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Everything you need to know about skin minimalism

Slash down all the extras!

The pandemic gave us enough time to get into each drawer in our house and throw out everything that wasn’t of use to us anymore. And while that’s led to us having a manageable wardrobe and drawers with nothing hiding in the musty corners, our beauty shelf hasn’t been offered the same courtesy. It’s still overflowing with impulse buys, influencer-approved products, the bare essentials, and, of course, everything you bought because your favourite skincare brand went on sale. So, let me ask you this, are you at that point where your beauty shelf looks more like an all-you-can-eat buffet: skincare edition? If you look at that shelf and wonder why you own four night serums and three foam cleansers or why your skincare regime takes up half your time, it might be time to tame it down.  
We’re talking about adopting skin minimalism. Before you jump to conclusions, we aren’t suggesting you Marie Condo your skincare products. We fully understand that those are an investment in their own way. However, skin minimalism means to use those products more mindfully and not layer random products that do more harm than good. After all, it’s about what your skin concerns are and what ingredients you choose to treat that and not how many products you use. Hence, cutting down the clutter of products you use might work better than your convoluted 7-step regime.  

 Why go minimalist?  

Built on the classic less-is-more philosophy, skin minimalism is about using fewer products to produce results that are better than the ones an extensive skincare regime promises. The reason behind this is simple. When you apply a few products that you know are going to work rather than a plethora of random products, you get targeted results. Slashing out all the extras can save you money, time, and energy. It’s like cutting out a toxic relationship. At some point you need to prioritise what you really need.    

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Also, it’s crucial to note that going minimalist with your skincare regime helps to repair and avoid further damage to your skin’s barrier. In fact, one of the biggest reasons that your barrier needs repair is because of overuse of product. So, going minimalist can only help.  

How to get started  

Prioritise the essentials

Let’s get something straight. No matter what social media tells you, you do not need three face serums. Any skincare routine worth its salt consists of three main elements—cleanser, moisturiser, and sunscreen. Once you have these in place, all the other products are just add-ons to treat specific concerns. Your regime should not consist of more that four or five products. Unless they are dermatologist recommended.  

 Identify your skin concern and the ingredients that would work to treat it   

 Are you looking to treat hyperpigmentation? Dryness? Acne? Identify your skin concern. Once you’ve done that, it will be easier to only use products that cater to that particular concern rather than haphazardly using products. Identifying your skin concern also helps in streamlining which active ingredient will work for you. Or find an active (like retinol) that treats numerous concerns in one small bottle.   

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Look for products that combine ingredients  

Multi-purpose products are always a good idea. Instead of using five different products that perform five different duties, why not find one product that does it all? Okay, maybe not all because that’s aspirational. But most of it. For instance, if you find a serum that not only hydrates but also targets acne, with both hyaluronic acid and niacinamide, you can target your dryness and your acne scars with one bullet.