Serene Aesthetics

Know Your Cleanser

Sep 30, 2017 — by Andrew Ooi

Cleansing is the most basic part of your daily skincare routine to maintain healthy looking and feeling skin. We used to assume cleansing as a basic skincare task that can be easily and quickly done even when we are a bit lazy or completely exhausted.

However, choosing the right cleanser that suits your skin type is not as easy as the cleansing process and using an inappropriate cleanser can harm your skin and cause you acne, dryness or even make your skin look older than it really is.

Therefore, it is important for you to understand your own skin type and select the cleansers that are specially formulated for your skin type. Hence, this article is going to help you figure out what cleansers will be the best fit for each skin type.

Oily skin type:

People with oily skin have overactive sebaceous glands which cause their skin producing more sebum than necessary. If you have oily skin, a gel based cleanser is necessary to help you clean out blocked pores and strip away excess sebum. When choosing a cleanser, you should look for a cleanser that is transparent since they are generally free from added moisturizers. Besides, you may also search for words like ‘oil control’ or ‘for oily skin’ on the label. Moreover, if your skin is really very oily and causes acne outbreak, you may look for ingredients like benzoyl peroxide, tea-tree oil or salicylic acid that fight acne.

Dry skin type:

People with dry skin have low levels of sebum and don’t maintain oil easily. Their skin often feel tight and appear flaky. Dry skin lacks the lipids that it needs to retain moisture and to protect against external influences like sun damage and dry skin is also prone to rashes, eczema and flushes. If you have dry skin, it is recommended that you consider cleansers that don’t require rinsing. This is because water can strip the skin of additional moisture. Hence, you should choose a creamy, soothing and moisturizing cleanser as it doesn’t require rinsing and you can just wipe them off with a cotton ball. You should also look for cleansers that contain glycerin and hylauronic acid because these components draw water to the surface of your skin. Be cautious that you should avoid foam cleansers which tend to be drying.

Combination skin type:

Combination skin can be further divided into two categories: One is the forehead, nose and chin are oily while temples, eye area and cheeks are normal or dry and the other one is your skin changes between oily skin and dry skin with changing climate or season. People with combination skin can wash your face with a gentle and water-soluble cleanser that does not leave your skin tight and dry. A gel-based or mildly foaming cleanser is recommended. In some instances, people use different products on different parts of their face or during different weather or season.


Sensitive skin type:

People with sensitive skin has skin that easily breaks out in rashes, gets blotchy, itchy or even stings in response to products. Sensitive skin problem is often the result of allergies, inappropriate products or overzealously applied treatment. If you have sensitive skin, you should look for cleanser with glycerin in its ingredients. Glycerin improves and protects the skin and helps in building an even skin structure. It provides optimum level of moisture, but it is gentle and has no side effects. Fragrance-free is also an important deciding factor as sensitive skin is prone to irritation.

Lastly, everyone’s skin is different and you need to determine which skin type are you and then spend some time to research on different cleansers by looking at their nature and ingredients before choosing the most suitable one for your skin type.


Essential Night Care For Tomorrow's Fresh Skin

It has been said that nighttime skincare is the key to flawless skin. This is because skin cell regeneration and repair is at its height between 1am and 3am. So, you will want to enhance this natural process by preparing and nourishing your skin with appropriate products.

To do so, here are some easy skincare tips you might want to follow at night before heading to bed so that you can have a healthy glowing skin in the next morning.


First of all,

it is essential to properly cleanse and exfoliate your face. Sweat, sebum, makeup and other impurities may have accumulated on your face throughout the day. It is important that you gently but deeply cleanse your face every night to remove impurities on your skin and prepare your skin for other skincare routines. Besides, dead skin cells are hard to remove from your skin. Hence, you can exfoliate your skin twice or thrice per week as exfoliating can remove the dead skin cells and avoid clogging pores which cause pimples.


Don’t skip toners! Apply toner right after cleansing. Different type of toner is formulated to target different skin issue that can help you to overcome your skin concern. Toners act as a delivery system for essential ingredients such as antioxidants, vitamin B derivatives and toning acids. Besides, using toner at night helps keep moisture level of the skin in balance and further exfoliates the skin.


Apply your treatment products. Treatment products are used to target specific skin concerns such as stubborn acne, age signs, hyperpigmentation and uneven texture. It is best to load up on your facial treatment products in the evening on freshly cleansed skin because you will be going to bed fresh-faced and these products will be under optimal conditions to work their best.


Apply your serums. Finishing the above steps, you can apply your serums on the clean skin but before moisturisers or creams. This is to avoid blocking the penetration of serums into the skin which causes wastage. Serums are products that are made up of smaller molecules that deliver a very high concentration of active ingredients. This makes them a great tool for targeting specific skincare concerns. Hence, serums are also treatment products. However, they need to be handled more carefully as they are usually pricey and the way of application can affect their effectiveness.


you can now apply moisturisers or face creams. Make sure you apply your heavy night cream as the last product in your nighttime routine. Not only will the heavier texture block ingredients from reaching the skin if applied too soon, but saving it for the end will create the added benefit of locking in all the ingredients you previously layered under it as well as some much needed moisture.

These tips may seem overwhelming after a long day but slowly incorporate them into your nighttime skincare regime and your skin will thank you! That’s all. Goodnight.

Skin Type Check

The first step on your way to beautiful, radiant skin is to determine your skin type. Skincare routine and products depend on your skin type and thus it is important for you to know your skin type. Products formulated for your skin type offer the best chance of giving you the results you want. Therefore, knowing your skin type allows you to choose and tailor your skincare routine and products that will be most beneficial to your skin.

There are generally 5 skin types. Firstly, normal skin that feels clean and smooth with natural radiance as it is not too oily or dry. Normal skin does not experience breakouts often. Secondly, oily skin which tends to shine and feel greasy. Excess sebum production makes oily skin more prone to whiteheads, blackheads, clogged pores and acne. Thirdly, combination skin which is a combination of oily and dry skin. People with combination skin will experience shine and greasiness on some areas of the face while having localised dry patches on other areas. Besides, combination skin can change according to weather. Next, dry skin that feels tight, rough, flaky and dry. Dry skin is more prone to aging and irritation. Last but not least, sensitive skin which gets irritated easily accompanied by rashes, red patches, itchiness and pain.

Other than visiting a skin doctor, you can determine your skin type by yourself at home. There are several simple methods to identify your skin type.

1. The Blotting Paper Test.

To perform this test, you need to prepare blotting paper. At the night before the test, wash your face and go to bed without applying any skincare product. Once you wake up in the morning, take the blotting paper and blot key areas of your face including T-zone, forehead, under eye, cheeks and jaw area. After that you can check the oils absorbed by the blotting paper to identify your skin type.

  • Normal skin: Blotting paper has average amount of oil in all areas.
  • Oily skin: Blotting paper has excessive amount of oil in all areas.
  • Combination skin: Some areas of the face have excessive oil but other areas don’t have much oil on them.
  • Dry/sensitive skin: Blotting paper has little or no oil on it.

2. The Mirror Method.

After your morning cleansing, do not apply any skincare or makeup as well as no wiping and blotting. As soon as midday comes, go see what your skin looks like in front of a mirror.

  • Normal skin: Looks the same all the time.
  • Oily skin: Look shinier compared to morning.
  • Combination skin: T-zone looks shine but the rest of the face is the same.
  • Dry/sensitive skin: Dry patches, peeling and redness at the midday. 

3. The Touch Test.

Similar to the mirror method, prepare your skin in the morning. When midday hits, use your hands to touch your face to feel how is it. However, make sure that your hands are washed and clean.

  • Normal skin: Entire skin feels supple and moisturised.
  • Oily skin: T-zone and other parts of your face feel oily.
  • Combination skin: T-zone, nose and chin feel oily while other areas feel rough and dry.
  • Dry/sensitive skin: The skin feels rough without oily or supple feel.

Finally, when you get to know your skin type, you are ready to learn what are the skincare products available in the market that suit your skin type. After that, incorporate them into your skincare routine correctly to maximise their effects on the skin for a beautiful and radiant skin. If you are still not sure about your skin type, do seek help from the professionals like Serene Aesthetics.