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 • Beauty  • Skin Minimalism: Why I Don’t Believe In Excessive Skincare

Skin Minimalism: Why I Don’t Believe In Excessive Skincare

Skincare is essential, there is no doubt about that. In addition to giving you a great complexion, doing your skincare routine is also a great way to rewind and relax at the end of the day. However, I no longer believe in those obnoxious 10 or 15-step skincare routines. I used to be obsessed with having as many steps in my skincare routine as possible, and it only irritated my skin, drained my wallet, and made my life more complicated than it had to be.

I know that it can be fun. Skincare is also a hobby, after all. However, I am not the only one who believes that too many steps in your skincare routine are counterproductive. Dermatologists like Dr. Andrea Suarez (aka Dr. Dray on YouTube), Dr. Sam Ellis, and Dr. Shereene Idriss, all promote having simple but effective routines. You don’t need most of the products that the beauty industry is trying to sell you. A few actives, combined with a facial cleanser, moisturizer, and sunblock cream, will be more than enough.

Why is excessive skincare bad?

Keeping your face moisturized and cleansed is important, but overdoing it could cause irritation or breakouts. Using too many moisturizing products that are rich in lipids could congest your skin, leading to small little bumps, blackheads, and whiteheads. On the other hand, some people are using too many products with exfoliating acids and aren’t even aware of it. Exfoliating acids, such as AHAs and BHAs, are now found in cleansers, serums, essences, and moisturizers. But you shouldn’t use more than one exfoliating product in your skincare routine. And even then, you shouldn’t use that one product more than a couple of times a week. Over-exfoliation can lead to irritation and seriously damage your skincare barrier.

But even if you don’t experience any of these side effects, an excessive skincare routine with too many products could reduce the overall effectiveness of your actives. Let’s say you use a toner, three serums, one essence, and then retinol on top of that. It will be very hard for that retinol to truly penetrate into your skin and do the job that it is supposed to do. There are just too many barriers between your skin and that active ingredient. The same rule applies to other actives, such as vitamin C or exfoliants. Your skin would be perfectly content with just one water-based hydrating serum.

What should I do instead?

When I realized that a complex skincare routine wasn’t the right choice for me and my lifestyle, I decided to cut down on most of my products. You see, I am a black or white person. If I can’t use 15 products at once, then I will cut down to 2 or 3. However, that didn’t work for me either. I just love the whole process of applying my skincare. I put on some music, light a candle, and take that moment to truly clear my mind. So I tried my best to find some balance. I still love to try different products, but I don’t use all of them in the same routine.

For example, in the mornings, I just cleanse my face with water, follow that up with a vitamin C serum, and lock it all in with sunscreen. In the evenings, I switch things up a bit. Some nights are for exfoliating, others are for retinol, and I dedicate at least one night in my skincare routine to just giving my skin a break. That means I just double cleanse, use a toner and hydrating serum, and finish with a thick moisturizer. My skincare routines are simple, relatively quick, and most importantly, they work.


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