Let me start today’s article with this. I am not a minimalist- I am a maximalist, in most aspects. But life happens, and some days you are lucky if you can squeeze in a quick shower and slap some moisturizer. In my case, this has been happening for quite some time, so I realized it’s high time to create something simple, attainable- a Minimalist Skincare Routine.
When it comes to skincare, things can get complicated fast. Everywhere you look, there’s a new product promising wrinkle-free, blemish-free, healthy skin. Exactly what we all want. Before you know it, your medicine cabinet is stuffed with cleansers, toners, exfoliators, serums, moisturizers, and masks.
The list goes on and on. Not only are many of these products expensive, using them all takes a lot of time. Even worse, overloading your skin with too many products and active ingredients can leave it looking worse than it did when you started.
But maybe it doesn’t have to be that way. What if you could get amazing results with just a few carefully chosen products? Here’s how to streamline your skincare routine in favor of a minimalist approach and why you should cut down to the bare essentials.
Why should you switch to a minimalist skincare routine?
You must be wondering, Can it really make a difference in your life? Minimalism is everywhere right now- fashion, makeup and beauty, and there’s a good reason for that. Life can get so hectic, and much of it is out of your control. Why not do what you can to make things less chaotic?
Here are some benefits of switching to a minimalist skincare routine that you may not have thought of:
Have More Free Time
Most of us can benefit from having less on our plates. The idea of simple living is catching on like wildfire across all life categories. We’re trending away from complicated routines in favor of simplicity because it’s better for our mental well-being.
Here’s an example of how the right active ingredients can simplify your life. If you have dry hair, moisturizing shampoo and conditioner made from honey nourish the hair right in the shower. The natural humectants leave the hair soft and shiny, eliminating the need for additional moisturizing products and complicated styling routines later.
It’s much the same with skincare. With just a few carefully chosen products targeted to your skin needs, you can create a routine that’s easy and doesn’t take much thought or time. This leaves you with more free time for things that really matter, like spending time with loved ones or enjoying your favorite hobbies.
Making the switch to a minimalist skincare routine will save you money because you’ll have fewer products to buy. No more spending half of your paycheck to purchase the latest trending moisturizer or mask.
Instead, you’ll be investing your money in a few quality products that actually do what you need them to do. You can put the money you save toward paying your bills and experiencing life.
Your Skin Will Thank You
Any dermatologist will tell you that less is more when it comes to skincare. Too many products and too many active ingredients can lead to redness, irritation, and breakouts. Not only that but mixing certain active ingredients can reduce their effectiveness, so you may not get the results you’re hoping for.
Suggested read: Join the skin-friendly movement, “SKINIMALISM”
How to Create a Minimalist Skincare Routine That Works
Here’s how to build a minimalist skincare routine that saves time and money, but still boasts amazing results.
- Choose a cleanser that’s formulated for your skin type.
This is the first step. If your skin is dry, look for a gentle, hydrating cream cleanser or a cleansing balm that won’t strip your skin. If you have acne-prone or oily skin, look for a gel cleanser that has salicylic or glycolic acid. No matter what skin type you have, avoid products that contain alcohol because they can irritate and dry out the skin.
- Choose two active ingredients that address your primary skin concerns.
There’s no question that active ingredients play a major role in addressing skin issues, but you should be wary of mixing them. We suggest choosing two products with active ingredients and using them 12 hours apart. With that in mind, here are some active ingredients to look for based on your primary concerns:
- Vitamin C: Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that helps brighten the complexion and reduce hyperpigmentation. It can help to boost collagen production and prevent the signs of premature aging, including fine lines and wrinkles. It should be applied in the morning for the best results. One of my most used vit C products: Kate Somerville Kx Active Concentrates Vitamin B3 + Vitamin C Serum, CeraVe Vitamin C Serum with Hyaluronic Acid
- Caffeine: Caffeine is another antioxidant that is used to address puffiness and dark circles under the eyes. Eg.: The Ordinary Caffeine 5% + ECGC Depuffing Eye Serum, Mario Badescu Caffeine Eye Cream.
- Hyaluronic Acid: Hyaluronic acid is a natural humectant that draws moisture to the skin and protects the skin’s moisture barrier. It’s an excellent choice for plumping up the skin and giving it a more youthful, radiant appearance. Eg.: Vichy Mineral 89 Hyaluronic Acid Face Serum
- Salicylic Acid: Salicylic acid is an exfoliator that helps to unclog the pores and prevent breakouts. Eg.: Cetaphil Face Moisturizer
- Retinol: Retinol is the holy grail active ingredient for preventing fine lines and wrinkles. It should only be used at night because it increases the skin’s sensitivity to the sun. Pixi Beauty Retinol Collection is a budget friendly option.
Suggested read: Retinol & Retin-A: A Basic Introduction!
- Choose your moisturizer.
Every good skincare routine, even a minimalist one, needs a good moisturizer. Once again, you’ll want to go with one that’s formulated for your skin type. Oily skin types should opt for a gel or lightweight lotion, while dry skin types will probably do best with a creamy formula.
All skin types should look for a product that has minimal ingredients to reduce the risk of irritation. Moisturizer should be applied to clean skin after your actives to seal in moisture and create a protective barrier.
- Choose your sunscreen.
Sunscreen is essential for slowing the signs of aging and preventing skin cancer, so it’s a must for every skin type. Experts say that you should wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more all year long, anytime you’ll be outdoors.
The good news is you don’t have to have a separate product for everyday wear. For every day, consider a multitasking product, such as a BB cream or moisturizer that has built-in SPF. That being said you’ll be better off with a water-resistant sunscreen that you can reapply regularly on days when you’ll be in the sun for an extended period. Read more about how to choose sunscreen here.
In a nutshell…….
Once you’ve chosen your products, consistency will be the key to achieving the results you’re looking for. Switching products to try something new will just undo all your hard work. The active ingredients you use need time to work to achieve the full, maximum results.
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Guest writer: Melissa Waltz, LinkedIn
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