As a twenty-year-old college student, I’m what dermatologists might consider a “skincare nightmare.” Although, perhaps they would use a more scientific term. I touch my face too often, rarely wash my makeup brushes, forget to take my makeup off before I fall asleep, and have never stayed consistent with a daily regimen. So, you can imagine the irony when I got the opportunity to intern for a dermatologist-backed skincare brand this summer.
On my first day with BeautyRx, I scrapped my almost non-existent regimen and tested all of Dr. Schultz’s products-- my new favorite kind of “research.” My skin care knowledge was minimal. I wasn’t really sure how often to reapply sunscreen (every three to four hours and after sweating and swimming) or how to minimize the appearance of enlarged pores (exfoliation). But all while learning valuable career experience in writing and social media, I was ultimately learning how to better an issue I’ve been dealing with for many of my 20 years: problem skin.
Blessed with cystic acne since age 13, there hasn’t been a morning where I’ve looked in the mirror and haven’t seen breakouts. Struggling with their appearance and concealment has been a constant battle, seeking help from a dermatologist early on. But like I said, consistency is not my strong suit, so I never followed through with applying topical treatment prescribed by my doctors. It was easier for me to conceal the problem than treat it.
My past skin care experience left me skeptical about ever finding a regimen that would work for me. But spending my summer days immersed in Dr. Schultz’s philosophy made me a believer for the first time. I never thought I’d become the type of person that uses five different products before bed (I do that now!) or gets a peel every month, but it’s about time I figured out my skin and eliminated my complexion worries. I wasn’t being my best self before this summer, and now my best self has become a ritualistic skincare product user with a real routine.
To explain my nightly skin care regimen, it’s important to know my skin type, as the products I use work best for my concerns. I have an extremely oily t-zone, but dry patches on my cheeks. I am a perfect case for what is known as “combination skin.” In order to balance the oil, I use the Balancing Glycolic Cleanser since it’s a little stronger for the oiler parts of my face. I also have become a regular user of toner, which I didn’t even know existed until I started working here. If you also don’t know what toner is, it changes the way you cleanse your face. Cleanser is only the first step in a cleansing process, and toner finishes up what a cleanser misses. My personal favorite is the Clarifying Toner, which I love because my skin feels refreshed after using it.
After cleanser and toner, it’s all about exfoliation. The cornerstone of Dr. Schultz’s philosophy is glycolic acid, “the gold standard” of chemical exfoliation. I always thought that exfoliation was just a physical aspect, using scrubs and grainy sponges, but I’ve now discovered that chemical exfoliation is even more effective for brightening your skin because it removes dead surface cells that keep your skin looking dull. Because I had never even touched an exfoliant before, the first step into glycolic products was with The Progressive Peel. Using the serum and exfoliating pads on alternating nights made my skin glow. To finish, I dab on the Light Rehydrating Lotion, the perfect moisturizer for the dry patches on my cheeks
On top of a new at-home regimen, I’ve been visiting Dr. Schultz to treat the skin troubles plaguing me since I was a teen. For the first time ever, I’m getting extractions on problem areas and in-office glycolic peels to brighten the appearance of my skin. He helped me build a routine for me skin type and the pace of my life.
The projects that I help with at BeautyRx are all focused on helping people achieve their best, youngest-looking, brightest skin. Every time I think of that phrase, I realize how important skin care really is. I am still young and lucky enough not to face the troubles that aging skin will eventually bring me. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned from the BeautyRx team, prevention is key. Even though I cannot physically see the effects of the sun’s rays does not mean that they are not impacting my skin. For this reason, I’ve started caring about the way I treat fine lines so they won’t turn into harsh lines and even worse, dreaded wrinkles one day. Instead of putting my youthful look through the elements with no help, I’ve learned that it’s better to help try to preserve certain aspects of my skin to ensure I always look fresh.
With great knowledge comes great responsibility, and I now am on a quest to teach people what I know: reminding my friends to wear sunscreen or my roommates to wipe off their makeup before bed (I’m sure they love it). In keeping them accountable, I’m also keeping myself accountable. I can’t just tweet about the importance of sticking to a regimen; I have to practice what I preach. And while this may have been a summer of working for skincare, it was also a summer of working toward it as well.
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