You know when you see someone and just think wow – they are glowing.
They look like they drink 3 gallons of water a day, use SPF 50 24/7, have never squinted or furrowed their eyebrows in their life, and somehow have poreless skin.
That’s the look we’re all trying to achieve – healthy, young, refreshed, and glowing.
Dewy skin is one of the hottest trends right now, but we expect it to stick around through the years.
Getting that hydrated glow and a little glint in the light doesn’t have to mean caking on glittery highlighter or using a sticky face gloss and it shouldn’t.
The best way to achieve dewy skin is to hydrate and heal your skin, no makeup needed.
The Origins of Dewy Skin
Beauty trends come and go multiple times in a single year.
Think back just 4 or 5 years ago when the contour was queen.
Everyone was developing their own elaborate, contrasted contour routine and doing face yoga to tighten their cheeks, pretty much all thanks to Kim K.
Fast forward to today, and beauty trends could not be more different!
Sure, makeup artists are still perfecting the contour + bake routine, but many people are starting to treat their pre-makeup skin with as much care and detail as they are with their makeup.
Today, skinimalism is in and this time American socialites have almost nothing to do with it – you can thank K, K as in Korean beauty, for it.
Korean beauty has long emphasized poreless, baby-soft skin and natural almost airbrushed finishes in their beauty routines.
This has even led to a quirky yet accurate name for this dewy finish – glass skin.
That is, skin should appear glossy, hydrated, and smooth with a light sheen or glow.
Now, this is different from the blinding highlights that usually accompany full faces of makeup.
Dewy skin is much more natural, fresh, and subtle.
That’s also what makes it universally flattering.
No matter what your skin type or tone is, you can achieve “the glow” by focusing on how you hydrate and cleanse your skin.
Three Essential Ingredients for your Glow Listen to your favorite beauty influencer or celebrity’s dewy skin daily routine and you’ll probably start to hear a pattern.
Exfoliate. Hydrate. Apply your oils.
While we can recommend our complete glow guide (below) it’s good to understand the why of the routine and how each product is going to work for your glow.
Some of the shining lights of skincare include:
We can’t get enough of it! Vitamin C is a superpower when it comes to brightening and rejuvenating the skin. It boosts our collagen production, brightens dark spots, and fights off free radicals to keep our skin looking hydrated far beyond application. In most products, you’ll see vitamin C referred to as LAA or L-Ascorbic Acid.
This is another super-hydrating acid that you’ll see in many skincare products. grab onto moisture and bind it to the skin. Hyaluronic acid contributes to dewy skin by improving your skin’s ability to hold hydration and infuse it into the deepest layers of the skin. It can also be used to diminish fine lines and wrinkles.
Retinol is another big name in the game, but it isn’t always the best choice for people with sensitive skin. It’s extremely powerful stuff and can leave skin looking totally revamped and “buffed” but it doesn’t always play well with other ingredients. If you’ve seen this buzzy ingredient around and want to give it a go, make sure to read up on the do’s and don’ts before you apply!
Yep, we need antioxidants on our skin and in our bodies! They protect us from free radicals which can dull our shine and cause serious skin damage. Antioxidants are a crucial ingredient in any skincare routine, especially one that targets freshness and luminosity.
Collagen, the protein that keeps our skin firm and smooth, doesn’t stick around forever. Our bodies produce it at a steady pace throughout life but after about age 23, it starts to decrease. Collagen can also become damaged by free radicals (which is another reason that antioxidant-rich products are so necessary). Collagen peptides, or just peptides, are a hydrolyzed form of collagen that has been broken down into smaller chains that can be absorbed by the body. This helps to boost our collagen levels back up and keep skin firm, healthy, and hydrated.
Your Complete Guide to Glowing
Getting a gorgeous glow isn’t a one size fits all kind of thing because our skin isn’t the same.
Dewy skin is all about gentle cleansing and using layers of clean, hydrating products until you achieve the glow you’re looking for.
In general, this is a guide that anyone can follow, but if you have specific skincare concerns, we’ll tell you what to do and what to avoid below.
Let’s get glowing!
1. Cleanse no. 1:
Your first cleanse (hint, there are two) should gently remove makeup. We recommend the Clean & Gentle Natural Gel Cleanser by Alana Mitchell to gently remove dirt, debris, and makeup from your face without stripping your face of moisture – that is the last thing you want in order to achieve dewy skin! It’s a gel-based cleanser, so it cuts down on time and makes washing your face peasy.
2. Cleanse no. 2:
Now is time for the deep clean. For this cleanser, look for hydrating formulas that penetrate pores to remove excess oil. We like Dermaquest’s Clay Cleanser for this step. It’s friendly for all skin types and leaves skin feeling smooth but not oily.
We know what you’re thinking – wash my face again? Well, yes. This time, your aim is to buff away dry and dull skin. If you wash your face everyday and are wondering why you can’t get the glow you’re looking for, this is probably why. Use a gentle exfoliating scrub to dislodge dead skin and brighten your complexion. Think of it as a massage rather than scrubbing too hard to avoid irritating the skin. You don’t need to do this step every day – you can keep it to 2 or 3 times a week. When you’re all done, gently pat your face dry and get ready to apply your next product.
4. Use a sheet mask:
As a rule of thumb, you should never leave freshly washed skin for more than a minute. Washing your face rids it of oils that can cause acne and other skin problems, but that oil is gone, your skin thinks it needs to go into overdrive to replace it! So, for this next step, try to apply it within the first 60 seconds after patting your face dry. Choose a gentle hydrating mask with antioxidants to fight off dulling free radicals. This sheet mask by Alana Mitchell is easy and quick to apply and aims to reduce pores and restore your skin’s youthful elasticity and glow. If you don’t have the time to apply a face mask, you can skip over this and head to step 5.
5. Apply a hydrating toner:
Hydrating toner what? Yes, toners can be hydrating and lightweight with the right ingredients! Since this is the first step after cleansing, you’ll want to look for formulas that are free of alcohol that can dry out skin. June Jacobs Green Tea and Cucumber Toner is a good place to start! It has a laundry list of naturally hydrating ingredients that deeply penetrate the skin and improve water retention.
6. Serum time:
Now is the step you have probably been anticipating! It’s time for a hydrating, nourishing serum. This simple and effective hyaluronic serum is potent and ultra-hydrating. It’s a great choice for all skin types and helps to protect and build your natural skin barrier. It’s gentle enough to use everyday! Bonus points if you use a facial roller to apply the product and drain your skin of lymph fluid.
Tada! The last step is, of course, moisturizer! We like to use products that work hard for us – meaning they can do a lot in one step. One of the golden rules of skincare, on top of moisturizing, of course, is to protect your skin with SPF. Try looking for a moisturizer that contains SPF and don’t worry, it won’t leave a thick white layer on your skin like sunscreen! This one is one of our favorites, the Image Skincare Prevention+ Daily Tinted Moisturizer. It has SPF 30 to protect your skin from UVA and UVB rays and a light tint to help you get glowing. This is our secret weapon when it comes to glass skin – a tinted moisturizer goes a long way!
On top of this dewy skin-targeting routine, there are also things you can do everyday to protect and nourish your skin.
This might not be news to you, but you need to drink your water!
It’s recommended that you drink 8 cups of water a day to keep all the organs in your body, including the skin, running smoothly.
Drinking water increases blood circulation to the skin, helps prevent wrinkles, and keeps you looking fresh faced.
Our tip is to get a cute water bottle and use fruit infusions to make hydration less of a drag.
Forgot to drink your water but want a glowing impression for a night out? Try hanging upside down for a couple of minutes.
It may sound wacky, but this will help the blood to rush to your face and give you the warm glow you’re looking for.
Specific Skin Care Concerns and Things to Avoid
The above routine is pretty generalized for people of all skin types, but we know that not everyone fits into the same mold.
If you have a specific skincare concern, there are also things you can do to fast track your glow.
For Acne Prone Skin:
Avoid artificial fragrances and alcohol which can dry out your skin and cause irritation. Though it might seem against your instincts, use an oil-based serum that’s made to manage acne. The oil will actually help you to maintain your skin’s natural moisture so that it doesn’t overproduce oil when it’s dried out. This Tuel Rehab Acne Serum uses tea tree oil to help manage redness and inflammation which hydrates your skin and builds up its natural moisture. Lastly, and I know this might be cheating a bit, but feel free to target and tone out redness with a lightweight concealer.
For Mature Skin:
Dewy, youthful, glowing skin is possible at any age! Our skin can get dull and dry as we age due to our collagen levels declining. To combat this, look for ingredients such as peppermint, vitamin B12, and ginseng root which boost blood flow in the face and make us look rosy and radiant. This Ling Ginseng Collagen Infusion Mask tones and revitalizes the skin to give us that fresh facial glow. You might also consider using an anti-wrinkle eye cream in your daily dewy routine to help the eyes look radiant and youthful.
Sealing the Deal
Everyone’s journey to glowing skin is a little different.
You might see results in a week, or it might take you a little longer than you’d like.
Now, I know we said no makeup and with the right amount of time, you won’t need it!
But, if you want to add a little umph to your look or get a dewy glamorous look right away, here are a few makeup tips to seal the deal.
1. Use Cream Based Products
Matted concealer and powder blush go against the dewy look, even if it’s just a base. Use creamy blush to add richness and color to your face and while giving you a fresh flush. Tinted moisturizers are a great substitute for matte concealer!
2. Use A Facial Mist Throughout The Day
No matter what level of makeup you use, you can always keep it fresh and dewy with a lightweight facial mist. Keep it in your purse or desk so you can apply it throughout the day. Not only does it make your skin look hydrated, but it also restores your skin’s moisture as you power through your day.
3. Remember To Also Exfoliate Your Lips!
They need a little love too, especially during the winter. Exfoliate with a lip scrub or lip mask and top with a natural tinted lip gloss for a flawless finish. If you know you’ll be wearing a face mask, switch for a moisturizing lip balm instead to seal in moisture and keep pigment off of your mask.
4. Let Your Whole Body Shine!
For a seamless dewy look from head to toe, moisturize from head to toe with a body oil. Body oils are actually extremely lightweight and leave a luminous shine rather than thick residue that sits on your skin. You can use it to replace body lotion in a pinch or add it to your bathwater the day before to keep your skin hydrated and glowing.
5. Avoid Glitter
Glass skin is all about looking natural and luminous and glitter kind of gives it away! Instead of using a highlighter with glitter, apply a sheer face gloss to the cheekbones, brow bones, and very tip of the nose to reflect some light and keep glowing. A little goes a long way!