How to Build Your Own Routine

One of the top requests I get via DM on Instagram is “Can you please help me create a skincare routine I can follow ?”. Personally I believe you are in the best position to build your own routine as you know your skin best, you know your skintype and you can choose products you would actually use. That being said, if you have any serious skin concerns you should see a dermatologist or esthetician to sort them out.

Quite a number of people have amazing skincare products in their stash but don’t know when or how to use them. I have taken on the task of helping you through this regardless of your age. This is by no means an alternative to seeing a professional, this is what has worked for me at that age as well as people I know.(I am 36 by the way as I included routines for 40s and beyond)

You might need to make a cup of tea or pour a glass of wine (or two) as it is a long one!!

Age: Teenage years

Increase in testosterone will lead to increased sebum, increased oil production leading to clogged pores

Skin concerns/changes: clogged pores, breakouts, blackheads

Typical routine needs to be simple as teenagers have better things to do than skincare….LOL

Morning

Cleanse: gentle cleanser; Cerave Hydrating Cleanser, CosRx Low pH Good Morning cleanser, Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Cleanser, Laroche Posay Gentle Hydrating cleanser,

Treat: Salicylic acid based toner; Stridex, CosRx Pimple Pads

Moisturize & Protect: Hydrating moisturizer to counter the dryness from the “treat” stage; Cerave Moisturizer with SPF 30, Aveeno Moisturizer with SPF 30

Evening

Cleanse: Same cleanser, as I do not expect a teenager to wear make-up so no double cleanse

Treat: Salicylic acid toner as above OR Benzoyl peroxide on spots only OR Bodyshop Tea Tree Oil on spots only  (this is working for my nieces who are 8 and 14)

Moisturize: Hydrating moisturizer; Cerave Hydrating Moisturizer

 

Age: Twenties

Nonchalant attitude to skincare, stress in university, partying, smoking and drinking as well as non-use of sunscreen will take its toll

Skin concerns:  ageing, acne, hyperpigmentation, effects of skin bleaching and harsh skincare products

Morning

Cleanse: Gel cleanser (oily skin), cream cleanser (dry skin)

Tone: Gentle exfoliating toner; Pixi glow tonic OR Nip + Fab Glycolic pads (maximum thrice a week) OR CosRx Pimple Pads

Moisturize: Hydrating Moisturizer: Cerave Hydrating Moisturizer PM, CosRx Oil-Free Moisturizing Lotion,

Protect: Sunscreen; A separate SPF is required. Minimum SPF 30; The BodyShop Multi Protection Essence, Neutrogena Ultra Sheer; Biore Aqua Rich UV SPF 50

Evening

Cleanse: Double Cleanse; Bodyshop Camomile Cleansing Balm/Oil, Simple Cleansing Oil, Soap & Glory Ultimelt, Una Brennan Vitamin C Cleansing Oil; follow with a second cleanser designed for skin type (gel or cream)

Tone:  Gentle exfoliating toner; Pixi glow tonic OR Nip + Fab Glycolic pads (maximum thrice a week)

Moisturize: Hydrating Moisturizer; Cerave Hydrating Moisturizer, CosRx Oil-Free Moisturizing Lotion

Extras

Facials

Gentle Peels. You can use the Peter Thomas Roth Pumpkin Enzyme Mask  or the REN Glycolactic Radiance Renewal mask once a week

*If you are over 25, consider retinol three times a week; Indeed Labs Retinol Reface or The Ordinary Granactive Retinol 2% or The Ordinary 0.2% Retinol in Squalane are good and affordable starting points.

* Tip: if you don’t like flannels and your cleansing balm or oil leaves a greasy film, use your second cleanse to get rid of the film.

Age: Thirties

Life has happened and taken its toll on your skin; heartbreak, wild 20s, more skin bleaching, child bearing, multiple jobs, inadequate time.

Skin Concerns:

Fine lines, hyperpigmentation, adult acne, dark circles

Cleanse: Gel cleanser (oily skin), cream cleanser (dry skin)

Tone: Gentle exfoliating toner; Pixi glow tonic OR Nip + Fab Glycolic pads (maximum thrice a week) OR FAB Radiance Pads

Treat: Vitamin C serum; Medik8 C Tetra, Brooklyn Botany, Timeless, The Ordinary. You can add a hyaluronic acid serum as well (Jordan Samuel Hydrate or Vichy Aqualia

Moisturize: Hydrating Moisturizer; Obagi Hydrate, Clinique Moisture Surge, CosRx Oil-Free Moisturizing Lotion,

Protect: Sunscreen;A separate SPF is required. Minimum SPF 30; The BodyShop Multi Protection Essence, Neutrogena Ultra Sheer, Biore Aqua Rich UV SPF 50, Heliocare

Evening

Cleanse: Double Cleanse with an oil or balm cleanser; Bodyshop Camomile Cleansing Balm/Oil, Soap & Glory Ultimelt, Lush Ultrabland, Una Brennan Vitamin C Cleansing Oil; follow with a second cleanser designed for skin type

Tone:  Acid Toner; P50, Peter Thomas Roth Max Correxion or Unwrinkle Pads, Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peel Pads OR Hydrating toner (if you will be using retinol same night)

Treat: AHA/BHA serum OR Differin OR Retinol OR DUAC or Azelaic acid

Moisturize: Hydrating Moisturiser as above or a facial oil (rosehip, marula, squalane, jojoba) – Pai Rosehip oil, The Ordinary Oils

Extras

You may want to introduce an eye cream if you are sure you will use it otherwise take your serum around your eye.

Facials once a month

Chemical or Enyme Peels. Better to get it professionally done

Microdermabrasion

 * Tip: Mix a few drops of oil with your hydrating serum and apply when face is still damp

Forties, Fifties and Beyond

Menopause and health issues may take their toll on the skin

Skin Concerns are ageing, lines, dry skin (menopause), hyperpigmentation (especially if on hormone replacement therapy)

Cleanse: Gel cleanser (oily skin), cream cleanser (dry skin)

Tone: Exfoliating toner; Clarins, FAB Radiance Pads

Eye Cream: Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye, Dr Dennis Gross Ferulic + Retinol Eye Cream

Treat: Vitamin C serum; Medik8 C Tetra, Medik8 CE Tetra, Brooklyn Botany, Timeless Vitamin C + E + Ferulic.

Moisturize: Obagi Hydrate, Clinique Moisture Surge, Neostrata Bionic Cream

Protect: A separate SPF is required. Minimum SPF 30; The BodyShop Multi Protection Essence, Neutrogena Ultra Sheer; Biore Aqua Rich UV SPF 50, Heliocare, Neostrata Sheer Physical Defence.

Evening

Cleanse: Double Cleanse with an oil or balm cleanser; Bodyshop Camomile Cleansing Balm/Oil, Clinique Take The Day Off, Una Brennan Vitamin C Cleansing Oil; follow with a second cleanser designed for skin type

Tone:  Acid Toner; P50, Peter Thomas Roth Max Correxion Pads, Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peel Pads OR Hydrating toner ( if you will be using retinol same night)

Treat: AHA/BHA serum OR a more powerful Retinol; Skinceuticals 0.5%, Medik8 1%,

Moisturize: Hydrating Moisturiser; Clinique Moisture Surge, or a facial oil (rosehip, marula, squalane, jojoba) – Pai or Trilogy Rosehip oil, The Ordinary Oils

Extras

Include Hyaluronic acid in morning and evening routines to combat dryness

Facials once a month

Chemical Peels. Better to get it professionally done

So that’s it! Hope you have more information on building your routine. You do not have to use the products I included, they are just examples of what I mean

The steps are pretty straightforward but nothing will happen if you still eat lots of dairy, sugar and processed food, or if you drink excessive alcohol and smoke.Be consistent with your skincare routine, eat a healthy diet rich in antioxidants, drink water, exercise and see a professional if things don’t get better.

What is your routine like? Lets chat in the comments section.

xx

 

ThatGeminiGirl

 

 

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15 Responses

  1. Fola says:

    Thanks for breaking this down so easily. I’m in my mid twenties and I’ve been toning with rose water, do I need to switch to pixi? I also use gel cleanser, but I don’t have a oily skin. My skin isn’t oily at all, and not sooo dry as well. Can I continue with the Cosrx gel cleanser or switch to another type? Lastly, do I need an eye cream, or the retinol is just fine?

    • Hi! Thanks for reading. Glad you enjoyed it. I would say get The Ordinary Glycolic Toning Solution. It’s 2% more concentrated than Pixi Glow Tonic and get a cream cleanser….Hope that helps…

  2. Bosa says:

    Such an eye-opener, thanks for this post. Time to build my regime.
    Loads of questions;
    – Examples of creamy cleansers
    – How is retinol used or introduced/frequency?
    – More examples of acid toners pls.

    Many Thanks

    • Hi
      – Examples of creamy cleansers
      Cerave Hydrating cleanser, Laroche Posay Gentle Hydrating cleanser, Dermalogica Ultracalming cleanser, Jan Marini Bioglycolic cream cleanser, Paula’s choice also has a variety, Clarins as well, BodyShop Vitamin E cream cleanser
      – How is retinol used or introduced/frequency?
      Start with twice a week then build up. Use at night only. I would do maximum 4 nights a week and wear sunscreen during the day
      – More examples of acid toners pls.
      Nip+Fab, First Aid Beauty, Clarins, Paula’s choice AHA and BHA, P50, Peter Thomas Roth, Pixi Glow Tonic

      • Bosa says:

        Thanks..

        Building up my regime, still confused about the toner and treatment part for the evening routine. Pls see below if it makes sense;
        Tone: Confused, what type of Toner is required before the treatments.
        • REN Clarifying Toning Lotion???
        Treat:
        • The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10% + Ha 2% 30ml or
        • Cosrx AHA 7 Whitehead Power Liquid 100ml
        • Cosrx Bha Blackhead Power Liquid 100 Ml later on
        • Paula’s Choice SKIN PERFECTING 2% BHA Liquid Salicylic Acid

        • I usually try to avoid acid toners and acid treatments in the same routine.I would use only ONE of the toners and follow with he lactic acid. I won’t use the lactic acid everyday so maybe you can get a hydrating toner. Hope that helps

  3. @seoulchoboja says:

    If only I had this kind of information 10 years ago 😩😩 but better late than never right?. They should honestly add proper skincare to secondary school curriculum maybe in home economics or something. I really laughed at ‘effects of skin bleaching’ cos I remember using one of these ‘tube creams’ that gave me proper bleaching. My biology teacher actually used me as an example one time for someone who has bleached (white face black neck 😂) you can just imagine the damage and shame smh. Thankfully all that is in the past and I know much better about proper skincare and building a routine. I’m interested in facials even though my past ‘facials’ experience wasn’t so great aka extraction part. I saw this esthetician I had a lot of cystic breakouts then she was just pressing and ‘extracting’ the whole thing I cried that day even my mum started crying kai. Lord know I just have so many funny/weird acne stories. do you have anywhere you recommend for facials nothing serious oh just the basic face pampering (if this makes sense lol). Sorry I always end up writing long stories x_x

  4. Alias says:

    I’m so glad you started this blog. God bless you for doing this! I’m 26, I know nada about skincare, infact I don’t do anything extra, use bar soap on my face and all that crap so you get the idea. Amazingly, I have no issues as per, my skin is still very okay(I’m very dark! Lol) but of recent I noticed major hyper pigmentation so I decided to start getting serious about my life and start a regime and follow through religiously. So you see why I’m so happy for this blog. Thank you for these tips and my question is this “what if you don’t fall in the oily or dry skin category”??? What are the options for the normal/combination skin ladies? And also any tips for hyperpigmentation on black skin??? Thank you sooo much

    • Hey! Thanks for your kind words and sorry for the late response.You can also use a cream cleanser and for hyperpigmentation you need to first halt it by wearing sunscreen religiously and add azelaic acid (minimum of 15%) and vitamin c into your routine, but the cause of the hypigmentation needs to be known…is it mealsma, drug induced,sunburn etc as you may need a peel…Hope I answered all your questions

      xx

      • Alias says:

        naa not mealsma(had to google what that was) totally a novice on this! i think it’s sunburn, no spf so far. changing that asap! i’m sorry to be a bother but what options dyu suggest for the “azelaic acid (minimum of 15%) “??? and as for Vitamin C- oral as per tablets or serums? thank youuuu 🙂

  5. AO says:

    Very helpful and useful information, thank you.

    I’m in my thirties and I’ve started using a fair bit of retinol. I just finished the ordinary 2%, as per beginners retinol, hence I was wondering if you could recommend something for the next stage.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Very helpful and useful information, thank you.

    I’m in my thirties and I’ve started using a fair bit of retinol. I just finished the ordinary 2%, as per beginners retinol, hence I was wondering if you could recommend something for the next stage.

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