How early should you have a skincare routine? The earlier the better. Having a reliable regimen can help save you time, energy and money in the long run.
Now, don’t get me wrong, you’ll still have lots of room for exploring and playing with products, you’re just gonna save yourself from doing unnecessary steps once you find the routine that works for what you need and want.
I know you may have been tempted to follow the Korean 10-step skincare routine. It looks fun! And the promised results are amazing. But it’s not really for everyone. And, truth be told, a lot of the steps are not needed.
So what should actually be part of your skincare routine? After more than five years of researching and writing about beauty, talking to dermatologists and other experts, here’s what I’ve learned: basic but no less effective regimens you can try out depending on your need. Plus, some products you can readily access here in the Philippines.
Basic but Best: A recommended skincare routine in the Philippines
While it’s tempting to buy and try everything you see on your social feeds, the best way to establish an effective routine is by sticking to the basics. You have to have a small but strong and solid ground. Try these tried-and-true steps.
Morning skincare routine
You need only three things in your morning routine: a cleanser, a moisturizer and a sunscreen. These are the basic foundations of an effective, reliable routine.
Take the night off — but gently. One popular dermatologist on TikTok recommends cleansing with just water in the morning. But I understand why you may be weary of this. Unless you sleep in an airconditioned room every night, you’ll still sweat a bit. And that needs to be washed off. So go on ahead and use a low pH cleanser or any other gentle cleanser. Check out cleansers to try based on your skin type below.
- Best Cleansers for Oily Skin
- Best Cleansers for Dry Skin
- Best Cleansers for Sensitive Skin
- Best Cleansers for Acne-Prone Skin
- Best Cleansers for Combination Skin
After cleansing, you need to nourish your skin. Using a moisturizer is a must! If you can find a multi-tasking product, even better. This way you can get more skincare benefits such as brightening or skin-barrier-protecting. But don’t discount the power of just good ol’ moisturizing either; its benefits go a long way. For options based on your skin type, check out the list below.
- Best Moisturizers for Oily Skin
- Best Moisturizers for Dry Skin
- Best Moisturizers for Sensitive Skin
- Best Moisturizers for Acne-Prone Skin
Don’t let that cleansing and nourishing go to waste. Make sure you protect your skin too! The best way to do that, of course, is to use a sunscreen. It’s really that product that keeps and seals all the good things in.
Check out our guides to and reviews on the best sunscreens in the Philippines right now.
Evening skincare routine
Equip your skin with the nourishment it needs in order to rest and recalibrate itself during slumber. Yes, beauty sleep is real! A lot of the skin’s rejuvenation process happens while you’re in dreamland. So make sure you have a good skincare routine to support its natural process before you hit the hay.
Take the day off (or, well, its remnants) with the help of an effective cleansing regimen. Since you’re using sunscreen in the day, you need to take it off at night so it doesn’t clog your pores. Using a cleansing oil or balm to break it and impurities on your skin is a good first step.
After that, you can go ahead and use the same cleanser you used in the day. Or if you’re feeling fancy, you can use a different cleanser that provides extra benefits but is just as gentle.
Remember how you’re supposed to supercharge your routine at night? This is where it comes in. Treat whatever issue your skin is facing. Is it looking dull? Use a brightening serum. Is it showing signs of aging? Anti-aging serum to the rescue. Is it inflamed? A soothing acne treatment is a must.
Check out these serums that are packed with ingredients that target different skin woes below — there’s a list for every skin type!
- Best Serums for Oily Skin
- Best Serums for Dry Skin
- Best Serums for Sensitive Skin
- Best Serums for Acne-Prone Skin
You can also look into exfoliating your skin once or twice a week. This helps the skin shed dead cells faster in order to reveal healthier, better cells. You can opt for mechanical exfoliators (think scrubs, beads, masks) or chemical exfoliators (products with chemical exfoliants such as alphahydroxy acids, betahydroxy acids and polyhydroxy acids).
I prefer going the chemical route because most mechanical exfoliators have a tendency to be abrasive (a.k.a. scratch the skin’s surface too much). But it’s also worth noting that you have to take just a bit of precaution too when using chemical exfoliants because they do tend to be quite potent.
Seal the deal with a good amount of moisturization. Use the same moisturizer you used in the day or pick one that’s just for your nighttime routine — either way, just make sure that you use one. Moisturizing helps to keep your skin balanced and strong.
Now, if you’re looking for something to address signs of aging, you can pretty much follow the same routine for day and night.
But if you want to amp it up a bit, you can add a vitamin C serum to your morning regimen. Many dermatologists recommend to use this in tandem with sunscreen because it also protects the skin from free radicals and sun damage. Think of it as giving your sunscreen a booster but also getting the added benefit of brighter skin and no dark spots.
Evening skincare routine
You can use an anti-aging serum in the ‘treat’ portion of your nighttime regimen and you’re good to go. Alternatively, you can use a product that has retinoid, retinal or retinol — they can come as a serum, oil or cream. Many studies have found the efficacy of topical vitamin A (retinoids and their siblings) in treating sun-caused skin aging.
Now that you know what you need to include in your skincare routine, you’re ready to start finding your holy-grail products and reaping their benefits. Good luck!
Jorj is an editor by profession, a b/vlogger on weekends, and a wife to Yop and mom to Cadence always. She's powered by curiosity and is in the process of becoming her best self.