The One-Step Skin-Care Routine Derms Say You Should Be Doing When You Get Out of the Shower

Photo: Stocksy/Liliya Rodnikova
Whether or not you should wash your face in the shower is one of the most controversial topics in the skin-care world. Some derms will tell you that the water is too hot and will strip your skin, while others will say that it's totally fine as long as you're keeping your showers short and using the right product. Personally, I will never give up the convenience of facial cleansing as a part of my lather-and-rinse routine, because who the heck has time for an extra step in the morning?! Recently, though, I learned that it's really what you do to your skin after stepping out of the jet stream that matters... and all you need to keep your skin happy is a single step.

The one product you should be applying after you shower? A facial oil, which dermatologists say works to seal in all that good H2O to keep skin hydrated from within. "Oils are great for locking in hydration after showers," says board-certified dermatopathologist Gretchen Frieling, MD. She explains that oils are also great because they "mimic the natural oil produced by the skin," which helps your skin maintain its barrier.

"Oils are best used after bathing for hydration," confirms board-certified dermatologist and founder of Visha Skincare, Purvisha Patel, MD, adding that they need to be layered on top of water in order to really do their job. While creams and moisturizers add hydration to your skin, oils serve as a layer on top to lock the hydration that's already there. Since oils don't have any moisture of their own (to reiterate—you'd need an actual moisturizer to reap that benefit), you want to use them when your skin is wet, making them perfect for a quick one-step slather.

While this process doesn't necessarily take the place of a full a.m. or p.m. skin-care routine, it's a great solution for those post-shower situations when you don't want to do a full 10-step regimen, but do want to give your skin a little bit of extra love.

In the great debate between oils and moisturizers, this is the one to use when your skin feels dehydrated AF. And here's why oil cleansing may not be all it's cracked up to be as an every day practice.

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