Skincare Guide: The Fundamentals

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Skin is the first thing that gets noticed when someone looks at us. While other aspects of personal grooming are equally important, skin perhaps is the make or break factor in creating an impression. It is of utmost importance to take good care of your skin, especially in this era of high pollution, ruptured ozone layers and hectic schedules.

One thing that must be kept in mind is that not everyone has the same skin type. And with different skin types, skin requirements change and so should the skincare practices. By not knowing your skin type, you open yourself to the risk of using the products that may not suit you, eventually leading to more skin problems.

Types of Skin

Skins types are mostly categorized into these four groups:

  • Oily skin
  • Dry skin
  • Normal skin
  • Combination skin

While you may see the term ‘sensitive skin’ often but that is not really a skin type. Any of the above types of skins can be sensitive in nature and hence should be treated with even more care. Before you start your daily skincare regimen, you first need to know your skin type if you already don’t. Use the common tissue paper test for it.

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Identifying Skin Type

An easy test to find out about your skin type is the tissue paper test. To conduct it, first clean your face thoroughly and leave it to dry by itself. This will take up to 10 minutes. Then take a tissue paper and blot it on your face. Now place he tissue paper down on a dry, smooth surface and look at it closely.

  • Lots of oily patches everywhere on the tissue indicate oily skin.
  • No oil at all says that you have dry skin.
  • Patches of oil mainly in the forehead and nose area indicate combination skin.
  • Little oil patches evenly distributed across the tissue tell you about a normal skin.

Regular Skincare Regimen

Our body works just like any other machine day and night. This machine is protected by the shield called skin. And while a machine may still keep running if it is left dirty and rusty, it will initially become unsightly and will eventually start faltering as the outside dirt keeps penetrating into its core. Similarly, our skin also needs frequent cleaning in order to keep the machine of our body in a spic and span condition. Follow a skincare program that suits your needs. The next section may help many in this regard.

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Daily Skincare Rituals

1. Cleansing

This is a must, whether or not you wear make-up or live in an extremely clean environment (none of us does by the way!) Your skin needs to be thoroughly cleansed with a good cleanser or a mild soap after the whole day’s work it has performed for you.

2. Toning

While it is not absolutely essential to use a toner, it can still prove to be immensely useful for those having oily or combination skin. However, beware of the toners with a high alcoholic content as it is not great for the skin in the long run.

3. Moisturizing

An absolute necessity for everyone! More so if you are over 25 years, have normal or dry skin and live in a cold or dry place. Our skin loses its moisture overtime and that is why we need to provide it extra moisture daily.

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4. Applying Sun Screen

Experts recommend using a sunscreen every day while going out, regardless of your direct exposure to the sun. This is because you may not feel it and the sunlight may still be piercing through your delicate skin, irritating the cells beneath, resulting in blemishes and even sun burns. Select a good sunscreen with a SPF of 15 or more.

Periodic Skincare Rituals

5.      Exfoliating

While it is an optional ritual but helps removing the upper skin layer of dead cells very nicely and unveiling the smooth, vibrant looking layer underneath. It is a very good idea to exfoliate at least every week to keep your skin glowing and free of any impurity build-ups.

6. Special Skin Treatments

There are also treatments like acne facials, anti-ageing treatments etc. But they are more need based. If you have a generally healthy skin, take good care of it and you are still not touched the 40 years mark, there is a good chance you can do without them. But it will be a good idea to get a relevant facial once every one to two months.

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