Looking good without makeup is all about amazing skin. When wearing makeup one can conceal skin problems and accentuate positives facial features. However, without the power of a fantastic foundation, luscious blush, brightening bronzer, skin has to be nearly flawless.
The key to taking care of skin is to Know Your Skin
There are five basic skin types:
- Normal skin. This skin type has a proper balance of moisture and oil.
- Sensitive skin. People with sensitive skin often experience tinging, itching and might get blotches when they come in contact with some common ingredients found in facial care products.
- Oily skin. If your face looks shiny, greasy or slick an hour or two after you wash your face, chances are you have oily skin.
- Dry skin. If your face feels tight or stiff after you wash, chances are you have dry skin. Dry skin is also more prone to early wrinkling and creasing.
- Combination skin. As the name suggests, is a combination of two or more of the skin types mentioned above.
It is important to find the right cleanser for your skin type. With all skin types you want to choose a cleanser that removes impurities without stripping the skin of natural oils. Once you know your skin type, many manufacturers make it easy to find your perfect cleanser simply by reading the packaging. If you have dry skin, stay away from cleansers with alcohol. If you have sensitive skin look for cleansers formulated without harsh chemicals and irritants such as sulphates, synthetic dyes and fragrances.
Lancome Creme Radiance Clarifying Cream-to-Foam Cleanser is formulated with antioxidant White Lotus and soothing Rose de France penetrates deep into the pores without over-drying to gently cleanse skin and other impurities. This cleanser is suitable for those with oily to normal skin. Approximately $25.
Boscia Purifying Cleansing Gel is a sulfate-free cleanser derived from amino acids. It deeply cleanses while preserving the skin’s natural oils. This Parabens, Sulfates, Synthetic Fragrances, Synthetic Dyes free formula, refines the look of pores and contains hydrangea leaf, green tea, and geranium that help to protect and perfect complexion Boscia Purifying Cleansing Gel is suitable for all skin types, including sensitive skin. Approximately $26.
Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleanser is a non-foaming gel that removes make-up, dirt and oil. The Alpha Hydroxy Acids from Papaya and Grapefruit gently exfoliates the skin, while glycerine moisturizes. Approximately $20.
Moisturizing is an important step no matter what your skin type. People with oily skin often think they don’t need to moisturize but it is possible for skin to be dehydrated under the slick of oil present on skin. If you have oily skin, look for an oil free moisturizer like Garnier Moisture Rescue Refreshing Gel Cream -- it is light weight and contains pure antioxidant fruit water extracts and skin conditioning Vitamin E to prevent dryness and normalize skin. Approximately $7.99
If you have dry skin you might be tempted to use the heaviest moisturizer you can find. This is not necessarily the best approach. Look for products that contain ingredients such as glycerin and dimethicone. Glycerine attracts moisture to your skin and dimethicone locks it in. Kinerase Restructure Firming Cream is formulated for all skin types but works wonders on dry skin. (Kinarase.com $98)
The jury is still out on the necessity of a toner, however, I like toners. Toners remove remnants of makeup or hard water impurities left behind after washing. Toners can also help to balance the skin’s pH and makes the skin more receptive to moisturizers and other skin treatments, such as serums.
The Body Shop Tea Tree Toner is great for oily, acne prone skin. The toner helps reduce the appearance of blemishes, prevent future breakouts, and control oil and shine. Approximately $11
L'Oreal HydraFresh Dermo-Expertise Hydrafresh Skin Toner Liquid contains beta hydroxy to gently exfoliate and pro-Vitamin B5 that helps protect against moisture loss. This toner is suitable for all skin types. Approximately $6.99
Sunscreen is a must 365 days per year, no matter your age or ethnicity. Use a broad Spectrum SPF that way you are protected from both UVA and UVB rays. Prolonged exposure to the suns rays ages the skin causing fine lines, wrinkles and darks spots.
Dermalogica Solar defense Booster SPF50, Oil free Matte SPF is great for those with oily skin because not only does it protect against the harmful rays of the sun but it also mattifies the skin. (Dermalogica.com $48)
One of he best way to give skin a boost is to exfoliate. Exfoliating removes dead skin cells and speeds up cell turnover. Exfoliating also increases circulation to the skin giving the face a nice glow. It is generally safe to exfoliate at least once per week. However, you don’t want to exfoliate if you are breaking out because it can make the problem worse. Treat the breakout and once pimples are healed you can exfoliate. There are physical exfoliators like microbeads, as well as chemical exfoliators like glycolic acid. There are also products that combine the two.
Exfolikate by Kate Somerville is made with microbeads and Fruit Enzymes that clean pores, while Salicylic Acid balances hydration without over-drying. This exfoliator is suggested for all skin types. (katesomerville.com $85)
If you are short on time then these exfoliating pads are for you. It is a one-step glycolic acid treatment product that is derived from pure cane sugar and contains salicylic acid to gently resurface skin and treat acne. ($60 for a 30 day supply)
Fade Dark Spots (Hyperpigmentation)
Hyperpigmentation is one of main reason women (and men) wear makeup. In addition to exfoliating, fade creams, gels and serums such as Murad’s Rapid Age Spot and Pigment Lightening Serum ($60 murad.com) can help to minimize and even eliminate dark spots over time. While using fade creams and exfoliators it is extremely important to use an SPF everyday and avoid excessive sun exposure.
Enhance Lashes and Brows
One of the easiest ways to look and feel glamorous is to have bold, beautiful lashes and well shaped brows. If you have paltry lashes and sparse brows try a lash and brow growth serum such as Grande Lash. Grande Lash is formulated with natural ingredients to enhance lashes and brows in as little as 4 weeks. Approximately $64.95 for 3 month supply.
Very few people are lucky enough to do nothing and still have beautiful skin. If you are among the lucky few, good for you! If you weren’t born with the gift of flawless skin, the steps above should help you look great without makeup.