High school wasn’t great for me or my skin. If you were to look back on my photos through puberty, you’ll see a pimply, frizzy haired, short sighted teenager in braces. Yep, I had it ALLL. But while the braces eventually came off, I started wearing contacts, and my hair texture changed (otherwise I could straighten it), I continued to battle with acne for a long, long time into my 20s.
Unfortunately, skincare is a long term regime that requires commitment and dedication. Here’s a recent pic from March 2019 where I was travelling overseas for work and woke up in the morning to take a candid shot for my husband:
I”m so thankful for relatively good skin these days. Over the years, my skin transitioned through oily, to combination, to dry, and back to combination. Everyone’s different. I’m lucky enough that while my my skin is prone to breakouts, it hasn’t been (overly) sensitive. Below are the 5 things I did (and still doing) to improve my skin.
Drink more liquids
I know, I know, this is the age-old saying. But it’s just so true. Think back to what something (anything!) looks like when it’s dry and dehydrated. It’s brittle, flaky, and shrivelled. Your skin will do the exact same thing: flaky, wrinkly, raw, and sensitive. I can’t admit to drinking 2L waters (or 8 glasses) a day, but I do try to inject as much liquid intake as possible into my routine. Such as:
✔ Warm glass of water first thing in the morning after waking
✔ Making myself a coffee after getting into office (before you say it’s also a diuretic, caffeinated drinks do not cause fluid loss for normal intake)
✔ Brew a mini pot of tea to put on my desk to drink throughout the day
✔ A drink to go with lunch (usually juice or some hot Chinese herbal drink. Not soft-drinks)
✔ Have some soup to go with dinner
✔ A jug of water by my bedside (I like to drink a glass before bed, and no, it doesn’t wake me up in the night)
Take some collagen
Collagen is what keeps skin looking smooth, tight, and bouncy (hence, “baby skin”). After turning the big three-oh, I’ve been noticing deteriorating skin texture and the appearance of fine lines around my eyes. Our body’s collagen production starts to slow from age 20 and begins to drop 1-2% each year after 30. So given the rare opportunity to visit Japan last year, I bought a packet of Shishedo’s The Collagen powder thinking to get my skin into a better condition before my wedding. I was curious and experimental; not expecting to see any real results for a while. My skin is prone to large pores and my forehead and chin feels bumpy at times. After adding the powder religiously to my morning coffee for a week, I was pleasantly surprised to feel my skin noticeably smoother in texture. Skin looked plumper and blemishes seemed to fade faster. The powder did subtly change the taste of my coffee, and although I can’t quite describe the taste, it didn’t bother me. I bought the bigger 240g pack, which lasted me around 2 months (the pack recommends 6g over 40 days). The Collagen is also available in liquid, tablet, or smoothie form if powder isn’t your thing. Again, please do your own research if you’re wanting to try. Don’t be irresponsible like me and grab it off a shelf at Don Quijote during an impulse touristy shopping trip. That said, I’ll definitely be buying it again.
Remove ALL traces of makeup
In fact, I double cleanse. By that, I mean I use a makeup remover to take off all the stubborn products, then wash my face again with a face cleanser. If there’s extra residue around the eyes afterwards (waterproof mascara and sweat-proof eyeliner, anyone?), then I’ll go over that area again with a cotton tip. Basically, I never (ok, rarely) sleep with makeup on.
Moisturise after cleansing
No matter how good your cleanser is, washing takes off natural oils and you need a moisturiser afterwards to seal the moisture back in. Just because you don’t have dry skin isn’t an excuse not to use one. There are so many different moisturisers out in the market now, you’ll be sure to find one to suit your skin type! My mother had instilled this habit in me since young, so now I can’t bear not using a moisturiser as my skin feels uncomfortably tight after cleansing.
Do you take less care of your skin than you’ll actually admit?
Did someone ever pass onto you their age-old skincare tips?
What’s your swear-by skincare habits or products?