The skincare industry can be kinda overwhelming, which is why we’re (always) here to help. And we totally understand your dilemma; with literally hundreds of innovative products being released each week and the discovery of another “must-have” ingredient, it can be hard to determine what products you really need and what’s just a trend. To guide you through the beauty-jargon on your quest for happy, healthy skin, here are 21 skincare tips that cover ALL the bases.
1. Get to know your skin type
Understanding and getting to know your skin type is the most important thing you can do for your skin. If you’re unaware or misinformed, you could compromise your skin’s natural balance and trigger irritation, inflammation, breakouts, and even premature aging by using the wrong products. The most common skin types are oily, acne-prone, dry, sensitive, and mature skin; it’s also important to note that you can be more than one type and it can change over time or through the seasons, so always listen to your skin. For more deets on decoding your skin type, read this.
2. Make sure you know how to layer your skincare
If you don’t apply your skincare products in the right order you could prevent them from being fully-absorbed, which means they won’t be as effective. The general rule is to apply the most lightweight formulas first so they can be easily absorbed without the barrier of heavier creams. To avoid piling (those tiny little balls you get when you’ve used too much product), when you move onto thicker creams, give your skin time to absorb the product (at least a few minutes).
3. Don’t apply too much product
When it comes to skincare, ‘more is more’ is not a good rule. So if you apply too much moisturizer, the product will likely pill or could potentially block your pores. Plus, it’s a total waste of product and your money considering your skin won’t be able to absorb it all anyway! Make sure you follow this sizing guide:
4. Always double cleanse
Double cleansing is our fave K-beauty hack, and it’s completely transformed our skin. By cleansing twice, you’ll ensure all the dirt, bacteria, oil and pollution that’s built up on your skin during the day has been removed, leaving you with a thoroughly clean base for you to layer your nighttime skincare routine onto. Check out our full guide to double cleansing here.
5. Never forget to do a patch test
Before you start using a new product, you should always do a patch test to avoid the risk of irritation or an allergic reaction. Just apply a small amount of product to your inner arm to see how your skin reacts to the formula.
6. Don’t use expired products
Hanging onto products past their expiry dates is a big no-no: It’s bad for you. Sadly, your beloved beauty products harbor bacteria (especially if you use them frequently), and these can lead to infections and irritations, not to mention, they don’t perform as well – we’re talking to you, gunky mascara! After a while, products can produce harmful toxins that can be dangerous to your health as well as your skin. As a general rule, if you can’t remember when you bought your face cream, SPF, foundation, mascara or eyeliner – get rid of it!
If you didn’t know, this little jar with a floating lid signals how long you can use your product for once you’ve opened it. So, if it reads 12M that means you’ve got a whole year to enjoy your product – usually lipsticks, blushes, eyeshadows, and foundation will be anywhere in this expiration region, or perhaps even up to 24M. Skincare products with active ingredients could be anywhere from 3M to 6M – so now you know, it’s really worth checking. Especially with skincare containing active ingredients or SPF, as they lose their efficacy and might not give you the protection you need.
7. Don’t be afraid of drugstore skincare
Don’t assume that a good skincare routine has to cost you serious dough! There’re so many amazing drugstore products and affordable brands with awesome formulas: From our fave drugstore $13 retinol to our $4 daily cleanser; to the $12 cream Meghan Markle swears by, you just need to know what to look for. Check out these derm-approved skincare products.