New year, new…skincare routine? For the beauty obsessed, the new year always presents a good opportunity to make some positive changes to your daily routine (especially if you slacked off over Christmas) and where better place to start than with some gamechanging tweaks to skincare regime?
Committing to double cleansing or daily SPF application might take a bit of getting used to, and we know that sticking to new year’s resolution doesn’t always come easy, so scroll down for our top tips.
Wear SPF every single day
Let’s start with the big one. If you’re not already wearing SPF every day (yes, even in the winter, and yes, even if it’s not sunny), then here’s why you should be. UV rays are the most significant cause of aging skin and can lead to skin cancer in some cases. They can pass through windows and are even harmful on cloudy days. The more UV exposure your sun has, the sooner you’ll experience signs of skin aging like pigmentation, loose skin, wrinkles, and dullness. Even if that seems a long way off yet, you should think of SPF as a preventative measure that will benefit your future self, and what’s more, UV rays can also worsen conditions like acne scarring/pigmentation and rosacea.
Always double cleanse
Double cleansing is a method of washing your face which ensures a thorough and efficient cleanse – especially if you’ve been wearing makeup or SPF. If you experience breakouts, congestion, or textural issues, then double-cleansing can make a big difference. Start by using an oil-based cleanser to break down makeup and remove excess oils, then follow it up with a gel-textured cleanser to remove any remaining residue and clear pores.
Layer your products correctly
It’s all well and good having an impressive skin collection with multiple options for serums and moisturisers, but if you’re not applying your products in the right order, they’re not achieving their full potential. As a rule (once you’ve cleansed), start with the thinnest texture first (so mists or toners), then serums (with the most water-like first), then creams, and finally SPF (in a morning routine) or oils (in an evening routine).
Don’t forget your neck
The skin on the neck is the same as the skin on the face, so it should be treated exactly the same – especially since it’s one of the first areas to show signs of aging. Whether you’re cleansing, masking, toning, or applying serums and moisturisers, always take the product down your neck to ensure it’s getting the same benefits. Since the neck has fewer oil glands than the face and the skin here is quite thin, focus on using products that will nourish and hydrate.
Build up your skin barrier
Having thicker skin is a stronger defense against bacteria, sensitivity, and dehydration, but if you’re a fan of exfoliation and masking or live in a low-humidity environment, then chances are your skincare barrier may be compromised. Look out for the warning signs – inflammation, product sensitivity, and skin that feels dry and dehydrated, or continues to break out no matter how much you mask. Start by stripping your routine back to basic hydration-focused formulas, cut out or minimise exfolaition (especially physical scrubs), and look out for ingredients like niacinamide and ceramides, which will help to rebuild the skin barrier.
Invest in a silk pillowcase
Silk pillowcases are well-known for helping to prevent bad hair days but did you know that they have skin benefits, too? Their smoother texture means they cause less friction on skin, which can prevent skin from wrinkling at night, and they’re also less able to absorb moisture from skin, so won’t suck out the expensive moisturiser you applied right before bed. If you have acne-prone skin, remember that washing your pillowcase on a regular basis will help to remove the bacteria, oils, dirt, and sweat that builds up with nightly use.
Use skincare tools
Already got an established skincare routine and figured out the best products for you? Take things one step further and upgrade your regime with some skincare tech. Whether you opt for an electronic cleansing brush, a jade roller, or a zit-zapping blue light device, these gamechanging facial tools will help you to get better and faster results.
Use your products more efficiently
If you’re as beauty obsessed as we are then you’ll know how easy it is to rack up an overwhelming selection of products that don’t see a lot of action. Rather than open five moisturisers at once, stick to one at a time, and check the ‘use by’ recommendations of any products that you have already opened. Look out for a 6M or 12M (which indicates that a product lasts for six or twelve months) and throw away anything that’s out of date – most skincare products start to expire once they’ve been opened and ingredients can become ineffective if they’re exposed to too much air or sunlight.