1. Establish a routine
Okay routines in life can be laborious, but they serve a purpose. Just like you would brush your teeth before going to bed, a skin care routine will help you stick to doing all the right things to protect and care for your skin. People who use a body lotion with antioxidant like vitamin E, toner, hand cream and even sunscreen in regular routines are likely to benefit from smoother skin. Get into good habits of cleansing and moisturising before bedtime and after showering, applying hand cream before going outside and topping-up using a travel hand cream when the weather's cold.
2. Stop popping pimples
You know who you are out there, you pimple poppers you. Newsflash: Popping pimples is bad for the skin (like you didn't already know). Every time you pop or squeeze at a spot you run the risk of damaging the follicle, and increasing the chance of it scarring your skin. Is it really worth it? It will only lengthen the time it takes for your skin to heal after a breakout – so keep that in mind the next time you get the urge!
3. Get to know your skin type
If you don't already know, it is important to know if you're a normal, dry, oily, or somewhere in-between skin type. This will help you determine how to care for your skin, how much product to use, how often to wash, cleanse and exfoliate. The main skin types are:
Normal - Looks clear; is even in colour; soft and supple to the touch; neither greasy nor tight; only occasional outbreaks of pimples; feels comfortable after applying lotion.
Dry - Continuously losing moisture; pale in colour; can be flaky and rough; feels tight after washing; easily irritated; fine dry-lines; rarely suffers acne or pimple outbreaks; feels very comfortable after applying lotion.
Oily - Shiny complexion; thick epidermis and open pores; feels oily after applying lotion; experience frequent outbreaks of acne and pimples.
Try taking an online quiz, like this one at FitnessMagazine.com, to determine yours.
4. No harsh scrubbing
Vigorous scrubbing of the skin using abrasive scrubbing pads and rough wash cloths can actually increase irritation and may even worsen your skin's condition. It may also make you more likely to experience breakouts than if you use your bare hands to gently but thoroughly cleanse your skin, or a soft, non-abrasive cloth.
5. Always remove make-up before bed
However tempting it is after a heavy night on the town to get back and crash-out without taking your face off, remember, if you do not remove your make-up before going to bed, your pores will not have a chance to breathe and will become clogged with the very make-up you have on your face. So to maintain a cracking complexion the day after the night before, throughout 2012, don't go to bed with your make-up on.