Creating a consistent skincare routine as a healthcare professional can be challenging. From long shifts to dry hospital environments to lack of sleep, there are a lot of factors that can work against your skin. But taking care of your skin is an important step to keeping it healthy and can even be a great self-care opportunity. So before you’re ready to crawl into bed at night or head off to work in the morning, take a few minutes to take care of your skin with some of our dermatologist-approved skincare tips for healthcare professionals. 

Don’t Overcomplicate Your Skincare Routine

When you think of a skincare routine, the first image in your mind might be a social media influencer showcasing their 20-step daily routine. Don’t worry, though. We know that healthcare professionals are ridiculously busy, and using more products doesn’t make your routine more effective. Dermatologists recommend starting with the basics. So don’t run out to purchase 10 different serums and creams just because you saw them on TikTok. The basics are going to be what makes your skin healthy and happy (and your bank account will thank you, too). 

What are the basics? We recently interviewed a board-certified dermatologist who gave us their skincare tips.  They recommend these essential items for your skincare routine. 

  1. Cleanser 
  2. SPF
  3. Retinol/Retin-A

With these products in your arsenal, you’re well on your way to creating a long-lasting skincare routine that’s easy to stick with. 

Understand the Basics

Each recommended skincare step is going to target a different need, so here’s a little bit of a breakdown of each product and why it matters. 

SPF or Sunscreen

Cetaphil product image from Target

The first (and arguably most important) step of your skincare routine is sunscreen. Sunscreen is important for a few reasons. Most widely known is its protection against skin cancer, which the board-certified dermatologist shares is “one of the top cancers diagnosed in people living in the United States.” On top of protecting your skin, they shared that sunscreen also provides some anti-aging benefits as well. “Sunscreen over time is going to help prevent fine lines and wrinkles,” they shared. “It is going to keep you looking youthful much longer than you would otherwise.”

If applying sunscreen every single day sounds like a lot, try grabbing a moisturizer or makeup product with SPF already in it. That way, on busy mornings, you can eliminate a step while still protecting your skin against harmful sun rays. Modifying your skincare routine to fit your lifestyle is going to be crucial to creating a routine that you’ll actually stick to.


Create Foaming Facial Cleanser Product Image from Target

After a long shift, notice how your skin looks and feels. With oils, sweat, makeup, and grime building up on your face throughout your shift, your skin most likely needs a little refresh. A gentle cleanser will leave your face feeling squeaky clean and help prevent any breakouts from occurring. If you wear sunscreen every day, cleansing your face is an important step for removing any excess sunscreen that can lead to clogged pores. 


create resurfacing retinol serum product image from Target

The key to keeping your skin looking young is to combat aging early. Adding Retinol or Retin-A to your routine is beneficial for combatting wrinkles, fine lines, discoloration, and other signs of aging. “The Retinol and Retin-As are going to help with gentle exfoliation,” shared the dermatologist. “So it’s going to help with your skin turnover, and it’s going to help prevent fine lines and wrinkling as well.”

There are over-the-counter options for these creams, but if you’re hoping to target a specific skin concern, like acne or discoloration, talk to your dermatologist to find one that’s right for you and your skin. And a side note — these Retinols and Retin-As are NOT safe for use during pregnancy. So if you’re able to get pregnant, keep that in mind before adding anything new to your routine. If you’re looking for a product with similar benefits, talk to your dermatologist for pregnancy-safe options. 

Create a Skincare Routine You’ll Be Consistent with

You’re not alone if you’re feeling overwhelmed with starting a skincare routine. Starting any new habit is going to take time and effort, but like most things, a little work upfront is going to help save you a lot in the long run. 

The board-certified dermatologist shared that one of the best ways to stick to a skincare routine is to pair it with other habits that you already have, like brushing your teeth or turning off your light at night. “Put your toothbrush near your facial cleanser, keep your facial moisturizer with retinol on your bedside table at night, and then put your morning sunscreen right next to your toothbrush. That way, you can just grab everything in the areas that you’re at, and you don’t have to move rooms or spaces.” 

Consistency is key when it comes to skincare.

Be Patient

Even though it would be nice to see results immediately, the dermatologist shared that depending on what you’re targeting, you might see results as early as 12 weeks, but with some products, you won’t see results for 5-10 years. “If you’re targeting overall youthful appearance and the longevity of your skin, you’re going to notice benefits over the course of like five or ten years. If you are using Retin-A to treat acne, you’re going to notice results in about 12 weeks of consistent use. If you’re using Retin-A to target just pigmentation or discoloration from the sun or prior acne, again, it’s going to take several months for you to notice these changes.” 

So remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.

Do Future You a Favor 

While creating a consistent skincare routine takes time and effort, it doesn’t have to be complicated. Start by adding one or two of these steps to your morning or night, and in no time, you’ll have a skincare regimen you won’t even have to think about. 

And remember, building a routine now will help you stay happy and healthy in the long run, so a few minutes today is a worthwhile investment in your skin’s future. 

Add Medely to Your Daily Routine

Facilities use Medely to post per diem shifts, local assignments, and travel contracts daily to connect with qualified and experienced healthcare professionals. Earn cash flexibly and on your terms with opportunities for nurses and allied healthcare professionals on Medely. Click on the link below to get started. 

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