Hands up if your new year’s resolution involves exercising? Or cutting down on booze? Yep – we see a lot of hands. While most are making new rules when it comes to health, fitness and lifestyle, we’re sticking to one area we know we will be committed to: skin care. Because why not give your skin just as much love as your body?
While it’s easy to slip into some bad habits (even the most devoted skin care aficionado skimps on sunscreen and occasionally sleeps in her makeup), come January 1st, we get to make a fresh start and revamp our skin care routine.
And it doesn’t have to be complicated – your resolution can simply be vowing to stop picking at your face, or making sure you scrub those dirty makeup brushes more than once a year. Because the truth is, no matter how many fancy-schmancy skin care products you have, it all comes down to nailing the basics – you can use ALL of the top-notch antioxidants and actives, but if you aren’t washing your face correctly, you’re not going to get the results you want from your skin care routine.
Ready to turn things around? We’ve pulled together some cute tips that’ll help you get your best skin yet.
#1/ Wear SPF Every. Single. Day
If you don’t think it’s necessary to wear SPF every single day, then you’re having a laugh. Sunscreen is one of THE most important products in your skin care routine. Make this the year you make no excuses for skipping your morning SPF, and protect your skin from harmful UV rays all year round. Wear it when it is sunny. Wear it when it is raining. Wear it when it is gloomy. Wear it when you don’t think you need to wear it.
The best part? There are some seriously snazzy formulas getting around, so it’s now easier than ever to wear sunscreen under your makeup without it sliding off your face or making your look greasy/ghostly white. Try La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL Ultra-Light Fluid SPF 50+, Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face & Body Sunscreen Stick SPF 50 and Mecca Cosmetica To Save Face SPF 50+ Supernscreen.**
#2/ Pare back your skin care routine
Kiss that 10-step Korean skin care routine goodbye, because 2020 is all about paring it back. It’s time to go full Marie Kondo on your bathroom vanity and clear out the skin care products you’ve hoarded over the past year and get rid of the things that aren’t really working for you. Because sometimes, less is more (just ask Sydney facialist Jocelyn Petroni).
#3/ Wash your makeup brushes and sponges
If you’re one to slack off when it comes to cleaning your makeup brushes and sponges (guilty!), it’s time to change your ways. Keeping your makeup brushes clean will not only ensure your makeup looks good, but it is also crucial for the health of your skin. A recent study published in the Journal of Applied Microbiology found high levels of deadly superbugs like E. coli (yep – gross) and Staphylococcus in nine out of 10beauty products tested. The biggest offender? The beloved beauty sponge, with 93 per cent of people admitting they had never washed theirs. Not washing your beauty sponges and makeup tools can lead to unwanted breakouts, skin infections and worse. Our tip? Properly clean your blenders and other makeup tools by using something like the Beautyblender Solid Beautycleanser.
#4/ Stop sleeping with your makeup on
Repeat offender? Listen up. Going to bed with makeup is absolute murder on your skin. Not only does crashing with your foundation and concealer on clog your pores and lead to bumpy skin and breakouts, but it can also speed up the ageing process. Argh! On top of this, you can forget about that dewy glow – because your skin will look dull and lifeless. Take that makeup off, girl! If you always forget to take your makeup off after a night out, leave a bottle of micellar water (we like Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water in Oil) and cotton pads on your bedside table. While it’s not ideal, it’s better than nothing.
#5/ Do a weekly face mask
Make a commitment to yourself to put on at least one face mask a week. The right face mask can help hydrate the skin, control excess oils and help minimise the appearance of pores. Plus, they feel super relaxing and pair perfectly with a Netflix show or a good book. So, relax and feel all smug and happy about the fact you are doing something good for your skin (look at you go!). If you’re looking for a super hydrating mask, we like BIOEFFECT Imprinting Hydrogel Mask.
#6/ Find a skin care clinician who is right for you
Skin care can be mighty confusing. If you have niggling concerns or are worried that you’re not using the right products for your skin, a skin care therapist can help. They will be able to analyse your skin and help you understand what type of skin care products and treatments will give you the best results. Ultraceuticals global education director Elizabeth Fardon says, “Just like the gym, your skin requires a consistent skin regime with professionally prescribed products, to help you get the results you want for your concern. Consistency is key to gaining traction with your skin goals.”
#7/ Invest in quality products
Make 2020 the year you invest in some good-quality key skin care products, such as a hyaluronic acid serum or retinol cream (or both, you crazy thing!). “Do your research and ask your skin clinician, who will happily recommend some reputable brands that are best for your skin concern,” says Fardon. “Clinicians are a wealth of knowledge about the science of our skin health. Keep in mind that most brands are designed to work together, so cherry-picking from different brands and using them together may not be an effective approach and can even cause skin reactions.”
#8/ Stop picking your face
Guys, just don’t. Picking and squeezing spots on your face is so bad. It can cause marks and scars and leave your skin looking red and swollen and a hundred times worse than it already is. It can also cause infection and actually make pimples a whole lot worse. It’s hard to stop, but it’s all about being more mindful and more self-aware. You just have to realise that you’re not going to make anything better – you’re just going to make it worse. So, ditch the magnifying mirror and be conscious about touching your face. It’s also a good idea to chuck some hand sanitiser in your bag to keep your mitts nice and clean.
#9/ Double cleanse every night
Want to hit the pillows with *totally* clean skin? Double cleansing may seem a little overboard, but removing makeup and actually cleaning your face are two separate steps. Your first cleanse removes makeup, oil and dirt, while the second cleanse actually cleans your pores, removes dead skin cells and allows your skin to absorb the benefits of the ingredients in your skin care products. Take off your makeup with something like Dermalogica PreCleanse, and follow with a gentle gel cleanser such as Ultraceuticals Ultra Balancing Gel Cleanser.
#10/ Drink more water
Let’s get real – staying hydrated is not only good for your overall health, it’s also great for your skin. Do yourself a favour and get acquainted with a nice reusable water bottle (check out CAW Crystal Activated Water bottles – they’re next-level extra) and make a habit of bringing it with you everywhere.
If you're looking for more tips on the products you need for your skin type, check out our tips on how to tailor your skin care routine.
What are you going to do for your skin in 2020? Share with us in the comment section below.
Main image credit: @georgiafowler
**Always read the label. Use only as directed. If symptoms persist, see your healthcare professional. Wear protective clothing, hats and eyewear when exposed to the sun. Prolonged high-risk sun exposure should be avoided.
Erin Docherty is a Beauty Writer for BEAUTYcrew and a Grooming Writer for Men's Health magazine. She has a keen interest in cosmeceutical skin care and is currently working on minimising her 9-step skin care routine – because ain’t nobody got time for that. When she’s not writing about the latest beauty news, or applying copious amounts of serum, you can find her spending all her money in Sephora.