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87 per cent of women are confused about skincare products - here’s the ultimate simple routine

The Telegraph logo The Telegraph 6 days ago By Victoria Hall, Beauty Editor

© Provided by The Telegraph Skincare is one of the most saturated industries and there is always a new product or ingredient that promises to make you look 10 years younger in weeks. Keeping up with it all is tiring - even for a beauty editor. According to a recent survey from Boots No7, nine in ten women are baffled by what skincare products to use these days. It’s no surprise considering the rise of lotions, essences and splash masks.

Yet, another study by online retailer Lookfantastic.com found that Brits spend more time than most nationalities on their cleansing routines, including women in Korea and Taiwan.

To help clear up matters, here is an honest and simple guide to skincare...    

Daily

Cleanser

Cleansing is non-negotiable step that should be done twice a day. In the morning, it’ll wake you up and in the evening, it’ll remove your make-up and any dirt and grime that your face has picked up. Finding the right type of cleanser for your skin is essential to making sure this step is effective and enjoyable. You don’t want your skin to be left feeling dry or tight afterwards. This means that the formula you’re using is too harsh.

Admittedly, there are a million to choose from, including lotions, foams, oils and balms. Those that have dry skin should opt for an oil or balm and those who battles with oilness should try a foam. If you’re entirely clueless, go for a lotion, milk or cream.

Serum

If you’re going to invest in any aspect of your skincare regime, this is where to put your money. Serums contain a higher amount of active ingredients, including vitamin C to brighten and smooth and hyaluronic acid to hydrate. The smaller molecular size of these ingredients also ensure that they travel deeper into your skin. In terms of anti-ageing, serums are king. 

Eye cream

I put this step in somewhat reluctantly as most beauty editors I know, including myself, don’t use a separate eye cream. However, it is widely acknowledged that the skin is 40 percent thinner and more porous around your eyes, so using a specialised formula does have its benefits.

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Moisturiser

You’ve fed your skin a multitude of active ingredients with your serum and now you need to lock them in with a face cream. A lotion or rich cream, depending on what your skin needs in terms of moisturisation, will do the job. You can opt for a face cream with SPF, but ensure you reapply throughout the day if you're going to be spending lots of time in the sun and apply liberal amounts.  

SPF

Pretty much every expert I've spoken to has name checked sun protection as the ultimate anti-ager. When a good SPF, whether it's factor 30 or 50, is applied properly and regularly, it gives your skin the best protection against environmental aggressors. Plus, the latest formulas don't leave your skin looking chalky or feeling dry or clogged up. It goes without saying that you skip this in the evening, but it should be noted that a thorough cleanse before bed is essential to wash again any chemicals.  

Related: Wake Up to Glowing Skin With a DIY Coffee Face Mask (provided by PureWow)

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Twice a week

Exfoliate

It can be tempting to over exfoliate your skin, especially if you’ve had a breakout or our T-zone is looking shiny. Don’t. All that happens is you aggravate your skin and send it into defense mode, which means it’ll pump out more oil and clog your pores. Instead, stick to a reasonable twice weekly exfoliation.

Some like gritty scrubs, others like chemical, or acid-based exfoliation. It’s a matter of preference. If you’re doing the latter, don’t mix too many acids together as you could cause irritation. Opt for a glycolic or salicylic based peel and avoid your eye area.  

Mask

Rehydration is your skin’s salvation. Using a deeply hydrating mask twice a week is like giving your skin a hug. It can come in the form of a cream mask or a sheet one, as long as it’s nourishing to your skin and it feels good, sit back and enjoy the moment.

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