6 Must-Have Ingredients in Your Skincare Regimen
Smooth, clear skin is a universal sign of good health. Although internal factors like eating a balanced diet, drinking plenty of water, and getting lots of exercise play an important role in achieving that healthy glow, the ingredients you use on your skin are equally vital. Did you know that your skin is the largest organ of your body? Clear skin is appreciated for its aesthetics, but keeping this organ in excellent condition is essential for your overall health.
While it’s a good idea to consult a dermatologist for skincare advice–especially if you have specific concerns you’d like to address such as acne, hyperpigmentation, or aging–a few ingredients are beneficial for almost all skin types. Mix and match according to the needs of your skin, and don’t be afraid to experiment! Keep reading to learn about 5 must-have ingredients in your skincare regimen.
- Vitamin C
Vitamin C is one of the most popular skincare ingredients, and for good reason. It’s safe for almost all skin types, whether used on its own or in conjunction with other skincare ingredients. As one of the most highly-researched antioxidants, it has lots of proven benefits. Vitamin C benefits for skin include anti-aging, fading hyperpigmentation (scars and brown spots), hydration, and increased collagen production. Plus, it even has other health-oriented benefits like increasing protection against the sun, healing sunburns, and treating wounds. Since Vitamin C is perfectly safe to use under SPF, try adding a layer before slathering on sunscreen for maximum protection against the sun’s rays!
- Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally-occurring molecule found in the human body. It’s a superstar when it comes to hydration. It doesn’t just lock in moisture when applied topically to the skin. It also pulls in moisture from the air, rehydrating your face throughout the day. This helps your skin achieve that plumped-up, glowy look. It’s often contained in moisturizers, serums, essences, and even sunscreens. If you’re using it as a serum, make sure to add a moisturizer layer on top for the most benefits.
These two chemical exfoliant ingredients are must-haves if you’re trying to combat acne or hyperpigmentation. AHA stands for Alpha Hydroxy Acid, which includes lactic, glycolic, citric, and tartaric acids. In contrast, BHA stands for Beta Hydroxy Acid, otherwise known as salicylic acid. BHA is one of the best treatments out there for acne, as it gently penetrates deep into the pores and cleans them out. AHA stays on the surface of the skin, adds hydration, and sloughs away dead cells, making it perfect for improving cell turnover, eliminating scars, and healing inflammatory acne. They can both be used at the same time, but be mindful to avoid over-exfoliating your skin. It’s generally best to just pick one and use it at night since both AHA and BHA can make your skin more sensitive to the sun.
Collagen is one of the most common and important proteins in the human body, as it helps create up to 30% of skin, bones, and muscle tissue. As people age or undergo stress, collagen levels can drop, creating lines, wrinkles, and other signs of aging in the face. Collagen supplements are a healthy and convenient way to make sure your collagen levels stay high. Still, it’s also very effective when applied topically. You’ll want to choose skincare products that contain collagen peptides instead of regular collagen; the molecules are broken down into small pieces, making it easier for the body to absorb through the skin barrier.
The black leftovers from fire? Yep! Charcoal is one of the more versatile products that can be applied to beauty products, day to day products like toothbrushes, and even skincare products. Activated charcoal is known for cleaning your pores and binding toxins. Using charcoal rubs or beauty masks can help you have smoother and clearer skin without using any laboratory-made ingredients in your process.
Antioxidants are found in lots of different foods, including blueberries, strawberries, artichokes, green tea, and even dark chocolate. Their most well-known benefit is protecting against free radicals, which can be found in cigarette smoke, pollution, and UV rays from the sun. Antioxidants also reduce inflammation, increase hydration, and keep your skin genuinely healthy in addition to looking its best. Many dermatologists recommend antioxidants for every person’s skincare regimen, regardless of skin type. Some of the most popular antioxidants are Vitamins A, B3, C, and E, and extracts made from green tea, rosemary, and berries.