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In our previous post we discussed in detail the first steps in an effective combination skin care routine and in this post, we will dive into the steps that follow cleansing and exfoliating. Toners and products aimed at correcting uneven skin tones, like facial essences and facial serums, are the next step in your combination skin care routine. Keep reading to learn why you should be paying attention to these steps and what ingredients are the most beneficial for your combination skin.
Not everyone needs a toner, but all skin types can benefit from using one. A toner is especially beneficial for combination skin because you can use it on your T-zone to help control oil and to deep clean the pores. “Toner is something I consider a second step of the cleansing process. The benefit is that, when used correctly, it can help remove excess oils and dead skin cells that may lurk on the face after washing. To some extent a toner can help other skin applications penetrate more rapidly,” explains Dr. Alicia Zalka, a dermatologist affiliated with Yale University.
“Toner products are more varied and diverse than ever. There are formulations with beta and alpha hydroxy acids (salicylic, glycolic) to exfoliate acne-prone skin, antioxidants like vitamin C and witch hazel, moisturizing toners with aloe and vitamin E, calming anti-inflammatory ingredients for sensitive skin and many with retinoids and other anti-aging compounds,” says Dr. Jennifer MacGregor of Union Square Laser Dermatology in New York. If you have incredibly dry cheeks but a very oily T-zone, you may want to consider using two toners. A moisturizing toner will keep your cheeks calm, while one featuring salicylic acid helps control oil and deep clean pores. No matter what toner you use, avoid those that contain alcohol because these can be too drying even for oily areas of sensitive skin and if you dry out oily areas, your skin will produce even more oil to compensate. Saturate a cotton pad with your chosen toner and swipe gently across your face.
One of the products beauty fans have been loving for a long time is facial essences. Essences are like a toner, but are more lightweight. They can feel like water going onto the skin and they contain ingredients that help to correct your skin’s color and that impart some natural glow into your skin. Correcting essences are used after toner, but before you add moisturizer to your face. You can also look for serums containing ingredients like vitamin C and licorice root extract that won’t add any oily feeling to your T-zone and that will calm and correct skin that is looking dull or dry.
Caring for combination skin requires using the proper products and paying close attention to what your skin tells you. Both using a toner, or two toners, and a product aimed at correcting problematic skin take your combination skin care routine to the next level for balanced and beautiful skin.