Here we go, another session at #TFCBeautyTalk.
In the midst of people sharing their skincare routines *yes, I am one of those people* all over social media, I completely understand how overwhelming it can be. There are so many out there. Endless products with endless combinations. Never-ending new launches and releases. It can get intimidating, to say the least. Especially for curious onlookers who are just starting to gain an interest. Beginners. Newbies. Whatever you call it.
It makes it harder too because there are gazillions of information out there nowadays compared to say, 5 years ago and one’s ability to process them all is limited. Plus, the power of social media and influencers can make us FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). Then before you know it, you fall into the black hole. Clueless and in limbo.
Enter this post. Compiling the essential things to acknowledge and remember as you’re on this journey. Let’s just say this is more of a guideline and a point of view from my glasses – based on my experience. Not dictating anyone because ultimately, the decision is yours to make and the risk is yours to bear.
Worth to read before we start. They’re all related.
OK, I don’t care if I sound like a broken record. Everyone’s skin is different. There’s no one-solution-fits-all. What works for me may not work for you and vice versa, even if we have similar skin type. Think twice before you ask someone, “what’s the best serum (or whatever the product is) for my skin?”
A skincare routine is comprised of a set of products. Hence, it’s called a routine. If you only rely on one product to solve all or many of your skin concerns, then you’re looking at the wrong way. When it comes to taking care of the skin, more than anything, it takes commitment. It’s not about being diligent when there’s a problem. Or only when you want to tackle an issue. The routine can be as simple or as elaborative as you want/need it to be. What matters here is consistency. We’re talking about the long road here, not the highway.
By any means, feel free to go to the dermatologists and skin aesthetic doctors if do-it-yourself is too tedious for you. Combining OTC (off-the-counter) products with skin clinic treatments, sure. But make sure you know what they’re putting/doing on your skin. At the very least, learn something from them. Earn the knowledge. Because after all, you’re paying for their services.
Another important thing, a skincare routine doesn’t make us impervious to acne or any other skin problems. Skin issues will always come and go. It’s not a cure, it’s maintenance.
HEALTHY & BALANCED LIFESTYLE.
Skincare doesn’t solve everything. It’s only a part that contributes to the skin’s health. Our lifestyle is one of the deciding factors. How we sleep, eat, drink, etc. The amount of stress. Dealing with fluctuating hormones (which usually translates to acne) could be a nightmare. I had a taste of it every now and then and it’s never pretty.
This is our bodies. We have to try to take care of it as much as we can. Be mindful of what we consume and how we treat it. Be kinder to ourselves. Be gentler. Be more in touch with our bodies. Deep inside, I think at this stage, we all know what are the healthy options here. It’s a matter of whether we want to do it or not. Agree?
Smoking – yeah no, just no. Not just your skin and health at stake here. But also others near you, including strangers and passersby. Ever heard of secondhand smoke? I’m always baffled whenever I see people smoke next to children, often their own children. Or feel entitled when we express we don’t like the puff bothering us. Um, hello? If you want to get all kinds of diseases, that is up to you. Don’t drag us along with you.
For me, I’ve been able to avoid acne since I cut out A LOT OF sugar, carbs, dairy, fried/greasy and extra spicy food. The acne only comes once in a while and it usually heals faster. Was it hard? Yes. But I get used to it, eventually. I still cheat though. And still reaps the punishment when I go overboard LOL.
Exercise more. Release those endorphins. And don’t forget to wash your face to prevent clogged pores from the sweat 😉
I think when we’re discussing genetics, let’s just admit that some people just have good genes. Even without good skin to begin with, some people have faster regeneration system that makes the skin to look better/healthier quickly. We can do all of the top beauty routines out there and yet we might still not achieve the same results. That’s just the way it is and there’s nothing we can do. It’s in their DNA.
What I do know is many of these “lucky” people still actually take care of their skin. I applaud them for not slacking or taking it for granted. If any, it should be motivating us to keep do the same. Not because we want to achieve the same skin, but more about appreciating what has been given to us.
We can’t feel sorry for ourselves because we’re not born like them. It’s pointless to keep comparing ourselves with others. What we can do is focusing on ourselves. Learn to love us in its entirety. Work with what we have. And keep at it.
ANTI-AGING IS LIMITING.
The whole anti-aging is just marketing. It has been abused and overused. Yes, we do age! We will have fine lines and wrinkles that so many people are dreadful about. Even though we take good care of the skin, eventually, we will have them. It’s called life. Aging is inevitable. Maintaining the skin’s health as we age is the long-term goal. To look best at our age.
I was really happy when I saw Allure’s posts (here and here) about phasing out the anti-aging term. It’s about time that we acknowledge that aging isn’t something to be necessarily scared of, but the opportunity to grow older is a gift that others might not have the privilege to. We get to live the life to its fullest, every day. Isn’t it wonderful?
For me, beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, colors, ways, and ages. I’ve seen women in their 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, and they’re all beautiful in their own way. They all have a story to tell. And it shows in their faces. Those lines, dark spots, and imperfections, these are the skin’s personality. Embrace it.
LISTEN TO YOUR SKIN.
Knowing your skin type will be your guide to finding the suitable products but it’s not always black and white. One thing for sure, always listen to your skin. You will hone your instincts as you learn. The skin changes from time to time. Some say every 6 months. In my case, whenever there’s a change in weather, environment or lifestyle, it will reflect on my skin easily. So, use products that will cover the skin’s current needs.
A simple example: if you feel your skin is dry lately and yet you still force yourself using clarifying masks and lightweight moisturizers because you think you have oily and acne-prone skin. Is it going to do any good? Probably not.
Proper hydration and balanced moisture are key to a healthy skin. Oily skin included. What I notice is many oily skin people actually suffer from dehydration, hence producing more oils to compensate the lack of hydration. I realized this upon reading a long time ago. I thought I had oily skin, so I used products that are geared towards this skin type. The result? My skin became oilier. Once I added more hydrating elements to the skin, I can see improvements. Don’t be scared of using moisturizers or oils. Find the right type products with suitable/preferred textures.
READ AND RESEARCH.
I am so satisfied I can type these loud and clear.
If you’re even THAT lazy to search for the most basic information, then I promise you won’t get far. And people will most likely be annoyed at you because you keep asking the simplest questions that can be answered by a simple Google search. Well, it’s still pointless if you won’t read the articles. Asking for a summary is insulting to the people who have spent their precious time writing this information.
When it comes to searching for product reviews, look for as many references as you can. Don’t just look for the good ones, look for all kinds of reviews. Get a feel for this particular product you’re interested in. Find a connection, a chemistry, so to speak. If you’re still unsure, then don’t force yourself to buy it. No one is pressuring you to.
Keep in mind that a negative review doesn’t mean that the product is bad. It simply means the product doesn’t suit the user/reviewer. Skincare is personal, afterall.
Reading product reviews isn’t enough, though. Search for other information. Basic routines. The steps. Cleansing. Exfoliating and its risks. Hydration. Moisturization. Skin barrier. SPF protection. How skin works. Ingredients. Why this works and that one doesn’t. The logic behind things. Bottom line, look for anything that makes you wonder. Cover as many angles as you can. Be inquisitive. Satisfy your curiosity.
Even after all these years, I still do this. Opening my doors to the world of knowledge.
ALWAYS TAKE WITH A GRAIN OF SALT.
I can’t stress this enough.
Don’t swallow everything you see and read.
Especially with hypes.
We all know. Brands/companies work with media, bloggers, and influencers to promote their products/services to the public. It’s normal, right?
The dark side is, these hyped reviews aren’t always what they are. I won’t be naming names, but I heard firsthand on a few occasions about certain individuals who raved about a product on their social media yet saying otherwise backstage. Another occasion, they probably didn’t even use or barely use the products. Just write pretty captions, yet empty. Perhaps, they want to maintain a good relationship with the clients. Or could be, they got stuck because they’ve already signed the contract. This is also partly the brands’ fault because many of them are not open enough to diverse opinions. Maybe because they think they’re paying to get glowing feedbacks. Though ultimately, it’s the media/influencers’ choice (and risk).
Just to be clear, NOT everyone is like that. The statement above isn’t about attacking, but I’m simply reminding ourselves not to be so naive. There are still many people who are being honest out there. There are people whose skin is just not that sensitive so they can try different products with ease. There are also people who are easily pleased. Truth is, outsiders will never know how many products that didn’t make the cut. We’ll never know the backstory behind all of those product testing and trials. I understand that with negative reviews, it’s easy to change someone’s mind but the bigger picture remains the same: it doesn’t mean the product is bad.
With my reviews, I express my opinions and testimony based on my experience using the products (read my Disclaimer). That doesn’t mean that it’s the right one or the same results will happen to you. There’s no warranty that comes with it. I only collaborate with brands who accept my terms and conditions, one being I get to write candidly and I can’t guarantee a 100% positive review. I can only say that I’m being as honest as I can with what I share in my space. I have built my reputation around that and I am thankful for my followers who have supported me along the way. If you don’t trust me, it certainly is up to you. I’m okay with it.
As a matter of fact, I encourage you to be critical. So please, take with a grain of salt.
After much contemplation, I decided to split the post. Otherwise, it’ll take really long to read and most of you might get bored already 😀
If you relate to any of these points above, please feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section below. I’d love to hear them! I think it will be a nice way to converse, share the personal knowledge and mind-opening to others in need.
There will be a part 2! Stay tuned!