Springtime Refresher: Keeping Skin Clean and Clear

Springtime Refresher

Everyone wants a healthy-looking complexion and the rebirth of spring is a great reminder to rejuvenate and remember the basics… Good skin care doesn’t need to be expensive or time intensive. It starts with positive lifestyle choices such as eating well, drinking plenty of water, regular exercise, and refraining from smoking and too much drinking.

A daily skin care routine includes the essentials:

  • Cleanse
  • Tone
  • Treat with a serum or eye cream
  • Moisturize
  • Apply sunscreen
  • Exfoliate (once or twice a week)

  • Cleansing, Toning, Moisturizing

    "Cleansing, toning, and moisturizing twice daily, every day, and then adding a facial steam with or without a mask about once weekly is one of the best ways to ease skin into spring,” advises Spring Cleaning: How to Pamper Your Skin. For more thoughts on facial masks for all skin types The Fashion Spot offers DIY instructions, while celebrity makeup artist Lisa Aldridge’s video is an entertaining look at how, when and why facial masks should be “popped on at anytime.”

    Add toner to your daily routine to help balance your skin’s pH level and shrink the look of pores. And remember to switch to a lighter moisturizer as temperatures rise. So just how important is moisturizer? In a British survey, 55 percent of 1,000 women polled said they'd rather "give up on their sex lives than their moisturizer.”

    In general, applying skincare in order of the thinnest products first is a good rule. Cleanse, tone, apply serum, eye cream, moisturizer and finish with sunscreen.


    The American Academy of Dermatology used UV photography to reveal hidden sun damage on people ages 18 months to 64 years old. Spring is the perfect time for a sunscreen refresher. There is no shortage of information on the importance of protecting your skin from the sun’s dangerous UVA and UVB rays. The EPA states that up to 90 percent of the visible skin changes commonly attributed to aging are caused by sun exposure. The Skin Cancer Foundation is an excellent resource for sun safety advice.

    Choosing and Applying

    Sunscreen not only helps prevent skin cancer, it helps minimize your skin’s exposure to free radicals in UV rays, which cause the breakdown of collagen. Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher to block both UVB rays (those that burn) and UVA rays (those that cause cancer and accelerate aging). Opt for a hydrating formula. Even if you use a foundation enhanced with SPF, it may not be enough. Consider adding a sunscreen after applying moisturizer, but before applying foundation to ensure optimal protection of facial skin.

    Rule of thumb: at a minimum, apply a shot glass size amount of sunscreen to your body 15 to 30 minutes before going outdoors. Reapply every two hours; every 30 minutes if you’re active. Remember your lips, ears, hands, feet, bald spots and the back of the neck.

    Exfoliating is Essential

    Exfoliating may not be a daily skin care activity, but it’s just as important to any beauty routine. According to Marie Claire, “Skin tends to become oilier when temperatures rise, so switching to an exfoliating cleanser will help keep skin healthy and clear.” Exfoliating is also an important part of an anti-aging skin care regimen.

    Facial skin is thinner and more delicate than body skin. It requires a different approach to exfoliation. The Beauty Department has a short tutorial on the correct method for exfoliating your face. SheKnows Beauty & Style offers tips for exfoliating from head to toe. You’ll need an exfoliating cleanser, loofah, pumice stone and body lotion. Then there’s Everything You Need to Know About Exfoliation from Beauty Bets, which explains the difference between mechanical and chemical exfoliation. If you prefer homemade exfoliants, Mother Earth Living has recipes for fruit enzyme and gentle food-based acid exfoliants.

    Following these easy-to-use skin care routines will help keep your skin healthy and glowing. What’s your favorite skin care tip?