Guide to Creating an Effective, All Natural Skincare Routine
After writing my previous post which garnered some negative (mostly positive) criticism, I felt this follow up was important. (Read: Natural Skincare is the Most Profitable Beauty Myth Ever) I taught you all the dangers of using ingredients in your pantry as part of your skincare routine, and now I’m going to show you how to safely create an all natural skincare routine. I 110% acknowledge how important a routine with no synthetic ingredients is for some people, especially those with certain health concerns. As I clarified in my previous post, not all natural skincare is bad. Finding natural solutions that are safe and effective is very possible. Let’s get right into it!
First, if you want to create an all organic routine, the most important part of it is going to be oil-based. Why? Oils can cleanse and moisturize the skin. They can also treat various concerns such as acne, excess oil, and discoloration. We love a multi-tasking product! When it comes to oils, it’s important that you use carrier oils and not essential oils directly on your skin. We’ll discuss specific oils and their purpose in the next post. Stay tuned!
I love oils specifically because if you’re a full beat kinda gal like me, they take almost everything off. Followed up with a mild toner or micellar water and your face is completely clean, and it still has it’s natural oils. Also, most carrier oils act as occlusives and seal in water to help prevent TEWL, which I discuss later in this post. Oils can’t hydrate, they only moisturize. This is because oil and water never mix, so you have to use them after any hydrating products in order to seal in hydration.
If you have oily skin, oil cleansing will change the game for you. Excessively oily skin is actually your damaged skin crying for help. The only way to help it is to give it the oils it’s lacking. I’ve been oil cleansing for close to 3 years and my skin type is now mostly normal. Oily T-zone? We don’t know her. Also for oily skin, jojoba oil should be your best friend. It mimics the sebum your skin naturally produces meaning your skin won’t feel the need to overproduce sebum like it does now. Dry skin sufferers will benefit more from argan oil as it has essential fatty acids that help your skin by increasing the amount of moisture it can hold and repairing it’s dry, damaged barrier.
Oils derived from plants, nuts, and seeds. They are typically extracted via cold pressing and have a very faint, nonirritating scent. Some examples are sweet almond oil, avocado oil, sunflower seed oil, and rosehip oil.
These oils are derived via distillation and are too harsh and concentrated to use directly on the skin because of their fragrances and volatility. Carrier oils are named such because they help “carry” the benefits of essential oils safely into the skin. Peppermint oil, lemongrass oil, sweet orange oil, and lavender oil are examples. I randomly feel the need to include here that you should NEVER add these oils to your face steamer if you have one. Oils heated up will burn your face…as expected.
Hydrating your skin is crucial. You don’t have a protective barrier if your skin isn’t properly hydrated and moisturized. No protective barrier means you’ve left your front door open for all acne-causing bacteria, pollution, and dirt to enter your skin. Yikes! Your skin experiences a process known as transepidermal water loss (TEWL), think of it as evaporation occurring on your face. In order to replenish the water lost during this process, you have to use humectants. Humectants attract water from the air into your skin, thus replenishing the water loss and hydrating. Moisturizers work by sealing this water in and reducing the amount of water lost in your skin during TEWL.
Now that we have that down, the following humectants should be your friend: glycerin, aloe vera, pro-vitamin B5 (panthenol), hyaluronic acid, and honey. All of these are great, organic humectants with their own additional benefits. For example, aloe vera soothes the skin as well as hydrating it, making it great for acne sufferers.
If acne and discoloration are your concerns, Tata Harper has you covered. They are known for all of their products being organic and safe to use on anyone. If they are out of your budget (completely understandable), certain oils like sweet almond oil are great for acne because of their high vitamin A content which helps to increase your skin’s cell turnover rate, therefore undoing clogged pores. Sunflower seed oil is also another acne fighter because it is high in linoleic acids, something acne-prone people tend to lack. Tea tree oil is useful for treating breakout-prone skin because it is an antibacterial and helps prevent acne caused by bacteria. (Related: Everything About Acne and How To Treat It)
For discoloration, rosehip oil is your best friend because it contains high amounts of vitamin C. Vitamin C works overtime to get rid of excess melanin and fight free radicals. Rosehip oil is another linoleic acid rich oil, so along with fighting hyperpigmentation, it can treat your acne. (Related: Understanding and Treating Hyperpigmentation). I would also recommend checking out the Bahi Sunflower Sweets Serum which is a cult-favorite for treating acne and hyperpigmentation. It’s formulated with vitamin e, a powerful antioxidant known for fighting inflammation, and other skin-loving ingredients like grapeseed oil and grapefruit extract.