Beginner's Skincare Guide

Everybody and their momma likes to hock a good kit. Me personally- I've never been a fan. I think our skin requires much more than a single brand 1-2-3 step. It seems like an easy solution, but the best routine is the one that works for you (and usually that's one that is made from many different companies- it's like Captain Planet on my counter). My routine took well over a year of real trial and error before I found the things that really worked for me. And none of them are from the same product line. And baby, I'm always finding something better to swap in and out. So if you want that smooth like butter skin that glows all on its own in the sunlight- you'll need to work for it.




I don't have all the quick answers and any beauty blogger telling you that they do is full of shit and you need to run from their page as quickly as possible. Sure, a small percentage of us can pick up a kit from Neutrogena and see stunning results from every product. But this same person could do this with every pre-packaged kit. They have what I affectionately refer to as unicorn skin- it's perfect and rare and you'll never see it in the wild.

What I can give you, my sweet dear reader, is the Beginner's guideline. It's the guideline of products you need in your arsenal to work up to the perfect routine. To start, you'll need the following:

1. A Cleanser: this can be anything from cleansing grains, a foaming cleanser, a cleansing milk, the oil cleansing method, a cleansing balm, or even honey. Some people can even use simply water in the morning. When you cleanse, your skin should never feel tight. If you cleanse and your skin feels tight and dry afterwards, you're using something your skin does not like. Using the wrong cleanser could cause you to break out, dry out, and over produce oil (which is why some people with dehydrated skin think they have extremely oily skin- their skin is really just screaming for moisture... and mercy).
2. An Exfoliant: typically I suggest you use a chemical exfoliant, however, using something like a Clarisonic every few days is fine as well. Even something like a muslin cloth or konjac sponge with your cleansing method can gently exfoliate. Never, ever, ever, EVER use something with coarse salt or walnut shells (e.g. St. Ives Apricot Scrub) on your face. The crystalline (read jagged) shape of these scrubs will cause microtears in your skin, compromising your skin. These small microtears can open up areas for bacteria to enter, making your skin horribly worse (and giving you a lovely infection to deal with). You want to use a gentle exfoliant to let your fresh, glowing skin show. Further, exfoliating can help remove dead skin cells that could potentially clog up/irritate your skin. 
3. A Moisturizer: I'd like to think the reason why is pretty self- explanatory. Cleansing removes not only the dirt and grime from the day, but your skin's own oils. So you need to replenish that. Even if you have oily skin, you should be using a moisturizer. Proper moisture keeps your skin bouncy, youthful, and just fresh in general. 
4. A Sunscreen: If you didn't get it from my sun post- UVRs are freakin' serious. And you need to protect your skin. Asian, Black, White, or Tan, we all need sunscreen. Sun cancers aren't that common in people of color- however, when they develop they're often deadly. This isn't because colored skin is so much more reactive to skin cancers, it's just that there's this pervasive idea that people of color do no need to worry about skin cancer or sun damage. THIS IS NOT TRUE. We all need sunscreen. Everyday. In every weather. And, ps, using an SPF 15 foundation is not enough. You need your own, dedicated sunscreen.

Now there are special extras you can buy on your skin concerns- like spot treatments, clay masks, hydrocolloid bandages, antioxidant serums (which are so fabulous for mitigating free radical damage from the sun), and even 'toners'. Skincare is utterly limitless, so if you feel depressed or anxious that you'll never have nice, clear skin, just keep searching. I had horrible cystic acne for over a decade before I found what worked for me and now, well now my skin is perfectly clear. Just don't give up. And if it ever gets to be too much for you and you need someone to talk to- Miss Hoojoo is always here for you. Leave me a comment and I'll always get back to you.

Well that's it for the Beginner's Guide, my lovelies. Kisses 

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