Skip to content

5 expert ways to spring clean your skin

A change in season which summons change, clarity and new beginnings, and it’s more welcome than ever this year. And it’s worth bringing a little of the “out with the old, in with the new” attitude to your skincare routine.

It’s not necessarily about swapping old formulas for new ones, but rather changing the focus from nourishing and soothing to brightening and smoothing. Like a Marie Kondo method for your skin, these experts tell us exactly how to do it.

Deep clean

You already know how important cleansing is – a mainstay in your routine, it’s as key in spring as it is in winter. The trick is to ensure you have the right formula for your skin type. “Cleanse for 60 seconds, twice a day,” recommends dermatologist Dr Ifeoma Ejikeme. “Ensure the cleanser is well suited to your skin type, and look out for ingredients that can support the barrier function of the skin, such as ceramides, hyaluronic acid and glycerin.”


If you’re suffering skin congestion, such as blocked pores or spots, it’s time to review the formulas you’re using. “Ensure none of your products are adding to congestion – put away heavy oils and overly nourishing creams if you find yourself breaking out,” suggests Dr Ejikeme.

While it’s tempting, what you shouldn’t do is go wild squeezing spots, because it can “break and scar the skin”, says facialist Katharine Mackenzie Paterson, who says extractions like that are best left to the pros. “If you have a yellow head on a spot (or pustule), then as long as you cleanse your skin, wash your hands, cover fingers with a tissue and gently apply pressure to each side of the spot and it extracts, then we can let you off,” she adds. “Afterwards, apply something gentle to help clean and purify, such as Clinisoothe+ – anything ghastly like TCP or toothpaste will just burn your skin.”

The right way to decongest problem areas is gently with an exfoliant and mask, once a week, she advises. “Clay-based masks help draw out impurities and calm angry spots, too, and salicylic acid is also your friend. It’s a BHA that penetrates and breaks down clogged oil, and it has a great anti-inflammatory effect too.” If you are suffering from more persistent blemishes, seek help from a professional – whether dermatologist or facialist.


More than anything, good texture is the key to fresh and youthful looking skin – and since the sun (hopefully) shines more in the springtime, a smooth canvas helps light bounce off the skin in all the right ways. Whether your skin is congested or not, a chemical-based exfoliant is a great way to help with texture and congestion as it “helps clear out any blockages and dissolves the skin’s surface layers to brighten, smooth and clear”, says Mackenzie Paterson. A warning: be sure not to overdo it, for a damaged skin barrier only causes dryness, irritation and redness – it depends on your skin type, but apply once every few days as a general rule.


Now, for the fun bit. Glowy skin can be tricky to achieve in winter, when central heating, cold temperatures and a general lack of sunlight make their mark upon us. In spring, it’s all about boosting radiance. Healthy skin starts with decent sleep, so Mackenzie Paterson recommends “checking in with your natural circadian rhythms now that the days are getting longer”, and more than ever, listen to your body – when you’re tired, you need sleep.

Next, for a wealth of new formulas that promise to improve luminosity and tackle uneven skin tone. Dr Barbara Sturm’s brilliant new The Better B Niacinamide Serum supports the skin barrier, smooths and reduces the appearance of pores, while Vichy’s Lifactiv B3 Dark Spot & Wrinkles Serum targets dark spots and fine lines, thanks to a combination of niacinamide, vitamin C and glycolic acid. Vitamin C is also brilliant for boosting brightness (as well as collagen production), and you can find it in Holifrog’s Sunnyside C Glow Serum.

Hydration is also key, so employ humectant ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid and glycerin, to quench skin’s thirst and plump. Then lock it all in with a great, lightweight moisturiser that helps support barrier function.

If you’re also a fan of a tan (and who isn’t?), two new self-tan products promise a believable golden glow. St Tropez’s Luxe Tan Tonic Drops combine DHA (the tanning molecule) with vitamins C, E, hyaluronic acid and niacinamide to feed skin the good stuff while slowly building up a bronze glow. And Tan-Luxe’s The Crème is packed full of amino acids, antioxidants and skin-identical lipids to tan while it nourishes.


While you don’t need to switch out all of your failsafe skin formulas each season, in the spirit of spring cleaning your space, it is wise to chuck out any formulations that might be out of date. “Especially SPFs,” points out Paterson, who also says it’s time to up the ante on antioxidants in your skincare regime if you are likely to be spending more time outside.

This article was originally published on Glamour UK.

Share this article: