Kick your skincare routine into high gear! Now that we’re finally emerging from a very long winter, it’s time to seriously upgrade your daily skincare ritual. From toners and essences to serums and eye creams, continue reading to discover the 10-step skincare regimen you need to combat aging.
The first step in any skincare routine should be a cleanser. A cleanser will not only remove any makeup residue, but will also open up your pores, ensuring that any skincare products that follow are able to absorb into the skin more effectively. Algenist’s Genius Ultimate Anti-Aging Melting Cleanser is an oil-based cleanser that balances and tones skin, leaving it soft, nourished, and hydrated. It also contains a unique formula that combines alguronic acid and microalgae oil, both proven to reverse signs of aging.
Exfoliating is crucial — especially as one gets older. With age, skin cells replenish more slowly, making it increasingly important to use a daily exfoliator that will remove dead skin cells. This will ensure that your skin remains as radiant as ever. We’re obsessed with the Microdermabrasion Skin Defying Exfoliator by Dr. Brandt Skincare. It’s suitable for all skin types and specifically targets fine lines, wrinkles, and blemishes. Its main ingredients are aluminum oxide crystals, lactic acid, and soothing botanicals, all of which come together for the ultimate anti-aging exfoliating experience.
A good toner not only balances your skin’s pH levels, but also shrinks the appearance of pores and removes oil and grime. SK-II’s Facial Treatment Clear Lotion Toner contains AHA and Pitera, the latter of which is an exclusive SK-II ingredient that contains vitamins, amino acids, minerals, and organic acids. Pitera works to simultaneously exfoliate and condition, ensuring that it won’t leave your skin dry or irritated.
Essence is a cross between a toner and a serum, and it has been steadily gaining popularity in Korean skincare routines. Its purpose is to hydrate and help with skin repair and cell turnover, a not-to-be-missed step for anyone looking to minimize signs of aging. Amorepacific’s Vintage Single Extract Essence promotes prebiotics and contains green tea to slow the development of lines and blemishes, working to improve the appearance of skin when it comes to clarity, texture, and elasticity.
Serum is another one of those products that becomes increasingly important with age. While some think serums and moisturizers can be used interchangeably, the truth is, they should both have a spot in your daily skincare routine. Serums contain a higher concentration of active ingredients than moisturizers. Which ingredients should you look for, you may be wondering? We recommend serums with Vitamin C and retinoids, as both ingredients will increase collagen production and act as antioxidants. Drunk Elephant’s C-Firma Day Serum is perfection. Its “super potent” Vitamin C-packed formula results in firmer, brighter, and smoother skin.
Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize! Hydration is absolutely essential for anyone who wishes to achieve dewy, glowing skin. As one gets older, the face produces less sebum (the oil liquid that comes from your pores). This can result in excess dryness, which means a moisturizer must be used day and night. Ceramidin Cream by Dr. Jart+ quenches dehydrated skin and releases moisture for up to 26 hours.
The skin around one’s eyes is some of the thinnest and most delicate skin on the body. Thus, it’s also one of the first parts to show signs of aging. Eye creams, unlike a typical moisturizer, are designed specifically for this ultra-sensitive area to target dark circles, puffiness, wrinkles, and lines. The Black Tea Age-Delay Eye Concentrate from Fresh is described as a “power nap for your eyes,” working to both firm and nourish under-eye skin.
Oil is one of the most underrated skincare products on the market. Many people shy away from it; their goal is usually to reduce the amount of oil on their skin, and so adding oil seems counterproductive. But in fact, adding a few drops of oil to your face can actually make your skin less oily. Plus, your skin produces less oil as you get older, making it drier and causing wrinkles to appear deeper. Most moisturizers contain very little oil, so it’s important to supplement this with an oil that has proven skin benefits, such as marula oil, camellia oil, or argan oil. Tatcha’s Gold Camellia Beauty Oil is rich in antioxidants and fatty acids, both of which help to nourish the face. As an added bonus, it contains 23K gold flecks to provide a subtle glow.
Sunscreen isn’t just for summer days at the beach. In fact, sunscreen should be applied every. Single. Day. (Yes, really.) It is not only one of the easiest products to apply and one of the most available skincare items on the market, but it’s proven to be the most effective way to prevent aging skin. You’ve probably been told this time and time again, but harsh UV rays are the leading cause of dryness, fine lines, wrinkles, and—far worse—skin cancer. So be sure to apply sunscreen every morning. (Hint: it should always be the last step in your skincare routine so that other products don’t interfere with its ability to shield your skin.) Lancome’s Bienfait Teinté Beauty Balm Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30 is one of our faves!
We’ve listed face masks at the bottom of this list because, while it is an equally important step in this anti-aging skincare regimen, it is not something that should be done on a daily basis. Rather, face masks should be used once or twice per week only. In addition to providing you with a quiet bedtime ritual (not to mention an opportunity for selfies), a face mask such as the Revitalizing Supreme Global Anti-Aging Mask Boost by Estée Lauder will help give you a luminous complexion and reduce the appearance of aging.