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How to Get Glowing Skin

THE COMPREHENSIVE, ULTIMATE, DETAILED, NERDY SKINCARE ROUTINE GUIDE FOR SKIN ENTHUSIASTS: Part 4 of 4

THE  COMPREHENSIVE, ULTIMATE, DETAILED, NERDY SKINCARE ROUTINE GUIDE FOR SKIN ENTHUSIASTS: Part 4 of 4

Part 4. Restoring & Replenishing

If you are just joining us for the first time, please read the previous posts about the cleansing part of the routine.  Skincare routines are largely built around cleansing, which includes exfoliation (deep cleansing) and restoring and replenishing.  We also discussed choosing skin goals including that of anti-aging and anti-inflammation on top of your personal goals to set as targets when choosing products for your personal skincare routine. 

Replenishment, Restoration, Hydration 

Replenishment, Restoration, Hydration:  Ok, so now that your pores are clean and fresh, it’s time to replenish and moisturize your skin. (Did you miss the cleansing steps before this?  See here.)  I like to use a potent mix of antioxidants in these steps to fight free radicals.  These are the products in which you should be investing. Here are the ingredients you should look for as you choose your products.  Most of the time in beauty, you really do get what you pay for as the more effective ingredients create a higher demand and drive costs up. As for the sequence of your routine, when in doubt, go in order of the most water based product that’s transparent, watery and light, to the thickest, more oil-based, creamy, heavier product.  The idea is that the smaller molecules should go on first to be absorbed into the deeper layers while the bigger molecules serve more as an occlusive to keep moisture locked in. 

  1. Preparing/ setting the skin:  Apply toner here (non alcoholic, skin prepping.) You can choose to replace with a glycolic acid/ salicylic acid pads, an essence or mist here. Some also like witch hazel, or I sometimes recommend a rose water based toner, a pH balancing toner, or a skin-relieving toner,  if none of your products in the routine have it. Determine the right products by your skin goals.  
  2. Apply essences, ampoules and serums here- in that order. If you are layering on multiple products here, remember: clearest to creamiest or smaller molecules to bigger molecules. Ampoules penetrate deeper so they go before serums.  The more translucent and watery textures should be applied first. It is totally OK to layer. People ask whether you should wait before applying the second or third serum and technically, yes, you should give it a minute to settle in, but it’s OK to pat on. All of your products in these steps should have your active ingredients that hit your anti-aging skin goals- all your vitamins, peptides and antioxidants.  If you are using potent but effective ingredients like Vitamin C or retinol that you can be sensitive to, be sure to apply them at night. Some people advise not using the two together, but that also depends on how sensitive you are. The reason some advise not to use them together or before exposing your skin to the sun is that these can all cause irritations.  It’s important to know your skin and build up to using powerful actives over time.  Again, it would be wise to always have a Mask Moments mask handy to soothe and calm any inflammation in case you flare up from irritations. You’ll be hitting your anti-inflammation skin goal at the same time.  
  3. Restore that nutrition and hydration with your Mask Moments! This is the MAIN EVENT of your routine! We recommend masking minimum one time a week if you are not in the habit, but generally, two to three times a week is recommended.  Celebrities and women in Asia mask daily and before big events so the make up can go on smoothly. If you are using a cheaper, paper/fabric mask, do not leave on long. Ten minutes should suffice before the fabric dries. Definitely don’t sleep in it. If you are using Mask Moments, you can leave it on as long as the mask takes to seep into your pores and absorb. You will see the mask begin to thin as the antioxidants, peptides and actives transfer.  In fact, applying Mask Moments at this step will help the actives from your serum in the previous step absorb into your skin as well. The mask also has a serum in it that  provides a deeper level absorption of nutrition restoration and hydration replenishment. If you are using Mask Moments masks, it’s highly likely that this is the only anti-inflammation step in your routine, which is key to anti-aging. These work like home beauty facials to plump your skin, delivering results and benefits of a spa right at home for a fraction of the price- what’s NOT to love? Also, if you are using any jade rollers, whip it out here to help circulation.

4. Occlusives: Seal off all that goodness with a good moisturizer that can act as a barrier. You want to create this layer to lock in moisture.  Moisturizing important step after masking that people often forget! Some people wash off the mask, which defeats the purpose! What you want to do is to apply an occlusive to keep from evaporating so we can lock in the moisture and nutrition you restored in the previous steps.

  • Lotions/Emulsions are the thinner, lighter moisturizers.  If you have oilier skin, you may prefer using a lotion as the only occlusive.
  • Thicker creams (usually night creams are thicker) go here and are applied after. Oilier people prefer water based creams, and drier skinned people prefer heavier, thicker, oil-based creams.

5. If you are using a separate eye cream and lip, cream, you can apply at this step.

6. If you are using any face oils, they go on last, as the last occlusive layer. I would only use oils during dry months, once a week, or if I’m reapplying on a flight.

7. Suncare: This is a daily must-do step that’s part of the day time routine. Use at least an SPF30 with PA+++.  I always recommend the strongest PA++++  as that indicates stronger protection from UVA, which ages skin. The sun is out every day, even when it’s cloudy and even if you are indoors with windows! There’s also blu-ray from our monitors and phones!  At night, be sure you take the time to thoroughly cleanse as sunscreens clog the pores.

 8. Any make up like primers, B.B. creams, or tinted moisturizers would be in this last step as you begin to apply your make-up.

And there you have it!  While these are general guidelines for the proper skincare routine, beauty is personal and depending on your skin goals, your products will differ.  Make sure your products target anti-aging, anti-inflammation and the goals you want to target.  Build your personal routine around these products based on the guides we provided around cleansing and restoring/replenishing.  Remember that any routine is only effective when you are consistent and stick to your products for at least one skin cycle.  Masking should also be incorporated REGULARLY into a routine as opposed to using as a special occasion treat. Mask Moments will help target restoration and replenishing for anti-aging as well as treating inflammation. Skincare maintenance is a routine habit, and we keep our customers on track with our subscriptions (non subscription products are available too).

Ready to try the newest specialty face mask on the market? Mask Moments is made of absorbent, anti-inflammatory coconut jelly and is a direct-to-consumer beauty masks subscription service. 

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THE COMPREHENSIVE, ULTIMATE, DETAILED, NERDY SKINCARE ROUTINE GUIDE FOR SKIN ENTHUSIASTS: Part 3 of 4

THE  COMPREHENSIVE, ULTIMATE, DETAILED, NERDY SKINCARE ROUTINE GUIDE FOR SKIN ENTHUSIASTS: Part 3 of 4

Part 3. Cleansing & Exfoliation

Ok- glad you're still with us.  Now for the actual steps!

Skincare Routine Categories: Cleansing

The two overarching facets of your beauty routine should consist of cleansing and restoring (Part 4). There are three parts to cleansing:

Clean thoroughly and always be gentle!

 1. Remove Make-up.  Products are oil based, water based or cream based. Lip and eye removers are recommended if you use a lot of color cosmetics like mascara or lipstick or foundation that are hard to remove. You also have melting removers and oil based removers infused with active ingredients. The idea here is that oil removes oil.

2. Wash your face. Use lukewarm, running water. Wash morning and night, and if you work out during the day, make sure you wash after you sweat! Choose a gentle wash whether foam cleansers, milk cleansers that are recommended for drier skinned beauties or non-foaming cleansers.  If you are targeting acne, I recommend looking for salicylic acid in your wash and/or cleansers that help balance your skin pH. If you are washing at night, make sure you remove the SPF and make-up thoroughly. Make-up wipes do not count! They have their purpose but should not substitute washing your face.

3.Deep Cleansing (Exfoliation). Exfoliation is the idea of removing dead skin cells which is key for deep cleansing and reducing the appearance of dull skin.  There are three different ways we can approach the process:

 A. Physical friction: the idea of using friction to remove dull skin by using a scrub with micro-beads, a gommage, brushes, etc.  (Think buffering, like sandpaper.) For scrubs, I advise using the smallest, roundest beads possible as there are many scrubs containing sharp, coarse and uneven ingredients that will cause small tears that are not visible to the eye but are damaging. Gommage is a drying paste that also uses friction to remove dead skin cells. There are many types of brushes from mechanical to manual, but the idea here is to be as GENTLE as possible, as these methods can often be abrasive.

B. Chemical method: (AHAs, BHAs, glycolic acids):  the idea of dissolving dead skin cells, so that the softer, younger-looking skin underneath is revealed. The advantages of this type of exfoliating is that it will unclog your pores. If your main focus is on the skin’s surface (and you don’t suffer from sensitive skin, redness or blocked pores), an AHA exfoliant is a good choice if you are exfoliating as a part of the deep cleansing process. BHA and glycolic acid are often contained in products meant to be used during your routine as daily exfoliators.  For example, you may have AHA in your face wash or in your creams. Sensitive-skinned beauties can avoid using them as frequently. In fact, if you are extremely sensitive, I would avoid chemical exfoliators altogether as certain AHAs and BHAs can be powerful and cause irritation and weaken the skin barrier. I like to use spot treatments with salicylic acid (a BHA) to treat blackheads as well as the occasional pimple/ acne.

C. Biological method: similar to the way chemical exfoliants work except enzymes break down protein to remove dead skin cells to reveal smoother skin underneath.  This is personally my favorite way of exfoliating as it’s the most natural way to break down dead skin cells and most recommended for sensitive skinned beauties.  However, this is also the most difficult method to handle at home and therefore less available on the market, as the effectiveness is temperamental and easily affected by the environment, pH balance, temperature, exposure to sunlight and the method in which it works.  While best applied by an esthetician, the trick is to use a powder with a brush for the enzyme powder to lather the right amount (only a small amount is needed and even less water to lather correctly.) Then, allow steam to settle and give the enzyme time to work.  I recommend doing this in the shower. Alternatively, you can use a warm cloth/towel to put over your face.  After everything has dissolved, wash off with lukewarm water.  

How often should you exfoliate?

Generally, the rule of thumb is to deep cleanse one to three times a week.  Exfoliating properly will really give you that glow.  There are exfoliating pads and leave on exfoliating products meant to be used as part of your daily routine, but please use these with care.  If you have dry, sensitive skin, less will be more for you, as long as you can be consistent. Taking time to experiment is key so you know what works for you. Those with oily or acne-prone skin may benefit from exfoliating more often, and if you have mature skin, regular, routine deep cleansing should suffice. 

Pro Tip: Try using Mask Moments on the days that you exfoliate. The combination of deep cleansing and restoration will give you that ultimate glasskin glow! Get on a Mask Moments subscription plan to help you stay consistent with both exfoliation and restoration/ replenishing.

Try it for $1 today

 

THE COMPREHENSIVE, ULTIMATE, DETAILED, NERDY SKINCARE ROUTINE GUIDE FOR SKIN ENTHUSIASTS: Part 2 of 4

THE COMPREHENSIVE, ULTIMATE, DETAILED, NERDY SKINCARE ROUTINE GUIDE FOR SKIN ENTHUSIASTS: Part 2 of 4

Part 2. Am I Choosing the Right Products for My Skin Type?

Are You Identifying Your Unique Skin Type Correctly? 

The most traditional way of thinking of skin types are: Oily, Dry, Normal and Combination skin. What’s misleading about these categories, however, is that by thinking you have “oily” skin, you focus your entire regime to stripping oils, forgetting that you actually need hydration just as much as the dry skinned folks.  What’s worse is people who are acne prone automatically assume they have oily skin and over-irritate their skin, which then causes your skin to produce MORE oil because it’s compensating for the loss.  This is a very common mistake! Remember that ALL skin goes through the skin cycle from drier phases to oilier phases with different needs throughout the cycle. Yes, you may have oily skin, but your skin will need just as much restoration and hydration. Remember that it’s about finding the right oil/water balance for skin.  Moreover, all of our skins will lose moisture as we age, so everyone needs hydration- not just people with dry skin! 

Lastly, estheticians divide the skin regions by the T-zone (your forehead and nose), the U-zone (your cheeks and face up to the neck line) and the décolletage/ neck area. Combination skin suggests that one of these zones is different from the other.  For example, you might have an oily T-zone but a drier U-zone. Identifying these zones is more complex than it appears and having vastly different patches on your face suggests you may be doing something incorrectly. The best way to gauge is really by the size, shape and evenness of your pores, which is not always accurate to the naked eye. As an esthetician, I like to treat each of these areas differently, but most people don’t go into that level of detail for home beauty. 

What About People with Sensitive Skin?

This requires a whole other blog piece. The short answer is that a) everyone should be treating their skin as gently as possible and b) everyone needs to treat inflammation! Take note of the kind of allergens you react to and if your skin is showing irritation to helpful ingredients like retinol or vitamin C, you can build up to working them into your routine slowly, over time, in small increments. If you have a chronic skin condition, consult your dermatologist. As you experiment, always have a Mask Moments handy, as these masks will help relieve redness and sensitivities and soothe away irritations. 

So Now What? What’s the Best Approach for Choosing the Products for My Skincare Routine?

Instead of thinking of your skin as oily/dry/combination skin, choose targeted skin goals for yourself to build your routine. For example, you may want to target redness, uneven skin tone, blackheads, flaky skin, acne, dry skin, wrinkle prevention, firmness, etc.  Once you have products that target these skin concerns, build the rest of your around these goals. On top of your targeted goals, make sure your overall skin routine includes anti-aging and anti-inflammation goals as well. Choose the products that address these concerns and stick to it for a minimum of 30 days- give it your whole skin cycle. Change takes patience, consistency and discipline - a routine that you stick to! Results will be worth the investment! Join us on our Facebook Page (or request to be added to our private Facebook Group) and share your journey with us!

And instead of putting masking off for special occasions, build Mask Moments into your routine regularly to address inflammation and restoration. This will be the best skincare decision you make and your actions and choices WILL pay off! 

Try it for $1 today 

#maskmoments_transformations