By Jessica Ashcroft, Licensed Master Aesthetician
Achieving and maintaining great skin is a goal shared by many, and a well-rounded skin care routine can be the key to unlocking a radiant complexion. By following a consistent regimen with carefully selected products suited to your skin type and concerns, you can promote healthy skin, minimize the appearance of imperfections, and enhance your natural glow. Whether you are a skin care enthusiast or a beginner, investing time and effort into a great skin care routine can improve your skin’s texture, tone, and overall health, allowing you to put your best face forward with confidence.
Why is a skin care routine important?
At Advanced Dermatology & Skin Surgery, we believe that a great home skin care routine contributes 80% towards correcting and maintaining healthy skin. A consistent daily routine makes a significant difference. Our in-office treatments cover the remaining 20%, propelling you toward achieving an amazing skin transformation! Having a good skin care routine is important for several reasons, including:
Maintaining Skin Health: Our skin is exposed to various environmental factors like pollution, UV radiation, and harsh weather conditions, which can damage and age the skin. A skin care routine helps protect the skin from these external aggressors and promotes its overall health.
Cleansing and Hydrating: Regular cleansing removes dirt, oil, makeup, and impurities from the skin’s surface, preventing clogged pores and acne breakouts. Additionally, moisturizing the skin keeps it hydrated, preventing dryness, and promoting a smooth and supple complexion.
Anti-Aging Benefits: As we age, our skin loses elasticity and develops wrinkles and fine lines. A skin care routine that includes anti-aging products can help minimize these signs of aging, improve skin texture, and promote a youthful appearance.
Targeted Solutions: A custom skin care routine allows you to address specific skin concerns or conditions you may have, such as acne, hyperpigmentation, sensitivity, or uneven skin tone. By using targeted products, you can effectively address these issues and improve the overall condition of your skin.
Self-Care and Well-Being: Establishing a skin care routine can be a form of self-care and relaxation. Taking a few minutes each day to pamper your skin can contribute to your overall well-being, reduce stress, and boost self-confidence.
Prevention and Protection: A good skin care routine includes the use of sunscreen, which is crucial for protecting the skin from harmful UV rays. Sun damage can lead to premature aging, dark spots, and an increased risk of skin cancer. Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States and worldwide, with one in five Americans developing skin cancer by the age of 70. The Skin Cancer Foundation talks about sun protection here.
Remember that everyone’s skin is unique, so it is important to understand your skin type and concerns when developing a skin care routine. Consistency and patience are key, as results may not be immediate. Consult with a Board-Certified Dermatologist, Dermatology Provider, or Licensed Aesthetician, who can provide personalized recommendations based on your specific needs.
Basic Steps Everyone Should Include in Their Skin Care Routine
The three objectives of a good skin care routine are cleansing, correcting/preventing, and protecting. Cleansing helps create a fresh slate for your correcting products to go into the skin and do their job. Protecting keeps your skin healthy and at its best. Plus, it will protect the time and investment in your skin care routine. The American Academy of Dermatology stresses the importance of keeping your skin healthy, especially as it is the body’s largest organ.
Keep in mind that each person’s skin has specific and individualized needs. Besides, products that work for one person may not work for another.
Product Recommendations for Each Step
- Cleansing: the product used for this step will depend on patient preference. Personally, I love to double cleanse with a creamy cleanser like the SkinCeuticals® Gentle Cleanser, followed by a foaming cleanser like the EltaMD® Foaming Facial Cleanser. Pick a gentle cleanser that is good for your skin type.
- Correcting and preventing: this category is the broadest and most diverse. I recommend a vitamin C serum for the daytime, like the Skinbetter Science® Alto Advanced Defense and Repair Serum™, and a hyaluronic acid serum for morning and night, such as the SkinCeuticals® A. Intensifier to plump and firm the skin. The Skinbetter Science® Mystro™ Active Balance Serum is great for adapting to your skin needs whether you have enlarged pores, redness, dull skin, or pigmentation. It can be used morning and night, giving an amazing glow. I recommend that all patients be on a retinoid at night to promote collagen, reduce breakouts, lighten pigmentation, and protect cellular DNA. The Skinbetter Science® AlphaRet® Overnight Cream is an excellent retinoid that can be used even by those with sensitive skin. Moisturizers can also be in this category to balance the skin’s hydration and protect that natural moisturization barrier we all have on the surface of our skin. For those that want a more luxurious, heavier cream, I recommend the Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2 treatment from Skinceuticals®. I have been using the EltaMD® Barrier Renewal Complex to help with my dry, flaky skin.
- Protecting: this step is going to be your sunscreen. Without sunscreen, it makes treatments and skin care null and void. So, it is a must! I love the EltaMD® UV Elements right now. It has a universal tint and feels lightweight on my face. Always use broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.
Should we be using different products in the morning vs. at night?
Absolutely! Certain products work better at different times of the day. For example, a vitamin C serum works best during the day since it fights against free radicals and sun damage. Sunscreen is also one you always want to use in your morning routine. While retinoids work better during the night since they can make the skin sensitive to the sun, and they repair the skin while you sleep at night. Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids are best used at night. Other products you can use as part of both your morning and evening routine include your cleanser, moisturizer, eye cream, toner, and specific serums or oils.
Why Facials are an Excellent Way to Complement Your Everyday Skin Care Routine
Facials are a fantastic way to elevate your skin care. It’s a great time to deep clean the skin, do an extra thorough exfoliation, perform extractions if needed, and get some amazing serums and products applied to that rejuvenated skin. These are just some benefits of using facials as part of your skin care. If you want to know more about facials, read our blog here. We recommend monthly to quarterly facials depending on your individual needs.
Our highly experienced Providers at Advanced Dermatology & Skin Surgery understand the importance of taking care of your skin, especially through all the stages of life and all the changes you might experience. To find out about all the services we offer in Medical and Cosmetic Dermatology, book an appointment at any of our convenient locations, which include Spokane North, Spokane Valley, and Coeur d’Alene.
About the Author:
Jessica Ashcroft, Licensed Master Aesthetician – Jess specializes in Cosmetic Dermatology at our Coeur d’Alene location. She has always been passionate about skin care. It all began with her interest in chemistry. After majoring in chemistry, she eventually realized she wanted to help people and work with them to achieve their skin care goals. When she isn’t working, Jess and her husband love exploring all the different trails and parks in the area. She loves attending concerts, trying out different restaurants, and spending time with her husband.