The #MorningRoutine trend is all over the Internet—and for good reason. We love to peek inside the regular routines of celebrities, influencers, and everyday people alike. But what about your daily routine? Do you know what step-by-step regime is best for your skin? We can help.
It’s not actually that complicated: A three-step skincare routine can get you through the day, and help reveal some of your best skin yet (though, as we’ve talked about before, skin issues can be mere symptoms of something wonky going on internally). The trick? Choosing products that are best for your skin.
To Do First: Skin Type Test
Your first step to figuring out the best routine for you is to determine your skin type. The easiest way to do this is to wash your face with water only (we recommend running this test in the morning, when your skin is already semi-clean). Dry gently and don’t apply any products. Wait 20 minutes and then check your skin.
- Do you notice it flaking, feeling tight or dry? You likely have dry skin.
- Do you notice oil and shine all over? You likely have oily skin.
- Do you notice it dry in some places, but oily or shiny on your forehead, nose, and chin? You likely have combination skin.
- Do you notice not much difference—your skin feels fairly calm, isn’t shiny or flaky? You likely have balanced skin.
While this isn’t a perfect test—and your skin can fluctuate depending on seasons, allergies, what you’re eating, and what medications or supplements you’re taking—it can help give you a baseline from which to start.
Three Steps to a Morning Skincare Routine
Having a morning skincare routine can not only help your skin stay in balance, but it can also mentally set you up for the day. It can provide a few minutes of self-care, and signal to your body and brain that it’s time to ramp up.
Step 1: Cleanser
Choose a gentle, invigorating cleanser for the morning—or, skip a cleanser entirely! If you haven’t sweated a lot overnight, a quick rinse with cool water can be all your skin needs.
- Dry Skin: Choose a milky or cream-based cleanser.
- Combination or Oily Skin: Choose a gel-based cleanser.
- Balanced Skin: Choose to rinse with water only, or try a micellar water.
Step 2: Toner or Hydrosol
Many of us may have vivid memories of 90s commercials that include harsh, alcohol-based astringents that sting when swiped across skin. Let us tell you, the toners of today are much more gentle, and they actually set your skin up to better absorb hydration. Toners can also help soothe, calm, and hydrate on their own, so they’re an important step in your skincare routine.
- Dry Skin: Choose an aloe-based toner that contains hyaluronic acid.
- Combination or Oily Skin: Choose a toner that contains witch hazel or willow bark (salicylic acid).
- Balanced Skin: Choose a toner with botanical ingredients like rose, lavender, or chamomile.
Step 3: Moisturizer or Hydrator
Face oils are ALL THE RAGE right now, and they are highly beneficial to skin because they’re dense in nutrients. But, oils can’t actually hydrate your skin; they can only provide nourishment. That means you need to moisturize with a water-based product (think something that contains aloe vera, actual water, or hyaluronic acid). Apply when your skin is still damp from your toner for maximum benefit.
- Dry Skin: Choose a cream-based moisturizer that also contains plant butters and oils.
- Combination or Oily Skin: Choose an aloe-based hydrator that is lighter and perhaps gel-like to avoid an oily finish. Oil-based treatments can be great for oily skin—they can actually help skin regulate its oil production, and reduce shine. But if you struggle with shiny skin, you’ll like a hydrator that has more of a matte finish for the morning.
- Balanced Skin: Choose an aloe or water-based moisturizer that also contains nutrient-dense ingredients like plant oils.
Skincare routines don’t have to be that complicated when you break them down. Yes, there are still a million products to choose from, but we can help with that too: Start with nontoxic, green skincare to avoid unnecessary and potentially harmful ingredients. Need help getting started? Check out our easy, green your beauty routine guide.
Dr. Cassie Wilder is a registered Naturopathic Medical Doctor (NMD) and founder of MIMC. Her passion is empowering her patients through education, understanding, and support through their healing journey. After graduating from Iowa State University with a Bachelors of Science in Kinesiology and Health, Dr. Wilder earned her Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine from Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine & Health Sciences, a fully accredited and nationally recognized institution in Phoenix, AZ. During her clinical training, she received extensive hands-on training with many leading experts in the field of functional medicine and developed a passion for treating hormonal imbalances, thyroid disorders, cardiovascular concerns, and adrenal fatigue.