The Beginner's Guide to Different Skin Products

Most people are aware of the fact that a proper skincare routine is more than just washing your face. In fact, it involves the use of products other than just a basic facial cleanser or moisturizer. However, with so many products out there, it can become quite difficult to come up with an effective skincare routine for yourself.

Here are all the products you need to know about to get you started on your skincare routine.

1. Cleanser

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A facial cleanser is the most basic product of any skincare routine. Washing your face twice a day is important to get rid of dirt, bacteria, and other pollutants from your skin. However, there are various types of cleansers available that suit certain skin types.

A common mistake that most people make is they use any cleanser, regardless of whether or not it suits their skin type. For instance, someone prone to breakouts might use a heavy or creamy facial cleanser that increases oil production and lead to acne breakouts. Thus, the safest option is to opt for organic skincare products, such as an all-natural cleanser, as they are free from harsh chemicals.

2. Exfoliator 

Exfoliation is an important step in your skincare routine, but it can be quite intimidating for those who are just starting off their beauty routine and are unaware of what exactly an exfoliator does. In simple words, an exfoliator can be any product or device that helps remove dead skin cells from your face or any other body part.

Physical exfoliators employ mechanical force to remove the dead skin cells from the surface of the skin. Chemical exfoliators, such as glycolic or salicylic acid, break and dissolve the bonds between dead skin cells using chemical force. Either way, once the dead skin cells shed off, it leaves behind a new layer of youthful and radiant skin.

Exfoliators also open up the pores of your skin to allow their content to come up and shed off from the skin surface, which helps prevent acne and inflammation. Since most chemical exfoliators are mild acids, they help lower the pH levels of your skin and kill harmful bacteria.

However, you must consider your skin type before deciding on the type of exfoliator to add to your skincare routine. Oily skin will benefit from using exfoliators containing salicylic acid as they prevent acne breakouts. Combination skin should opt for slow and mild exfoliation to avoid testing the boundaries of skin sensitivities. Additionally, those with dry or sensitive skin should avoid exfoliating altogether since it can cause excessive dryness.

3. Treatment Products

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These products are meant to target and address specific skin concerns, such as dark spots, hyperpigmentation, fine lines, inflammation, acne, and signs of aging. The FDA has approved these treatment products since they are highly potent but are only safe to use when recommended by a dermatologist. Treatment products include various gels, creams, lotions, serums, solutions and medicated facial pads.

The kind of treatment product you require depends on your skin concerns. The most common active ingredients that treatment products contain include retinoids, such as adapalene and tretinoin that help deal with wrinkles and other aging signs; salicylic acid for acne; and topical steroids for inflammation and skin allergies. Vitamin C, coupled with other growth factors, are also found in anti-aging treatments.

Do not start using a treatment on your own. If you have been  experiencing a persistent skin condition, visit your dermatologist for a consultation first to find out the root cause of the issue you’re dealing with and how you can address it.

4. Serum

Serums are concentrated solutions that typically contain antioxidants that help fight free radical damage. They also contain anti-aging ingredients, such as retinols, to stimulate the production of collagen. A Vit C serum penetrates deep inside the skin and hydrates it from beneath, making it appear youthful and plump. Ideally, you should use your serum after washing your face with a facial cleanser and before your moisturizer. The Advanced Anti-Aging Vitamin C serum by ML Delicate Beauty is the best vitamin C serum for your face as it not only helps keep acne and acne scars at bay and reduces aging signs.

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5. Face Oil

Facial oil is loaded with nutrients that build a resilient and protective layer on your skin, regardless of your skin type. They are hydrating for your skin, which makes them especially useful for those who have dry skin. The most commonly-added ingredients in face oil are vitamin E and argan oil due to their naturally hydrating properties that can tackle every skin type’s concerns.

Incorporating face oils into a skincare routine can be highly beneficial, particularly for enhancing skin hydration, elasticity, and overall radiance. Face oils are concentrated blends of natural oils extracted from plants, seeds, and nuts, and they are rich in essential fatty acids, vitamins, and antioxidants. These components are crucial for strengthening the skin's lipid barrier, aiding in moisture retention, and protecting the skin from environmental stressors.

Unlike traditional moisturizers that primarily lock in existing moisture, face oils provide deeper nourishment and are particularly effective at combating dryness, flakiness, and fine lines. They can be especially beneficial in evening routines, where they work overnight to repair and rejuvenate the skin.

Additionally, face oils can be tailored to various skin types; for example, lighter oils like argan or squalane are great for oily or acne-prone skin, as they offer hydration without clogging pores, while richer oils like marula or rosehip are ideal for dry or mature skin, providing intense moisture and anti-aging benefits. It's important to apply face oil after water-based products and before heavier creams to ensure optimal absorption and effectiveness. With their luxurious texture and potent benefits, face oils can elevate a skincare routine, offering a simple yet indulgent way to maintain healthy, glowing skin.

You need to use only two to three drops of your face oil to hydrate your entire face. Also, those with acne-prone skin should opt for tea tree oil that helps with acne and vitamin C oil to help with acne scarring.

6. Sunscreen

You probably know what sunscreen is, but maybe you aren’t quite aware of how important it is to apply sunscreen daily. Sunscreen protects your skin from the sun’s damaging ultraviolet (UV) rays that cause premature aging, dark spots and even cancer.

Incorporating sunscreen into a daily skincare routine is crucial for protecting the skin from the harmful effects of UV radiation, which include premature aging, sunburns, and an increased risk of skin cancer. A broad-spectrum sunscreen, which shields the skin from both UVA and UVB rays, should be a staple in everyone's skincare arsenal, regardless of skin tone or climate. UVA rays are responsible for aging the skin, causing wrinkles and sunspots, while UVB rays are associated with sunburn; both contribute to the risk of skin cancer. Sunscreen not only prevents these damages but also aids in maintaining an even skin tone by preventing the formation of sunspots and hyperpigmentation.

For effective protection, it's recommended to use a sunscreen with at least SPF 30 and to reapply every two hours, especially after sweating or swimming. Modern formulations offer a range of textures from lightweight, non-greasy lotions to tinted creams, catering to different skin types and preferences. Some even include added skincare benefits like hydration, antioxidants, or a matte finish suitable for oily skin. Incorporating sunscreen into a daily routine, even on cloudy days or when indoors, as UV rays can penetrate windows, is a simple yet vital step towards preserving the skin's health and appearance long-term.

Sunscreen isn’t something that you use once in a while when going to the beach or before playing outdoor sports; it’s an integral part of your daily skincare routine despite the season. Whether you’re stepping out of your house during summer or are going out during the winter season when the sun is hidden behind the clouds, sunscreen is vital!

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7. Moisturizer

A moisturizer is a skincare staple. If you want to keep your skin looking younger for a long time, you need to moisturize from head to toe! While it’s imperative that you moisturize your skin during winters, you need to maintain the same routine during summers as well.

Whether you have dry, oily or combination skin, moisturizing your skin is vital. However, the consistency of the moisturizer varies according to skin type. While those with oily skin need to use a light and liquid-y moisturizer, those with dry skin need a heavy cream-based moisturizer.

Since there are many moisturizers available for various skin types, it can be confusing to find the perfect one. If you want your skin to be more hydrated, opt for a moisturizer containing hyaluronic acid or glycerin. Moreover, if you want to keep your skin hydrated while preventing acne and aging signs, opt for a moisturizer that contains retinol like the Retinol Moisturizing Face Cream by ML Delicate Beauty.

A good moisturizer is an indispensable part of any skincare routine, playing a vital role in maintaining the skin's hydration, elasticity, and barrier function. Moisturizers work by trapping and sealing moisture in the skin, preventing dryness and dehydration, which can lead to a host of skin issues, including flakiness, itching, and even accentuation of fine lines and wrinkles.

They come in various forms, such as creams, lotions, and gels, each formulated to cater to different skin types – heavier creams are ideal for dry skin that requires more intense hydration, while lighter lotions or gel-based moisturizers are suitable for oily or acne-prone skin as they provide necessary hydration without clogging pores or exacerbating oiliness. Many modern moisturizers also contain active ingredients like hyaluronic acid for enhanced hydration, niacinamide for skin barrier repair and anti-inflammatory benefits, or ceramides to reinforce the skin's natural barrier and retain moisture.

For best results, moisturizer should be applied to clean skin, after cleansing and toning, and before sunscreen in the morning or more intensive treatments at night. Regular use of a suitable moisturizer can help keep the skin balanced, smooth, and healthy, effectively preventing premature aging and keeping the skin looking youthful and radiant.

8. Toner

A toner is a great skincare product to include in your skincare routine, but it isn’t for everyone. Toners help reduce excess traces of makeup and other residue from the skin and shrinks pores, helping your skin restore its natural pH balance. This is vital since our pH levels suffer due to the use of soap and other chemicals, which leads to an increase in oil production and possible breakouts. Since toners can be a little harsh, those with sensitive skin should avoid using it or use an alcohol-free toner.

Toner is an often underestimated but essential step in a comprehensive skincare routine, serving multiple purposes that enhance the overall health and appearance of the skin. Traditionally used after cleansing to remove any residual makeup, dirt, or impurities, modern toners do much more. They balance the skin's pH level, which can be disrupted during cleansing, and prepare the skin for better absorption of subsequent skincare products like serums and moisturizers.

The right toner can help in minimizing the appearance of pores, providing additional cleansing for oily or acne-prone skin, and adding a layer of protection against environmental impurities. Many toners are infused with active ingredients tailored to specific skin concerns: hydrating toners often contain ingredients like hyaluronic acid or glycerin, ideal for dry or dehydrated skin, while toners for oily or acne-prone skin may include salicylic acid or witch hazel to control excess oil and prevent breakouts.

For sensitive skin, alcohol-free and soothing toners with ingredients like aloe vera or chamomile can be particularly beneficial. Incorporating a toner into your daily skincare routine, applied with a cotton pad or patted in with the hands after cleansing, can lead to more refined, hydrated, and healthy-looking skin, making it a crucial step not to be skipped.

9. Face Mask

There are various types of masks available in the market that suit different skin types. While some masks hydrate your skin, others dry it and even brighten it up. However, a mask isn’t something that should be used on a daily basis. It is best to use it once a week.

Incorporating face masks into a skincare routine offers a targeted approach to addressing specific skin concerns and provides an opportunity for deep skin nourishment and relaxation. Face masks come in various formulations such as clay, cream, sheet, or peel-off, each designed to cater to different skin needs. Clay masks are excellent for detoxifying and purifying, making them ideal for oily and acne-prone skin as they can absorb excess oil and draw out impurities.

Hydrating masks, often formulated with ingredients like hyaluronic acid or glycerin, are perfect for dry or dehydrated skin, providing intense moisture and plumping the skin. For those aiming to brighten and even out skin tone, masks containing vitamin C, niacinamide, or alpha hydroxy acids can be effective.

Additionally, sheet masks, soaked in a concentrated serum, offer a convenient and mess-free option, delivering active ingredients directly to the skin. Using a face mask once or twice a week can complement daily skincare routines by providing an extra boost of care, addressing specific skin concerns more intensively. They not only improve the skin's overall health and appearance but also offer a moment of self-care and relaxation, contributing to a holistic approach to skincare and wellness.

10. Eye Cream

Eye creams are formulated to target specific eye area concerns, such as wrinkles, puffiness and dark circles. There are certain eye creams that deal with multiple issues at once. The most common ingredients that eye creams contain include antioxidants, hyaluronic acid and peptides.

Eye cream is a specialized skincare product designed specifically for the delicate area around the eyes, and its inclusion in a skincare routine can significantly help in addressing concerns unique to this area. The skin around the eyes is thinner and more prone to dryness, fine lines, puffiness, and dark circles, making it require more targeted care.

Eye creams are formulated with specific ingredients to tackle these issues: they often contain hydrating elements like hyaluronic acid to plump and smooth the skin, caffeine to reduce puffiness and tighten the skin, and retinol or peptides to address fine lines and boost collagen production. Some eye creams also contain brightening agents like vitamin C or niacinamide to combat dark circles. The application of an eye cream should be gentle, using the ring finger to lightly tap the product around the orbital bone.

This not only helps with absorption but also prevents pulling or tugging of the skin, which can exacerbate fine lines. Regular use of an eye cream, both morning and night, can help in keeping the eye area hydrated, reducing the appearance of aging signs, and maintaining a fresh, youthful look. This makes it an essential step in a comprehensive skincare routine, particularly as one ages and the skin around the eyes requires more specialized care.

Now that you’re aware of the various skincare products, you need to establish a good skincare regimen that benefits your skin type!

What skin products do you use in your daily skincare routine? Let’s talk about it!



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About Author:
Christine Wright | Beauty Expert | Esthetician | Blogger
Christine Wright is a trusted beauty expert and an esthetician who is loved by editors and bloggers. She is a prolific writer on the topics of natural, chemical-free skin and body care. She also does reviews on store brand beauty products, with fairness and a real point-of-view. She is well-known of creating products for specific skin types, especially to those with ultra-sensitive faces.
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Opinions expressed are those of the writer.

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