Happy New Year! We hope you got your festive cheer on last night and danced 2015 away like it was 1999. But now, the work begins: It's time to make some resolutions!
More squats, more salads, and fewer glasses of chardonnay may be on your list—but don't forget about your skin. Making a few easy beauty resolutions could have a big impact and help you waltz into 2016 like you own the place. Here are five ways to start getting your glow on:
1. Ban Bacteria
Wash your makeup brushes—for real—this year. Aim for once a week in order to keep yucky bacteria (think: the stuff that causes staph infections and strep throat) out of your pores. Applying your makeup with dirty brushes can lead to acne, rashes, and bacterial skin infections, so really, it's a worthwhile chore.
Finally throw away that old makeup, too. Don't risk bacteria-induced breakouts or less-than impactful eye shadows. Make sure you toss your mascara before it hits the three-month mark and any liquid concealers at around one year. Powder products will last you longer but not forever. One thing you're probably safe on is pencil eyeliner, since sharpening it on the regular helps get rid of any nasty germs. Check out our guide to makeup expiration to see which products you should carry with you into 2016—and which ones belong in the dumpster.
2. Be Gentle on Your Eyes
If you want to avoid wrinkles (and who doesn't?), avoid harsh rubbing on ultra-delicate eye skin. How? Cut waterproof mascara out of the equation—it requires more work to remove, and that can intensify under-eye circles. Plus, be super-careful when removing any eye makeup—in order to minimize skin pulling, put remover on a cotton round, and hold it on your eye for several seconds before rubbing makeup off.
3. Think Economically
Pay attention to portion control. In order to get the most bang for your buck, make sure you're not overusing your go-to skin-care products. A dime-sized dollop of face wash will do—and so will a pea-size amount of serum, a few drops of toner, a quarter-sized amount of moisturizer, and so on. (When it comes to what you put on your face, less is definitely more). And in order to save on your skin-care staples, consider joining a customer loyalty program to earn points towards future purchases or discounts.
4. See Those Specialists
Pencil in an annual visit to the dermatologist. It's important to monitor those moles, and seeing your derm regularly will give you access to someone who's familiar with your skin specifically. If you really want to glow 24/7, try to get a facial every couple of months.
5. Use the Right Products
Make this the year that you find the right products for your skin type instead of haphazardly choosing moisturizers, foundations, or masks. If you have dry skin, gravitate towards a cream moisturizer; if you have oily skin, stick to something water-based; and for sensitive skin, avoid acids. In terms of foundations, make sure you pick the right formulas to address oily, dry, combination, or acne-prone skin. Possibly more popular than ever, we all know that we should be using face masks. So let's make 2016 the year of using the RIGHT masks—the ones specifically formulated for our skin types. That means if you're dry, stock up on hydrogel masks; if you're normal to oily, scoop up rubber or peel-off masks; if you're acne-prone, pick up some clay masks; and if you're worried about aging, head towards the water-sleeping masks.
Trust us, your skin will thank you. Now go forth, and glow.