Creating an Effective Skin Care Routine

One of the most common concerns in dermatology is finding an effective skin care routine. One that won’t clog your pores or irritate your skin. One that will continue maintaining one’s youth of the skin. One that’s actually worth investing in. There are many different skin care routines out there, as well as many different price points.

At Arkansas Dermatology, we do not use cookie cutter skin care routines for our patients. We will find one that is right for you regarding your skin’s needs and wants.

A compliant and correct routine is very important to your skin care, so let's discuss the steps you should incude.

Cleanse

A cleanser is the first step in any routine, but what type you use is dependent on the type of skin you have. Are you prone to more dry skin? Or is your skin oily? Maybe it is combination. Often, we base whether we would like you to try our selection of foaming or hydrating washes depending on your skin type. A few names we may recommend are CeraVe, Cetaphil, La Roche Posay, and Vanicream.

We also consider any underlying skin conditions you may have, such as acne, rosacea, eczema, etc., in order to protect your skin barrier and prevent worsening of any condition. There are many brands out there, available in a range of prices, that claim they are “all natural” or “clean”. It is important to talk with your dermatology provider about different brands and to keep in mind that what constitutes “clean” is all over the place. Stick with science on this one, trust us.

Medication (if needed)

The next step in your skin care routine should be applying any topical medications you may need to use for your problematic skin condition at hand. Whether it’s for your acne, your rosacea, or other dermatology condition, this would be when you would apply that medication.

Another holy grail product for your regimen that your dermatology provider may recommend is a retinoid. Retinoids are great for that glowing, youthful appearing skin as they prevent the production of fine lines and wrinkles by increasing collagen production in your skin. They also help shed unwanted pigment of the skin, improve skin texture, help with breakouts and breakout prevention, as well as increasing skin cell turnover for prevention of aging. Retinoids are to be used after cleansing and before your moisturizer at bedtime. Of course, any product this wonderful comes with side effects of its own such as dryness and peeling, so talk with your provider on how to combat these issues.

Serums

The next step in your skin care regiment that needs to be discussed is serums.  The most common serum any dermatologist would recommend is a Vitamin C serum. Why? Vitamin C is an antioxidant that can do wonders for your skin. It can protect your skin from pollutants and harsh UV rays, improve the appearance of dull skin texture and tone, improve hyperpigmentation, and improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Vitamin C in its active form can be very hard to bottle, which is often why you will see higher price points for this specific serum. Talk with your dermatology provider regarding the serum brands they recommend.

Moisturize

This next step may be one of the most important steps in your routine. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Maintaining the skin barrier is so crucial to having beautiful skin and protecting it. Moisturizing is a lot like cleansers, meaning we will pick a brand and type of moisturizer dependent on your skin type and underlying conditions – yes, the oily skin producers also need moisturizer!

Sunscreen

The last step for your morning routine should ALWAYS be sunscreen! Should I use sunscreen even if I am just driving in the car? Yes. Should I use sunscreen even if I am just relaxing at home? Yes. Does it really matter the SPF of the sunscreen for my face? YES! Glass windows in your house and your car may protect you from UVB rays, but they don’t protect from UVA – the rays that can lead to not only the production of skin cancers, but also the aging process of your skin.

The head and neck regions are one of the most common areas we find skin cancer in dermatology. Often times people do not want to use sunscreen on their face for fear that it will break them out and cause irritation. Sunscreen has come such a long way. The formulas and the brands we will recommend are actually produced to prevent breakouts.

It is also important to remember chemical vs physical sunscreens – some still absorb the UV rays and some deflect the rays completely. And yes, SPF strength does matter! Taking into consideration how often you reapply, how you apply it and how much you apply all fit in to this conversation. Talk with your dermatology provider regarding sunscreen brands that will be a best fit for you.

These simple and effective steps will help you get that beautiful skin we all desire. Make an appointment today so we can find what is right for you and your skin!

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