How do you keep your skin healthy and happy throughout your twenties?
There’s TONS of information out there about what skincare in your twenties should look like. SPF, retinol, eye creams, toners, chemical exfoliants, anti-aging serums, masks…it can be totally overwhelming!
Our goal here is to keep things as simple as possible and just speak from personal experience. Because, let’s be honest, a lot can happen to your skin in your twenties, and the last thing you need is a 10-step skincare regimen you won’t stick to.
The focus when it comes to skincare in your twenties is preventative care. Cleanse properly, moisturize like there’s no tomorrow and protect your skin from the sun and harsh chemicals.
So with that, we give you our top 5 must-have skincare products for your twenties (and early thirties!)
1. Cleansing Balm
You’ve heard us say this a zillion times now…if you don’t double cleanse, you need to start NOW. The two most important things you can do for your skin are keep it clean and keep it moisturized. Balm/oil-based cleansers do just that! The oil in the balm attracts dirt and makeup while maintaining your skin barrier protected and hydrated.
Check out two our favorites below! Simply rub a dime-sized amount all over a dry face until you feel your makeup dissolve. It’s MAGIC.
2. Non-Foaming Cleanser
I think one of the things we’re all most guilty of in our early twenties is wanting to strip our face of any oil. Who can blame us though? We’re all scarred from those terrible oily teenage years. So naturally, we gravitate towards powerful foaming cleansers to ensure no greasy streak is left behind.
Unfortunately, we need to break that habit because foaming cleansers can actually be really harsh on the skin. Many of them contain sulfates, like SLS or SLES, to create that foaming sensation, which in turn can be very irritating and drying to the skin. Remember, we don’t want to strip our skin of the oils it naturally produces. They’re there to protect you!
Follow up your cleansing balm with either of these gentle cleansers for perfectly clean pores.
3. Simple Moisturizer
We pretty much go through three moisturizer phases in our twenties:
- Early twenties = What’s a moisturizer?
- Mid twenties = Give me ALL the serums, oils and creams. I need to make up for lost time!
- Late twenties = Over it. I literally just want a basic moisturizer that will keep my skin hydrated day and night.
I’m in phase three and wish I would’ve just stuck to a basic moisturizer all along! As I started to experiment with countless products in my mid-twenties, my skin became extremely sensitized – meaning it was overworked and reacted poorly to almost anything I put on it. So a few months ago, I decided to just cut out all the “extras”.
I now find my skin does best when I stick to simple AM and PM moisturizers. No fuss, no crazy serums or heavy oils. Just simple creams that will keep me hydrated all day long without clogging my pores.
4. Vitamin C
Let’s do a quick skincare vitamin refresher:
- Vitamin A (Retinol) – Promotes skin renewal, brightens skin tone and smoothes texture
- Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide) – Reduces the appearance of pores and treats acne
- Vitamin C – Enhances SPF, boosts collagen and heals dark spots
- Vitamin E – Protects our skin from pollutants and reduces UV damage
Honestly, they’re all pretty great! So why do we recommend vitamin C over anything else?
In our opinion, it’s one of the most well-rounded ingredients that covers a lot of bases. Vitamin C helps boost collagen production, which starts to decline at around age 25. It heals dark spots and hyperpigmentation from the good ole’ acne days. And it works extremely well with SPF to help reduce UV damage even further.
It boosts, heals and protects.
What about retinol?
Should you be using retinol in your twenties? If so, what’s the best way to incorporate it into your routine? We get a lot of questions surrounding this particular ingredient. Check out this easy breakdown below!
- It is recommended you start using retinol in your late twenties, at the earliest.
- You should start with very small amounts, 2-3x per week.
- The easiest way to incorporate it is through serums or overnight masks.
- Avoid retinols if you have sensitive skin or are pregnant.
Being that retinol can be very irritating to the skin, we recommend you start your experiment with its all-natural alternative – bakuchiol. It’s extremely safe to use and has all the benefits of retinol: reduces acne, fights inflammation, diminished hyperpigmentation and reduces fine lines. Plus so much more!
5. Daily SPF
Last, but certainly not least, we have SPF. Protecting our skin from the sun is one of the most important things we can do when it comes to preventative care. You might not see any UV damage in your early to mid twenties, but it sure comes out later on! So it’s better to be safe than sorry and start incorporating SPF into your daily morning routine.
Personally, I prefer using tinted moisturizers with SPF rather than applying sunscreen every morning. It’s a total time saver! However, for those no-makeup days, be sure to try one of these sunscreens below. They are both incredible and don’t clog our pores.
A few extras we think you should keep around…
While we wanted to keep the core list of products as simple and straight forward as possible, we can’t help but mention a few additional items you might want to consider:
- Toner – We both use toners to clean our face in the morning rather than face wash! They help keep our skin hydrated and calm throughout the day.
- Eye masks – We are both very skeptical of eye creams at the moment. So instead, we choose to wear super hydrating eye masks several times a week.
- Exfoliant – It is important to make sure you exfoliate your skin a couple times a week. But don’t go overboard! A simple AHA serum or a pore vacuum session will do the trick.
- Treatment mask – Who doesn’t love a good face mask? We recommend applying a face mask once or twice a week, depending on what you have going on. The three Versed masks we talk about in this post are total must-haves!
Turns out, skincare in your twenties is pretty easy!
Comment below with questions or connect with us on Instagram (@uncovertheglow) for more. Until next time!