(Daily) Using your fingertips, wash skin with a cleanser suitable for your skin type. Avoid using an abrasive washcloth or sponge, which may irritate. Rinse away cleanser with lukewarm water. Hot or cold water may cause flushing or irritation. If your face is irritated by water at any temperature, try using a soothing cream cleanser you can simply tissue off. Gently blot your face dry with a thick-pile cotton towel. Don’t rub skin, as this may cause irritation.
(Twice Weekly) Pour a quarter-sized amount of face scrub into the palm of your hand, and work it into your skin using an upward, circular motion. Use a gel-based scrub with fine grains to buff away dead skin without overdrying. Soak a face cloth in warm water and wipe the scrub away. Concentrate on areas where pores are most visible, such as the nose and cheeks. Avoid your eyes, nostrils and mouth. Exfoliation removes dead skin cells for a smoother appearance to make pores appear smaller. Men’s facial skin is thick and can be exfoliated twice a week. A face scrub is essential for three reasons, according to Ole Henriksen, founder of the eponymous skin care brand. “Firstly, it deeply cleanses the skin, dislodging build-up in the pores and helping to break up white heads. It also smooths and refines the skin’s texture, giving it a soft, supple look. And lastly, it enhances blood flow to the face, giving the appearance of a fresh glow,” explains Henriksen. Looking for a scrub that won’t wreak havoc on your face with harsh beads? Henriksen believes that jojoba beads are extremely gentle. “What you want to be sure of is that the beads are perfectly round spheres,” Henriksen adds.
(Weekly) Apply a thin layer of a mask to your face, avoiding the eye area, nostrils and mouth. Allow the mask to dry and remove it with warm water or peel it slowly if it is a peel off mask. Masks, unlike just exfoliating to rid the top layer of dead skin, deeply cleanse pores to remove embedded debris, and tighten pores once removed and some also allow the skin to soak up extra nutrients if they are made with added vitamins. Use a mask once or twice a week after cleansing and exfoliating.
(Not Necessary) Today most dermatologists agree toner isn’t necessary as a step unless you suffer from acne, but what can be helpful is to use a vitamin or hydrating facial mist during the day which can add some extra moisture to your face at the office or while running errands. This can be very good if you have used a serum or face cream with Hyaluronic acid. I highly recommend finding a product that has Hyaluronic acid in the ingredients. This added ingredient attracts and binds water within the cells of the skin and tissue underneath, literally acting like a sponge holding up to 1000 times its weight in moisture. So the mist really does help your skin when used with a product containing Hyaluronic acid. For a great article on why Toner isn’t really something you need for healthy and vibrant skin, check out beautifulwithbrains.com.
(Daily) Using a serum is the next step. Many people aren’t sure why serums should be used before using a face cream and the reason is that a serum is your go-to product to improve the overall look of your complexion. The active ingredient can bring antioxidants to the skin, restore cell growth, or help decrease pore size. But the one thing a serum doesn’t do, typically, is moisturize the skin.“Moisturizers have a base that allows them to stay on the surface to moisturize the outer portion of the skin, but a serum has a lipid-soluble base that allows the active ingredient to actually penetrate into the epidermis,” explains Dr. Lawrence Samuels, chief of dermatology at St. Luke’s Hospital and founder of the Rx Systems PF skincare line in the US. Think of serums as the nutrients and food your skin needs and then creams and moisturizers as the hydration-water to stay supple and protected. Use a pea sized amount of serum two minutes after you cleansed and toned on dry skin and not wet. Serums bind better to hydrated cells versus applying while the water is still on your face. Waiting two minutes means your face has had time to soak up water and prep skin for the serum.
(Daily) Finally, after three to five minutes apply your moisturizer. “Moisturizers help restore the keratin protein back to the skin, so they generally have a higher pH,” he said. “If you put on your serum then immediately put on your moisturizer, it can somewhat decrease the effectiveness of your serum.” It’s important to use face serums primarily at night, because UV rays and oxygen can cause them to oxidize — another reason to make sure you always keep a tight lid on your products.