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A Simple Routine Is Best for Skin, Says This Top Dermatologist

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Photo courtesy of Jim Lafferty/The Licensing Project

A Simple Routine Is Best for Skin,
Says This Top Dermatologist

No matter what your skin has been doing over the past few months (flaking in a desperate SOS for moisture? breaking out? looking fine but not as radiant as you’d like?), it’s about to look and feel a lot more luminous. “As we move from the drying, lower-humidity temperatures of winter into spring, it’s time to protect and repair skin with a simple routine,” says top NYC dermatologist Elena Jones, who sees clients of all ages and skin concerns, including record producer, fashion designer, rapper, and Humanrace skin-care founder Pharrell Williams. “Cleansing, exfoliating, moisturizing, and applying mineral sunscreen sounds so straightforward, but it works,” Jones says.

She consulted with Williams on Humanrace, the fast-acting, gorgeously packaged, refillable skin line. The ethos behind the line—a gender-inclusive, three-step routine to balance, boost, and smooth every skin type—reflects Jones’s own strategy to help clients achieve their best skin at home. “My favorite thing about working with skin is how resilient it is,” she says. “It can bounce back and renew itself.” Especially when you’re consistent about taking care of it, she continues: “Part of the reason Pharrell has the beautiful skin he does is his commitment to his routine.”

Jones’s approach—unlike that of many dermatologists—focuses on clean formulas. “‘Clean’ should mean products that are safe and formulated without toxic ingredients,” she says. “It was important to us that we formulate by following the EU standard for personal care products, which bans over 1,300 ingredients. The USA bans 11.”

1

Cleanse and nourish

“Choose a gentle cleanser that hydrates skin and doesn’t strip it of its natural oils. You’re getting rid of the day’s dirt, oil, and pollution and prepping skin for whatever treatments you apply next,” says Jones. “If you have dry or normal skin, cleansing once a day—at night—is probably sufficient. If you’re oily, wash your face morning and night.” An exfoliating cleanser—like the silky rice powder from Humanrace or the new cloudberry jelly from goop—smooths away dirt and oil with a little more grit but is still gentle enough to use twice a day, even if your routine includes potent alpha hydroxy or vitamin C treatments.

2

If you’re oily, tone

The breakout-prone, the oily, or those who just like a little extra can amplify cleansing with toner. “Using a glycolic acid toner can help mitigate breakouts,” says Jones.

  1. Glycolic Acid Toner for Oily Skin


    goop Beauty G.Tox Malachite + AHA Pore Refining Tonic

    goop Beauty
    G.Tox Malachite + AHA Pore Refining Tonic
    goop, $75/$68 with subscription

    SHOP NOW

3

Target skin issues with serum

Serums are concentrations of active ingredients that target issues like dullness, rough texture, extreme dryness, and more. Because serums aren’t lipid-based, like moisturizing creams, they don’t aggravate oily and breakout-prone skin and can even help soothe it. Jones likes hyaluronic acid—a humectant that intensely hydrates by drawing in water molecules and can help deliver other ingredients into skin, as well as vitamin C serums, which brighten, firm, and improve texture. The goop vitamin C serum mixes both ingredients, so your skin gets a surge of moisture on top of the smoothing, firming boost from antioxidant vitamin C.


  1. Dr. Barbara Sturm Hyaluronic Serum

    Dr. Barbara Sturm
    Hyaluronic Serum
    goop, $300

    SHOP NOW


  2. goop Beauty GOOPGLOW 20% Vitamin C + Hyaluronic Acid Glow Serum

    goop Beauty
    GOOPGLOW 20% Vitamin C + Hyaluronic Acid Glow Serum
    goop, $125/$112 with subscription

    SHOP NOW

4

Exfoliate, and your skin will look better

“I love exfoliating with glycolic acid,” says Jones. “We put it in the Lotus Enzyme Exfoliator because it helps unclog pores, smooth the look of wrinkles, and even increase moisture in skin.” Jones also likes enzymes to help even tone and retinoids for smoothing and brightening skin. “If you have dry skin and are using a retinoid, exfoliate twice a week on alternating nights (not consecutively), and moisturize after using the retinoid. If you’re oily or blemish-prone, exfoliate three times a week nonconsecutively, alternating between a retinoid one night and a moisturizer the next,” she says.

Glycolic Acid and Enzymes


  1. Humanrace Lotus Enzyme Exfoliator

    Humanrace
    Lotus Enzyme Exfoliator
    goop, $46

    SHOP NOW


  2. Humanrace Lotus Enzyme Exfoliator Refill

    Humanrace
    Lotus Enzyme Exfoliator Refill
    goop, $42

    SHOP NOW

  1. Glycolic Acid and Exfoliating Microminerals


    goop Beauty GOOPGLOW Microderm Instant Glow Exfoliator

    goop Beauty
    GOOPGLOW Microderm Instant Glow Exfoliator
    goop, $125/$112 with subscription

    SHOP NOW

  2. Once-a-Week Glycolic Acid Peel

    This overnight peel pad does it all in one go; you can use gentler exfoliants (like Microderm or Humanrace) during the rest of the week, but use no AHA or retinoid treatments within twenty-four hours of using this one.


    goop Beauty GOOPGLOW 15% Glycolic Acid Overnight Glow Peel

    goop Beauty
    GOOPGLOW 15% Glycolic Acid Overnight Glow Peel
    goop, $125/$112 with subscription

    SHOP NOW

A Routine for Sensitive Skin (or Retinoid Users)

“If you have sensitive skin, start by exfoliating once a week with a gentle retinoid-like ingredient, like bakuchiol,” says Jones of the plant extract that’s clinically proven for effectively smoothing wrinkles and firming skin but without the residual irritation, redness, and skin sensitivity often associated with retinol. We love the Follain mask made with bakuchiol; the goop face oil uses the same ingredient to deliver amazing clinical results, including firming and wrinkle-smoothing (it’s of course also a fantastic moisturizer, full stop).

  1. Bakuchiol Face Oil


    goop Beauty GOOPGENES All-in-One Super Nutrient Face Oil

    goop Beauty
    GOOPGENES All-in-One Super Nutrient Face Oil
    goop, $98/$89 with subscription

    SHOP NOW

  2. Bakuchiol Mask


    Follain Ultra Hydrating Mask

    Follain
    Ultra Hydrating Mask
    goop, $34

    SHOP NOW

5

Moisturize—always

It bears repeating that all skin needs moisture, and the simple act of smoothing on cream or oil can help plump lines, restore glow, and fortify skin against the elements. “Even if you’re oily, moisturizing with the right formula helps nurture and balance skin,” Jones says. “For Humanrace, we used a super potent hyaluronic acid as well as squalane—ingredients that hold on to water and make skin look dewy without aggravating oily skin. You really get that humidifying feel when you massage it on.”

Cream

“Dry skin does better with moisturizers that are made with lots of oils or butters, and the older we get, the better we can tolerate richer formulas,” Jones says.


  1. Humanrace Humidifying Cream

    Humanrace
    Humidifying Cream
    goop, $48

    SHOP NOW


  2. Humanrace Humidifying Cream Refill

    Humanrace
    Humidifying Cream Refill
    goop, $44

    SHOP NOW

For Dry Skin

  1. Cream


    Augustinus Bader The Rich Cream

    Augustinus Bader
    The Rich Cream
    goop, $280

    SHOP NOW

  2. Oil


    Le Prunier Plum Beauty Oil

    Le Prunier
    Plum Beauty Oil
    goop, $72

    SHOP NOW

  3. Balm


    Tamara Dutta Rosehip Smoothie Balm

    Tamara Dutta
    Rosehip Smoothie Balm
    goop, $150

    SHOP NOW

6

Protect with mineral sunscreen

When you wear sunscreen (try to be religious about smoothing it on every day as your last step), you’re doing a lot more than helping to preserve collagen, skin’s main structural protein that diminishes as we age and with sun exposure. “We all need to put it on and reapply it, because skin cancer is real,” says Jones, who likes Supergoop mineral sunscreen. “Don’t forget your hands and neck.”

  1. Sunscreen and Primer in One


    Supergoop Mineral Sheerscreen

    Supergoop
    Mineral Sheerscreen
    goop, $38

    SHOP NOW

  2. Tinted


    Unsun Mineral Tinted Face Sunscreen

    Unsun
    Mineral Tinted Face Sunscreen
    goop, $29

    SHOP NOW

  3. Serum


    EleVen Unrivaled Sun Serum SPF 35

    EleVen
    Unrivaled Sun Serum SPF 35
    goop, $50

    SHOP NOW

  4. For Eyes


    Supergoop Bright-Eyed 100% Mineral Eye Cream SPF 40

    Supergoop
    Bright-Eyed 100% Mineral Eye Cream SPF 40
    goop, $36

    SHOP NOW

  5. For Face and Body


    The Organic Pharmacy Cellular Protection Sun Cream SPF 30

    The Organic Pharmacy
    Cellular Protection Sun Cream SPF 30
    goop, $69

    SHOP NOW

  6. For Hands


    Unsun Hand Cream SPF 15

    Unsun
    Hand Cream SPF 15
    goop, $27

    SHOP NOW

Because sunscreen can block vitamin D absorption, it benefits everyone—especially people with darker skin, who are more prone to vitamin D deficiency because melanin reduces the body’s ability to make vitamin D from the sun—to take a supplement. Jones says: “Take the supplement and wear your sunscreen.”


  1. The Nue Co. Vitamin D Spray

    The Nue Co.
    Vitamin D Spray
    goop, $25

    SHOP NOW


  2. Dr. Nigma Vitamin D Sun

    Dr. Nigma
    Vitamin D Sun
    goop, $30

    SHOP NOW


  3. Hum Nutrition Here Comes the Sun High-Potency Vitamin D3

    Hum Nutrition
    Here Comes the Sun High-Potency Vitamin D3
    goop, $12

    SHOP NOW



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