Do I Need That? Skincare

Potions, lotions, creams, and sprays! I’m exhausted just thinking about the plethora of “must- have” beauty products out there.

When you learn the real purpose behind a product, you can decide what products are must-haves for you, and which ones you can do without.

1. Moisturizer

cure-for-dark-circlesAll skin needs to be hydrated in order to look and feel healthy. Supple skin is soft, flexible, and less prone to cuts and cracks.

Purpose: Moisturizer adds good old H2O back into your skin. Tiny carriers penetrate skin’s water-resistant barrier, allowing skin to soak up the good stuff.

Did you know that oily skin is often the most dehydrated? Ladies, oil does not quench thirst. Your skin needs water! Use an oil-free, water-based moisturizer to hydrate your parched skin. Once your skin gets used to the added moisture, it will produce less oil.

Moisturizer = MUST HAVE

2. Eye Cream

Purpose: Eye cream does for the eye area what moisturizer does for the rest of your body – it hydrates.

Eye cream is different from other moisturizers because the skin around your eyes is different. The orbital area (area around your eyes) is extremely fragile. This area lacks sweat glands, leaving  it susceptible to dryness, irritation, and wrinkles.

eye-creams-for-puffy-eyesIn addition, the under eye area tends to become puffy and dark with age, sleep deprivation, and/or other environmental factors.

Eye cream is formulated with special ingredients that help hydrate, tighten, and brighten – depending on the product.

It is wise to begin using a good eye cream as early as your 20s. If you don’t, trust me, you will wish you had. Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!

Eye Cream = Must Have

3. Primers

primers-for-beautyGreen ones, purple ones, silicone-based, water-based…the list is endless. Primers are taking over the beauty scene.

Purpose: Primer is like Spackle for the face. It fills in large pores and smooths the appearance of wrinkles. It also creates a smooth canvas for your makeup, locks in skin’s moisture, reduces shine, deters creasing, and amps up your makeup’s staying power.

All in all, primer is great stuff. I love it, but I’ll be honest, I don’t use it all the time.

Women concerned with visible pores and wrinkles may want to use it daily. If you have a lot of redness in your skin,you may want to use a green primer under your makeup regularly.

For women with smooth, gorgeous skin – primer is not necessary. If you don’t use makeup, you can use primer alone to help diffuse light and keep skin’s moisture sealed in. Or, just use it on those special occasions when you want your makeup to look flawless and last all night. This stuff can be pricey!

Primer = Optional

4. Exfoliators

clarisonic-facial-skin-carePurpose: To exfoliate is to remove dead cells from the surface of the skin by using a physical (ie. microdermabrasion) or chemical (ie. glycolic acid toner) method.

Dead cells on your skin’s surface will make your complexion look dull and tired. They can also clog pores and lead to acne.

Exfoliating is the best way to help skin breath and look radiant.

glycolic-acidYou should exfoliate twice per week. If your skin is sensitive, be sure to use soothing products and gentle pressure. As you all know, I love my Clarisonic brush. There are many tools in the market that range in price, consistency, and quality. See what works for you.

Just keep in mind, don’t overdo it. Anything is excess causes more harm than good.

Exfoliate = Must Have

5. Anti-Aging Serums

Purpose: Anti-aging serums generally help speed up cell turnover through the use of retinoids like Vitamin A –  resulting in less visible lines, wrinkles, and age spots.

serums-for-hydrating-skinSerums can temporarily help the appearance of lines and wrinkles by plumping up the surface of the skin with super-hydrating ingredients and by dissolving dead skin cells, but every product will not work for every person. They may even be irritating for many women. Choose carefully.

Products containing GABA may temporarily act like a weak shot of BOTOX and with continued use, may help decrease the rate at which a wrinkle deepens, but it’s not a permanent solution.

Anti-aging products are usually super expensive and there is no guarantee that they will work for you. Ultimately, you need to do what feels right for you. If using an anti-aging product makes you feel good, and you can afford it – by all means, go for it.

Anti-aging products = Optional

6. Facials

Purpose: Cleanse, purge, and treat skin for a healthy appearance.

facials-are-optional-for-beautyProfessional facials are quite a treat. Your eyes are closed, it smells delightful, and someone is gently stroking your face with divine elixirs…sigh. The experience is unreal, and so is the price tag.

A licensed aesthetician can help clear out backed up pores and extract build-up. You will walk out feeling renewed and relaxed. Spa facials are great to have every now and then, but they are not necessary. If you do not plan on keeping up with them, I would advise against having extractions. An extraction can stir up some dormant acne that will become problematic for you.

If your skin is in good healthy – you don’t need a facial. Keep up your healthy skin by maintaining a good cleansing, exfoliating, and moisturizing routine.

Facials = Optional

Written By
More from Mehwish Khan

Chicago Editorial Makeup Artist

Mehwish Khan is an agency represented Chicago makeup artist with extensive experience...
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  • farah

    hey i am 23 i have dark circles and fine lines too.can you recommend any eyecreme? please would appreciate it.

  • m

    I think it’s a common misconception that oily skin needs moisturizer. Another common misconception is that you have a consistent skin type that never changes. Some women fluctuate between normal, combination and oily on a day-to-day or week-to-week basis depending on the weather, their hormones, stress levels, and many other reasons. Some days they may need moisturizer and other days they can go without. Using sunblock every time you go outside and avoiding sun exposure is the easiest way to avoid getting wrinkles.

    I had oily skin for years which was probably exacerbated by using moisturizer that I didn’t need. I stopped using it regularly last year and my skin seems to have re-balanced itself and my pores don’t look as large. (I also started using a good salicylic acid toner, so it could be that or a combination of the two.)

    I used to get oily by the afternoon and have to blot my face regularly, now I can go most of the day without looking shiny or needing a major powder touch-up. Now I only use moisturizer when my skin feels tight after washing, or I have dry spots. I always use sunblock or foundation with sunscreen– liquid foundation provides enough moisture for me most days.

    Try only using moisturizer when your skin actually feels dry and see if it helps with the oiliness.