Friday, August 14, 2015

5 Tips for Better Skin

I used to be of the ranks of those who only wash their faces in the shower with bar soap. The horror. I never had terrible skin, so I really didn't give it much thought. But as I slide through my twenties, I've picked up a few habits that really made my skin go from "fine, I guess" to "awesome, I don't even need any concealer today."

Always Wash Your Face
I know we all fail at this, myself included. But the improvement I see in my skin when I wash my face morning and night every day is undeniable. Even if you haven't worn any makeup during the day, just walking through the world will get some grime on your beautiful mug, so why not take five minutes at the end of the day and refresh yourself? I'm an advocate of the double cleanse for days on which I do wear makeup, using a cleansing oil first, followed by a balm cleanser of some kind. My favorite oil is Julep's Bare Face Cleansing Oil, although I know a lot of people like The Body Shop's Chamomile Cleansing Oil, which is much less expensive. (Unfortunately, I am not a fan of the scent, so I don't use the TBS one.)

Avoid That Squeaky Clean Feeling
I feel like a lot of people, particularly those with oily skin, like to wash their face until it has that tight feeling when it dries. But that's actually not so good for you. Stripping the skin of all it's natural oils can dry it out unnecessarily and cause a rebound in oil production to make up for it. As far as I'm concerned, the gentler the cleanser, the better.

One of the most important steps I added to my routine was some gentle exfoliation. In addition to using a warm washcloth to remove my cleanser, which adds a bit of manual exfoliation, I am absolutely devoted to chemical exfoliants, glycolic acid in particular. Any number of products are available that feature different concentrations of this star ingredient, which helps remove dead cells from the surface of your skin. I happen to love both Pixi's Glow Tonic and the First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads. They're on the gentler side, and I find that with regular use my skin looks much brighter and evenly textured.

Moisture, Moisture, Moisture
In my personal experience, there are quite a few skin problems I've been able to solve simply by amping up the hydration steps in my routine. First and foremost, drink water. No kidding, you gotta be hydrated inside as well as outside. Then, I try to put as many moisturizing steps into my routine as possible. My most loved products are Trilogy Rosehip Oil and Bobbi Brown Hydrating Face Tonic. I don't hear what the haters say about expensive water, that tonic makes my face look better, end of discussion.

No doubt about it, when you're tired, your skin looks tired, too. Getting enough sleep every night will go a long way towards improving your overworked face. As an added benefit, your mind will feel better, and when you feel good, you look good, right? Right.

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