Skin Care By Trial & Error

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Being an non-skin specialist I have learnt things by trying out things, by research (because I love me some of that) and general trial and error.  I have been performing some kind of  skin care routine for quite a while, I'd dare say that by the age of 12 my mother had already been showing me how important it is to care of one's skin...bless her! It took me this long to learn some things about my skin, how to take care of it and develop a proper skin care routine.  I won't be talking about products I am using at the moment in this post..but watch out for that.  What I'll be talking about is five tips for a better skin care routine.  I tried to think of my skin care fails over the last decade and boiled it down to 5.

DISCLAIMER: you may or may not be aware of these things and to some these might be very obvious.  But it wasn't to me, so this might help someone who is still on a trial and error phase.  

1.  The good old face wipes controversy.  There was a point in my life, ages ago, where I actually thought that face wipes existed to make life easier.  And by that I admit, shamefully, that I'd use them to wipe off makeup and head straight to bed.  After an mummy-intervention, I learnt that a whole routine is due after that face wipe so I started using it just before cleansing to take the bulk of the makeup off.  Having a bit of a rebellious skin, things were not looking happy on my face.  I think the material of the actual wipe causes to much 'friction' that it actually hurts my skin, no matter how gently I'd swipe my skin. 
Tip: I now use a face wash instead of the wipe.  It takes only a couple more seconds and you still get a real of a lot of your makeup off before cleansing.  Face wash - there for a reason.  

2. Taking care of your face leaves a great feeling of freshness and cleanliness.  When you always feel that after using the same set of products its easy to go in a rut and use the same things that work.  Until they stop working! The skin changes, there might be a time when conditions dehydrate your skin or give more oily tendencies.  This was happening a lot to me.  The actual products that miraculously gave me the best skin would start to break me out like crazy.  
Tip: I find that shocking my skin helps.  By shocking I mean, changing my skin care routine or parts of it, after some time of being stuck with one.  I've started this over the past year, and I have never been suddenly irritated by a product that would have made a monthly favourites post... so far.   

3. Related to number 2, sometimes we buy ourselves products to target specific problems that we are having with our skin.  Which is good.  But, it can also turn into a hotch potch of ingredients, that may be too strong, in our pores.  While specific ingredients help target certain issues, sometimes they are not the answer.  As a big-spender-on-luxurious-skin-care I can vouch for this. 
Tip: Going back to basics once in a while helps.  You may be surprised to find out that your breakouts have been encouraged by the many things you've put on them to calm them.  Using a basic cleanser (you'll see what I am using in an upcoming post) will not only save you LOADS of money but will actually give your pores the chance to breathe and heal themselves once in a while.  

4. I have always thought that the skin care routine is - cleanser -> toner -> moisturiser.  Well, I'm not saying it isn't.  But there may be some additional steps to that.  I've got one which has changed my life. 
Tip: SERUM.  I've never given this much importance but upon deciding (as in no. 3) to take things back to basics I thought that having a good serum to do the job helps.  My skin has not been better.  I still  use the shock factor and alternate between serums more often than I change my skin care routine.  But having a cleanser that cleans your pores without trying to clear your breakouts and then have a serum for the latter job has helped a ton.  

5. Finally.  This may be strange and less generalisable..but can help if you get the same feeling.  As with wipes, my skin sort of reacts to the feel of cotton pads.  My skin is very thin and sensitive and I have to be very selective on the materials I use on my face as my reacts to that too. Here's the tip if you get the same thing. 
Tip: Use a muslin/ face cloth.  Run some lukewarm water over it and use it instead of the cotton pads. The texture and warmth of it will sooth your skin so much.  Believe me! 

There you have my five pains turned to gains.  I hope they helped...if not sorry for the ramble.  Watch out for another Skin Care post next Friday.  Bye!

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