Author- Neha Suradkar
Korean, Japanese and most South East Asian Women are blessed with the best skin and they are equally aggressive with the maintenance of their genetic gift. A year in Japan and two in Singapore taught me a lot about this 'Asian' skincare routine. The routine comprises of 10 steps... YES 10 STEPS done twice a day!! How impossible it could be for us when most of us are not able to follow the basic 3 step CTM (Cleansing-Toning-Moisturizing) routine! Skin care is made a significant part of daily routine from a very young age, while here we start thinking about our skin once we cross 30!!
Nevertheless, to educate ;) you all, let me tell you what this 10 step routine is
Makeup Removal- Cleanse- Exfoliate- Toner- Essence- Serum- Eye Cream- Moisturizer- Sun Protection/ Night Mask- Lip Balm
The significant part of this routine is Hydration, which plumps up the skin and makes it look younger. The other aspect is layering of products starting with lighter texture to heavier ones, which further aids in hydration.
Now, the important thing is how to incorporate this skin care routine in our life comfortably and believe me, it is not as difficult as it may sound. Let me share 5 significant steps that we can pick up from this routine along with some of my favorite products
1. Complete Makeup Removal- Most of us do not take off our makeup at night. This is one of the main reasons for skin breakouts and dullness. It is important to use an eye makeup remover to take off all traces of makeup from eyes. Use a q-tip to completely remove eye liner/kajal in between the lashes. I love L'oreal gentle eye and lip makeup remover and Maybelline Clean Express Total Clean Makeup Remover (Read my review here). After removing eye and lip makeup, one can use a cleansing milk/ cream/ water/ balm (as per your skin type) to take off makeup from the face. My current favorite here is Shu Uemura Ultime 8 Sublime Beauty Cleansing Oil, which my husband got from Japan otherwise earlier I was using Bioderma Sensibio H2O, which is pretty good too.
2. Toning- Often considered to be least significant step in skin care but it cleans the traces of cleanser from the skin and refreshes it. It is a must do step for skin hydration. My favorite toners are Rose water from Kama Ayurveda, Moisture Spray from Cinema Secrets and Kiehl's Iris Extract Activating Treatment Essence. You can always keep a bottle in your bag and can use as instant refresher during the day specially if you spend most of the day in Air conditioned environment.
3. Serum- Serum is something a lot of us are unsure of and don't know when and how to use it. I believe that serums are the magical portions that can change the way your skin is, drastically. These are basically light weight concentrates with loads of active ingredients, which penetrate easily into the skin and provide more intense treatment. These are loaded with hydrating agents and provide a boost of hydration to the skin. My favorites are The Body Shop Oils of Life Intensely Revitalizing Facial Oil and Shu Uemura Tsuya Skin Youthful Vita-glow Activator.
4. Sun Protection- This is usually the most neglected part of skin care routine. SPF of 15 is required daily indoors and outdoors. If you spend more time in sun, SPF of 35 is required and 50 for beaches and pools. I love to use Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Drytouch Sunblock 50.
5. Night Cream- Another skin care practice that is overlooked by most of us. Most of the women I've met always tell me that it is important for skin to breathe and hence nothing should be put on the skin at night. What I tell them is that the skin needs to repair and regenerate and our job is to provide the skin with nutrients that help this process. Night cream (also called Night Mask) is rich with skin regenerating ingredients. My favorite is Olay Regenerist Revitalising Night Cream Moisturiser.
Hope the post helps you to take your skincare game one level up and do share in comments if it makes any sense to you and motivates you to look after your skin.
Signing off for now