In my twenties, my ‘skincare routine’ consisted of the odd face wipe, a slick of moisturiser (when I remembered), and far too many nights spent sleeping in my mascara, waking up with panda eyes. I was lucky enough to have low-maintenance skin and consequently did the bare minimum to look presentable.
When I hit 30 that all changed. Almost overnight I woke up with dry, tight skin and those niggly fine lines that are all-too-present in harsh lighting. Inevitably, this was the catalyst for a skincare obsession, as I consumed beauty vlogs and racked up empties upon empties in my endeavour to reclaim happy skin. If you have skin issues, be sure to consult with a dermatologist that has undergone skin care professional training.
1. Cleanse morning and evening, without fail!
Clean skin is close to godliness and how you cleanse is key. Face wipes are a hard no – as skincare expert Caroline Hirons explains, all wipes really do is ‘move dirt around your face’. Caroline argues a flannel is the best piece of kit for the job – and I can vouch for this. Since cleansing with flannels, my weekly breakouts have all but disappeared. Keep a basket of eight or so clean flannels in your bathroom and machine wash, you can find these for as cheap as 25p in Wilkos and they’re much kinder to the environment than single-use wipes. Combine with a cleansing balm or milk and use hot water for a deep, pore-cleaning cleanse.
2. Inject moisture
Every skin type (even oily skin!) needs moisture. The miracle, moisture-boosting ingredient that transformed my skin is hyaluronic acid. I cannot hype this stuff up enough! If you’re unfamiliar, hyaluronic acid is a molecule that is naturally found in the body. With its gooey-like texture, once when applied to clean damp skin, this miracle ingredient moisturises, fills fine lines and protects. That plump and juicy skin your favourite skinfluencers boast? Most likely the work of hyaluronic acid.
I’ve recently tried and tested Institut Etherderm’s Intensive Hyaluronic cream, which has a creamy but easily absorbed texture and is loaded with the good stuff. After just a handful of uses, it’s quite incredible how visible the results are. I kept catching sight of my bare face in the gym mirror during my bi-weekly workout and marvelling at how dewy and alive my skin looks (and it wasn’t just gym sweat!). This is a real hero product for me.
I also like to use a face mask every three days or so for an extra boost of moisture. My dehydrated skin has been lapping up Institut Esthederm’s Intensive Hyaluronic Mask, which has a melty, creamy balm texture, and adds that extra juice that my skin craves.
3. SPF is for every day!
SPF isn’t just for summer, it’s for every day. A good SPF should be applied on top of your moisturiser before your make-up. Don’t be shy in your application – as beauty expert Caroline Hirons explains: ‘Make sure you apply it everywhere, including the back of your neck and the top of your ears… EARS! Even if you aren’t on holiday.’
4. Introduce an eye cream
Again, if there’s one tip that has really improved my skin, it’s bringing an eye cream into my routine, morning and evening. If you’re yet to invest in an eye cream, Institut Esthederm’s Intensive Hyaluronic Eye Serum is a great place to start. It’s a simple and beautifully effective hydrating eye formulation that plumps out fine lines, creating a smooth, non-greasy base, meaning your concealer will apply like a dream. A great tip from the beauty pros is to apply your eye cream first, before any serums. This allows the eye cream to sink in and do its work without interference from other lotions and potions.