Skip the BS: A Simple Skincare Routine for Everyone

Guys, please just don’t use 2-in-1 body and face wash.

(A screenshot of a video uploaded by @fentyskin of Fenty Skin ambassador @seangarrette)

American culture may be the forefront of a lot of industries: movies, music, military funding. But we’re definitely so behind when it comes to skincare. Korea takes the cake by a landslide on this one. 

Many people look to Korea to see what is new or innovative in the industry. Generally speaking,  it’s usually at least a good five years ahead of us in this field.

The most interesting thing about skincare and the culture that surrounds it in Korea is the fact that men consider it to be simply hygiene, much like brushing their teeth or putting on deodorant. However, in the United States, when most people look at a guy putting on some moisturizer, or even WORSE a serum, all of a sudden he becomes “too high-maintenance”.

We have many reasons to thank for this. We can sit here and blame toxic masculinity, societal expectations (or lack of an expectation to care), or the fact that most skincare products are thrown into the “beauty” category and marketed mainly towards women. I could go on. 

However, it is simpler to just state the obvious: we all have skin, regardless of gender. Hence, it is important to take care of your skin, as it is the largest organ in our body and our first line of defense. I don’t think I even have to say it at this point, but SKINCARE IS FOR EVERYBODY.

The key to a good and effective skincare routine is focusing on quality and purpose over quantity. You really don’t need more than four to five products in your skincare routine. As long as you’re doing these three to four basic steps with good products.

If you don’t know where to start, here is a no BS skincare routine that will work for anyone: 

1) You Need A Bomb Cleanser

This step is definitely one of the most important ones (after SPF, of course) in order to get off the nasty stuff (bacteria from your fingers, air pollution, etc) that builds up in your pores throughout the day. Even though we’re not really going out and about during quarantine, this step is especially important for people who exercise or play sports. I find it easiest to keep my cleanser in the shower since my face is already wet when I am in there and it keeps me from forgetting. 

For those with normal to dry skin: 

I’d recommend the La Roche Posay Toleraine Hydrating Gentle Facial Cleanser.

Because of my dry skin, this is one of my personal go-to face washes. It leaves my skin feeling super soft without giving me that tight or overly-dry feeling that other cleansers have given me. It’s formulated with glycerin (helps hydrate the skin) and niacinamide (regulates sebum to ensure you are not too oily or dry), which both help hydrate the skin and reduce sensitivity. 

Lastly, the price is AMAZING for the amount of product you get and it is available, along with the rest of the La Roche line, at most drugstores.

For those with normal to oily skin: 

I would recommend the La Roche Posay Toleraine Purifying Foaming Face Wash

This is basically like the previous product’s sister, but for those on the oilier side of the skin spectrum. It’s formulated with glycerin and niacinamide, and has the same drugstore accessibility and affordable price point. These two are both good no BS options that will assure you get your bang for your buck.  

Price for both: $14.99

2) Use a treatment to tackle a specific issue in your skin

 This step is probably the most optional part of the routine. It targets dark spots, large pores and just does a little extra to nourish your skin. This can be done with a hydrating toner, a brightening serum, or an acne-fighting treatment just to name some. You’ll want to do this right after you cleanse your skin 

To reduce breakouts or the look of pores: 

I would recommend the Paula's Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant. The main ingredient — salicylic acid — is a chemical exfoliant used to remove dead skin cells, as well as unclogging and shrinking pores. I’ve personally noticed my pores getting smaller because of this product, it’s actually kinda crazy. It also comes in a mini travel size if you want to give it a try without having to commit to the full size. 

Price: Usually sold at $29.50 / 4 oz. but is now on sale for $23.60

To add some extra hydration: 

I’d The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5. The main ingredient sodium hyaluronate (a form of hyaluronic acid), is draws in moisture from the environment to keep your skin hydrated. It’s also formulated with B5 to help further soothe and nourish your skin.