Daily Skin Care Routine to Obtain and Maintain Beautiful, Clear Skin
The best way to maintain the results of your facials, or to get clear skin without facials, is with top-notch care at home. If you're on a budget and don't think you can get clear skin without spending a lot, know that the best place to spend your money is going to be your skin care routine at home, not facials. It is also recommended that you give yourself a facial once or twice a week.
Not everyone needs all of these steps, so please read them carefully.
(If you don't wear makeup, skip this paragraph)
Before you begin, remove makeup with an makeup remover that can be used for both eye makeup and the rest of the face. If you use waterproof mascara, mineral oil can be used for your eyes, but the rest of your makeup should be removed with a cleanser or makeup remover meant to remove makeup. RULE OF THUMB: Makeup removers are designed to remove synthetic material; cleansers are designed to remove non-synthetic material. A facial cleanser that can remove makeup will say so on the label. If you use a regular cleanser to remove makeup and then wipe excess away with a towel or washcloth, you can cause tiny white bumps on your upper cheeks called Milia. These are impossible to remove by yourself and can get quite unsightly. After removing mascara, your remover can be used with your hands to remove the rest of your makeup, like a pre-cleanse. Rinse and proceed with Step 1 as follows:
Step 1 : Wash your face and neck thoroughly with cleanser using your fingers or a soft cloth/sponge twice a day. Rinse thoroughly using tepid or cool water, never hot, never cold. Pat dry with a towel without rubbing.
Step 2 : Use toner every time you wash, spraying 5-6 sprays directly onto the face, or spray on hands and apply to the entire face, twice a day (do not rinse, do not blot, do not wait for it to dry). If you are using a toner containing Salicylic Acid, use cotton-rounds, without rubbing. Your skin should be left damp from the toner while you apply your next step. If using an acne remedy, this is where you can apply it as per instructions you're given.
Step 3 : Repair sun damage, reduce redness, heal blemishes and/or repair skin damage with a serum twice a day. Apply with entire hands, massaging in well.
Step 4 : Exfoliate (remove dead skin cells) with Alpha Hydroxy Acid as advised by Daniela. If your acne condition does not need AHAs, using an exfoliating mask is highly recommended - see How To Give Yourself a Facial at Home.
Step 5 : Hydrate and protect : In the morning use a hydrating SPF lotion. If your skin is red, chapped or sensitive, follow with a protective lipid replacement serum. In the evening, use a hydrating nighttime lotion designed for your skin type and acne issues. A separate nighttime lotion is recommended since it is not a good idea to use something your skin does not need while it's rejuvenating itself while you sleep (such as SPF).
Remember, all skin care products, whether cleanser or lotion or creme, should be applied using your entire hands - fingers together with palms - and not just the pads of your fingers. Using only your fingers may look nice on TV, but it doesn't get product everywhere it needs to go, and you can end up wasting product.
Watch this video to learn how best to apply a lotion :
If you tend toward redness, you can first warm your hands by rubbing them vigorously together, then apply product to your hands and gently pat the product onto your face.
And that's it!