Hopefully long gone are the days you believed the magazine model’s amazing skin had nothing to do with airbrushing and 100% to do with the product she was promoting – or maybe you always knew the truth?
Regardless, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t at least expect our skincare products to perform as they claim to – we’re all entitled to skin that is the best version of itself (even when it isn’t being airbrushed.)
Sometimes though we can seriously sell our products short and never fully allow them to deliver what they offer – which not only negatively impacts our skin but also our wallets!
Despair not! You only need to remember a few simple things (and follow a few easy steps) to allow those products all the opportunity they need to work the magic they were created for.
Here’s how to get the most out of your skincare products…
– Right order, right time, right product –
Skincare is a bit of a science. We need to do things in the right order at the right time with the right products to achieve the optimal results.
Skin needs to be primed and ready to accept & absorb what you’re placing on it – so if you do this in the wrong order, you end up causing confusion and wasting product for virtually no reward.
The reasonably recognised order:
AM: Cleanse, tone, serum/s, day moisturiser, sunscreen
PM: Cleanse, tone, serum/s, night moisturiser
You might notice it’s separated out into AM & PM, that’s because there are times of day when certain products should be used. Overnight, skincare should be all about repair and during the day it’s all about protection.
Certain ingredients such as Retinol, are safer used at night as it heightens your skin’s sensitivity to the sun. Be mindful of the advice handed out on the product label.
The time of year should also be taken into consideration. You may find your skin is drier in the winter, so need a more comforting day cream but in the summer you might benefit from a lighter moisturiser.
Finally make sure you’re using the product for its intended use. A toner isn’t a makeup remover. A body moisturiser isn’t for use on your face. Unless the product has multi-use potential then stick to what it’s meant for – you wouldn’t hire an electrician to paint your house – it’s a waste of their potential and your money.
– Know your skin type –
It’s a bit like knowing your bra size – it’s really important to get it right, but how many of us accurately know our skin type?
If you’ve decided your skin type without any real confirmation – how confident are you that you’ve actually assigned it correctly?
Knowing your actual skin type allows you to select products designed for it. It’s worth investing time to learn about your skin type and it’s needs. Otherwise we leave ourselves open to make inaccurate assumptions – like oily skin doesn’t need moisture (just for the record this isn’t true)
Ask a beauty therapist, take an online test (there are hundreds available) but get some evidence behind your skin type diagnosis.
Did you know that skin types can change over time? Hormones, seasons, it all plays a part. Just because you had normal skin previously doesn’t mean it’s not sliding more into dry. It’s worth the 5 minutes to reassess and make sure your products are suitable for your type.
– Application is key –
Apply it as advised – it’s the easiest way to get the product to do its job for you. Read the directions on the packaging – or if they’re scarce, take a few minutes to check online.
Don’t waste product in the palms of your hands either! Apply serums, moisturisers and sunscreens using the ‘dot method’. Apply a few dots on your forehead, cheeks and chin and smooth on. Rubbing product together into your hands before application just causes your palms to absorb it and essentially waste it.
Also note the direction in which you’re applying your lotions. To reduce redness and encourage lymphatic drainage, apply in a downwards smoothing motion. To encourage greater circulation and glow to your skin apply with upwards movements.
Make sure you’re using the right amount too! Overdoing it won’t gain you any extra brownie points in the skincare stakes. It’s better to apply in more controlled amounts and add to if required. This also helps your products last longer.
– Use in peak condition –
With any product, it works best if it’s in date. Skincare products have a shelf-life. Make a mental note of them and try to discard when they’ve passed their peak. You can find out the product life by looking at the little jar symbol, which will contain a number and an ‘M’ next to it. So, 6M means 6 months shelf life and 18M means 18 months shelf life and so on.
As well as using them within date, you also need to ensure you’re storing them correctly. If the conditions aren’t right, they’re going to spoil. Avoid placing products in the path of direct sunlight. Check product advisory notes to make sure they’re not best placed in the fridge. Certain products which contain more unstable ingredients are best stored out of high humidity bathrooms.
– A little helping hand –
You’ve followed all the care instructions, you’ve applied everything in the right way, at the right time and in the right order, but something is just a bit off. It may be your skincare routine could do with a little helping hand. There are certain things we can do to really maximise the benefits from our daily routines…
Exfoliation: 2-3 times per week (depending on the product) it’s advisable to exfoliate. To find out more about this, you might benefit from reading For the scrub of it: why should you exfoliate and how to do it right!. Clearing the skin by sloughing off dead skin cells creates the premium environment for serums and moisturisers to do their absolute best job for us.
Face masks: Additionally, every so often, it’s very beneficial to pamper ourselves with an extra skincare treat such as a face mask. This can be an actual facial at the beautician’s or an at home mask – sometimes just that extra hit of something gets us glowing, smooth and radiant.
Eating well, staying hydrated: We are what we eat & drink and this can become exceptionally apparent with our skin. Skin that has access to all the good vitamins and nutrients has a massive head start even before a serum comes into contact with it. Drinking plenty of water also helps to flush out toxins and improves skin moisture levels. Perfect for helping us look and feel younger.
Ready to get the most out of your skincare products?
Is there any better feeling in the world of beauty than knowing you’ve got your skincare routine (and products) locked and loaded? Following these simple steps will make sure your efforts are rewarded. Most importantly, products you’ve invested both time and money in will more likely deliver the results you want.
Want to take even more stress & uncertainty out of your beauty routine? Read:
I hope you’ve found – how to get the most out of your skincare products – helpful? Are there any that you’ve implemented already or that you’re going to start? Any other helpful tips to share? If you’ve any questions or comments, just get in touch by leaving a comment in the box below – I’m happy to help and I always love to hear from you!