How to start your clean skincare regime
Over the past two years, skincare has had a huge boom in popularity. Don’t get me wrong, we were all washing and moisturising our faces beforehand - but thanks to some incredible ‘skinfluencers’ on IG and TikTok, it’s now one of the hottest topics to chat about. There’s also been an increasing awareness about ingredients, processes and sustainability.
If you’re feeling super inspired and want to switch up your skincare regime, it can be hard to know where to begin. Everyone seems to be saying something different. Do I apply hyaluronic acid before or after moisturising? Which serums do I need for my skin type? Do I need to wear sunscreen inside?!
Take a deep breath. We’ve got you. Pop the kettle on, put your feet up and read our top tips for how to create a clean beauty regime for your skin type.
What is ‘clean’ beauty?
Let’s break it down (and dispel some rumours).
Clean beauty doesn’t have one set definition. Generally speaking, clean beauty products are ones that don’t contain any parabens, sulfates or artificial fragrance and colour. Clean beauty products consider both human health and the environment - so they shouldn’t contain any ingredients that are toxic to us or to the planet.
Unfortunately the term has been swept up in the greenwashing era by certain big brands. If you thought ‘clean beauty’ meant all your products should just be made from avocados, oatmeal and water, you’re not alone. It’s a common misconception that you should only put natural products on your face. But you can trust science - clinical skincare that has been formulated and tested by dermatologists are incredible for targeting skin problems.
Now we’ve established that, let’s get down to business.
How to start creating a clean skincare routine
Before you chuck all your existing products in the bin, take stock of what you’ve currently got on your shelves. What products do you use at the moment, and why are you unhappy with them?
Sort your skincare and beauty products into three piles:
- Love! If you’ve got some staple products you can’t go without, keep them in your routine. Check they don’t have any actively harmful ingredients - if not, you’re all good to go.
- Hate. If certain products actively irritate your skin but you bought them because they’re popular, ditch them. For example, if your cleanser leaves your face feeling tight and squeaky clean, that’s not good - it’s stripping all the moisture out and damaging your skin’s barrier.
- Not sure. If you’ve got some bits and bobs you don’t feel strongly about, use them up before you throw them out to avoid creating unnecessary waste. If they’re in date and there’s lots left, why not gift them to a family member or friend instead!
Less is more
The number one rule when it comes to skincare is to stay minimal and not go overboard. You might be tempted to buy every single exciting product available - but not all of them will suit your skin.
When you first begin, start with these basic steps:
- Cleanse - Choose between foam, gel, cream, oil, micellar water and cleansing bar depending on what suits your skin.
- Tone - Toners help to remove any excess oil and leftover dirt, prepping your skin for moisturiser. There are plenty of choices depending on what benefits you’re looking for.
- Moisturise - Keeping your skin hydrated is important all year round! It helps with fine lines, signs of aging, dryness, irritation, blemishes and other common skin problems.
- Protect - Remember to wear SPF even in the depths of winter - you’ll thank yourself in a few decades’ time!
Don’t worry about cluttering your routine with fancy serums at first until you’re completely happy with the above.
… and don’t forget about makeup!
Makeup is obviously a crucial part of any clean beauty routine. But unlike with skincare, you might not want to go minimal! That’s absolutely fine - you can wear as much blush, bronzer, eyeshadow and lipstick as you want, all while maintaining healthy glowing skin.
Try to go for makeup products by reputable clean brands, and check the ingredients for any potential irritants.
Prep is important. Protect your skin properly before applying makeup with a good moisturiser and a primer. (This will also reduce the appearance of larger pores, and will give you a gorgeous smooth complexion!)
At the end of the day, do NOT just slump into bed - even if you’ve had a big night out. Take time to deeply cleanse your skin to remove every last trace of makeup, dirt and grime.
Do some brand research
Ready to buy some brand new skincare and makeup products? There are so many incredible clean beauty brands out there. From Upcircle’s creative use of food waste to Ere Perez’s makeup crafted from botanicals, there are endless innovative brands to choose from.
Consider the wider implications of brands, too. Is their packaging recyclable? Are they completely vegan? Do they have ethical processes in place?
To help narrow your choice, find a handful of brands whose ethos you really resonate with and stick with them. We’ve handpicked some of our favourite clean beauty brands for our website - so if you need a helping hand, head over to our Personal Care section.
If you still feel aimless, let other people do the hard work for you! Reviews are your best friend. Scroll through customer feedback and reviews to get a sense of what people’s opinion is. Even though everyone’s skin is different, you’ll get a good feel for which products are most highly rated!
Your skin is special
When creating a clean skincare regime, remember to go for what works best for you. Everyone is different - your skin might love one product but react badly to another.
Don’t overwhelm your skin - start by using a tiny amount of one new product, and phase each one gradually into your routine. Give your skin time to adjust to new things. If it becomes irritated, let it rest and only introduce new products when it’s calm and uninflamed.
Lastly, have fun! Enjoy the process of discovering and experimenting with new clean beauty brands. We have a wonderful selection of sustainable and ethical skin and makeup brands on our online shop - have a browse and see what catches your eye!