Know what makes a skin care regimen essential to look your very best
Wash your face twice a day. Bathe daily. These oft-repeated commands for personal hygiene go unchallenged, and for good reason. Who would doubt that glowing skin comes with regular cleaning? And just as important as knowing which are the best skin products and methods to use is knowing why a skin care regimen is essential.
An endless battle
All day and every day, your skin is under attack. Its enemies are nonstop and invisible. One is cold weather, which dries the skin. Another is wind because it causes chapping. And while the sun may bring warmth, it also emits skin-burning, wrinkle-inducing, cancer-causing ultraviolet (UV) rays.
Even your healthy work-out poses a threat. For while it tones your limbs and relieves your stress, it also produces sweat that can clog pores if it’s not removed.
Add to that list such potent enemies as bacteria–because bacterial cells outnumber human cells–and the dead skin our bodies shed daily. Allowing dead skin cells to pile up creates a sheet of dirt that even cleaning products can’t penetrate.
With such determined foes attacking our skin, it’s no wonder that following a regimen isn’t just the right way, it’s the only way.
Clean well and often
When it comes to good skin care, quantity is just as important is quality. Picture for a moment a steady shower of pollutants settling on your skin, or the beads of sweat that form after each work-out, or even the build-up of grime from makeup applied eight hours earlier. Then ask yourself whether skipping a morning cleanse or a nightly makeup removal is even an option?
No way, say the professionals at Future Derm. Instead, a twice-daily regimen that you follow without fail is the least you should do because it “adds up to almost 22,000 instances per year when a simple routine can make a dramatic difference in your skin’s health,” says Future Derm’s founder and skin care blogger Nicki Zevola Benvenuti.
What’s good for your skin is vital for your health
No cancer is more common in the United States than skin cancer. And many types of skin cancer are preventable, according to the CDC. That’s why the Skin Cancer Foundation, the Surgeon General, and the CDC all recommend applying sunscreen every time you’re outdoors.
And that’s true even on cloudy, winter days when UV rays are still present and still strong enough to pass through glass. By adding regular doses of sunscreen to your skin care regimen, you’re preventing UV rays from penetrating the skin and changing your cells.
Cancer isn’t the only medical condition your skin care routine helps to avoid. There’s also the infections caused by bacteria which, if not removed, can produce an itch severe enough to cause skin breakage.
What part of skin care needs a regimen?
Admittedly, a decent skin care regimen will involve many steps, from removing dirt to purging dead skin. Which of these requires a consistent regimen?
All of them, say skin professionals. Here’s why:
Your morning wash removes dead skin that formed overnight. Your end-of-day cleanse erases both environmental pollutants that festered all day and makeup that contains pore-clogging bacteria. By following a steady cleansing regimen, you’re preventing redness, skin irritations, and acne.
Skin peeling evens out wrinkles and fine lines. It also corrects photo-aging, dyspigmentation, scars, and loss of elasticity. An everyday method to exfoliate the dead skin cells that cause these conditions will make your skin glow.
Hydrating and Moisturizing
Your skin is the body’s largest organ. It needs water to function properly. The most effective way to hydrate your skin, according to doctors, is not by drinking water but by applying it directly to the skin. Hydrating skin creams and moisturizers help to replenish lost water and keep it on your skin. Your daily regimen should consist of applying a moisturizer at night and within two minutes of bathing.
To safeguard your skin against UV radiation, apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF level of at least 15. Do this before heading outdoors and after 80 minutes of the first application.