By Oyindasola Oladimeji
What am I passionate about? Skincare. The concept, the act, the regimen, all of it. I have never really had problematic skin, so acne riddled skin was not what drove me into the arms of skincare twitter. From a young age, I have always loved mixing creams and oils even without knowing what they particularly do for the skin. Now that I do, I have never loved it more.
A skincare routine can be as simple as using a face cleanser, toner, moisturizer and SPF. SPF is a must. You should always apply it generously even when the sun isn’t out because those ultraviolet rays still are. But it can also be quite complex. Complex because there are a couple more steps to it and loads more facts to remember to keep your skin healthy and happy. These extra steps could be a face mask, exfoliator in whatever form, serums and hydrators, oils, spot treatments etc. Got it?
Let’s dissect my current routine starting with the morning one -yes, the morning routines can vary from the night ones. My current morning routine is a cleanser, toner, serum, moisturizer, oil and of course, SPF. My night routine is the same but usually with an overnight spot treatment or just any other spot cream. Now, what does each product do?
A cleanser, as the name suggests, cleanses the face and removes dead skin, oil and dirt from the face. I recommend a salicylic acid cleanser, those are amazing for acne and spots! I use Dudu Osun Black Soap. It can be drying so if you’ve got dry skin, beware!
Toners remove the last bit of any remaining dirt and bacteria on the face and can also close the pores to prevent any environmental contaminants from penetrating the skin. I use The Ordinary Toning Solution which is personally one of the best toners I’ve used. It’s great for boosting the complexion and improves the texture of the skin. It’s just £6.80 and the link to the site is here: Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution | The Ordinary£6.80The Ordinary(6,079)
Moisturizers infuse and trap hydration in the skin, so the skin doesn’t dry out. Also, regularly using moisturizers prevents wrinkles and tired-looking skin. I’m yet to find a moisturiser that you shouldn’t be using, but I personally use: Revolution Skincare Brightening Boost Moisture Cream with Ginseng 50ml£10.00BEAUTY BAY(47)
Oils are occlusive which means they seal all the ingredients in to keep them from evaporating. They should always be used last because oils can penetrate other products on the skin but other products cannot penetrate oil. Also from the ordinary, I use The Ordinary 100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil 30ml£9.30lookfantastic.com(4,781). Some other oils are great as well, such as jojoba oil and grapeseed because they are light. Heavy oils like coconut, marula, olive, avocado should be avoided as these either cause breakouts or congest the pores.
SPFs can be used after oils, even though oils should be the last step in your routine because SPFs are protective, not additives. They protect the skin and prevent hyperpigmentation, wrinkles, worsened acne scars and even premature ageing. As long as the protection is 30 and above, go for it! Also, if you don’t want a white cast, make sure it doesn’t have zinc oxide or titanium oxide in it. That being said, I use Boots Soltan Protect & Moisturise Suncare Spray Spf50+ 200ml. It’s lightweight and smells amazing! (on that note, if you have sensitive skin, be careful when buying products with fragrance in them as they can be irritants as well. This applies to all skin products, not just SPFs)
And then when I need to add a spot serum to clear any blemishes overnight, I use The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% High Strength Vitamin and Mineral Blemish Formula 30mlOpens in a new window. It is an absolute must-have. It clears blemishes fast and other textural irregularities as well. Other great serums are lactic acid, Hyaluronic Acid etc. The Ordinary also stocks these!
And there we have it! A beginner’s guide to a complete skincare routine.