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Tips For Simplifying Your Skin Care Routine

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- People who want to protect their skin during the harsh winter weather have more options than ever before. Enough options that, according to dermatology physician assistants Brooke Moss and Lauren Sundick, shoppers might spend more money than necessary.

"We don't advocate for spending all of your money on a million different products," Moss said. She and Sundick are siblings who call themselves, The Skin Sisters. "Use high-quality ingredients—stable, effective products to help you achieve your goals."

She and Sundick say shoppers can easily find what they need at drug stores and common retailers. Three things they advise everyone to have in their routine: a moisturizer with SPF, a night cream with retinol, and a vitamin C serum.

"All vitamin C is not created equal," Moss said. "You'll want to look for something called l-ascorbic acid, which is the most active, potent form of vitamin C. It helps prevent free radicals like blue light, pollution in the air, UV—all those things that can contribute to early signs of aging."

They quoted recent international studies that suggest the UV rays from cell phones penetrates deeper than the sun, which could break down skin cells and increase signs of aging. Moss and Sundick also advised against a 10-step process, saying too many products or harsh ingredients in any one of them could be harmful as well.

"We all—even we—love that squeaky clean feeling on your face. But the truth is, it's terrible for your skin," Sundick said. "Those cleansers that give you that squeaky clean feeling actually strip away the skin's barrier, and it changes your skin's pH."

With moisturizer with SPF, night cream with retinol and vitamin C as a foundation, people can expect to spend about $60 for the three items combined. For people who want to treat something specific, Moss and Sundick suggest first asking what's most concerning.

"So if you come in and you tell me the one thing that bothers me the most are dark circles under my eyes… that's a time to splurge," Sundick said. "You want more active ingredients—ingredients that absorb a little more and work a little better."

They added, with the growing interest in skin care comes an empowering movement to look better and feel better—both aesthetic, cosmetic factors. Skin care is also about health, and Moss and Sundick urge people do annual screenings for melanoma as well.

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