How To Choose A Skincare Product That’s Right For You?

This is one of the most difficult questions, isn’t it? If we have found a skincare product that suits us, we tend to stick with it. However, our skin needs changes and variability depending on the season, age or even stress level… just to name a few. And skin care is always very personal; what suits your friend, may not suit you.

Here are some easy tips from our skincare experts on how to choose the right products that suit your skin and your needs.

  1. What is your skin type
  2. What skin concerns you might have
  3. Stick to simple basics
  4. What really makes product work
  5. Don’t buy into the hype – pay attention to the order of ingredients
  6. How are your skincare products formulated?
  7. Try first – unwanted reactions?
  8. When can I expect results?
  9. Simple Circulove skincare routine

Did you know? How toxic an ingredient is depends on where in the world you are. While the EU bans more than 1,300 harmful ingredients from cosmetics, beauty is one of the least regulated industries in the US where only around 11-30 ingredients are banned (by the FDA).

1. What is your skin type?

Knowing your skin type is essential to finding the right products to care for it.

It is one of the main conditions to take into account – not only because skin reacts to the components of the products you use, but also because it helps you understand what kind of ingredients to avoid or use.

Your skin type is usually determined by genetics, but there are daily habits and environmental factors that can worsen a skin condition. Each skin type has a specific set of characteristics and symptoms, which requires special attention.

The basic skin types are normal, oily, dry, and combination. Your skin type is determined by the size of your pores, the degree of oil, and moisture in your skin. Once you understand your skin type, you can start selecting your products.

Here’s an easy checklist for you:

Normal Skin Type

You have normal skin if you have few imperfections, no significant sensitivities, and small pores that are barely visible. Normal skin has:

✔     Few imperfections
✔     No sensitivity
✔     Hardly visible pores
✔     Radiant skin

Oily skin

Oily skin generally stems from large pores. It leads to dull or shiny skin that is prone to blackheads, acne, and other blemishes that arise from clogged pores. You may have:

✔     Enlarged pores
✔     Dull or shiny, thick complexion
✔     Blackheads or pimples

Dry Skin

You have dry skin if your skin is rough or dull. It also may be spotted with red or itchy patches. Your pores will be so small as to be practically invisible. You may have:

✔     Almost invisible pores
✔     Dull, rough complexion
✔     Red patches
✔     Your skin is less elastic
✔     More visible lines

Combination Skin

Combined areas of oily, normal, and/or dry skin is common. For instance, you may have shiny, oily T-zone (nose, forehead, and chin) and dry elsewhere. You may need different care in different areas. Combination skin can have:

✔     Pores that look larger than normal, because they’re more open
✔     Blackheads
✔     Shiny skin

If you’re not 100 percent sure what skin type you have, it’s worth a trip to the dermatologist or certified beautician to confirm it. Once you understand your skin type, you can start selecting your products.

2. What skin concerns you might have?

Think of if you have any skin-related issue like redness, dullness, dryness, acne and wrinkles. Do you have any significant sensitivities to environmental irritants? Does your skin sometimes itch or burn? Are there any wrinkles or other signs of aging that you’d like to address?

Ask yourself what problems you are trying to correct so that you can pick the right products to address them.

Don’t ignore your age. As we age we lose the capacity to synthesize some nutrients. This may lead to deficiencies and you will need to search for products to replenish those losses.

3. Stick to simple basics

Superfluous use of products and needless ingredients can irritate your skin causing minor skin damage. Stick to the basics to give the skin what it really needs. That’s the reason why the routines exist: cleanse, moisturize, protect and nourish.

Some products may appear cheaper and some more expensive, but what you need to prioritize in is quality. Stick to natural, clean & healthy products.

To make it easy, look for multipurpose products. It is good to think about how many products you really need. Best to invest in a simple, daily skincare routine you can stick to.

4. What really makes products work?

The first thing you need to know is that what makes a product work efficiently and safely is a combination of the following factors:

1.     What ingredients are in the product
2.     The amount of these ingredients
3.     How the product is formulated and ingredients treated in that process

You need all these 3 factors for the product to work efficiently. If one element is missing, there would be a substantial decrease in the performance. The first thing you want to do when selecting a product is to analyze the ingredients list.

5. Don’t buy into the hype – pay attention to the order of ingredients

Good looking packaging and perceived popularity are sometimes easy traps that we fall into, and we shouldn’t hold too much weight or value into that when we select what’s good for our skin. Be sure you are not paying just for fancy packaging and heavy advertising budgets, and above all, read the product label carefully.

A basic understanding of how cosmetic labeling works will definitely help you choose the best skin care products. Ingredients will be listed in order of highest to lowest concentration. The INCI exists to help create a standardized language of ingredient names to be used on labels around the world.

Basic thumb rule: look for the first 5 ingredients, because the first 5 listed on a label have the highest percentages, they indicate the performance of a product. Next most important is the synergy of all ingredients. Ask from your preferred brand if they are able to answer this question.

Here are some good online databases for ingredient and product research: EWG’s Skin Deep database, CosDNA and INCIdecoder.

6. How are your skincare products formulated?

How skincare products are formulated is the most difficult task for consumers to find out. This is important, since while the presence of active ingredients is certainly beneficial, the presence and amount itself is not enough. The formulation plays a huge role. For example, how oils are extracted and how pure they are, plays a crucial role from a product efficacy and skin compatibility point of view.

Similar to this regarding probiotic skincare formulas, once an ingredient is fermented, it’s microbes break down into smaller, more absorbable molecules. This makes these ingredients much more efficient at performing their job. The fact that fermented ingredients are able to mimic our cell functions also means that there is less of a chance of adverse reactions.

This is why it is good to avoid purchasing from DIYers, when it comes to skincare. You want someone with a strong chemistry background and years of experience to formulate effective cosmetics. Try to find out information about how your skincare is formulated. If there is nothing on web pages, most probably this information does not exist, which is a red flag.

7. Try first – unwanted reactions?

When trying a new skincare product the first time, don’t apply it directly on the face – do a patch test first. Before you start to use a new product, place a small amount on the inside of your elbow and wait 48 to 72 hours. If you notice no redness, swelling, itching, or burning on that spot, it’s OK for you to start using.

The state of your skin may become worse the first day you decide to pamper your skin with natural products. You may experience unpleasant reactions such as dry skin, oily skin, rashes, red patches, shredding or even large pores. Don’t worry, though – this is called the rebound effect. These symptoms do not last. There are different factors that influence the length of time your skin takes to find its natural balance. Such as stress level, diet, skin problems or your skin type may effect on how fast your skin adapts. Also, if you’re using several products and applying them all at the same time, this may cause problems. Try instead applying them at different times (for example, apply one product in the morning, the other at night).

8. When can I expect results?

As a general rule, it takes about 4 weeks the outer layer of your skin, the stratum corneum, to renew itself. Our age and particular skin cycle also affect how long it will take for the product to work. In our 20s, our skin cells take about 14 to 21 days to regenerate. In middle age, it takes about 28 days for the cells to regenerate. And as we move to our 50s and 60s, our skin cycle slows even further to about 60 to 90 days.

So it typically takes about 3 to 6 weeks for skin care products to work and you start seeing an improvement. This time can be shorter or longer depending on the type of product you use and the severity of your skin issues. The more work it needs to be done to heal your skin, the longer it will take to see the improved results.

This is the reason why it’s important to invest in a good skin care routine that works for you, even if it means spending a little bit more. The benefits of a good skin care routine will surely outweigh the cost over longer period of time.

9. Simple Circulove skincare routine

Choosing to use clean, probiotic skincare is even more important with skin irritations and breakouts on the rise, as it is crucial to use the skincare products that are supportive of your skin barrier and microbiome. Prefer gentle skincare products that are supportive of your skin barrier and microbiome to help balance the impact of irritation.

Here’s how to choose the right probiotic Circulove products by skin type or concern.

By Skin Concern

  • Stressed skin, flakiness, irritated skin, redness, lack of moisture, oiliness:
    • CALM Face + Eye Serum
  • Lack of firmness, lack of lustre, lack of moisture/smoothness:
    • SMOOTH Face Oil
  • Protection against anti-free radicals and UVA/UVB/HEV light from devices:
    • DAY SPF 20 Moisturizing Day Cream

By Skin Type

  • Sensitive, Rosacea, Psoriasis, Oily or Combination skin:
    • Day Cream: DAY SPF 20 Moisturizing Day Cream
    • Intensive Treatment or night cream: CALM Face + Eye Serum and  
  • Dry skin:
    • Cleansing: WASH Face Cleansing Oil (seasonal item)
    • Day Cream: DAY SPF 20 Moisturizing Day Cream 
    • Night Cream: SMOOTH Face Oil for night or mix with day cream for extra moisture
    • Intensive treatment: CALM Soothing Serum perfect under day cream or face oil  
  • Normal skin / All skin types:
    • Cleansing: WASH Face Cleansing Oil (seasonal item)
    • Day Cream: DAY SPF 20 Moisturizing Day Cream
    • Intensive treatment: CALM Soothing Serum 
    • Night Cream: SMOOTH Face Oil

Summary

There’s no one-size-fits-all skincare solution. An individualized approach is crucial to finding the right skincare products with the right ingredients for your skin. Each person is different, so start by taking into account your skin concerns, issues and current skin type today.

Appendix

Ingredients to avoid in skincare

Our skin is our largest organ. It’s also very absorbent. The issue here is that most of us don’t think about our skin this way. If you put something on your skin, that product gets absorbed into your skin.

Here’s just a few but the most harmful ingredients that you want to stay away from. It pays to get to know the ingredients in your skincare products.

1. Parabens

Parabens are a prevalent ingredient in many everyday skincare and hair care products. You’ll see them listed as Methyl, Ethyl, Propyl, Benzyl, Butyl, Isobutyl or something similar.

2. Phthalates

BPA Bisphenol-A (BPA). Phthalates often creep into the formulas of many skincare products, particularly perfumed skincare products and deodorants. What you may not know is that there are also other types of phthalates and they’re not listed on any labels. This chemical is used to retain a perfumed scent but is widely linked to breast cancer and reproductive issues. Just like parabens, phthalates can too mimic estrogen.

3. Fragrance

Fragrance can be called a “cluster ingredient”, and can be anything up to 4,000 different chemicals. They never have to be disclosed due to proprietary interest or intellectual property. Added fragrance formulas are widely linked to allergic reactions and can cause aggravated skin conditions such as dermatitis as well as respiratory conditions.

4. Triclosan

Triclosan and triclocarban are antimicrobial chemicals added to provide antibacterial properties to cleansing and skincare products as well as soaps and deodorants. Unfortunately, it can irritate the skin and disturb thyroid and hormone functions. It has now also been banned in many countries in toothpaste, deodorant, sanitisers, liquid antibacterial soaps and mouth rinse.

5. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) / Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)

Unfortunately, this ingredient is in a lot of products, particularly anything that foams like skin cleansers. However, it is a powerful skin, eye and lung irritant. It is not an ingredient you want to be putting on your skin every day.

6. Polyethylene Glycol (PEGS)

An all-too-frequent feature in skincare formulas, PEGs are used to thicken skin care products. Unfortunately, they can also strip the skin of natural moisture and contribute to oily or greasy residue on the skin. PEGs come under many different numbers as well. So you can see them as PEG numbers.

7. Synthetic Colors

Few people tend to question the inclusion of “synthetic colors” in skincare products, but you really should. If you see the letters F, D or C, followed by a colour or number, your skincare products contain synthetic colours. The problem is that these artificial ingredients come from petroleum or coal tar sources and are linked to several health issues.

Toluene or Formaldehyde are not anymore used in modern skincare.

Photo credit to Anna Shvets @pexels

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