Bakuchiol, Tranexamic acid, Shikimic acid, Ectoin, Glycoin – these are just some of the ingredients the skincare community has been raving over the last few months. It takes a lot for us to get excited about something new, but we are not immune. That said – there are certain skincare ingredients all of us need in our routines to have healthy skin.
Ok, so we are cheating a bit since sunscreen isn’t an ingredient per se. However, regardless of our age or gender, it is one product we all need. Sun exposure causes photoaging and skin cancer. Without sunscreen in constant rotation, no matter how diligent we are about our skincare routines, all our efforts are for nothing.
Antioxidants work by protecting our skin from free radical damage we are exposed to daily. There are plenty of antioxidants on the market, but the gold standard remains vitamin C. It protects the skin, and it also boosts collagen production. Likewise, it evens out the skin tone, as well as brightens the skin.
Well-hydrated skin looks smooth, supple, and plump. Hyaluronic acid occurs naturally in the body. However, as we get older, the Hyaluronic acid levels naturally drop. Our skin gets drier, and fine lines and wrinkles are more prominent. Hyaluronic acid has numerous benefits for the skin. It has antioxidant properties, it soothes and restores, and replenishes the moisture content in the skin (since it can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water). Hyaluronic acid is a moisturising ingredient suitable for all skin types.
You can never go wrong with ceramides, no matter your skin type. Ceramides are natural lipids that are an essential part of the skin. They prevent moisture loss and improve hydration of the skin. Ceramides soothe irritation, help replenish the moisture barrier, but also stimulate the skin to produce more lipids. It is true that as we get older, the ceramide levels in our skin deplete. However, we can damage our moisture barrier regardless of our age, through overexfoliation or by using a high pH cleanser. The healthy skin barrier is of utmost importance for all skin types.
Ask any skincare enthusiast or dermatologist what is one ingredient they couldn’t do without, chances are they will say Retinol and its derivatives. No, you don’t need it in your routine if you are 20, have no problem with breakouts, and enjoy a healthy lifestyle. But for anyone over the age of 25, retinol should be a part of the skincare routine for a simple reason. Prevention is better than a cure. Retinol has provable benefits for the skin, and it is one of the most researched ingredients in skincare. It helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, fades sun damage, encourages the synthesis of collagen and elastin, and treats acne and acne-related scarring. That said – the use of retinol is a marathon, not a sprint. Adjust your expectations accordingly; you will not see results overnight.
We love our acids at Ishtar HQ. What’s not to love? They resurface the skin, treat and prevent breakouts, and do all manner of fab things for the skin. The results can be magical, once you find suitable acid and determine how often you can use it. That said – not every skin tolerates chemical exfoliation. If that is the case, you can investigate gentle alternatives, like enzyme powders or treatment serums.
What are some of the must-have ingredients in your skincare routine?