A good daily skincare routine is more than skin deep. The function of our skin is critical to our physical wellness. It’s the first defense against external pollutants, ultraviolet rays, bacteria, and physical injury. It generates vitamin D, supports our sensory systems, helps us retain moisture, and regulates body temperature.
Our skin is an indicator of internal health, alerting us to allergies, stress, and disease. It’s closely tied to our emotions (blush much?). There’s no getting around the fact that the way we feel about our skin is interconnected to our self confidence and mental wellness.
For these reasons and more, establishing a daily skincare routine is essential for self care. But with the countless products and the loads of information floating around on the internet, many don’t even know where to begin.
RejuvenationMD’s Bellingham Patient Care Director & Master Esthetician, Julene Beeson, breaks down the basics of a healthy morning and evening skincare routine that anyone can follow. However, she strongly recommends consulting with an expert who can assess your skin type and recommend a tailored regime to maximize the benefits of daily care.
Nutrients for Healthy Skin
Which ingredients support healthy skin? Science heralds Vitamin C, D, E and A as essential vitamins to feed the skin. While eating foods rich in these vitamins and taking oral supplements supports the body, applying these vitamins topically is important to ensure the skin receives an adequate dose of these nutrients.
Vitamin D– protects the skin from inflammation, supports cellular health to reduce apoptosis, and supports the barrier of the skin, hastening wound healing.
Vitamin E– is a powerful antioxidant that helps combat UV damage. It’s anti-inflammatory and may protect the skin against environmental pollutants.
Vitamin C– also helps prevent UV damage and aids in collagen development that can help strengthen and repair damaged skin. Vitamin C can help brighten skin and it may also aid in moisture retention.
Vitamin A– is a retinol which promotes cellular turnover and stimulates cellular generation. It’s a treatment for acne and has also been shown to reduce hyperpigmentation, fine lines, and signs of aging.
When choosing skin care products, look for formulas concentrated with 15-20% of the vitamin for optimal benefits. Oral nutrients are delivered to our organs via our blood stream. Because our blood vessels exist in the dermis layer of the skin, the epidermis layer is last to receive the benefits of oral nutrients. That’s why topical applications of vitamins promote healthier skin.
Essential Skincare for Morning Routines
Cleanser should be a staple among your skincare products. The type of cleanser you need will be determined by your skin type. But if you don’t know whether you have oily, dry or combo skin, opt for a soap-free, fragrance-free, hypoallergenic, gentle cleanser. We’re fans of clean ingredients so avoid parabens, sodium lauryl sulfate, toluene (benzene), etc. These chemicals are linked to adverse health effects.
After cleansing, reach for an L-ascorbic acid serum containing 15-20% Vitamin C. As mentioned above, Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that protects cells from the free radical damage that promotes aging. A formula with 15-20% of Vitamin C will deliver more deeply into the skin for better results. L-ascorbic acid serum will give your skin an immediate noticeable glow, and regular use can help diminish the appearance of hyperpigmentation and sun damage. If your skin is on the sensitive side, use the serum every other or every two days until you build up a tolerance for it.
Did you know that pairing a Vitamin C serum with Vitamin E and sunscreen can increase protection against the sun? Sunscreens greater than SPF 50 do not offer that much more protection. However, combining a good Vitamin C and E serum with sunscreen will help create a potent anti-aging defense that can repair and reverse sun damage, while increasing protection against oxidative stress and UV rays.
After applying sunscreen, reach for a good moisturizer rich in ceramides, peptides and lipids to keep the good ingredients in and the environmental toxins out.
Essential Skincare for Evening Routines
Between 11pm and midnight the skin is in an active repair stage, called mitosis. Skin that’s not clean can’t breathe. And when it can’t breathe, it can’t repair itself which is why a night time regimen is critical for the health of the skin.
We know the importance of washing makeup off of our face before heading to bed, but makeup isn’t the only thing you’re washing away. At the end of the day, there are toxic environmental pollutants on our skin that should not be invited into the bedroom.
The list of chemicals will be dependent on where you spend most of your day. Typically, we come in contact with carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, particulate matter from cooking, PAHs, semi-volatile, and volatile organic compounds (SVOCs and VOCs) throughout the day.
So, when you’re done for the day, remove your makeup and reach for your gentle cleanser and wash those toxins away. After cleansing, apply a potent Vitamin D serum to strengthen the skin’s barrier. Next, apply a small amount of retinol, a derivative of Vitamin A. Retinol initiates cellular turnover, sloughing away dead skin cells, evening pigmentation, and stimulating new collagen development. Retinols are proven to smooth, thicken, and strengthen the skin. However, overuse can cause scaling, rash, and dryness so it’s important to consult an expert and use as directed.
Follow the retinol with a soothing eye cream. Gently dab it around the periorbital region and complete the routine with a vitamin-rich night time moisturizer to lock everything in.
Want Improvements in Your Skin? Be Consistent.
Healthier skin is within reach. RejuvenationMD is home to skin care experts who will review your current regimen and help guide you towards a personalized system that will help achieve your goals.
If you’re new to skin care, don’t expect to see results over night, or even after a week. Remember, it can take up to three weeks to establish a good habit. After a few months of maintaining a consistent routine, you’ll be rewarded with stronger, healthier skin, improved texture, and more even skin tone.
Schedule a consult today to learn how you can protect and improve your best asset– your skin!
RejuvenationMD is the premier aesthetic skin treatment and wellness center in Washington’s North Sound. Our award-winning practice is home to 3 female physicians, an ARNP, a registered nurse, and a team of master estheticians and patient care coordinators. Learn more online at www.RejuvenationMDMedSpa.com or call RejuvenationMD in Bellingham 360-685-8408 or Burlington 360-982-2620 today.