This summer, I tried one of the most talked-about beauty trends on the internet: skin minimalism. Except, I had no idea I was doing it at the time.
Let me back up… by the end of last year, my skin was red, raw and super sensitive after months of trying the latest launches, ingredients and trends – all in the name of work (yes, work!) The final straw came when I found myself heading to the beach and dabbing on make-up to cover up my angry, spotty skin. Who wears makeup on the beach? Not me.
So, I decided to pare things back to three simple, gentle products until my skin felt better. But the simplicity of my new routine was so effective (and so easy) that my new Marie-Kondo approach stuck. My holiday skin thrived. Meanwhile, I found myself at the forefront of one of the skincare world’s fastest-growing trends: skin minimalism.
The final straw came when I found myself heading to the beach and dabbing on make-up to cover up my angry, spotty skin. Who wears makeup on the beach?
As you can guess by the name – a nifty portmanteau of “skin” and “minimalism” – this trend is all about simplifying your skincare and using as few products as possible.
“[Skin minimalism] is the result of an epidemic of irritated, sensitive and allergy-prone skin that developed during the pandemic, when many people overindulged in over-the-top skin care,” explains dermatologist Dr Ryan De Cruz.
In other words, all those cleansers, toners, moisturisers, AHAs, BHAs, retinols, Vitamin C, Vitamin E has left many people’s skin – mine included – feeling hyper-sensitive, raw and irritated.
So… what did I choose?
Despite the many boxes of beauty products that clutter my home, streamlining was easy. I stuck to a basic do-it-all cleanser, a light, summery moisturiser, and a broad-spectrum SPF. Here’s what I chose:
A non-rinse formula that can be gently wiped off.
A fragrance-free, uber-calming cream, which I used at night only.
I’m obsessed with multi-purpose beauty products and this three-in-one combo served as my daytime moisturiser, primer and (most importantly) SPF. And did I mention they are all under $50!
“Skin minimalism benefits your skin, the earth and your wallet,” explains Avène’s head of medical sales and training, Janis McNicholas, before adding: “the simplified routine saves time, money and disappointment when our skin reacts with redness or flakiness to the latest ‘hot’ ingredient”.
The results were excellent. Cutting back on actives and sticking to three gentle products helped repair my compromised skin barrier, making it calmer and clearer.
The only downside? The FOMO of having to set aside new beauty deliveries, and having to force myself to ignore press releases about exciting new launches. For now, I’ll stick to skin minimalism but when Alpha H’s beautiful new cleansing balm launches, and Drunk Elephant’s exciting newbie becomes available at Mecca, all bets are off.