The Beginner’s Guide to Skincare Buzzwords

Eager to add some must-have ingredients into your routine, but not sure where to start? You’ve come to the right place.

Skincare is a science, but that doesn’t mean it has to be daunting or too complicated to decode. Here are a few guidelines for incorporating some of the buzziest ingredients into your everyday routine based on common questions and concerns.

1. Just getting into retinol?

This ingredient is undeniably effective for anti-aging, but if your skin is on the parched, sensitive side, it can exacerbate flaky dryness. To keep your skin happy, remember that less is more. Depending on the potency of the product you use, you can ease into it with an adjustment period. Apply it once or twice a week, and then every other day, until your skin is used to it (this could take several weeks, so be patient). Try: No7 Advanced Retinol 1.5% Complex Night Concentrate.

2. Curious about bakuchiol?

If you find that retinol is just too strong for your skin type, there’s an alternative option getting a lot of attention lately: bakuchiol. This ingredient is derived from the babchi plant and has long been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine. The upside for the retinol-hesitant: Bakuchiol is known to be gentler on skin and thus suitable for most people. Try: philosophy nature in a jar skin reset serum with bakuchiol & olive leaf extract.

3. Want to tap into antioxidants?

In general, antioxidants aren’t complicated to use, and you’ll find them across a variety of skincare products alongside other active ingredients (most antioxidants play well with others). Since they work to defend your skin against environmental aggressors, you’ll want to apply them when they can excel at their job (in the morning) and also when your skin is repairing itself (at night). Try: Clarins Double Serum.

4. Heard about the need to keep vitamin C stable?

Similar to other antioxidants, vitamin C is easy to incorporate into your routine; it can be as simple as layering on a serum a minute or so before you apply your day cream. One challenge with vitamin C is that it’s notoriously hard to keep stable and effective in any formula, so opt for one with airtight packaging and keep your product in a cool, dark spot. Try: Origins Ginzing™ Into The Glow Brightening Serum.

5. Worried about over-exfoliating?

Acids including AHAs (such as glycolic acid and lactic acid) and BHAs (salicylic acid) are excellent at getting rid of dull, dead skin cells, but it’s true that you should avoid over-exfoliating as you could annoy your skin’s moisture barrier. For example, don’t use a gritty scrub right before you slather on acid products; ditto for mixing acids with retinol. Likewise, avoid layering multiple acid products: using an AHA cleanser and serum and night cream all at once is likely too much. Instead, go with one retexturizing product at a time. Try: StriVectin Advanced Hydration Lactic Acid Nightly Retexturizing Serum.

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