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There are literally hundreds of products available when it comes to skincare, and choosing what to use (and when) can feel overwhelming. The good news? There’s nothing wrong with beginning a small, simple skincare routine without feeling pressured to include all of the newest products.Ultimately, the best skincare routine is one that you’ll actually stick with, so choose the products that work for your daily routine and seem sustainable.
We’ve rounded up some must-have items for simple morning and nighttime routines as well as on-the-go products that are handbag essentials.
Cleaning your face is the most basic skincare step. No product can successfully interact with your skin if it’s covered in dirt and oil. Your morning skincare routine should always start with a cleanser. Even though you’ve been asleep, oils and dirt can clog your pores overnight, so you want to start fresh every day. A great all-purpose cleanser to use morning, after workouts, and night is a simple micellar water with no harsh additives or abrasives (and has no need to rinse). Micellar water is an easy cleanser for even the busiest day. Make sure that you have some soft, washable pads to use with a liquid cleanser so that you aren’t scrubbing with anything too abrasive. If you’re looking for a more substantial nighttime cleanser, try one with essential oils that help remove heavy makeup and leave your skin feeling soft and fresh.
Every morning before applying makeup, use an SPF lotion as a base layer. Your SPF could be part of your foundation or a separate cream that you apply pre-makeup. Sunscreen is another option for layering under makeup. Using an SPF lotion as part of your daily routine will do two things: hydrate your skin and protect it from the sun. These two goals should be top of your list regardless of weather, location, daily plans, etc. Investing in a great daily SPF lotion deserves to be among your highest priority skincare items.
Makeup Removal Wipes
While most cleansers should do a good job removing your makeup at night, you might find that you need extra help getting eye makeup off gently and completely. Makeup removal wipes are a great solution for this problem, and they’re good to have on hand when you’re out and about in need of a cleansing wipe. You can also use makeup removal wipes to eliminate dirt and oils, so even if you don’t wear makeup, having a few wipes handy is a good idea. Choose a product that’s for sensitive skin to minimize eye irritation and dryness. Some options are individually wrapped and perfect for keeping in your gym bag, car, or purse.
During the day, your SPF lotion should serve to help moisturize your skin. At night, choose a moisturizer that will maximize your sleeping hours and leave your face feeling rejuvenated and vibrant. Because you’ll be inside out of the sun while you sleep, your night cream can safely include a retinol that would typically make your face extra sensitive in the sunlight. Retinols serve to energize your skin cells and help repair any damage.
Roller or Face Mask
An essential part of your skincare routine should be something that can calm and soothe irritated (or stressed!) skin. A roller or face mask of your choice is a perfect option here—incorporate it into your daily routine or save it for those times when your day has been extra hectic. An ice roller can be cooled prior to use for an even more luxurious experience, while a green tea face mask can cool your skin 5-10 minutes before bed.