference. Toners will finish cleaning every single little bit of dirt and grime that double cleansing couldn’t do. (You’ll be surprised by how much there is still left on your skin after you see the dirt on your cotton swap). This is an easy step, you pour some into a cotton round (I like to buy exfoliating ones for the extra benefit) and you slide it aaall over your face. It will balance your skin’s pH and helps with pores. I also like to use brightening toners which helps with… you guessed it, brightening your skin! It will basically make it all glowy and healthy. Although there are some toners that come in a spritz bottle, I think the cotton round method is much more efficient.
My absolute favorite part! Not to be confused with moisturizer, it actually goes before your moisturizer, otherwise your skin won’t absorb the ingredients. Serum is super runny, almost like water. This is where you’re going to find the most variety of benefits. There are serums out there that target every single thing you can think of, brightening, dullness, hydration, wrinkles, antioxidants, anti pollution, and the list goes on and on. They bring so many vitamins and minerals to your skin. My favorite serum is anything that has hyaluronic acid, this ingredient is everything you need, it a super powerful humectant, it can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water. It literally grabs and locks in moisture from the air and it keeps it in there aaaall day. The fun part about serums is that you can mix them, create a little cocktail; a few drops hyaluronic acid, a few drops of vitamin c and some anti aging and voila! I recommend having different serums for various skin concerns. Just look online “serum for _____” and do your little research on what the best product/brand is!
This is probably the most popular step, everybody knows they have to moisturize. I just wanted to make sure you know in what order you should apply your cream, always after your serum. I would just say get something that fits your skin, whether its thick moisturizer, light weight or in between. Just make sure it’s targeted for sensitive skin! If you want a little boost of moisture, I like to add a few drops of any sort of oil (rose-hip is my fav) during winter because my skin definitely needs that richness during cold days. This is also when I put my eye cream but that’s pretty explanatory, just… wear your eye cream.
YES, EVEN IF YOU HAVE OILY SKIN. (Just google it and you’ll see all the articles) I only like to apply oils at night, I’m pretty sure the majority of people do too. It’s honestly more of a night skincare routine thing since it probably won’t absorb quick enough during the day. Also, sometimes I would just skip moisturizer and do oil instead, but still after my serum. Serum first, oil second. Oil has the ability to absorb and penetrate through your moisturizer and serum. Think of it as the cherry on top. And just like the serum, there are many oils for different benefits. Some brands sell blend of oils for different skin concerns, I would say that is the best option to buy.
I should definitely mask more often. But I still do the bare minimum, which is a detox clay mask one a week. I usually do it on Sunday nights, it’s become sort of like a ritual. Detoxing your skin once a week is so important, it’s like pushing a reset button and making sure your skin is on its tip toe condition! But other than that, you can buy masks for moisturizing, brightening, rejuvenating, etc etc and those gentle ones you can use as many times as you want!
This is sort of like the basics for skincare. I do have different routines for day and night. Usually day routines are more simple because you actually don’t need that much in the morning. At night-time, however, is when your skin cells regenerate so you want to make sure you’re feeding it aaaall the goodies, because it actually needs them.