Face Care 101

A woman's skin care techniques can be as varied as personal taste, and there is a vast variety in skin care types and needs. But with the domination of marketing and trends over basic skin intelligence and education, it's difficult to find what things work best for you (without spending a ton of money, going through potentially-damaging routines, etc). I know- I have been there. 

Given all the research, interviews with aestheticians, and trial-and-error that I've done, I wanted to share the most important tips with you guys.

The following holds true no matter what kind of skin you have (dry, oily, combination, sensitive, rough, wrinkled, damaged, fair, etc):

Always always always clean your face twice. Yes, even if you have very dry skin. The first time is just to remove the surface makeup and oils. The second time is to deeply clean the pores so that your skin (one big organ, ya know) can breathe, excrete, etc as it should. When your skin functions as it should, you glow (and have fewer breakouts).

The first cleanse, to remove makeup and dirt, can either be with a specific face-make-up remover (different from an eye makeup remover!), or you can use plain olive oil. You just need to put some on a cotton ball and gently swipe it across your face (may need to do two cotton balls and swipes).

The second cleanse, right after the first, should be with your specific facial cleanser. Just put some in the palm of your hands, rub together to start a lather, then gently dot the cleanser on your face. Using a wet soft cloth or sponge, lather the cleanser evenly over your face in circular motions. This helps with circulation as well as getting a nice deep clean. 

You don't have to press hard or scrub vigorously (this can damage the surface cells and even bust capillaries). And for the love of all that is good and holy DO NOT USE BODY SOAP ON YOUR FACE. That stuff isn't made for delicate skin like the undereye area and will do more harm than good.

After you rinse and gently pat your face dry with a clean towel or cloth, apply moisturizer. Yes, even if you have naturally oily skin. You should use a daytime moisturizer (usually very light, with built-in SPF), and an evening moisturizer (usually a somewhat heavier cream for repairing skin damage). 

If you have those annoying bumps under your eyes, make sure you're using an undereye-specific moisturizer in those areas- that skin is tissue thin and pretty needy.

Different product lines will target different skin needs, but ALL skin needs to be thoroughly and deeply cleaned, and then moisturized, to retain a good balance and healthfulness. If you follow this regime and still have skin issues, the problem likely lies with the products you're using.

And, of course, one of the best things you can do for your skin (and all your other organs) is to drink lots of water, eat a balanced diet, and get regular exercise.

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