To Look Your Best Every Day, You Need A Daily Skin-Care Regimen
This must be based not only on your skin type but also on the nature of your skin tone and the amount of melanin in your skin. Skin of color is very susceptible to developing either dark or light patches in response to a variety of factors. Everyday triggers such as sunlight, scratches, pimples, or even rashes can prompt the overproduction or underproduction of melanin, causing dark or light discolorations. To avoid the discolorations, you must treat your skin with great care. The way you tend to your skin every day can make the difference between a clear, glowing complexion and one with blotches or blemishes that can be difficult to camouflage or fade.
A skin-care program must include ways to properly cleanse, exfoliate, tone, moisturize, and protect your skin. To make this easy for you to adopt, I’ve summarized the steps in checklists, modified for skin type, at the end of the article.
Skin Cleansing Tips
• Cleanse your face daily to remove dirt, oil, and makeup.
• Use products designed for your skin type: oily, dry, normal, combination, or hyper-pigmenting.
• Don’t overdo it. Cleansing too often or too roughly will harm your skin.
• Exfoliate if you need to remove dull, dead skin cells by using exfoliating acids found in skin products—but test the product on a small patch of skin first.
Be Gentle – Do Not Overclean
To remove dirt, excess oil, perspiration, and makeup, most Indian women should cleanse the face twice a day. The tools you select for washing are important. Think gentle. First, choose a mild, non-irritating cleanser. Avoid cleansers that contain abrasive granules for exfoliation. These harsh particles don’t clean out pores and they can aggravate and irritate the skin, causing redness, or worse, darkening of the skin or hyperpigmentation. If you have acne, scrubbing with the granules can
actually dramatically worsen an acne outbreak. Also, steer clear of acne puffs, loofah sponges, or rough washcloths. They will only irritate the skin.
Many Indian women make the mistake of overcleaning—cleaning the face too often or too roughly. But most skin problems (acne, dark marks, clogged pores) are not caused by dirt, so there’s no need to use harsh products or rough cleansing
techniques. Also, our pigmented skin requires gentle care to avoid skin irritation that can trigger problems such as discoloration or even keloid scarring. Gentle cleansing with your fingertips or a soft cotton washcloth will do. Remember, for many women of color, skin type tends to vary with the change of seasons. It’s likely that most of you will change your cleansing ritual several times a year. Many will utilize the advice for oily skin in the hot and humid summer months of April to August and the advice for dry skin in the dry winter months of December and January. So remember, you may need to adjust your cleansing ritual and the products you use accordingly.
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Dr. Sunita Banerji received her MBBS degree from The Armed Forces Medical College, Pune, one of India’s leading Medical Institutes and received her DGO credentials in Obstetrics and Gynecology in 1982. She started her successful Aesthetic Medicine practice in Lokhandwala, in 1989 after undergoing extensive training in London. She was far ahead of her time in starting this type of practice in India. Eternesse – The Anti Aging Skin Treatment Clinic in Mumbai – her brainchild helps treat major medical problems related to lifestyle, aging and cosmetic treatments and surgery.