skin health

9 min read

Skin 101: how to build a basic skincare routine

Learn the steps to create an essential, effortless routine for maintaining your skin’s health.

skin 101: how to build a basic skincare routine

the basics of using skincare


When it comes to looking after your skin on a daily basis, a comprehensive skin care routine should be on your to-do list. It may seem like a daunting task to pick the right products (we don’t blame you–it can be confusing!) but it’s as easy as identifying your skin’s key concerns and choosing products that treat them. 


step 1: cleanse


No matter what your skin needs are, cleansing should be your first priority. Why? Plenty of reasons! In the morning, cleansing is essential to remove any debris and dead skin cells that have shed during your sleep. It is also important to cleanse your skin in the morning to remove any residual night time skincare from the night before! (We generally tend to use thicker moisturizers at night that should be removed before our AM routine.) At night, cleansing removes make-up and any dirt that your skin has accumulated throughout the day. If you neglect this step, your skin is susceptible to being clogged and bacteria can potentially thrive, causing unwanted breakouts. (Those pesky under the surface bumps are generally caused from improper cleansing.)


If you’re wearing make-up or heavy sunscreen, spend time outside, or even live an active lifestyle- start your cleansing routine with Precleanse. This oil-based cleanser melts surface debris, like make–up and dirt, while conditioning skin. This universally loved cleanser can be used on any skin type, but it’s particularly effective for skin that produces excess oil (including sweat!). Follow up with Special Cleansing Gel, a soap-free gentle cleanser that removes deep impurities, without irritation, while maintaining skin’s moisture levels. All skin types can use this cleanser as well, especially if you have more sensitive, breakout-prone skin. Explore all our cleansers and choose the right one for you with the help of our cleansers blog.


step 2: exfoliate


Now that we’ve got those dead skin cells out of the way, it’s time to exfoliate. This step can be done with a chemical or physical exfoliant to keep your skin *really* clean. After all, a build-up of gunk & dead skin cell accumulation is one of the leading reasons breakouts pop up on the skin’s surface.


So how do you choose the right exfoliator? There are two main types of exfoliation: chemical and physical. Similar to sunscreens, they both have advantages that make them compatible with different skin types and conditions.


Physical exfoliants, like scrubs and sugars, use friction to physically buff off dead skin cells. They’re great at breaking down larger molecule debris that can be easily detached; so they’re best for people that are concerned with dry patches, flaky skin, dehydration, and skin that’s not easily sensitized. Scrubs can be aggravating for sensitivity (or breakout prone skin) due to the friction and blood circulation it causes to buff it on the skin! Chemical exfoliants, like AHAs, BHAs, and PHA’s break the chemical bonds that hold our skin cells together, helping them lift away when skin is rinsed. They’re highly effective at removing smaller molecules, and are great for people who are concerned with pore size, breakouts, pigmentation, aging concerns and (depending on which chemical exfoliant is used) more sensitive skin.


For a daily dose of gentle exfoliation, try Daily Microfoliant, a rice-based physical exfoliator that polishes for a brighter, smoother complexion. For more powerful results, reach for a chemical exfoliator like Liquid Peelfoliant. This once-a-week treatment deeply resurfaces skin, helping fade the look of dark spots, lines, wrinkles, and rough texture.  


Still wondering which exfoliant is right for you? Check out our exfoliants blog to learn more.


step 3: tone

Next, it's time to prep your face for treatments and moisturizers. Toners are meant to refresh your skin and prepare it to absorb any subsequent moisturizing products. The Multi-Active Toner is a hydrating toner that’s formulated with moisture-binding humectants to capture and maintain skin hydration. Use it after your cleanser or throughout the day for a pick-me-up whenever you need.   


step 4: treat

With so many different skin types and concerns, such as blackheads, pimples (breakouts) and oiliness, it’s important to use products that can target specific issues (skin challenges) and improve the overall health of your skin. Personalize your routine with targeted serums that effectively treat specific skin concerns, delivering better results, instantly and over time. 


To treat pimples (breakouts), you can’t go wrong with Clear Start Breakout Clearing Booster. It’s formulated with Salicylic Acid to address breakout-prone spots, while Niacinamide and Seaweed-derived extracts lock in moisture and improve skin’s defense against future breakouts. The best thing about this spot treatment is that it can be used on both existing and underlying breakouts–who wouldn’t want that? Use your finger to pop a light layer over your spots and go about your day. The formula dries clear, so you won’t be left with any white patches on your skin.  


If you want more versatile care, look no further than the Dynamic Skin Retinol Serum. This high-dose, multi-retinoid treatment helps clear skin while easily reducing the 4 major signs of skin aging: pores, texture, tone, and wrinkles. Its 3.5% Retinoid Complex continually releases 3 types of retinols, helping treat skin over time without irritating it. Plus, Squalane and Beta Glucan help replenish skin and support the skin barrier. This innovative treatment gives you all the visible results of retinol without the unwanted side effects. Learn more about choosing the right serum in this blog.  


step 5: moisturize


Now that you have cleansed, exfoliated, and treated your skin, there’s one more step to go–moisturizing. And, it’s a step that all skin types (yep, even combination and oily skin) can benefit from. 


In the AM, we recommend reaching for a moisturizer with SPF like Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF50 that can restore hydration and protect your skin from harmful sun rays. Whilst UVA and UVB rays are invisible to the naked eye, they’re incredibly sneaky and can damage, even burn, your skin. This multitasking moisturizer delivers hydration, firms skin, and protects against sun damage with Broad Spectrum protection. 


At night, go with something nourishing (minus the sunscreen), such as Skin Smoothing Cream. This versatile moisturizer feels incredibly lightweight yet deeply soothes skin, especially while you sleep. Key ingredients, such as Hyaluronic Acid hydrate your skin and make it look noticeably plumper. Plus, botanicals like ginger, orange, and grapefruit can soothe skin and reduce redness. For even deeper replenishment, try Super Rich Repair. This rich moisturizer is the perfect way to repair and restore skin’s moisture levels as you sleep. Shea Butter and Oil of Evening Primrose pair up to nourish chronically dry skin and protect from moisture-stealing irritants. Learn about all of our moisturizers and which is right for you in our moisturizer guide.


consistency is key

The most important part of your routine is consistency. Follow these steps every single day and you should be on your way to achieving healthier skin and a glowing complexion.  


start here

Still questioning which products are right for you? Talk to an expert! Chat live with our Professional Skin Therapists or try our Face Mapping analysis to get personalized, expert-approved product recommendations based on your skin concerns. If you’ve already got your recommendations, check out our skin kits and sets which are the perfect way to build your new skin care routine.