As the founder & formulation expert of a clean beauty brand, I often get asked multitude of questions from my peers regarding my radiant & youthful skin and how I am able to maintain it with being a full time working mom to a 1.5 years old toddler. I will be very honest with you all, I rarely go to salons (2-3 times in a year). Mostly, because I can't even take out 1 hour from my hectic schedule and dedicate it to a sitting session doing nothing.
This was a pressing issue for me throughout my career. I wanted to find out whether I can get a 'Glass Skin' with a consistent & effective simple skincare routine, without having to visit salons on a regular basis. Don't get me wrong. I would absolutely love going to a salon and get myself pampered, but I don't have time. Between my super hectic & demanding work hours and taking care of my toddler, I hardly find any 'me' time anymore. And hence, began my quest for that perfect & quick skin care routine that would help me achieve the best version of my skin.
I am sure, just like me there are plenty of women out there who face similar challenges and are looking for answers. So, below are the few pointers from my 5 years of extensive research & testing in skincare formulations, that have helped me achieve the best version of my skin.
Step 1- Cleanser: Always start your skincare routine with a clean skin. I cannot emphasise on this enough. Keeping your skin cleansed is the most important step towards keeping unwanted acne and clogged pores at bay. Any mild sulphate free foaming cleanser is fine. Double cleansing is recommended if you are cleaning off makeup from your face. Start with a makeup cleansing balm/oil. Massage your way through the entire face, including your eyes. Wipe off with a wet cotton cloth. Follow with a gentle sulphate free foaming cleanser. Double cleansing ensures that all the oil & dirt have been removed from the face.
Step 2- Toner/Essence: A good alcohol free toner with mild & hydrating actives helps prep the skin for the upcoming steps and better absorption of products into the skin.
Step 3- Serum: This is a VERY important step. Including a right & effective serum in your skincare routine makes a huge difference. Serums are very high in active ingredients concentration and they actually help in giving your visible results much faster. Always start with a serum that has low-medium concentration of actives. Once your skin starts getting used to the actives, you can up their concentration. Some of the most popular & effective actives used in serums:
- Bakuchiol (Natural Retinol alternative): Retinol is known to give you an amazingly radiant & flawless skin. But, it comes with a cost. Not everyone's skin reacts happily to retinol. Retinol might cause acne breakouts & irritation to many people. It's equally effective & completely natural alternative is BAKUCHIOL. Bakuchiol is a wonder active that is suitable for all skin types, is equally potent as retinol and it is 100% natural & plant based. It's used at a concentration of 1-2% in serums.
- Niacinamide (aka the All Starts Actives): The most loved active out there! It is great for skin brightening, depigmentation, skin hydration and cellular turnover for a brighter & smoother skin. All of the above, and suitable for all skin types. This Vit-B3 complex helps you get a luminous glow instantaneously. Start with a 5% concentration serum, you can safely go upto 10% concentration once your skin gets used to it.
- Hyaluronic Acid (aka The Holy Grail of Hydration): By far, the best & safest active for anti-ageing! The holy grail of hydration, Hyaluronic Acid is capable of holding 1,000 times its weight in water. It delivers intense hydration and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Instantly quenches skin's hydration thirst to breathe new life to dry, rough & dull skin.
- AHA (Mild Fruit Acids): Mild exfoliating acids extracted from fruits that work gently to remove dead skin cells surface to reveal a brighter and softer skin. They also help in reducing fine lines, wrinkles and dark spots.
Step 4- Moisturiser: Seal all the actives with a good moisturiser. The hydration and nourishment provided by a good moisturiser (suitable for your skin types) coupled with all the actives used in previous steps give a balanced concoction to skin for its great health! Hence the dewy, glowy radiance & a clear skin!
Step 5 - Sunscreen/Overnight Mask + Face Oil: This step is dependent on the AM/PM part of the day. If you're stepping out in the Sun, ALWAYS wear your sunscreen! No amount of skincare will help you if you don't wear a good Sunscreen with atleast 30 SPF! However, during your bedtime, follow all the above steps with an overnight mask or a face oil. You can alternate between both the products every other day. An overnight mask actually does a slow facial, exfoliation & provides extra nourishment to your face so that you wake with a red carpet ready skin! Whereas, a face oil provides extra moisturisation to your face for an extra soft & bouncy skin! I prefer alternating between both the products. You can try and see what routine works the best for your skin.
I have curated a sample 5-Step Skincare Routine to help you understand the flow better:
Hope this easy 5 step routine helps you guys!
Try it out and let us know in the comments section below.