Is Your Skincare Regimen Overwhelming?

12/06/2018

You might already have dozens of bottles in your bathroom and shelves. And yes, they all need to be applied daily. Can you still keep up? Do you still think it’s worth the time?

Aside from being stressful and time-consuming, a “complete” skincare regimen can also be very expensive. If you purchase all the topical products that promise perfect skin, it could easily add up to thousands of dollars. Perhaps you might have thought a few times if it’s all just a scam.

DIY and at-home experiments

It goes beyond expecting wonderful results. Many people now (especially women) are getting fond of doing at-home experiments. They try various products every week and month and see if anything brings results fast. Also, they don’t consult a dermatologist or a skincare professional. They want to do it all themselves and they want their own hard work to pay off.

There’s nothing wrong with that (given that they’re careful). Different topical products (gels, creams, cleansers) do indeed have different effects on various skin types. The human skin can react differently based on the composition and concentration of the active ingredient. Also, some products might not successfully penetrate the skin (thereby reducing or nullifying their effectiveness).

Once a product displays effectiveness, people might continue using it. For instance, if a topical product containing low concentrations of retinoic acid is effective in reducing fine lines, people would be glad to continue using it. They allow the results to talk for themselves.

In some cases, people try different products for the sake of variety. What if product B produces faster results than product A? Are there other creams that yield amazing results and yet no side effects? We often try different solutions in search for better outcomes.

But before we know it, our bathroom cabinets or vanities are already full of bottles of different sizes. The collection of different products becomes a routine instead of focusing on results and simplifying it all.

How to make your skincare regimen simple

The goal of skincare is to get rid of problems and protect your skin from sunlight. It starts with daily cleansing to get rid of dirt that might be irritating your skin. This is also to remove excess oil (which may cause acne and blemishes). Although your skin automatically produces natural oils to protect it from potential irritants, too much of it can react with dirt and cause irritations.

Aside from daily cleansing, you should also protect your skin from the harsh ultraviolet rays of sunlight. UVA and UVB rays can affect the skin cells by damaging the DNA. The initial results could be premature skin aging and early development of fine lines and wrinkles.

That’s why it’s recommended to regularly apply sunscreen especially if you’re planning to stay outdoors for long periods of time. It’s also ideal to go or stay outdoors during the first early or late hour of the day. This is to reduce your exposure to the harsh ultraviolet rays.

A moisturiser might also be added to your regimen if you have dry skin. Although the human skin is naturally strong and resilient, there will be times when the skin rapidly loses moisture content. This can result to dry and flaky skin. This especially happens when the air is a lot drier (low relative humidity). More water will be pulled out from our skin which leads to dryness.

Moisturisers often work in either of the two ways: Trap the moisture or replenish it. The moisture can be kept from escaping or what’s lost will be restored. These are straightforward means of keeping your skin moisturised and looking healthy.

A simple skincare regimen may only require three products (cleanser, sunscreen and moisturiser). You might also require a few other lotions and creams for other parts of your body. If you have fine lines and/or brown spots, you might also need one or two additional products to make the problems less noticeable.

In total, you would only have six or seven skincare products in your bathroom or dressing table. It still seems a lot but it’s more manageable compared to having over a dozen different products. It’s also a good way of making the most use of each product and forgetting the rest (waste of money).

Is your skincare regimen overwhelming?

If it is, you might be doing a few things wrong. It might have become a habit to collect several skincare products. But most of them might just be sitting there or don’t yield any results at all.

Thankfully, right now you can do better. You can choose 6 or 7 products that deliver the most results. Your choice can also depend on your particular needs right now (e.g. a good moisturiser if you have a dry skin). This takes some work because it might have already become a common sight to have dozens of bottles here and there.

Using fewer products may help you avoid adverse reactions. Chemical reactions (and how your skin reacts with certain substances) may result to blisters, rashes and irritations. As you use more products, more chemical reactions might also happen. The different combinations and reactions can be unpredictable and harmful.

Also, it’s important to choose organic skincare products as much as possible. This might mean the absence of certain chemicals such as hydroquinone, parabens, phthalates and triclosan. These chemicals might act harshly on your skin. The effects get worse especially if the user is pregnant or having certain medical conditions.

It’s good to remember that our skin is naturally strong and resilient. There’s nothing wrong with using “artificial” means such as applying topical products so we can keep our skin younger looking. But it’s best to use natural products (and in low concentrations) as much as possible to minimise the risks.

Keeping it simple also makes everything doable. We’ll have fewer things to think about which leads to more time and focus on other important things such as our overall physical health. As a result, we’ll become truly healthy both on the inside and outside.