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There are some items every woman needs in her life: the perfectly fitted pair of skinny jeans, a LBD, a red lipstick that flatters her skin tone—and a whole host of skin care products suited to her specific concerns, of course. Want to maintain a beautiful-looking glow? A consistent skin care routine is key! From facial cleansers to serums to face masks to glycolic acid to eye creams formulated to minimize the appearance of dark circles under the eyes, there are certain skin care products you should keep your bathroom stocked with if you want to maintain a radiant-looking complexion. Ready to go shopping? Consult this list to find out which skin care products are worth adding to your cart—and to your skin care routine!
Dear lazy girls: Introducing your skin’s new BFF! Micellar water has been a French-favorite cleanser for years and years—and now it’s super-popular across the globe. Haven’t tried it yet? Well, your skin is in for a gentle treat. Micellar water is made up of tiny micelles—oil molecules—that are suspended in water. These micelles act like magnets, attracting makeup, dirt, and oil up and away from your skin. The coolest part: Micellar water doesn’t require any rinsing or rubbing. Ooh la la!
Skin care product pick: Try the L’Oréal Paris Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Waterproof – All Skin Types. Sleeping in your makeup is a total beauty faux pas, since your foundation, mascara, and whatever else you have on your face can mix with the dirt and oil on your skin, leading to clogged pores. That’s where micellar water comes in. This one removes makeup (even the waterproof kind) in one swipe.
How to use it: Saturate a cotton pad with micellar water. For eye makeup removal, hold the pad over closed eyes for a few seconds, then wipe. You can also wipe the pad across your face to cleanse your skin.
Sometimes you’ll find yourself really in the mood for a deep clean, and that’s when you’ll want to turn to a clay facial cleanser. While you will need to step up to the sink for this one (watch the cleanser turn from clay to mousse when you add water), these cleansers are formulated to remove everyday impurities including dirt, oil, and pollution from the surface of your skin. Talk about clean!
Skin care product pick: Try the L’Oréal Paris Pure-Clay Exfoliate-Refine Cleanser. This exfoliating cleanser helps remove dead skin cells from the surface of your skin, leaving pores with a tighter, minimized appearance and imperfections less visible. Squeeze the cleanser into your hands, then add water to transform it from clay to mousse. Gently massage the cleanser onto your face using circular motions, then rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water and pat dry.
You may not have heard of them before, but peel pads are beloved by beauty industry pros—and for good reason. Peel pads help to exfoliate away dead skin cells that can make your complexion look dull (and who wants that?).
Skin care product pick: Try the L’Oréal Paris RevitaLift Bright Reveal Brightening Peel Pads. It’s not just wrinkles that can make you look older—so can dull, uneven skin tone. And your skin’s natural ability to shed surface dead skin cells declines as you age, which allows dark spots and uneven tone to become more visible. What you can do: Try adding a peel pad to slough off the dead skin cells to your nighttime skin care routine. This one is formulated with glycolic acid.
How to use it: At night, gently smooth a peel pad over your face after cleansing. In the morning, make sure to apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher as directed, because newly revealed skin may be sensitive to sunlight.
No matter what type of skin you have—such as oily, dry, sensitive, combination, or normal (in that case, lucky you!), moisturizer can help keep your complexion adequately hydrated. When you wash your face with cleanser, this can strip the natural oils from your skin, which is why it’s important to use a moisturizer afterwards to help make up for what’s been lost during the cleansing process. Water-based formulas have been trending lately, so this might be an option to consider when you’re thinking of picking up a new moisturizer.
Skin care product pick: Try the L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Normal to Oily Skin, L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Normal to Dry Skin, or the L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Extra Dry Skin. This line of water-based moisturizers is formulated with hyaluronic acid and aloe vera water for long-lasting hydration. This normal to oily skin moisturizer removes excess sebum (a.k.a. oil) from the surface of skin for a fresh feel and matte look. The normal to dry skin moisturizer envelops skin with moisture, improving radiance. The extra dry skin moisture envelops skin with moisture, providing comfort.
How to use it: Gently apply your moisturizer of choice to your face morning and night after cleansing.
While it might feel amazing to relax at the beach, all that time in the sun can actually do a number to your skin. When you spend time in the sun without wearing broad-spectrum sunscreen, this can lead to damage later on, which can show up on your skin (think: wrinkles and dark spots). That doesn’t sound good, does it? That’s why it’s important to wear broad-spectrum sunscreen daily—and no, not just on sunny days. According to the Food and Drug Administration, you should apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF value of 15 or higher every single day as directed. You’ll also need to reapply your sunscreen at least every two hours or immediately after swimming or sweating. Of course, sun protection doesn’t begin and end with sunscreen. The FDA also recommends dressing for the occasion by wearing long sleeves and pants, broad-brimmed hats, and sunglasses. Better safe than sorry! To cut down on the number of steps in your skin care routine, reach for a moisturizer formulated with broad-spectrum sunscreen.
Skin care product pick: Try the L’Oréal Paris RevitaLift Bright Reveal Brightening Day Lotion SPF 30, which is formulated with broad-spectrum sunscreen, glycolic acid, and vitamin C. Apply it as the last step in your morning skin care routine daily as directed.
To seriously upgrade your skin care routine, it’s time to say hello to serum. Typically, serums are highly concentrated formulas that target specific complexion concerns, such as dark spots and wrinkles. They can also help to improve the overall appearance of your skin. Talk about a win-win! Unsure of where serum should fall in your skin care routine? The answer: You should apply one in between cleansing and moisturizing.
Skin care product pick: Try the L’Oréal Paris RevitaLift Daily Volumizing Concentrated Serum. With continued use over time, this serum helps improve the appearance of skin volume.
How to use it: Before using your moisturizer, apply the serum over your face in the A.M. and P.M.
Is anyone a fan of dark circles, under-eye puffiness, or crow’s feet? Anyone, anyone? We thought not! If you’re plagued by any of these skin concerns, reach for an eye cream and add that bad boy to your skin care routine pronto to help reduce their appearance.
Skin care product pick: Try the L’Oréal Paris RevitaLift Anti-Wrinkle + Firming Eye Cream. This anti-aging eye cream helps smooth the appearance of the skin around your eyes with continued use over time.
How to use it: Apply the eye cream in small dots around your eye area, gently smoothing it in until it’s thoroughly absorbed. It can be used morning and night, and you can also layer makeup over it during the day.
Heading to the gym? Toss a pack of towelettes in your tote so you can freshen up post-workout. Towelettes are a great one-step skin care product that don’t require rinsing—so it’s perfectly alright if you don’t have access to a sink in the locker room.
Skin care product pick: Try the L’Oréal Paris Ideal Clean™ Makeup Removing Towelettes. Your life is about to get a whole lot easier thanks to towelettes. These wipes gently cleanse and remove all makeup (yes, even waterproof!). Plus, these ultra-soft towelettes won’t dry out your skin. Yay!
How to use it: Wipe a towelette over your face and you’re good to go.
Is there anything more relaxing than putting your feet up and chilling with a face mask on? Ahhh…Face masks are an awesome way to get your Zen on without ever leaving the comfort of your own home (meaning you can slather one on while wearing your jammies). But any ol’ face mask won’t do—this time, reach for a charcoal mask for major skin care benefits.
Skin care product pick: Try the L’Oréal Paris Pure-Clay Detox & Brighten Face Mask. Formulated with charcoal, this face mask helps draw out the buildup of impurities, dirt, and pollution and reduce the appearance of dull skin.
How to use it: Apply an even layer of the face mask to clean, dry skin. (Avoid your delicate lip and eye area!) Leave the face mask on for 10-15 minutes, then rinse off thoroughly with lukewarm w. Use three times a week for best results.
Not ready to stop shopping? How about a few makeup products your beauty arsenal might be missing? Check out the 11 Makeup Essentials Every Woman Should Own.