Creating and sticking to a consistent body care routine in Malaysia is a lot easier than in other places. Where the climate can affect your skin significantly, forcing you to change up your routine!
However, focusing on the face (skin care routine) alone does not feel complete! And your body deserves to be pampered too. The best part? Having a body care routine can be a real mood booster!
Here’s how you can get started on a body care routine at home for yourself!
STEP 1 – Get Clean With Body Wash
The bare minimum you can do is to get your skin clean! With a body wash or a soap bar!
You’ll know a body wash is too harsh for you if it leaves your skin feeling tight (i.e. dry) after your shower! If you feel itchy afterwards, you might be allergic to your new body wash!
Some people like to use a loofah or wash cloth. But using your hands works too!
And when you pick out a body wash, the smell should not be the sole determining factor! We know it’s not easy to find an SLS-free body wash but these are better for your skin in the long run! SLS can upset your skin’s natural ph balance!
- We know it’s not easy to find an SLS-free body wash but these are better for your skin in the long run! SLS can upset your skin’s natural ph balance (*1)!
- If you have body acne, you can try a body wash that includes salicylic acid
STEP 2 – Use An Exfoliator/ Body Scrub
Why Should You Use A Body Scrub?
- Removes dead skin cells from covering newer softer skin
- To prevent acne
- Especially important if you shave, because exfoliating can prevent ingrown hairs!
Body Scrubs In Malaysia
Some body wash already have exfoliating beads or grains in them but be careful:
- Microbeads are actually microplastic – these go down the drain and enter our waterways which is neither a good thing for the environment or you!
- Grains like walnut husk are actually too harsh and create micro tears in your skin (*2)
Preferable scrub ingredients are natural. Like:
- Crushed rice grains or oats
- Ground coffee grains
Yes, you can actually make body scrubs yourself!
Other ways to scrub your body include using an exfoliating mit or glove.
How Often Should You Exfoliate?
Ideally, 2-3 times a week in your body care routine should be enough. Even if you have a stubborn rough patch, don’t over scrub! As that can lead to darker and tougher skin as the skin heals (*3)!
Align your exfoliating days with the next item.
STEP 3 – Shaving/ Waxing (Optional)
We’re not telling you that shaving is a must in your body care routine. It’s up to your personal preference.
If you would like to shave, make sure you cleanse and exfoliate your skin first!
This prevents the hairs from growing back the wrong way (i.e. ingrown), or for acne to pop up.
When shaving, always follow the direction of the hair growth. Going in the opposite direction can lead to ingrown hairs, and even folliculitis. Shaving cream is advisable to reduce trauma to your hair follicles (*4).
An alternative to shaving:
Waxing gives you more lasting and cleaner results but can be painful. And when the hairs do grow back, it can be very itchy!
Again, it’s up to your preference. But you should wax on clean skin (and dry) all the same. You may have to cut hair shorter beforehand too.
First time waxing? Do a patch test in the crook of your elbow first to see if the product is compatible with your skin!
Another important thing to note:
Unlike shaving, do not wax on the same day that you exfoliate! Waxxpot.com even suggests avoiding exfoliating 24 to 48 hours before waxing! To minimize skin irritation!
STEP 4 – Apply Body Moisturizer
This is one of the most important steps in this order for skin care routine!
Best applied after you towel off from your shower:
To seal in moisture from the shower steam! And after applying the moisturizer, wait a few minutes for it to absorb, before putting your clothes on!
A body moisturizer can also be used anytime you feel your skin is dry!
There are body moisturizers that claim to firm up and tone your skin, remove stretchmarks and cellulite:
But we wouldn’t fully rely on these for results!
According to one dermatologist (Joshua Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research at Mount Sinai Hospital),
“Firming creams are best at preventing sagging or may give modest improvements in sagging skin when used alone” Source: Marieclaire.com
For exceptionally dry skin, you can look into body oils. Although these can be messy and may stain your towels, clothes, and bedsheets!
STEP 5 – Protect Your Skin
Like your face, your body is subject to skin damage from UV rays.
When you go out or drive:
Use a hat, umbrella or wear long sleeves and pants. Whichever part is exposed, slap on some sunscreen. And don’t forget your neck!
Heed the title. These are optional and additional steps to your body care routine (not in order).
And they should only be attempted with utmost care and in moderation.
And maybe you have heard of these other body care methods and are just curious:
Dry Body Brushing
This technique of running a dry body brush over your limbs, towards your heart encourages lymphatic drainage. Which reduces the appearance of bloating.
And aids in removing toxins in your body.
It’s ok to this one 1-2 time a week, or spread out between weeks if you have sensitive skin – according to byrdie.com.
Similar to chemical exfoliation for your face. They make your skin softer and smoother. And can reduce dry patches, acne and even wrinkles.
Common ingredients include salicylic, glycolic trichloroacetic, and lactic acids. There are beauty centers that provide this service.
These can be done in light to intensive levels. For the latter, you may experience some discomfort for up to a few weeks.
What you don’t want to do, is over-do a body peel. You need to give your skin time enough to heal in between peels (at least 10 days) (*5).
Microneedling involves a dermaroller with tiny needles to prick your skin. This encourages collagen production. Resulting in firmer skin. It can help reduce the appearance of scars with a few sessions!
There may be skin irritation after a microneedling session. It’s best to leave this to a professional rather than doing it yourself! The main concern is keeping the dermaroller sanitized before and after each session (*6)!
Read more: 13 Best Collagen In Malaysia
A basic body care routine in Malaysia will not take too much of your time! Because the most time-consuming parts (scrubbing and shaving) are not something you have to do every day!
Look after your skin – it’s the only you have for the rest of your life! And a little dose of self-love never hurt anyone!