A Beginner’s Guide to Starting a Skin-Care Routine in Three Easy Steps
With just a large variety of skin-care products at your fingertips, starting at square one can seem daunting. So, we’ve taken some of the guesswork out of the process by offering you a simple, three-step guideline for starting a daily skin-care regimen from scratch, and it’s a lot easier than you might think.
According to , Dr. Dhaval Bhanusali, board-certified dermatologist and Skincare.com expert, when starting a skin-care routine for the first time, less is more.“If you have more than five products, stop,” he says. “It’s too much and will likely lead to dryness and even acne.” When it comes to building a beginner’s skin-care routine, you should include three concise steps: cleansing, serum, and moisturizer.
Beginner’s Skin-Care Step 1: Cleansing
“A gentle cleanser is key to use both morning and night,” says Dr. Bhanusali. “It removes debris from the skin’s surface, cleans pores, and primes the skin to absorb topical products, like moisturizers and serums, better.” When you’re just starting out, reach for gentle, light cleansers to remove makeup and pollutants that can accumulate on the skin’s surface throughout the day. If these impurities stay on the skin, you run the risk of them combining with oil, clogging your pores and causing pimples and blackheads. While we’re big on both chemical and mechanical exfoliation, Dr. Bhanusali warns to be careful if you’re just starting a skin-care routine. Try the CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser for a gentle option.
“Exfoliating cleansers that feature alpha and beta hydroxy acids should be used in moderation — two to three times per week max,” he says. Start off small with a once a week exfoliation and to see how your skin reacts before making it a part of your weekly routine. We like Kiehl’s Pineapple Papaya Facial Scrub.
Beginner’s Skin-Care Step 2: Serum
After cleansing, Dr. Bhanusali advises that you reach for a serum to treat any skin-care concerns you may have. “Look for one that’s formula is rich in antioxidants like SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic,” he says. This serum helps to fight damage from environmental stressors and brightens your complexion for a smooth surface.
Beginner’s Skin-Care Step 3: Moisturizer
The best way to wash your face is to always follow up with hydration — and never forget to apply sunscreen in the morning. “It’s imperative to wear sunscreen each day and utilize products with formulas rich in antioxidants to help protect our skin from environmental aggressors such as pollution.” Combine both steps by reaching for a moisturizer with a broad-spectrum SPF of 30 or more, like La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair Facial Moisturizer with SPF 30. Apply it as the final step in your skin-care routine before putting on your makeup. At night, Dr. Bhanusali suggests to end your skin-care routine with a night cream formula that is rich in antioxidants.