Skin Care Routine | Why do we need one?
Can you please explain why it's so important to have a skin care routine set in place?
This is a great question. It seems so obvious to many that a good skin care routine is important to have in place, but for others they question why. When we understand what our skin is, what is up to during the course of the day and night, and what we need it for, it’s far easier to understand why we need to care for it!
Our skin is :
- Our largest organ
- Our first line of defense
- It protects us from the environment, infections, temperature variations
- It cools our skin by sweating and flushing.
- It is an important sensory organ
By understanding these key roles of our skin it is clear that it is a dynamic organ that is constantly changing.
As our first line of defense, our skin produces oil and sebum to protect us from outside allergens and pollutants. This oil and sebum can build up leading to clogged pores in addition to
Our skin has an immune system that is providing surveillance against bacteria, viruses and fungi in the environment.
Our skin protects us from harmful UV rays and free radicals from cigarette smoke and other sources, but can also be susceptible to damage.
What are some key foundations of a good skin care routine?
The most important steps to a daily skin care routine are to cleanse, treat/repair, and protect the skin.
Cleansing involves helping remove excess dirt, sebum and oil, and buildup on the skin. Generally a simple cleanser is sufficient however some may find it helpful to add an exfoliant in at this step.
Treat/repair involves understanding if there are any challenges that your skin faces- acne, dry skin, wrinkles, etc. These challenges can be addressed by the addition of products designed to address these factors.
Protecting the skin involves understanding the importance of keeping the skin’s barrier intact. Moisturizing and hydrating the skin effectively is important here as is applying a sun block to protect the skin from harmful UV rays.
What are signs that your current skin care routine isn't working?
There are many signs that indicate that your skin care routine isn’t working.
- Excess breakouts. If you keep struggling with acne and cannot seem to get a handle over it there is a good chance that you are not removing the excess oil and sebum buildup on your skin effectively. Try working on the cleanse step of the routine to find a better option.
- Excess dryness that doesn’t seem to respond to moisturizers. Have you ever had dry patches around the nose and eyebrows that even when you put on moisturizers its flaky an hour later? This is actually an issue at the repair step. This is an indication that you likely have seborrhea and may need to add in a product to help treat the pH of your skin or excess yeast that builds up on the skin over time.
- Increasing freckles and discoloration. There’s a good chance the last step of protecting your skin on a daily basis from sun exposure and also UV found in other sources is being missed. Try to make sure your sunblock is on daily and effective!
- Premature fine lines and wrinkles. Protecting your skin from sun every single day of the year is key to prevention. Sunblock, sunblock, sunblock.
- Excess redness or flushing. This is generally a sign of rosacea. It is important to add into your routine between cleansing and protection an anti-inflammatory. Niacinamide serum is a common over the counter ingredient to use. It’s also important to make sure that the other steps in your routine are not aggravating the redness through irritation.