What does your skin feel like right now? Balanced, calm, comfortable? Or oily, tight, inflamed?
What will your intentions be tonight when you cleanse and moisturise your skin? Do you take your time, carefully working the product into the skin?
Do you have a skincare strategy? Do you buy what's most popular, prescribed or convenient?
This exercise is about frequent evaluation of both the current condition of your skin and products on hand. You may have noticed your skin doesn’t feel the same every single day depending on food consumed, hormones, weather or stress. Taking this into consideration, I don’t believe in being too rigid with skincare routines but rather flexible and adaptable to these factors. I highly recommend having two different cleansers and moisturisers or oils on hand to accomodate your most common fluctuations or at elast to update your routine seasonally. The next part of this exercise is to look at the individual components of your routine. It is easy to forget our skin is a living, breathing organ. We often take for granted the environmental assault and general wear and tear we expose ourselves to every day. I believe there is an over-emphasis on anti-aging and under-emphasis on ritual, protection and nourishment.
Our skin responds well to rituals.
There is however, a current trend towards traumatising the skin in order to encourage healing. The science behind it is based around 'up-regulation' of the skin's function. In other words, it is thought that wounded skin will heal to a point of enhanced appearance. The benefits are short lived. I am often alarmed by the amount of cases of sensitised skin from overuse of cosmeceutical products and invasive procedures. This doesn't apply to those using an AHA/BHA/Retinol based product 2-3 times per week. To me, overuse means cleansing with an AHA cleanser, applying a lightening serum and layering that with retinol cream. I like to call this type of skin 'stressed'. It usually appears, reactive, inflamed, and imbalanced (slightly oily but tight and dehydrated). It is a common misconception that just because you've been using a product for a long time, you won't react to it. While active products can be useful, be weary of brands that promise miracle results in a flash. Inflammation caused by aggressive products leads to the formation of ‘self-destruct' enzymes that eventually breakdown collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid. Sounds counter-intuitive to me! This is why it is imperative to evaluate each step of your routine. Are you layering too many cosmeceutical style products in an attempt to achieve faster results?
Our skin has a very rhythmic pattern of shedding so a little patience will allow the correct products for your skin to work and show real results.
This isn't to say you have to miss out on a daily dose of powerful ingredients, simply opt for ingredients that are strengthening such as fat soluble Vitamin C, Ferulic Acid and Hyaluronic acid.
The skin can be healed in a much more profound way with barrier restoration, dermal nutrients and adequate hydration. It is much more preferable to encourage the skin to perform as it should, a state of homeostasis. Let's not forget that beauty comes from within so it is only logical that wellness in beauty is about working with body processes, not against them.
We are here anytime to help you expand or streamline your skincare straetgy as needed. No two people have the same skin so we welcome you to share your skincare concerns and goals with us for a personalised approach!