This is an approximate visual interpretation of what the average person sees when choosing beauty products. Sure, you Lovelies are undoubtedly more up-to-speed than most, but there are still things that we all get confused about when it comes to our beauty routines. During my time as a makeup artist, there was one skincare mistake that I found so many people making, regardless of how fashionable, gorgeous or sensible they were. Is it something you’re doing, too?
I still have no idea why so many people don’t moisturize, but the fact of the matter is that if you wash your face and don’t moisturize, you’re probably doing some damage to your skin. In fact, provided you don’t wear makeup and you take showers regularly, you’d be better off not washing your face at all if you don’t moisturize. I know it sounds like common sense; moisturizers are everywhere, there are tons of inexpensive options and most of us have used them at some point. But still, I’ve encountered so many actors (the male ones are especially reluctant…), models and friends who all only moisturize occasionally when it should be a most of the time, if not all of the time, occurrence.
The most common reason I’ve heard is that it will “cause breakouts.” This usually comes from people who either had acne as a teenager or presently still struggle with it. Unfortunately, these are some of the people who can benefit most from moisturizer. When you wash your face — especially with harsh acne washes or rough exfoliating cleansers — you not only get the dirt off your skin, you also strip your skin of its naturally-produced oils that it uses to keep itself moist. When you don’t replenish this hydration, your skin gets tight and ends up overcompensating by producing even more oil than normal. It’s trying to maintain the balance, but instead, it just causes your pores to get even further clogged. That is what leads to breakouts, not moisturizers. If anything, those harsh cleansing systems that use both washes and toners are more to blame than any cream. A friend of mine used to use those salicylic acid cleansing pads with no moisturizer, then wonder why his skin would get greasy and break out; it’s often dependent on the moisture equilibrium of your skin (though not all the time, since cystic acne is very, very different).
Think of it as being similar to sweating: when you get dehydrated and don’t have enough water in your system, your body needs to find a way to cool itself off. It then starts to release its own moisture in order to achieve the temperature balance desired for your system to run properly. Of course, it’s not trying to gain moisture through sweat. but it’s a comparable concept: when your body needs balance, it tries to do it on its own.
When searching for a moisturizer, try to find one that keeps your skin supple but doesn’t feel greasy. A lot of this depends on your overall skin type. I have very dry skin, so I often use a thick moisturizing gel like Clinique’s or a thick lotion, depending on the season. I also use an anti-aging eye cream because people with drier skin tend to get wrinkles more easily (which should be good news for those of you who had to struggle with oily skin during your younger days!). If you have oily skin, use an oil-free one to give you that moisture without adding grease. A great one of these is Neutrogena’s and at $10, it won’t break the bank, either. For normal skin, my favorite to use on other people has always been Philosophy’s Hope In A Jar; it really does live up to the hype. Of course, these are just simplifications of the huge range of skin-types different people have. Plenty of people have combination skin, in which case trial and error through samples from Sephora or department stores will be a big help.
Lovelies, what are your favorite moisturizers?