Routines are customised to the individual for several reasons. I always tell my clients to start minimal and work their way up. Keeping a regular routine and noticing changes in your skin is more important than when what you put on it.
As a therapist, I am always asked what someone should use to achieve a result. My hope to suggest treatments and products cause a reaction and create a more appealing result for that person. Where this can get tricky is when an established routine is not in place.
Our skin is a living, breathing organ. It contributes and reacts to most of our bodily functions. Every time you introduce a new substance your skin needs to react to control and protect the body. Everything we use has a PH which will cause this reaction within your skin's own PH. Having an established routine will allow your treatments to take effect quicker.
Does this mean you should use the same products all the time? HA NOPE. I raise my hand and say that I swap product all the time. However, I follow a somewhat fluid routine as I know what my skin reacts to and when it needs a pick me up.
Phase 1: Cleansing is key!
For more detail on cleansing see my post The Importance of Cleansing. It will give you a better idea of how cleansers work and the different formulations and how you can use them for optimum results.
Essentially I follow the rule to always double cleanse. Step 1 removal, Step 2 Purify. The skin needs to breathe and with the modern trend of high silicone percentage in products, it is vital that you remove it correctly. Your treatment and nourishing products will also absorb more successfully without this build up.
Phase 2: Perpetration.
Skin prep is as important as your treatment products. Something as simple as a rosewater mist can make ingredient penetration so much more successful. Personally, I always complete Phase 1 & 2 in the bathroom. I keep a selection of hydrating mists, toners, liquid peels and lotions hand to compliment my Treat and Protect products.
Acids are a great investment for preparing the skin. AHA’s and BHA’s in low concentrations help the skin to renew, restore PH and maintain stability. Hydrators and humectants and resurfaces absorb successfully as the skins natural barrier is prepared for a reaction.
Phase 3: Target and Treat.
This is where we get creative. 2nd to cleansing (Washing away the day and the negative energy) Treating is my favourite part of the routine. Here I can layer products, Zone for targeted results and play around. TRIAL AND ERROR. It's something that in the retail community you hate to hear. Washing money down a drain but if you do it correctly you will discover how your skin reacts and give yourself a better understanding of what it needs and when you need to act.
Serums, masks, tonics, lotions, oils and ampules play a perfect part in this little show to target skin concerns. Dehydration, inflammation, spots, texture can all be addressed. I enjoy laying serums and oils to give me a 1.2 HIT! of nourishment and hydration.
Phase 4: Protect! Seal the Deal.
Protect does not just mean SPF. It is a term you can think of when you want to enhance the lovely layers of supple skin you just spent the last 5-15 minutes pampering. A cream, lotion or oil will lock in the layers and provide a slow release of nourishment and energy for your skin to absorb and thrive off. Don’t go heavy if you just layered oils. Use something lightweight to just cushion your skin.
SPF, however, is important and you do need to think about what has just gone onto your skin or what is currently working within your skin. Example, If I spent my Sunday night enjoying a hard-core but non-aggressive vitamin A treatment. I know my skin will need 2 things to rebuild itself back up again. SPF, my natural barrier is now fractured and Hyaluronic acid. I can use these in my treat but if I can get an added line of defence in my final layer. Then why not?
This is just something that I find works majority for most people. Play and discover that is the benefit the industry gives you. The gift of choice :)