The skin is composed of three layers. The surface layer (epidermis), the middle layer (dermis) and the deep layer (hypodermis). The epidermis is several layers deep. Cells are created in the lowest layer and take about a month to move to the surface, where they then die. What we see on the surface of our skin is actually a layer of dead cells. Washing with a cleanser helps to slough off the dead skin cells, leaving the skin looking more vibrant. As well as getting rid of dirt and sweat, cleansers also remove blemish-causing bacteria from the surface layer.
Basic Skincare Needs
Although the skin has 10 essential needs to maintain optimal form, meeting the basic, daily needs with a four step regiment creates the foundation of daily skin care. The four essential steps are cleanse, tone, protect, and hydrate. A look at each step individually will help to clarify how it specifically addresses the essential needs of your skin.
Cleanse: This step meets the skin’s basic need to be free of excess oil, dirt, and pollutants. If these impurities are not removed, you may experience dull, sallow skin; clogged, inflamed pores that can discolor and scar; or free radical oxidation that can damage cells, affect healthy cell renewal, irritate the skin, and initiate hyperpigmentation. To avoid these negative effects, cleansing should be performed twice daily.
Tone: Toning fulfills a basic daily need by preparing the skin to receive the benefits from other products and should be performed twice daily, after cleansing. Toning works in several ways. It calms and soothes the skin, toning also minimizes the appearance of pores and balances the skin’s pH.
Protect: The protect step meets the skin’s basic need for a morning moisturizer with SPF to guard against harmful UV rays and environmental stressors. Sun damage degrades the moisture barrier and structural proteins and promotes discoloration.
Hydrate: The hydrate step provides vital lipids, replenishing moisture, and key repair components for optimal nighttime recovery. Nighttime hydration should be applied once daily in the evening.
Exfoliate your skin no more than every three to five days. Use circular, upward, gentle motions with very gentle products. Remember that you are simply exfoliating dead skin, which takes very little pressure; abrasive loofahs or shell powder-based exfoliants are just not necessary.
Eye crèmes are designed to super-moisturize the finest skin on your face. Always use your ring finger or pinky to apply these products around the delicate area of your eyes. Your pinky and ring finger are weak by nature and force you to apply gentle pressure.
Mask on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to detoxify, renew, and tighten your pores. Before you mask, it is important to cleanse and tone. Be sure to leave the mask on your face and neck for five to 20 minutes, depending on the mask type. Gently and thoroughly remove the mask with warm water. And after you mask, always tone and moisturize your face and neck.