How to know when to update your skincare routine

Our skincare expert Jennifer Rock says to think of the products you use in your skincare routine as a toolbox - you don't need to use everything for every job.

Your skincare routine should be a ritual and you should know it like the back of your hand. For example, on any given day, I know which cleanser I’m using – sometimes it is due to the fact that my skin has been incredibly consistent thus I stick with a consistent routine, sometimes I know that the inclusion of one specific thing will give it the boost (or the settle) that I’m looking for.

See some of Jennifer's previous posts:

The Nerdie Guide to Skincare For Sensitive Skin

Is Your Skin Changing During Pregnancy? Here’s What To Do

How to Change Your Skincare Routine for Autumn

The Skincare Essentials You Need to Pack For a Festival

The Lowdown On Double-Cleansing and Why You Should Be Doing It 

Skincare Myths That Are Actually True

However, as they say, variety is the spice of life and you have to keep track of whether your skincare routine is actually continuously benefiting your skin. The thought of introducing new products is terrifying for some but it's time, once and for all, to figure out whether you should be biting the bullet and switching up what you are using…


You’re no longer seeing skin results

This is paramount, in my opinion. If your skin has 'plateaued', as in it was improving and now it has stopped and you are not 100% happy with what you are seeing, you have to reassess the skingredients you’re using. This is why the Nerd Network has a follow-up consultation service. We check in with clients every 8 - 10 weeks, see if things are getting better and adjust where we can for maximum skin results. For some, it means a higher dosage of AHAs or vitamin A and for others, it can mean a much bigger change. I believe it is worth it for there to be measurable changes in the skin and its health!

Your skin concerns have changed

You were oily in your twenties and a little bit spot prone and now you’re coming into your thirties and wondering why your foamy cleanser is leaving your skin feeling tight and taut. You are a hooman – both you and your skin have changed since then. As we age and as hormones fluctuate, we see decreases and increases of oiliness, skin density, plumpness, skin hydration and much more. You have to remember that if your skincare seems to have stopped working for you, it actually may have. You may need much more hydration, or oil-based products after years of avoiding them!

Your own preferences have changed

This one goes more for makeup, SPFs and other 'finishing' products that create a different finish on the skin. You may have adored the absolutely matte, absolutely flat, 100% poreless look of the noughties… in the noughties. If you’re still using uber mattifying products, it could be time to switch to something with light-reflecting particles, like the new Murad Rapid Age Spot Correcting Serum or something that creates a juicy, plump slick on the skin, like IMAGE Vital C Hydrating Waterburst – this is in, hand on heart.

The season has changed

For me, you simultaneously have your skincare routine and your skincare toolbox. Your routine is what you are putting on your skin whereas your skincare toolbox includes your routine as well as additional products that you add in or take out as you need them. For example, hyaluronic acid is plenty of hydration in the summer. When winter rolls around and your humectant HA cannot pull moisture from the dry air, you may still feel dehydrated after applying it. In this case, you might need something extra, something slightly heavier or oil-based to help the skin to defend itself from moisture loss. You sub in those products as you need them and bench some of the others… It sounds crueller than it is, your products do not have feelings.

You actually want to change your skincare routine

The beauty industry is incredibly innovative right now and it is hard to keep track of which form of which ingredient is the best for which concern. We are told that niacinamide and vitamin C don’t work well together and then certain formulations crack the code to make them work together, for example. Ingredients like algae or magnesium may step up to take the limelight. You do not have to lag behind the cool kids – ensure that the groovy, new, forward products that you are using work for your particular skin and be willing to deal with any consequences. The alternative is to take the guesswork out and allow a professional to educate you… That’s why moiself and Team Nerd exist!


For more information on perfecting your routine, pick up a copy of her debut book, The Skin Nerd: Your Straight-Talking Guide to Feeding, Protecting & Respecting Your Skin from Eason or Dubray Books.

Jennifer Rock aka The Skin Nerd is a skincare guru with a skin consultation service that everyone needs to check out. Follow Jennifer on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

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