“Shelfies are so 2020” - said no one ever, except Pinterest.
Pinterest Predicts 2021, Pinterest's data analysis report, states that skinimalism is in and that less is more. An increase of searches with phrases like “natural glowing skin,” “face yoga exercises,” and “homemade skincare” points to a rise in a minimalistic approach to skincare (and makeup) consisting of only the essentials and targeted products for your season of skin— aka skinimalism.
Everyone loves a curated flat lay of color-coordinated products or a shot of an aesthetically pleasing medicine cabinet with the prettiest bottles lined up by height. But behind the photos, there are cabinets and vanities filled with an abundance of products and beautiful faces suffering from irritation and sensitivity from misusing products or overdoing it. There’s a reason why dermatologists tell us to try one product at a time.
Yet we’re the first to admit that we love a good skincare routine, especially during the pandemic when extra time at home meant extra time taking care of our skin. In fact, skincare came in a close second to hand soap in best-selling health and beauty care products in 2020. But too much of a good thing can be a bad thing, and dermatologists have made that clear.
And just like the caked-on makeup looks, made popular by makeup influencers on Youtube, circa 2010; the end of the 12-step skincare routine and the likes of it is coming to a close with the rise of skinimalism.
Benefits of Skinimalism
Skinimalism is about owning your beauty.
Picture-perfect faces on social media (usually with a filter on them) have made many go down a rabbit hole in the pursuit of perfect skin. But perfect doesn’t exist. Skincare should be just that: caring for skin — imperfections and all. Be comfortable with texture because it’s normal and let your skin breathe.
It’s better for your skin.
Too many products and not keeping track of the active ingredients being used and how they interact with each other can actually make skin issues worse or create new problems. By cutting back, you have full control and a better understanding of what works for your skin type and needs.
The sustainability factor.
It’s simple, the less you have, the less waste produced. Not to mention the impact it has on your wallet. By adopting a skinimalism approach to skincare, you reduce the number of products that go to waste simply because you couldn’t use it up before the expiration date— most likely because you have so many. You also reduce the amount of packages that enter landfills.
Skinimalism is cost-effective.
Having a 4 step skincare routine instead of a 12-step routine means there are 8 products you don’t have to buy. And if you splurge on higher-end products, that could mean hundreds of dollars, but even less-expensive, or drugstore skincare products can add up depending on how many you buy.
How to Adopt Skinimalism
Don’t throw away your products. Instead, go through them and pick four to five that are everyday essentials. And keep the rest for when your skin needs some extra TLC, like when it’s on the drier side or when some hormonal pimples pop up.
Dermatologist Dr. Flora Kim suggests a simple four-step routine that anyone can adopt:
Cleanse your skin every day with a cleanser that washes away impurities without stripping away natural oils. Make sure to use one that’s suitable for your skin type.
The serum you chose here will depend on what your skin needs. For example, in the morning, you may want to use a brightening serum with vitamin c and, at night, a retinol serum.
Locking in moisture is essential for hydrated, glowy skin. Always include this in our skincare routine. Again, use one that’s made especially for your skin type.
Lastly, protect. Sunscreen is incredibly important during the day to protect the skin from harmful rays. Opt for a moisturizer with an SPF of 30 or higher.
With fewer steps to take in your morning or nighttime regimen, try gua sha or facial exercises to help depuff and relax the muscles around your face.
Creating a skincare routine that works for you takes time.
It can take at least six weeks to see the results of your products which is why skinimalism helps you know what works and what doesn’t. It’s also a good idea to let your dermatologist recommend products or active ingredients that could benefit you. Being consistent and patient— before trying the newest product everyone is talking about— is key.