Your Best Skin Care

In Seven Simple Steps

The best skin care available to you, begins with the valuable understanding that doing a little homework now, will go a long way for your skin in the future. If your here, your on the right track.

Best Skin Care Step #1:  Understand What Your Skin Is

Getting your best from your skin begins with knowing the basic science of your skin.

    Skin:
  • Is classified anatomically as an organ
  • Provides a barrier system of defense to protect our body's internal environment.
  • Is a window to our internal health and will not only reflect regular internal activity i.e.. hydration, hormonal shifts etc, but also can reveal possible health concerns i.e. rocacea's (red tiny bumps resembling acne) internal link to the body's vascular and circulatory system.

Best Skin Care Step #2:  Know What Your Skin Needs

Learn what your general skin care needs are and then fine tune further measures to meet your unique skin concerns.

    Skin needs to be:
  • Protected External factors such as sun exposure, pollution and contact with irritating things or products, can result in inflammation and even damage. Protecting our skin daily with sunscreen, will be the most effective preventative measure we can take against aging and wrinkles. In addition, imagine just how much money would be saved.
  • Cared for Most of us need to daily cleanse and moisturize our skin and understand the best way to do it. Most of us will benefit from regular skin exfoliation. All of us, regardless of skin color, or geographical location, need to use sunscreen daily. Knowing our skin type, will determine the details of the methods and products.

Best Skin Care Step #3:  Know Your Skin Type

Learn your individual skin care needs fine tuned by experience and common sense, and pay attention to the ups and downs.

  • Determine your skin type - There are some general guidelines that help us categorize the type of skin we have and how we can go about caring for it.
  • Fine Tune- Since there are so many individual differences among us, these categories can not provide absolute specifics. Use the general guidelines to provide a context to work within, and support the essentials of skin care but use some common sense to make smart and effective product choices that will serve your own individual needs.

Best Skin Care Step #4:  Establish Your Best Skin Care Regime

Your best skin care will be founded on a simple but effective regime but also take into account your special needs.

  • Your basic skin care regime will incorporate these key elements;
    1. cleanse
    2. exfoliate
    3. moisturize (unless you have full fledge oily skin), and
    4. use sunscreen.
  • Fine tune this regime to meet your skin's special needs. The objective is still to keep it simple as you can while effectively meeting needs.

Special needs and other common sense considerations will shape your routine daily, weekly and monthly.

Special Needs- i.e. incorporating acne treatment or anti-aging treatment
Daily needs- i.e. morning vs. evening regimens -morning; cleanse, moisturize, sunscreen (some moisturizers come with sun protection) -evening; cleanse, exfoliation method, treatment, rich moisturizer
Weekly needs- i.e. Sundays-use of special treatment mask like deep pore cleansing or exfoliating masks
Monthly- i.e. Skin care treatments like a facial performed by an experienced professional.

Best Skin Care Step #5:  Choose Your Skin Care Products Wisely

Well worth your while, is doing the homework that will help you make effective product choice.

  • Narrow down product choices that cater to your skin type for each step of your skin care routine.
  • Ideally, you will make your choices based on research, recommendations, customer feedback and a sense that the product is the right fit for your skin care needs.

Need a little help with that homework? I have made a handful of product suggestions to get you pointed in the right direction. See below...

Best Skin Care Step #6:  Monitor Results Achieved By Your Product Choices

Keep an eye on your skin and don't be afraid to move on to other recommended product, if the one you have chosen is not delivering or even worse, causing irritation. What you will discover sometimes is, what works for some, may not work for you, even if you are seemingly the same skin type. (There are other, more complicated factors that come into play that will determine how well skin products will perform on your skin. Note the often posted study disclaimer in the advertisement, "results may vary".)

Best Skin Care Step #7:  Adapt To Your Skin's Changes Over Time

Your skin is dynamic. That means a variety of conditions, internal and external, can influence its behavior creating change. These behaviors can be short term or long term. Things like short term hormonal changes may increase or decrease the amount of oil production in your skin sending your skin in directions of breakouts or dryness. Long term changes, such as related to aging, will reveal collagen production diminishing. Luckily, most changes will be gradual and manageable.

Here are a few of my recommendations skin care product choices:

CLEANSERS
Clean your skin gently! It is common to believe, the stronger the cleanser the better, but strong can reek havoc with your skin. One of the most highly recommended skin cleansers across the board (from celebrities to dermatologists), for all skin types including sensitive, is Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser.

TONERS
Although I am not convinced that a toner needs to be part of every good skin care program, I don't want to disregard the opinions of those who feel it is beneficial.

What does a toner do?

Toners are meant to bring your freshly cleansed skin back to a balanced pH, remove any remaining residue missed during cleansing, generate greater hydration and bring additional benefits depending on the product.

Obagi Nu-Derm Toner gets great customer reviews, as a toner alone or as part of a complete five part skin care system (if you like to use all same product, Obaji gets very good reviews for its skin care system) . The toner in particular, uses natural ingredients that help tone, hydrate and restore balance.

DAY MOISTURIZER

Normal to Oily Skin:
Overall great moisturizer for normal to oily skin is Peter Thomas Roth Oil-Free Moisturizer.

Normal to dry skin (and sensitive too), try SkinCeuticals Emollience.

Eye Cream:

Clinique All About Eyes Rich Skin Care addresses puffiness, effectively hydrates which reduces the look of fine lines, and is a light weight formulation with good customer feedback.

Olay has some budget friendly effective skin creams and serums these days. Here is one anti aging remedy that can compete with some of the top luxury brands Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream and the Eye Lifting Serum, which I have personally used and find them effective hydrators (three quarters of the battle against fine lines).

SUNSCREEN
This item should be worn daily and with full spectrum effective ingredients like titanium dioxide (physical barrier), or avobenzone (chemical barrier).  NEW recently approved Mexoryl Sx and Tinosorb offer excellent broad spectrum, photo stable protection as well.

For All Skin Types

Getting excellent customer feedback is SkinCeuticals Physical UV Defense SPF 30. It is non chemical and has a special formulation to reduce the whitening effect found in other physical sun blocks. Safe for all skin types including sensitive, traumatized and safe for children.

Normal to Dry 

Anthelios SX Daily Moisturizer SPF15 by La Roche-Posay is a top choice, award winning, excellent formulation of daily moisturizer with sunscreen.  It is light weight and contains excellent sunscreen agents Mexoryl Sx and  Parsol 1789, for UVA and Octocrylene  for protection against UVB.

NIGHT CARE
The best skin care for a night regime covers quite a range in possible product recommendations. Age, skin type, skin conditions etc will dictate product use for this important skin recovery time frame.

DEALING WITH ACNE
There are many options to consider depending on the severity and frequency of the breakouts. For mild to moderate acne try the proven Proactiv system which uses salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide.  For more severe acne, please see a dermatologist.

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