It's time to come clean... literally. I'm 26 years old, and I don't really know how to take care of my skin properly to keep it clean, breakout free, and hydrated. Please teach me Skin Care 101, so I can have a daily routine to make this happen.
I am the kind of person who has to have a list on the door of my apartment that says "MEDS, PHONE, KEYS, WALLET, WATCH, LUNCH" in order to remember all of those things each morning. I need a routine simple enough that I can put up a short list like that next to the mirror in my bathroom so I can remember it each day.
A few days ago, for the first time in several years, I took a bath, rather than my regular shower. I was appalled
by the amount of dirt that came off me—the ring around the tub when I got out was phenomenal, especially since the tub had been cleaned just the day before. I realized that the way I shower and wash my face each day must not be getting me clean; it seems extremely unlikely that so much dirt came from just one day going to and from my office in Manhattan, especially in the winter, when most of my skin is covered up during my subway commute, when I'd expect to get dirt on skin exposed to the city air.
So, how should
I be cleaning my body and my face? The way I currently clean myself, I don't smell, and I don't look dirty, but I often feel
dirty and I know I'm not doing it as well as I'd like.
About my skin and when I clean it:
All of my skin is dry (particularly in the winter), and my face (including lips) is very flaky when it is dry. My neck almost always feels dirty to me, especially where it meets my shoulders and collarbone. I tend to get breakouts on my chin and on my back, particularly where waistband of my jeans and the band of my bra sit (largely, I think, because I'm not cleaning my back well enough). I don't wear makeup regularly, I usually wash my hair every other day, and I've recently switched to showering at night before bed (it's been pointed out to me that it makes sense to clean oneself just before getting between the sheets so that they'll last longer, and won't add to any breakout problems).
Cleansers, moisturizers, scrubbers, etc. which I have acquired and used in varying degrees of haphazardness:
Burt's Bees Orange Essence Facial Cleanser, a generic apricot face scrub, a basic drugstore body wash, bar soap, a back brush similar to this one (I hardly ever use it, though—the bristles come out, and the head keeps falling off the handle), washcloths, generic drugstore "pre-moistened face cleansing towelettes," Origins Mega Mushroom Face Lotion, Arbonne RE9 Advanced Restorative Day Crème SPF 20, and Arbonne Ginger Citrus Body Butter.
Which of that plethora of things are actually useful? What should I use regularly, and what should be sent to the trash? (I list them all because I'd like to use what I've already got, where possible, but I'd also like to avoid using useless things just because I've got them.)
Teach me how to take care of my skin, AskMe—I want to learn. What routine should I be doing each morning and night so that my skin feels clean, I get fewer breakouts, and my face doesn't look like it's constantly peeling? Oh, and so I don't leave such ghastly rings in the bath, of course.