Glowing, flawless skin doesn’t happen by chance. Other than what God blessed you with, it takes a lot of effort and discipline to keep your skin healthy. No matter what type of skin your parents have, hereditary factors have little impact in determining your skin health.
Skincare products can be used by people as young as in their 20s to people in their 70s and beyond. Surely people in either end of the spectrum cannot be using the same skincare products. This begs the question: How often should one review his/her skincare regime?
Science behind skincare
The goal of any skincare routine is to delay signs of ageing and protect your skin from environmental damage. Powerful serums can also be used to address or target specific skin issues that you want to treat.
Unlike medical aesthetic treatments such as chemical peels or lasers, skincare products don’t break the skin surface. There is absolutely no way skincare products can give you an instant fix.
You need to be patient and give yourself 4 to 6 weeks for any new skincare product to take effect. You need time to allow your skin to reap the benefits over a long period of consistent use. You should aim to use a product at least once daily over a period of 6 weeks to see visible improvement.
When should I review my regime?
Our skin is at the mercy of external forces as we age. Visible changes occur when we are in our late 30s and 40s. The skin becomes thinner, pores become larger and hyperpigmentation appear on sun-exposed areas.
As your skin needs to change as you age, so will your products.
Doctors recommend review of skincare products should be done every 6 to 8 months. However, it does not mean that you need to overhaul your skincare regime every 6 months. It merely means that you should assess your products and switch out those products that no longer seem to help you achieve your skin goals.
If your skincare products still work well for you, then continue using them and review again after a few months.
How to apply skincare products
The general rule of thumb is to apply in order of consistency – from thinnest to thickest and ending it with a broad-spectrum sunscreen. For example, a skincare regime should consist of: Cleanser, toner, serum, moisturiser and sunscreen.
Cleansing your face is the most basic and essential step of any skincare routine. Our skin comes in contact with environmental pollutants and they should be thoroughly removed at the end of the day. Wash twice a day to avoid accumulation of clogged pores and formation of acne.
Using a facial toner often brings to mind stinging astringents that our parents used to use. In the past, toners were alcohol-based and they were used to dry up oily skin and remove last traces of makeup or dirt on the face. Nowadays, facial toners are no longer harsh to the skin. In fact, toners are now seen as a supplement to deliver an extra boost of nutrients and to prepare your skin for better absorption of your serum and moisturizers which you will be applying after the toner.
Serums often come in small containers because they are filled with powerful, concentrated doses of active ingredients to address certain skin conditions such as acne, pigmentation or wrinkles. Not sure what to look out for? See our recommendation below:
- VITAMIN C To help brighten dull skin and improve overall complexion by reducing pigments and age spots.
- EGF A cell-signaling polypeptide capable of setting off a cascade of skin renewal and intense repair.
- TRANEXAMIC ACID Powerful anti-inflammatory function which inhibits the synthesis in melanocytes. It is effective to fade discoloration and brighten the skin. It also calms and restores skin barrier.
- FERULIC ACID It protects overall skin foundation by reducing development of fine lines and age spots. Another important function is to boost the effects of other antioxdiants.
- VITAMIN B5 It is a popular antioxidant found in serum because it has an anti-inflammatory effect and can expedite the skin’ healing process.
The most important function of a moisturiser is to rehydrate the skin and lock in the moisture. Contrary to popular belief, people with oily skin should also use a moisturiser. Even in normal and oily skin, excessive cleansing and exposure to harmful UV rays can damage the skin’s barrier and cause the skin to lose moisture. Using a lightweight moisturiser will rebalance the skin and regulate oil production.
Unless you are living under a rock, you will likely be exposed to harmful UV rays on a daily basis. This is perhaps the second most important step in any skincare regime (the first being cleansing your face).
The use of a broad-spectrum sunscreen protects your skin from UVA and UVB. Opt for a SPF50 sunscreen as it protects you from 98% of the UVB rays. Make sure that your sunscreen has PA grade as well. It provides UVA protection and prevents you from premature ageing.