Here's How The 'Quiet Quitting' Phenomenon Applies To Your Skincare Routine

What Generations X and Y have in common is that they are all adherents of the hustle culture — a lifestyle in which one's work becomes the centerpiece of their life and everything else plays second fiddle. With overworking comes burnout, which leads to a secret desire to quit. And that's how "quiet quitting" became the most discussed lifestyle trend in 2022. On this, Zaid Khan, who was credited with popularizing the phrase "quiet quitting," said in his TikTok video. "I recently learned about this term called quiet quitting, where you're not outright quitting your job but you're quitting the idea of going above and beyond." Quiet quitting is not a newly discovered state of mind. It just had rarely been brought up before. Per a survey by Gallup, "quiet quitters" account for at least half of the U.S. workforce.

Thanks to endless anatomization, this phenomenon has spread far beyond the context in which it was first brought up. Quiet quitting is being discussed in relationships, religious life, and even fitness regimens. The quiet quitting fad has also made its way into the beauty industry. For years, cosmetic marketers have drilled into our heads that good skincare equals more skincare. As if maintaining existing skincare habits weren't enough, we're constantly bombarded with new beauty products and techniques, and we have no idea which ones are true. Here's some good news for those grappling with beauty FOMO: you may quietly quit your skincare routine and still have healthy skin. This is how.

Sometimes, less is more in skincare

Aside from freeing up some space on your vanity desk, simplifying your skincare routine by eliminating products that your skin doesn't need can actually have a positive impact on it. Noting that it's never a good idea to give your skin a sensory overload, dermatologist Dr. Melanie Palm tells Byrdie, "There is a benefit to giving your skin a break from certain products and following a more simplified routine, especially if you're using a lot of actives, so it can repair its lipid barrier." Dr. Palm goes on to say that a simplified routine helps protect your skin barrier from potential irritants throughout the winter when low temperatures, plus an indoor heating system, can easily weaken it. 

Echoing the sentiment, dermatologist Dr. Pamela Benito tells Glamour that the skin cannot digest all the skincare ingredients at once. Overwhelming it with many actives can make it extra sensitive and vulnerable to irritation and extra dryness. Also, it's worth noting that not all skincare ingredients work well together. Some cancel each other out and make the ingredients ineffective when used in conjunction. That's why dermatologists would advise you to use certain products on alternate days — in the morning or evening — rather than all at once. For instance, combining retinol with vitamin C or benzoyl peroxide is one surefire way to irritate your skin and trigger a flare-up. Now that you know how beneficial a minimalist skincare routine can be, let's talk about what stays and what goes.

How to streamline your skincare routine

According to dermatologist Dr. Susan Massick (via Everyday Health), building a minimalist skincare routine is all about keeping the key steps and ingredients that are needed to keep your skin healthy. For instance, Dr. Massick recommends limiting your skincare kit to no more than fundamental products such as a cleanser, a moisturizer, and a facial sunscreen. To avoid irritating your skin, look for an alcohol-free, gentle cleanser containing glycolic or salicylic acid. Moisturizing is key to keeping your skin hydrated and supple, and a lightweight moisturizer with deeply hydrating hyaluronic acid can do the job. Then, slather your face with sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher to protect your skin from sun damage and premature aging. 

For those with oily or acne-prone skin, you can also incorporate a toner into your skincare routine right after cleansing. Containing alcohol, facial toners can remove oil from your skin while cleaning your pores of the last trace of impurities, professor of dermatology Joshua Zeichner tells Allure. If you're looking to address some skin concerns, a serum can help. A serum, which contains a high concentration of active ingredients, may penetrate deep into your skin and deliver powerful repairing effects such as brightening skin tone, boosting skin elasticity, and minimizing the appearance of aging lines with just a few drops. If you think your skin can use more, consult a dermatologist to find out which products are worth the investment.