Watch: The Beginner's Guide To Skincare

By Sam Negrin

The world of skincare can be extremely confusing. Between moisturizers, oils, foam cleansers, gel cleansers, serums, retinol, toner, exfoliators... that's not even the half of it. This is one of the reasons we started Beauty Brief — but there's still the question of "what exactly do I ~need~ everyday?!!!"

The video above shows a very basic guide of investments that every 20-something should look into. Are we missing anything? What are your favorite brands?!

  1. Gentle face wash. Something that will take off your makeup and provide a deep clean without drying out your skin. We love Glossier's Milky Jelly. ($18, Glosser.com)
  2. Toner. This is a step that often gets overlooked. Toner is actually really important to get every last bit of dirt and pollution off your face and help balance the pH of your skin. We love the Kiehl's Calendula Herbal Extract Alcohol-Free Toner for it's benefits to sensitive and acne-prone skin. ($21, Kiehls.com)
  3. Serums. Serums are small bottles of extremely concentrated, often active, ingredients that are targeted at a specific concern. Whether you're trying to fight fine lines, acne, hyper pigmentation, dryness or overall brightening, there is a serum that can really help you. In the video above, we recommended: Glossier Super Bounce for dry skin and brightness because of the inclusion of hyaluronic acid ($28, Glossier.com), Odacité Papaya Geranium Serum Concentrate for it's natural lighting effect for hyper pigmentation ($39, BlueMercury.com), iS Clinical's Active Serum for combating fine lines and acne simultaneously ($135, Dermstore.com), and Skinceuticals Phloretin CF because of the ferulic acid and vitamin C for brightening and evening the skin tone ($165, Dermstore.com).
  4. Basic moisturizer. There are so many different types of moisturizers for various skincare concerns, day or night. But everyone should have one basic option that does the job well and works anytime/anywhere. Kate Somerville's Goat Moisture Cream does just that. ($50, KateSomerville.com)
  5. Sunscreen. This is non-negotiable. Your skincare routine can cost hundreds, thousands of dollars and end up completely useless if you lay in the sun unprotected. It's good to have an easy sunscreen on-hand that easily works under your makeup and doesn't cause breakouts. We love Sonya Dakar's Daily Shield SPF 30 for that. ($45, CultBeauty.com)
  6. Exfoliator: Chemical or Physical. Exfoliating is SO important no matter what skin type you have. Lose the dead skin cells and blocked pores that cause blackheads or early signs of aging, fast. Chemical exfoliation is great for those who suffer from consistent breakouts, we love Dr. Dennis Gross' Alpha Beta Daily Peel Pads for an ~instant~ glow ($84, Dermstore.com). Physical exfoliation is equally beneficial for the skin (IMO) but a lot of doctors/estheticians veer away from that when the skin is broken out to prevent breakouts from spreading to different parts of the face. TBH, I have no idea if that is true but what I do know is that Josh Rosebrook's Active Enzyme Exfoliator leaves your skin baby soft and incredibly bright, plus it's all-natural. ($60, Beauty-Heroes.com).
  7. Mask, or masques. It's always good to have a mask (if you're fancy, masque) on-hand for those days you feel extra congested or dry. We love a basic bentonite clay mask for ~deep~ cleans that you can find at any health food store for less than $10. For a big dose of hydration, we love the Mahalo Petal Mask with a yummy dose of honey, white clay and rose ($95, Beauty-Heroes.com).

Dish your favorite products in the comments below!