Like a tailored suit or well-fitted dress, a skincare routine should suit you. Different skin types, concerns, age groups and lifestyles imply that one size does not fit all. Research and innovation have paved the way for us to create our ideal routines. In particular, the Asian beauty market is home to a plethora of key ingredients, formulations and techniques.
Double cleansing is a transformational step. The first cleanse should focus on removing makeup and the day's "dirt". The second is about treating the skin, cleansing pores and promoting a healthy complexion.
Hydration is key to radiant and plumper skin. It is fast becoming one of the most focused on skincare steps. One tip is to layer products onto damp skin. This allows for better absorption through the skin's outer barrier. Those products will then seal that moisture in. Soothing floral waters or an essence can boost results of the steps applied afterwards.
Korean skincare routines pride themselves on the use of essences. Their formulations range in viscosity and are patted on allowing high concentrations of ingredients to enrich the skin. The Western market has taken note on the importance of this step with brands such as Estee Lauder and Origins bringing their own versions to the table.
Similarly, serums provide targeted treatments. They contain a few key ingredients, void of thickening agents or heavily moisturising factors. A little goes a long way with these silky, concentrated formulations.
Moisturise with a formulation to suit. Gel textures are ideal for oily/combination skin types. Thicker creams packed with niacinamide and butters may suit more mature or drier skins. Oils can nourish and deliver a healthy glow or boost your current moisturiser with a few drops.
Protection is key. A sun cream with UVA, UVB and HEVL protection is ideal no matter the season. HEVL rays are responsible for 50% of skin sun damage due to oxidative stress. It activates the process of cell tissue turnover (matrix metalloproteinases) which can cause wrinkles and uneven pigmentation.
With increasing research on the effects of pollution on the skin coming to light, your morning skincare needs to be your shield. Choose effective products that will protect your skin from sun rays and free radical damage.
Exfoliation removes dead skin cells and brings a fresh layer to the surface; brightening your complexion. There are a variety of products on the market,
with different concentrations of AHAs and BHAs to suit varying skin sensitivities.
Masks give skin the suited attention it needs. Sheet masks have become a big deal in the Western world with many seeking out Korean brand favourites. Not only do they provide an incredible hydration boost but they allow active ingredients to effectively penetrate the skin via osmosis.
Our skin is our largest organ. Its changes daily, if only in small ways. Whether we notice these changes in the short term or not, protection, cleansing and hydration are key to healthier skin. With a wealth of leading-edge products and ingredients on the market, we can tailor ourselves a skincare routine that merges effortlessly into our lifestyles.
Author Bio: Sarirah is a software developer from London who writes the beauty and lifestyle blog Pretty Not Included. Her passions focus around skincare, beauty trends and efforts to merge the tech and beauty industries.