How to Create a Skincare Routine That Actually Works
As you guys are well aware, I’ve become increasingly obsessed with clean and natural skincare and beauty, so during our babymoon, I read The French Beauty Solution per Jess’ recommendation. I ended up reading it cover to cover in just two and a half days! Not only was it an easy read, but all the tips shared in it made it impossible to put down—of course I want to know what the French do to look so effortlessly beautiful! Don’t we all!?
After I finished it, I spent some time thinking about my current skincare routine. My biggest issue was consistency. Some weeks I’d be on top of it—you know, cleanse, exfoliate, mask and hydrate properly, then the next week, I’d get busy and let it slip. Before I knew it, my skin looked parched, splotchy and broken out again.
Just as roller coaster dieting doesn’t work, neither does roller coaster skincare routines. They real key to gorgeous, glowing skin everyday? Consistency, high-quality products (not necessarily super expensive ones) and a streamlined routine.
In the past, I’d try a new products for a while and if I didn’t see results quickly, it’d get tossed in the back of a drawer, never to be seen again. One point that the author, Mathilde Thomas who also founded Caudalíe points out is that Americans want instant gratification and that most products, even the very best ones, take time to fully work their magic.
So, with that knowledge in mind, I set out to create a new beauty routine over the past month. I wanted to see if a) I could keep up with a more strict skincare routine for a month, and b) if it made a difference in how my skin looked. Oh, and when I say strict, I don’t mean more intense or more steps, just simply following the steps I normally take in a regimented manner. That meant the same morning and nighttime skincare routine, as well a weekly skincare routine for things like exfoliation, masks, washing my hair and moisturizing my body.
I spent an evening with a cup of herbal tea, Mathilde suggests this frequently in the book, and scribbled down my ideal beauty routine and started practicing it immediately. Here’s how to create a beauty routine for yourself that actually works.
How to Create a Skincare Routine That Works
Know Your Skin Type
If you don’t already know your skin type, it’s time to figure it out. The most common are normal, oily/acne-prone (that’s me), sensitive/dry and aging. Every skin type needs different things. If you have oily skin, you won’t need as much moisture as someone with sensitive/dry or aging skin, so you’ll want to pick products accordingly.
Make it Manageable
Don’t make your routine so complicated that you give up after a few days. At the very least, your morning skincare routine should include these steps: cleanse, tone, moisturize, eye cream, and SPF. Your nighttime routine should include these steps: remove makeup (if you wear any), cleanse, tone, serum, moisturize, eye cream. Note that removing your makeup does not count as cleansing! If you only do one step, you’re leaving lots of residue and bacteria on your face that can lead to breakouts.
Write it Down
Because I love lists, I wrote down my morning and evening skincare routines, complete with steps and which products to use, though I have switched out my serums and morning creams—I told you I was bad with consistency! I also created a weekly routine that included masks and scheduled down time. That was hard, but oh, my gah, so worth it! I also wrote down my shower routine—including haircare, exfoliating the rest of my body and moisturizing my skin. I forget to put lotion on so often because I’m tired after my shower—not anymore!
I used to love my night time skincare routine. It was my time to unwind and relax at the end of the day, but I was breaking out quite a bit (thanks pregnancy hormones) in July that my beloved routine was becoming a point of frustration and stress through my day. I’m learning to just accept where I am and be okay with the changes. Knowing that I’m making strides in creating a better skincare routine keeps me hopeful so that I can enjoy it again. Dimming the lights and putting on my robe make it feel more like a spa treatment and make it easier to enjoy the process.
Go Beyond Your Skincare Products
Your skincare routine should extend beyond your natural beauty cabinet. What you put in your body is just as important. Make sure to eat healthy, clean foods and add supplements like Vital Proteins Collagen. I’ve raved about this stuff on Insta Stories before, and if you haven’t tried it, I highly recommend it. I just put in a single pack or scoop into my coffee and it completely dissolves. Collagen helps our skin maintain elasticity which makes you look more youthful. Not only does it have a 10 grams of collage, but it also has 9g of protein! I haven’t been eating as much animal protein lately and having this extra protein is great for my diet.
Make Necessary Changes
The point of this was to not make too many changes and let my skin adjust to one routine over a month, but at the end of the month, I think it’s smart to take a look at what’s working and what’s not. Is your face drier? More oily? Maybe you’re putting on too much moisturizer or not enough. Make adjustments and continue until you find what works for you!
One month later and I have to say, I’m pretty pleased! Not only was sticking to the routine easier than I thought, it made my mornings and nights a breeze because I didn’t have to think about it. I masked and exfoliated pretty regularly, my skin is much clearer and the rest of my body is better hydrated too. For this month, I really tried to stick with the same products, but I did made a few switches every once and a while. At night, I’d change up my serum once or twice a week, and in the mornings I switched between using Countermatch and this Elemis Pro-Collagen day cream. I love trying new products and brands, so I know I’ll test new ones in the future, but I’m trying to test them longer than just a few days! It’s too fun not too! But, it was a good experiment!
Do you have a skincare and beauty routine that you stick to religiously? What steps are the most important to yours? Any brands or products you swear by? I’d love to hear any tricks you use!