Josephine Wackett (Skincare specialist - Principal, Steiner Beauty Training) gives expert video advice on: How do I know my own skin type?; Is it worth spending money on expensive products? and more...
What is a cleanser?
Cleanser can be either a lotion, a milky lotion, or a cream, or even a cream which is used with water. A very dry skin is best cleansed with a creamy, in other words oily, emoliant type of cleanser, because that will soften makeup and dust and dirt on the surface of the skin and remove it without drying the skin. A cleanser which is a lotion, a milky lotion, is an emaltion, so it is a mixture of water and oil and that will again remove makeup, remove dust and dirt, and dead cells, but not in any way dry the skin. Oily skin should be cleansed with a cleanser, which is a wash type cleanser and therefore doesn't have so much oil in it. It's a product which helps to clean the skin and reduce the oiliness.
What is a moisturiser?
A moisturizer is a lotion or a cream (depending on how oily it is) which is applied to the skin when it is clean, before putting on makeup or even if someone isn't wearing any makeup. It protects the skin from the elements. It locks in skin's natural moisture, and helps to act as a humectant. In other words, attracting moisture to the surface of the skin and preventing the skin from drying out, so the skin looks less like a prune and more like a nice, smooth, plum.
What is an exfoliator?
An exfoliator is a product which helps to remove dead cells from the surface of the skin, stale makeup, dust and dirt and grime which hasn't been thoroughly cleansed away with the cleanser. It may be slightly abrasive so that's when it's removed it's rubbed off, and that works as a friction to remove the dead cells. Or it may be a much smoother product which is better for a dryer skin, where there's no abrasion, no roughness, and no granules in it. But an exfoliator, whatever type, is for removing dead cells from the surface of the skin because they don't all get shed regularly on their own. It's much cleaner and smoother for the skin to have them helpfully removed.
What is a toner?
A toner is a product which is used to remove any oiliness from the skin. It can be called an astringent, it can be called a tonic, or it can be called a toner. It shouldn't be, ideally, containing any alcohol, which will dry the skin. Even an oily skin doesn't need alcohol. It makes it too dehydrated. The toner should be applied on a damp cotton ball, wiped over the skin to lift off and remove any oiliness, any traces of cleanser which are left behind, any minute amounts of makeup which the cleanser hasn't properly removed, or dust and dirt from the atmosphere.
What is a night cream?
Night cream is a product which is used to help to improve the skin during the night. It's especially important on a dry skin. In order to not only keep in the nutrients, the natural nutrients of the skin, but also to add nutrients. In other words, vitamins can be incorporated into it and other various active substances, which help to maintain the condition of the skin and improve the skin. Because the complexion at night when we relax becomes very warm and the warmth makes the pores open, so the skin will absorb more product or whatever is put on it during the night than during the day. A night cream for an oily skin should not be too oily because there is enough oil there. It should be less of an amolinant but will contain additives which help to maintain the surface of the skin without putting any extra oil in. That will help to prevent dehydration, and will help to control the oiliness but not add any oil at all.
What is an eye cream?
Prevent premature aging by using eye cream. The skin of the eye has the weakest structure, and because of this the eye area ages quicker than other areas and absorbs less oil. Eye cream is light cream that protects your eye and prevents premature ageing.
What is a face mask?
A face mask is a product which can be applied to the skin to improve the texture and to feed it. It will depend on what type of mask is selected. Usually, in a professional treatment the skin may be treated with two or three face masks. One on the oily area, in other words the center panel or the combination skin. And a different one on the dryer area. And then maybe another one in the eye area. The most important factor is it must be the appropriate one for the skin type and the skin condition on that day, because the condition of the skin varies according to the time of year, how the climate has been, how much central heating one has been in or how much air conditioning. One of the biggest problems as the buildings get warmer is that air conditioning is very dehydrating, so an oily mask helps the skin which is being bombarded with air conditioning.
What skincare routine do you follow?
The most important thing with any skin care routine is to keep the skin clean. So I would always cleanse my skin first thing in the morning and last thing at night. If I'm going out in the evening, I would certainly cleanse it to remove the days makeup and dust and dirt and grime even if I didn't have any makeup on, before I put any makeup on in the evening. I wouldn't dream of applying makeup over a skin that hadn't just been cleansed. I would always use a toner after cleansing, again night and morning and if I'm going out in the evening. And I would always use a moisturizer in the morning, whether I'm putting on makeup on or not, a fine thin layer of moisturizer, the same if I'm going out in the evening. And then at night before going to sleep, a little heavier night cream with an eye cream around the eye area and a neck cream around the neck area is a good idea. I would use an exfoliator once a week. I would also try and have a treatment, a facial of some kind, once a month, and I would also use a face mask once a week. A simple routine, but not difficult to follow. People haven't got time and I certainly haven't got time to spend more than a few minutes, night and morning, but I wouldn't dream of going to sleep in makeup.
Is it worth spending money on expensive products?
Expensive products on the market are expensive for a number of reasons. Some of the houses, some of the companies which produce them, spend enormous amounts of money on research and development. Some spend an enormous amount of money on advertising. Some spend an enormous amount on the ingredients. Expensive products have their worth and their place . If someone is trying to be careful with money, it would be more sensible to use a cheaper cleanser and toner, but a more expensive moisturizer or night cream or exfoliant. If someone has money as no object, then use expensive cleansers and toners also. A lot of people think it's absolutely essential to have a matching range of products, but you can mix and match to a certain extent. In some ranges, products are complimentary and they are better used together, but not always. If someone is using what I call "top end" medical aesthetics type products, then they are definately worth the money, because they contain very much more expensive ingredients, but they will have more profound effect on the skin.