The New Year is the perfect time to make resolutions and set new goals - and that includes your skincare routine. We’ve rounded up some simple skincare resolutions to help keep your skin clear and bright, this year and every year.
When it comes to New Year resolutions, the trick is to set realistic, manageable goals. There is little point in making generalized declarations such as, “I want better skin” without breaking down that goal into specific, achievable actions.
Your age and skin type can help determine what your skincare goals should be. For example, if you’re in your 30s and your skin is starting to show the first signs of aging, you should start using an anti-aging serum. If you’re in your 50s and have noticed that your hands dry out more often, you should add a deeply moisturizing hand cream to your daily routine.
Irrelevant of your skin type, age or gender, below are some easy-to-follow skincare habits that you can add to your skincare resolution list for the new year.
Clean out your beauty cabinet
Perhaps you love trying new products and have accumulated a collection of creams, lotions and serums. Or perhaps you have a hard time throwing out products that didn’t work for you but you hang on to them for a rainy day. Either way, it’s time to take a hard look at what’s inside your beauty cabinet and clear out products that you never use or that have expired. Check the label for the special icon of a small jar with a number inside it. This number indicates how long a product can be used for after opening. You can use a permanent marker to write the date you opened each product directly onto the label. That way you always know when something is about to expire.
Wear sunscreen every day
This is the most important resolution you can make for this new year and every new year. Come rain or shine, sunscreen is essential for protecting your skin from harmful UV light that can cause long-term skin damage, such as dryness, fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots, sunburn and even cancer. Remember to apply sunscreen with a SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of at least 30 every day, even in the winter, to your face, neck and decolletage. Covering up other exposed skin areas is also wise, such as forearms and the backs of your hands.
Remove make-up every night
This new year, take the time to correctly cleanse your face of make-up every night before bed. Sleeping with make-up on is a sin many younger women are guilty of, but that’s what New Year resolutions are for. Throughout the day, your skin is exposed to cosmetics, air pollution, free radicals and other external aggressors that can clog pores and damage the skin barrier, causing premature aging, fine lines, wrinkles and spots. What’s more, your skin goes into repair mode while you sleep. Removing make-up and cleansing your face correctly will get rid of dirt, grime and cosmetic residue and it will help your skin work on rejuvenating and repairing itself overnight.
Moisturize both morning and night
Your skin needs moisture to remain smooth, healthy and refreshed. Moisturizing twice a day ensures your skin keeps moisture levels at an optimum. In the morning, apply face cream after cleansing for a re-hydrated morning look. At night, apply after cleansing to restore moisture lost throughout the day and to assist your skin in its overnight renewal process. Slightly damp skin is most receptive to moisture, as it helps locks in hydration for a dewy look. Choose a cream that suits your skin type, with antioxidants and Hyaluronic Acid, for healthier, plumper skin.
Exfoliate and mask a couple times a month
Exfoliating is an important part of any skincare regime, and, in this case, a little bit goes a long way. Weekly exfoliation helps get rid of dead skin cells, grime and dirt, revealing skin that looks fresh and bright. Using a facial mask a couple times a month (or depending on your needs) will also help tackle specific skin concerns. Masks come in many forms, such as clay, hydrogel, sheet, mud, peel off, cream, etc., and there are many to choose from: hydrating, cleansing, exfoliating, brightening, clarifying, soothing, repairing – just pick the one that suits your skin needs.
Wash your make-up brushes
You remove make-up every night before bed so why undo all that hard work with something as easily resolvable as dirty make-up brushes? Aim to wash your most-used brushes once a week to avoid bacterial build-up. Wash them with warm water and a touch of baby shampoo or other non-irritating soap, rinse thoroughly and dry well with a clean towel or blow-dryer. Not only will this help keep harmful microorganisms away from your skin, but it will also help your brushes last longer.
Drink plenty of water, get enough sleep
Your whole body requires water to function properly and that includes your skin. Drinking water helps flush out toxins, reduce puffiness and the appearance of wrinkles. Make sure to drink about 2 litres a day, alongside at least 8 hours of sleep. Sleep is essential for a well-functioning body. Inadequate or poor sleep is often an overlooked cause for many health-related issues, including puffy skin, wrinkles and fine lines. Make quality sleep a priority this year and your mind, body and skin will thank you for it.