No makeup? No wrinkles? No problem! Get answers to common questions about the importance of having a skin care routine no matter what your lifestyle is from Dr. Cristi Gomez, Director of Product Safety & Environmental Toxicology, and David Gan, Senior Principal Scientist, Skin Research & Technology.

Watch the video or keep reading for top questions about having a skin care routine, and learn the science-based

A picture of the TimeWise Repair skin care set for advanced aging, TimeWise Miracle Set 3D for early to moderate signs of aging, Botanical Effects, Clear Proof acne-fighting skin care, and MK Men skin care for men

Why should I have a skin care routine?

Dr. Cristi Gomez:
Your skin is your largest organ. It’s made up of millions of skin cells, and it renews itself every 28 days. That is a lot of important biology to take care of, and a skin care routine helps you do just that.

What is a skin care routine?

Dr. Cristi Gomez: The typical steps in a routine are cleanser, targeted solutions — such as serums — and moisturizer. Cleansing and moisturizing are the most important steps, and you can customize the rest of your routine based on your needs such as age-defying, evening skin tone, acne-prone skin, etc. To best care for your skin, go through your routine morning and evening.
A picture of various Mary Kay skin care products and body care products with SPF sunscreen on a pink and yellow background with sunglasses

I don’t like a lot of steps in my daily routine. What is the bare minimum I should do to care for my skin?

David Gan: At the very least, cleanse and moisturize each morning and night. Also use sunscreen to decrease the risk of skin cancer. Some moisturizers even have SPF protection, so you don’t have to add another step. 

Do I need to wear a sunscreen even if I’m not at the beach?

David Gan: Yes! It is important to protect your skin with sunscreen every day — even on cloudy days. In addition to preventing sunburns, it also decreases the risk of skin cancer and helps prevent the early signs of skin aging. Your future self will thank you! A broad-spectrum sunscreen will protect your skin from both UVA and UVB radiation, which is important since UVA rays can cause damage without giving you a sunburn.


Sun Protection Factor (SPF) value refers to a product’s ability to block UVB rays from the sun. When you use products with a high SPF, it takes more solar exposure to give you a sunburn than when you use a product with low SPF.

A picture of a white, brunette young woman touching her face

Do I need skin care even if I don’t worry about anti-aging benefits?

David Gan: Skin care is about more than defying aging. It helps you maintain healthy skin long-term, avoid breakouts and give skin a brighter appearance.

Why is cleansing my skin important? What are the consequences if I don’t?

Dr. Cristi Gomez: Washing your face helps remove makeup, dirt and grime, and impurities that can lead to blocked pores and breakouts. It also gives you a fresh start for your nighttime routine. Also, makeup tends to migrate to our fine lines and creases while we sleep. You will wake up looking fresher if you remove makeup from the day before.


Avoid using hot water to wash your face since it may potentially dry out or irritate your skin. Our experts suggest washing your face with warm water instead. 

A picture of TimeWise Repair eye cream in a purple tube, night cream in a silver and purple jar, day cream with SPF sunscreen in a purple jar, advanced lifting serum in a purple and silver bottle and foaming cleanser in a purple tube on a counter top

Do I need skin care even if I don’t wear makeup?

Dr. Cristi Gomez: Yes! If you aren’t wearing makeup, you want to have beautiful, healthy skin to show off. So a skin care routine will benefit your no-makeup look.

Do I need to wash my face at night if I don’t wear makeup?

Dr. Cristi Gomez: Absolutely. You need to cleanse your skin morning and evening to help clear away breakout-causing impurities.

Do I need skin care even if my skin looks great?

Dr. Cristi Gomez: Yes. There are many stressors that can have a cumulative impact on your skin and affect how it will look in the future. A skin care routine will help your skin continue to look great.


If you have sensitive skin, look for skin care products that say “suitable for sensitive skin.” When a Mary Kay® product has that text in the description, we’ve verified that claim through clinical tests with board-certified dermatologists to show that these products are suitable for sensitive skin. 

A picture of a smiling mature Latina with dark brown hair

Why is moisturizing my skin important? What are the consequences if I don’t?

David Gan: Our skin naturally produces oil to moisturize itself, but it’s important to replenish moisture after cleansing your skin. Squeaky-clean, unmoisturized skin isn’t necessarily a good thing. And depending on the person, skipping your moisturizer can lead to extra oil production or dry skin. If you have oily skin, you need a moisturizer that works for your skin type. An oil-free moisturizer could be a good option for you.

Do you have any general tips or tricks for someone new to having a skin care routine?

Dr. Cristi Gomez: Start with cleanser and moisturizer, [Link to Moisturizer skin care category page] and add new skin care products as you feel comfortable. This will also give your skin time to adjust to new products, which is important if you are trying a product with added benefits such as exfoliation for the first time. 

“Also, make it easy to maintain your routine. I buy two facial cleansers. I keep one in my shower for washing my face in the morning and one by my sink for washing my face at night. This makes washing my face way more convenient and eliminates excuses.


Exfoliation refers to the process of renewing the skin by removing dead skin cells. Using a product that exfoliates helps your skin look radiant and helps products absorb better. Exfoliate two to three times per week with a physical or chemical exfoliator to improve skin’s texture and reveal younger-looking skin.

Product rubs of various Mary Kay skin care products against a white background.

David Gan: No matter what your skin type, age, lifestyle and needs are, having a routine is crucial for maintaining your skin’s health, and your Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant can help you choose a routine whether you’re keeping it simple or searching for specific benefits.

Start Your Routine!

Love your skin with facial cleansers and moisturizers that leave your skin feeling amazing whether you’re looking for age-defying benefits, solutions for breakouts and acne, custom formulas for your skin type, or something simple. Then, visit Targeted Solutions to round out your at-home routine! If you’re ready to dive in and try a full regimen, visit the Regimen Finder to find your perfect fit!