The Ultimate Skincare Guide

It’s no secret that everyone wants glowing, youthful, radiant looking skin — stores line their shelves with countless face creams and cleansers including everything from anti-aging and firming to acne prevention and sun damage reversal. Today we’re talking everything skincare and giving you a list of everything you can do to keep your skin looking its best in our ultimate skincare guide. Read to find out what you can do on a daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly basis to get the greatest skin of your life.

Daily


Drink Water


Drinking water has many benefits to the skin. It hydrates your skin and flushes the body, ridding it of toxins. “If your skin is not getting the sufficient amount of water, the lack of hydration will present itself by turning your skin dry, tight, and flaky. Dry skin has less resilience and is more prone to wrinkling.” It’s advised to drink at least 8, 8 oz glasses of water a day to keep your body healthy. If you live in an area with an especially cold, hot, or dry climate, you can take this into account and up your intake even more. Keeping your body hydrated will help your skin retain its elasticity, giving you radiant and younger looking skin.

Moisturize


Keeping your skin hydrated plays a key role in great looking skin. If skin is nourished, it stays wrinkle free and therefore helps in the anti-aging process. If you suffer from dry skin, look for products containing a high percentage of Hyaluronic Acid — an ingredient that allows the skin to retain moisture. The Hymed Hylunia Original Reconstructive Cream is the perfect example of a face moisturizer that will replenish the moisture in even the driest skin. Not to mention, it’s organic and vegan. For a good at-home alternative, try applying olive oil to your face before bed.

Among all the natural lipids, olive oil has the most similar chemical distribution to human sebum (sebum is the body’s own natural skin lubricant). This similarity gives olive oil a strong affinity to human skin. Olive oil is completely safe, easily absorbed, and has a cell “re-fattening” capacity.

Applying olive oil before bed will allow it to really sink in and moisturize deep into your skin.

Wash Your Face


This is probably the most obvious tip to getting great skin. Keeping your skin clean helps remove buildup, dirt, and oil which clogs pores and causes breakouts. Dirt that accumulates in pores causes the pores to stretch and appear larger. This gives the skin a more textured appearance rather than smooth, young looking skin. Wash your face twice a day to keep your skin fresh and clean. Try a gentle cleanser like the HyMed Gentle Face Cleanser.

Get Decent Sleep


There’s some truth in the term “beauty sleep.” Being well rested will help keep your skin looking bright and hydrated and help you to maintain a clear complexion. With not enough sleep, it throws off your skin’s pH levels, creating an imbalance in your skin’s moisture level; consequently, your skin becomes dry and crepey. Not to mention those lovely dark circles and bags that develop underneath your eyes with a lack of sleep. Moral of the story, give yourself a good 8 hours when possible — your skin will thank you.

Wear Sunscreen


Sunscreen is important to not only keep your skin safe, but it helps in the anti-aging process. Sun, although good for your body and mental state, can be very damaging to the skin. It causes sun spots, premature wrinkling, and gives your skin a leathery look if you get too much. If you don’t like how sunscreen makes your skin feel, find a makeup brand that offers SPF in their products, like Jane Iredale. Keep your skin soft and smooth by wearing a high SPF if you’re planning on spending a lot of time in the sun — SPF 4 isn’t going to cut it if you’re at the beach all day. Do yourself a favor and grab a sun hat while you’re at it. You’ll stay cool while looking chic, it’s a win-win.

Eat a Good Diet


Great skin starts from the inside. Filling yourself up with foods that nourish your body is a step toward keeping your skin looking its best. Pomegranates and blueberries are filled with antioxidants that fight free radicals and help regulate skin’s blood flow. Foods like salmon and walnuts are filled with omega 3 fatty acids which can improve the skin’s elasticity. Studies show that eating chocolate with 70% cacao helps to prove luminosity and the caffeine can temporarily reduce skin puffiness. You don’t have to tell us twice!

Weekly


Use Sheet Masks


Sheet masks are an easy way to target problem areas in our skin — not to mention they make us feel luxurious. Try the Dermal Korea Collagen Essence Full Face Facial Masks for an at-home spa experience. They come in an assorted pack of 16 so you can try a number of different masks such as gold, green tea, cucumber, platinum, charcoal, aloe, pearl, and even snail — which we can’t decide if it’s gross or not, but sometimes we’re just desperate for good skin, people. These masks contain vitamin E and collagen which keeps your skin smoother and younger looking. Apply these full face masks post shower when your pores are clean and open. Wear it for a good 20 minutes or more to let them do their magic. You’ll be left with super soft and nourished skin.

Wash your Pillowcase


Dirt and oil accumulate on your pillow, which then is transferred to your face while you sleep. This dirt and oil can clog pores, causing breakouts. To avoid this, wash or switch out your pillowcase regularly to keep it and your skin clean.

Exercise


We know exercise isn’t among the favorite methods of getting great skin, but it is effective. Exercise keeps our bodies healthy, and our skin benefits from that. Exercise increases blood flow which helps nourish skin cells and carry oxygen and nutrients to working cells.

Disinfect Makeup Brushes


Disinfecting makeup brushes is key to keeping your skin clear and breakout free. Oil, makeup, and dirt builds up on your brushes, creating a breeding ground for bacteria. This bacteria is then transferred to your skin when you apply your makeup. Use a mixture of antibacterial dish soap to clean the brush and olive oil to condition the brush hairs. For a full tutorial, check out our post on How to Properly Clean Your Makeup Brushes.

Exfoliate


Exfoliating your skin will get rid of dead skin cells that can clog pores and cause breakouts. Removing old, dull skin will also reveal a younger, smoother, and brighter looking complexion. You can also make a face scrub at home using organic brown sugar with olive oil. Gently apply it to your skin using small, circular motions, without applying too much pressure — you don’t want to overstimulate the skin and cause a breakout! Just let it skim over the surface of your skin, avoiding the delicate skin close to your eyes. Since this scrub is food grade, you can also safely exfoliate your lips. You can exfoliate every other day for the first week, then once weekly thereafter. If you have especially sensitive skin, you might want to first try exfoliating once or twice a week — you know your skin the best, so do what works for you. If you’re looking for a mud mask type of product, try the GLAMGLOW Youthmud Tinglexfoliate Treatment, a multilevel resurfacing exfoliation that helps tighten skin and minimize the look of pores. It will help get rid of impurities without stripping your skin of its natural oils.

Monthly


Get a facial peel


Like exfoliating, facial peels will remove old, dead skin that makes your face look dull. There are a few basic chemical peels, depending on what problem areas you want to target. Here are three basic chemical peels, as told by the American Society of Dermatologic Surgery:

Superficial or lunchtime peel: Alpha-hydroxy acid or another mild acid used to penetrate only the outer layer of skin to gently exfoliate it. The treatment is used to improve the appearance of mild skin discoloration and rough skin as well as to refresh the face, neck, chest, or hands.
Medium peel: Glycolic or trichloroacetic acid is applied to penetrate the outer and middle layers of skin to remove damaged skin cells. The treatment is used to improve age spots, fine lines and wrinkles, freckles, and moderate skin discoloration. It also can be used to smooth rough skin and treat some precancerous skin growths (i.e. actinic keratosis).
Deep peel: Tricholoracetic acid or phenol is applied to deeply penetrate the middle layer of skin to remove damaged skin cells. The treatment removes moderate lines, age spots, freckles, and shallow scars. Patients will see a dramatic improvement in skin appearance. The procedure is used on the face and only can be performed once.

It’s best to talk to your dermatologist about your skin and what it is you want to achieve. Your doctor will let you know if a peel is necessary and which one would best fit your needs.

Examine for suspicious moles


Do a quick check to see if you have any suspicious moles. Follow the “ABCDE” rule to detect any abnormalities —

  • Asymmetrical shape: Benign moles are typically symmetrical in shape.

  • Border: Non-cancerous moles typically have smooth, even borders.

  • Color: Sometimes the presence of more than one color can be a warning sign of melanoma.

  • Diameter: Melanoma lesions are usually larger than 6mm in diameter (about the size of a pencil eraser).

  • Evolution: The most important factor to consider when diagnosing melanoma is if you notice changes to any of the above.

If you are presented with any of these warning signs, please make an appointment with your dermatologist immediately to get checked out. If you aren’t sure, we suggest you air on the side of caution — it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Yearly


Get a Skin Screening


Even if you regularly check yourself for suspicious moles, it’s still a good idea to see a dermatologist. Schedule a skin screening in case you missed anything and so you can rest peacefully knowing you’re in the clear.

Assess your Beauty Regimen


Over time, your skin changes due to a number of factors including:

  • Age
  • Climate
  • Stress
  • Pregnancy

… and more. You’ll need to reassess your skin and see what it needs or what’s missing from your beauty routine. With age our skin tends to become more dry and lose its elasticity, so that is one area to keep an eye on.


How many of these things do you already implement in your skincare routine? With skin being the body’s biggest organ, it’s important to give it the TLC it needs in order to look its best.

Be sure to check out our post on 4 DIY Face Scrubs to see how you can make your own natural exfoliators, and read our post on 4 Simple Ingredients to Clarify Skin.

Photo credits: Kristen Love

Source: American Society of Dermatologic Surgery, Olive Oil Source

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Kristen Love

Kristen Love resides in the Chicago area with her husband & two kiddos-- an energetic toddler who will do anything to make his sweet, baby sister giggle (which doesn't take much). She is the author behind The Love Notes Blog, a YouTube beauty vlogger, an extreme DIY’er, obsessive chick flick watcher, lover of all things pretty & her spirit animal is Li’l Sebastian. Connect with her! Blog: www.thelovenotesblog.com | Instagram: @thelovenotes | Facebook: The Love Notes Blog | Twitter: @lovenotesblog | Snapchat: @thelovenotes | YouTube: www.youtube.com/kristenlove13

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