Lately, lots of people have been asking me about skincare. With so many products on the market (and so many people telling you what you should do) it can be hard to know what’s real and what’s a sales tactic. That’s why, this week we are going back to the basics. What’s the minimum that we should be doing to our skin to maintain it’s natural vigour? Do we really need to spend a lot? Jules Cardozo-Marsh, make-up artist and beauty expert gives us the lowdown.
If in doubt, cleanse
Cleansing your face twice a day is a must. It doesn’t matter how you choose to cleanse, just make sure that you are using the right cleanser for your skin type. You might like to use a foam, cream, gel or lotion cleanser, whatever suits your routine and gets your skin super clean.
I’m a huge fan of the hot cloth cleanser, and nobody does it better than Liz Earle. Another favourite of mine is the British brand MERUMAYA. Sold exclusively in John Lewis, this cleansing balm melts on contact with the skin, leaving it feeling clean, velvety smooth and super comfortable. It’s rich in Omega 3, 6 and 9 which are essential for keeping fine lines and wrinkles at bay. Use with a daily cleansing cloth, which gently exfoliates, removing all traces of makeup and dirt. Watch out Liz, this product is causing a stir!
If you have oily skin you’d be forgiven for thinking that you should avoid an oil based cleanser, but this is actually a myth. Oil produced by the skin is very different to that used in products and therefore using oil on the face can actually help as they contain essential fatty acids that our bodies don’t produce. Try DHC deep cleansing oil enriched with Vitamin E which helps fight against free radicals.
To tone or not to tone?
It’s all down to personal preference as to whether you opt to use a toner. Many people tone but aren’t really clear on what a toner actually does. A toner refreshes, removes any remaining cleanser and makeup and balances the pH of the skin. A toner can also be beneficial for those with oily skin. Choosing a toner that is alcohol free is a must, try Cosmetics à La Carte Rose Water a paraben-free product which helps calm skin and reduce redness. It smells divine too!
Invest in a good moisturiser
If there is one product you need to invest in wisely, it’s the right moisturiser. This product soaks into your skin so it really needs to do its job. With so much selection and so many products making big promises, my advice is to shop around and don’t be afraid to ask for a sample. A moisturiser should soak into your skin without leaving it feeling greasy, oily or heavy.
We lose collagen as we age so we need to replace it to keep the skin looking youthful. Choosing a moisturiser with an SPF is also important as this helps protect our skins from sun damage, even in winter. Remember, a moisturiser is a very personal choice based on your skincare requirements and there is no right or wrong product/brand to choose from. List your requirements and choose accordingly. You also don’t need to buy all the products in a range, mix and match as your budget allows.
If you’re not sure where to start, I do have a couple of favourite products! MERUMAYA Youth Preservation Moisturiser SPF15 is a lovely light beautifully textured cream. Try this if you have mature skin but like a moisturiser that soaks in and provides rapid hydration. It’s packed full of active ingredients that have been clinically shown to reduce fine lines and wrinkles.
Premae PHARMA 100 is a conditioning cream suitable for those suffering from skin allergies. It won an award for Best Eczema Cream at the National Beauty Awards 2014 so if it’s good enough to win an award it’s definitely worth trying – especially if you suffer from severe dry skin, psoriasis, dermatitis or hives.
Consistency is key
This simple, three-step routine doesn’t take very long and is actually a really nice way to bookend the day. Your skin will benefit from a twice daily cleanse, tone and moisturise using the right products for your skin type.
Jules Cardozo-Marsh is a leading London-based makeup artist and beauty expert. She offers bridal and occasion makeup, as well as one-to-one makeup and beauty lessons.