ABCs of Skincare



Can any of you relate to the “curse words”:  fine lines, wrinkles, sun spots, age spots, dry or crepe-y skin, dark circles?

I know I have said a few as I enter my 30s and quickly see the youthful skin I took for granted in my 20s start to fade. Taking care of your skin can feel very overwhelming, and most do not know where to start.

The easy answer is just to start doing something– one product or two can make a tremendous difference in your skin.

The overwhelm of all the products, unique skin types, clever marketing, and price can take the fun out of getting your youthful face back. I enjoy learning about products and the science behind them. Through my previous medical marketing career, I soaked up all the skincare knowledge I could while learning from a stellar dermatology practice. I wanted to know how to help not only my skin but also my mom’s, my best friends’, and coworkers, so I asked a lot of questions and narrowed my scope to the basics that our skin really needs.

Let’s simplify this with the ABCs of skincare and 3 do-able steps you can take to get your skin back to its youthful glow.

How to start…

Make an appointment with a dermatologist.

This seems obvious, but too often, we try to analyze our own skin or get “tricked” by what marketing can be louder at Sephora. We spend countless money on over-the-counter products that may not provide results or are not right for our skin.

Does this sound like you?

By scheduling time with a professional, they can recommend products that are right for your skin type and address your concerns. It is also worth mentioning that we should ALL be getting our skin checked for any peculiar spots and screening for skin cancer. If you remember baby oil for tanning, tanning beds, or what SPF 4 means- then I am speaking to you here 😉

Use the ABCs as your foundation for skincare products. Everyone should be following these basics:

A) Vitamin A for Retinoids/Retinols.

(night time routine) Retinols help promote cell turnover, diminish fine lines and wrinkles, and shrink pore size. This is found over-the-counter but is also available via prescription through your dermatologist. I recommend going through your prescription as most retail retinoids can be costly. In comparison, I paid $42 for a 6 month supply of retinoids.

B) Broad-spectrum sunscreen.

THIS! Saying it again- wear sunscreen! Sunscreen helps protect us from the harmful rays and helps prevent early aging brought on by the sun. I use EltaMD Facial sunscreen every day under my makeup or mixed with a tinted sunscreen on the weekends. Investing in quality sunscreen makes all the difference. EltaMD Facial sunscreen is the only one I have found not to irritate my skin and acts as a primer underneath my makeup. So when it is two products in one, I don’t mind spending $30ish every 6-8 weeks.

C) Vitamin C

Adding this antioxidant helps prevent free radicals against our skin and early aging. This product alone has made a tremendous difference in how my skin responds. Always choose medical-grade- companies like SkinCeuticals, Revision, or Obagi, to name a few, make great products. Medical grade is more expensive but is far more potent and effective than over the counter.

When you invest in these three staples, the other skincare products you add are bonuses! I look for ways to save on other products like moisturizers. Vanicream or CeraVe are great brands recommended by my dermatologist. These are quality products without all the “bad stuff” added. I use the Vanicream Moisturizer and CeraVe Hyaluronic Avid and have LOVED them.


Miranda’s Daily Skincare Routine


Wash Face and pat dry.
Apply Vitamin C serum (always first to hit your skin)
CeraVe Hyraluronic Acid
EltaMD Facial Sunscreen.. then makeup


Wash face and pat dry.
Apply a pea-sized amount of retinoid. Sometimes I mix this with my moisturizer to help this spread easier. Apply to face, neck, and chest.


Other Treatments to Consider

Two treatments I swear by, and I have recommended to everyone are the laser treatments IPL and Clear and Brilliant. IPL is designed to help your skin’s complexion and eliminate dark spots from the sun, and it works! Clear and Brilliant helps with your skin’s texture and fine lines with no downtime. After 3-4 days of a little rough skin, your skin feels so incredibly smooth and glows so bright! I try to get these 2-3 times per year, and it has helped eliminate the need for excess makeup and foundation and keeps my complexion smooth.

Also, BOTOX. Laugh lines, worry wrinkles, crow’s feet- whatever you have or call them- are smoothed out with this injectable. Find a qualified injector and one that will thoroughly listen to your goals. I have never felt “frozen” after any treatment. Most consultations at cosmetic dermatologists are complementary, so it is worth a conversation!

Here’s a little math to help you with starting your skincare foundation with the ABCs:

  • Dermatology appointment (varies) average- $100
  • Retinoid prescription, tube lasts 6 months (varies with insurance)-$50
  • Sunscreen- $30
  • Vitamin C (varies)- $150

Total under $300 for products and services that will last you several months and will change your skin!

**Follow my favorite skin gurus on Instagram for more tips and information:

@jordanharper_np and @skinbyblair

**Disclaimer- I am not a medical professional and would recommend you consult with a physician before taking any products, especially if you are pregnant or nursing.

All products featured are specifically selected by our team. When you purchase something through our retail links, Pensacola Mom Collective may earn an affiliate commission.


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