Great skin doesn’t happen by chance. It requires commitment and a lot of hard work, especially if you don’t have good quality genes. For people who don’t have genetically good complexion, don’t fret. You can still get clear, flawless skin if you put in extra effort to care for your skin.
In today’s society, there is a plethora of information pertaining to beauty and skincare. If you are not a discerning reader, it can be difficult to tell apart useful tips that work and those that may do more harm than good.
With the help of Dr. Siew Tuck Wah from Radium Medical Aesthetics, we put together some tips on how you can design a skincare routine that works for your skin type.
Important steps for a basic skincare routine
Regardless of your skin type, you need to have these three steps in your routine:
- CLEANSE Wash your face thoroughly with a suitable cleanser for your skin type.
- MOISTURIZE Hydrate your skin after you cleanse your face even if you think you have oily skin.
- PROTECT Always shield your skin from the harmful UV rays with a broad-spectrum sunscreen at least 30 minutes before sun exposure.
How to choose a facial cleanser
Cleansing your face at least twice a day is the most basic and essential step of any skincare routine. You may choose not to slather moisturizer and sunscreen, but you need to at least wash your face.
“Your skin comes in contact with pollutants and dirt from the environment. When mixed with the sebum from your skin, it can cause blockage to the pores, which may lead to formation of acne,” says Dr. Siew. Wash your face in the morning and night to avoid clogged pores and dull skin.
This is what you need to look out for when you choose a facial cleanser for your skin type:
How to choose a facial toner
When people talk about toner, the first thing that comes to mind is probably stinging astringents that our mothers used to put on their faces in their 80s.
“In the past, facial toners were alcohol-based, and it was very drying for the skin. Its sole purpose was to remove any residual oil and makeup on the skin after cleansing,” says Dr. Siew. Facial toners have evolved over the last few years. In addition to removing last traces of makeup and dirt on your skin, toners are formulated with less harsh compounds and contain some active ingredients to deliver extra benefits to the skin.
Some ingredients you can look out for in your facial toner:
- Mineral-rich toners to fortify the skin foundation
- Hyaluronic acid and other hydrating compounds to plump the skin and reduce fine lines
- AHA and BHA to treat enlarged pores and fine lines. Acts as an exfoliant. Helps to improve sun-damaged skin
- Vitamins C and E to fight free radicals
Pour a few drops of toner in your palm and dab it gently on your face. Try not to use a cotton pad as you will end up wasting most of the toner.
Protect your skin from the sun
Basic rule for choosing a good sunscreen is to make sure that it has “broad spectrum” protection. This means that it will protect you against both UVA and UVB rays. Look out for labels that have SPF and PA – this indicates that it provides protection against UVA and UVB.
Make sure your sunscreen has an SPF of at least 50. This SPF number is the level of protection against UVB. SPF50 filters about 98% of UVB rays. One thing to bear in mind is that no sunscreen can protect you completely. So avoid prolonged sun exposure even if you have sunscreen on.
Discipline and patience required
Allow these three basic steps to become your second nature so that it creates a good foundation for your skin. Contrary to popular belief, the science behind skincare products requires patience and discipline. There is no such thing as an instant fix. You need time for the products to work and results can only be seen through consistent use.