Editor’s note: The following article is written by a Skinny Mom Resident Mom. The Resident Mom program gives a voice to our readers, allowing moms across the world to contribute content to Skinny Mom. If you’re interested in becoming a Resident Mom, click here to apply.

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The need for a beauty routine happened for me after the birth of my little girl almost four years ago. Like many first time moms, taking a shower felt like a win for the day, let alone having hair done and makeup on. My skin was suffering from the lack of care and I was inconsistent in every way with my routine.

Some of us are the “whenever and however” beauty babes, meaning that you think, “I’ll wash my face whenever I get a shower and put on my makeup however I did it when I was in high school. It seems to work okay.” Others are the “vacuum consumer” beauties who grab for anything on the shelf to help skin concerns. Then our bathroom is cluttered with things we don’t even like.

face washing

As an award-winning holistic esthetician (eco makeup artist), we would all believe that my skin routine has always been perfect. However, when I became a mother I got stuck in bad beauty habits, too. At one time I had products overflowing in my bathroom and a makeup routine that simply didn’t work for me. I had step back to develop my standard routine and be consistent to have the success in the skin I wanted. Here are the most important factors to my successful beauty routine.

>> Read more: 10 Common Things That Happen To Your Skin as You Age

For a successful routine you need just that: a routine! A consistent morning routine should include: cleansing, exfoliation, treatment, moisturizing and protecting with SPF every morning. Repeat this routine in the evening, skipping the SPF.

1. Cleansing: Many of us clean off our makeup at night, though we have all felt tempted to go to sleep with our makeup on, and if we don’t wear makeup, we think our face is clean enough. Same with waking up in the morning, you might say to yourself, “All I did was sleep,” however, cleansing in both mornings and evenings is absolutely necessary. Skipping cleansing is like not brushing your teeth; it leads to bacterial buildup causing acne. Refresh your skin with oil cleansing or a mild cleanser – no soap! Soap meant for hands will dry you out. Even if you’re oily, this is not good for the sebum (protective layer) of the skin.

2. Exfoliating: Even exfoliating in the evening allows for cell regeneration at night so you can wake up glowing and radiant rather than dry and dehydrated. It removes buildup from the day leading to less acne and black heads as well! All good news. The use of a simple washcloth will do the trick or you can upgrade to a Konjak Sponge that is eco-friendly and biodegradable.

konjac sponge

Photo Credit: Be Pure Beauty

3. Treatment: Utilizing an effective treatment for your skin type daily will allow it to be fully effective rather than just occasionally applying. Treatment products need anywhere from 30 to 60 days to see results. This will also help us product junkies save money and avoid product disappointment because we are being consistent.

>> Read more: Keep It Simple: 6 Best Natural Skin Treatments

4. Protection: Sunscreen with non nano zinc oxide is the best part of a successful beauty routine and is the most effective product you can use for anti-aging. No matter what wrinkle cream you are using, if it’s not followed by a great sun protection, you’re left with a skin negative. Organic Beauty Companies such as 100% Pure have dozens of products containing this sun protection so we don’t have to slather on the white stuff before applying makeup; it’s actually in the makeup!

Finally, take inventory of all the products you have. Comb out the ones you rarely use or are expired and let them go (especially mascara – maximum of 6 months!) Switching products constantly will just lead to more disappointment and overspending and the same goes for makeup. Give yourself time to do it right. Do the research on products that will work for your skin. Watch a few YouTube videos or check out some Pinterest pins on applying makeup so it stays, making the time you take to put it on worth it, plus you’ll feel confident about your routine.