The Beauty Dept / An Expert Guide to Mixing and Matching Your Skincare
WORDS BY MARCIA KILGORE
An Expert Guide to Mixing and Matching Your Skincare
As someone who gets asked for skincare advice a thousand times a week - my approach has evolved to incorporate a Swiss level of precision. Here’s how I systematically tackle the quest for the perfect complexion.
First, if you have a skincare issue that is temporary, a flareup, or it comes and goes...
I’ll go through a litany of questions, trying to find the root of the problem while eliminating any out-of-the-box causality. From practical experience as a beauty expert, the sorts of questions you should be asking are... Any lifestyle changes? Leave-on hair products or new conditioners? Hormone shifts? Are you or have you recently been breastfeeding? Staph infections? New nail polishes or cuticle creams (which interestingly are often the culprit when it comes to unexplained red patches on your eyelids)? And if the problem is on your hands or your body, is there any new furniture in your house? New rugs, anything recently delivered with a Scotchguard finish? Any recent vaccinations? Do your hands itch when you fill the gas tank in your car? And then WHERE is the issue most pronounced? Of course, if there is anything causing you any concerns, consider consulting a medical professional.
The large majority...
of people’s skincare worries related to clogging, breakouts, pustules, pimples, and blackheads are the result of hair - coated in some kind of comedogenic styling or conditioning product - sweeping against your face. If you’re clogging up, grab a tube of Fruitizyme Five Minute Facial, use it every three or four days, while tying your hair back, to see if it’s an easy fix.
Location, location, location.
Once ‘hair products’ have been eliminated as potential culprits, Chinese face mapping may help identify whether an under or overactive system in the body is to blame.
For followers of Chinese face mapping, the chin, jawline and neck may indicate issues with hormones, sugar or candida. The cheeks represent your lungs. Puffy undereyes could be your kidneys telling you something. And the big vertical line between your eyebrows indicates your liver. Constant inflammation, acne or redness on any of these areas can be a signpost to the state of your internal health.
The second biggest category of questions I get are related to sensitive skin, redness, rosacea skin, hormonal acne, how to solve chronic dryness, plumping dehydrated complexions, and what to do about fine lines and wrinkles.
The most effective skincare ingredients do the same jobs, in slightly different ways. And 99% of the time, skin issues can be solved by combinations of the same 4 categories of ingredients.
1. Keratolytics (for exfoliating and regenerating, smoothing, unclogging). These include Retinols, Retinoids, exfoliating peptides, fruit acids, alpha and beta hydroxy acids, lactic acid, smoothing enzymes, and mechanical scrub particles.
2. Moisturizers/Hydration Enhancers (to hydrate, soothe and for barrier support). These include nut and fruit oils and butters, glycerine, squalane and squalene, lanolin, hyaluronic acids, moisture peptides, Vitamin E acetate, Sodium PCA, seaweeds and any number of oil-in-water or water-in-oil combinations.
4. Antimicrobials/Bacteria fighters (for breakouts caused by bacteria) like tea tree oil, biosurfactants, sulphates, stearates, oleic acids, and plant soaps, clays, and salicylic acid.
In Part 2, TWO basic skincare rules that make gorgeous skin easy...
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