Spring Clean Your Skincare Routine

Skin’s needs can change with the seasons so now’s the time to spring clean your skincare routine! We spoke to Southwell-based STORY aesthetician, Sophie Matkin who explains the why, what and how so you can banish Winter woes and prep for Summer skin goals.

Spring clean skincare skin treatments STORY clinics

Spring skin changes…

As we head into Spring you’ll likely begin to notice changes to your skin. These can include… 

  • Dull skin due to a lack of vitamin D during the Winter months.
  • Dryness and dehydration thanks to the effects of cold weather and central heating.
  • More congestion and breakouts as higher temperatures and humidity trigger increased sweat and oil production.
  • Rosacea flare-ups; these can be more prevalent during the Spring due to us starting to go outside more and being subject to the effects of wind and sun.

You may also find your skincare routine needs some tweaks…

  • Your moisturiser may now feel too rich.
  • You may have new concerns to address, such as dryness and breakouts.
  • Skin often gets oilier during the Spring and Summer months so you may wish to include skincare products to help manage this.
  • Reintroducing SPF if you (naughtily!) ditched this during the Winter.

So how do we deal with these Spring skin issues? Sophie has some great advice…

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Reveal your skin’s radiance

There are two key ways to tackle dull skin: exfoliation and the introduction of vitamin C to your skincare routine. 

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Gentle but thorough exfoliation

“Exfoliating is a vital step in banishing dull skin and revealing your skin’s radiance,” says Sophie. “Even if your skin feels a little flaky after the Winter months, it’s still important to exfoliate!”

“Introducing a gentle at-home exfoliator at least once a week will improve results and drive other targeted products deeper. You can also benefit from professional skin treatments that offer a deep exfoliation as well as targeted care for additional skin concerns, from dehydration to acne and pigmentation issues.” 

Acid-based chemical exfoliators featuring alpha- or beta- hydroxy acids (AHAs or BHAs) are advised over physical scrub products which can be too harsh for your face. 

We recommend trying the Neostrata Glycolic Renewal Smoothing Lotion, which is available in-clinic from STORY Marylebone. Alternatively, you can call us to purchase any skincare products and we’ll happily send them out to you.

Introduce vitamin C to your skincare

Topical vitamin C is a rich anti-inflammatory antioxidant that is known to promote radiance. It also helps to protect the skin against free radical damage from the sun and other environmental factors. Vitamin C skincare products come in all forms, though many people prefer to use a serum, which is generally used in the morning as the last step before your moisturiser and SPF.

“STORY favourite, the EverActive C&E + Peptide serum by Alumier MD contains 15% of the purest and most potent form of vitamin C,” notes Sophie. “The formulation is designed to brighten your complexion and improve skin texture as well as reducing fine lines and wrinkles.”

Don’t forget your SPF

SPF is the best anti-ageing product you can use for your skin. It should be worn every day, all year round and we recommend wearing no lower than an SPF30, though ideally you should opt for an SPF50, with broad spectrum protection.

Unprotected sun exposure can damage your skin barrier leading to sensitised skin and conditions such as eczema, broken capillaries or acne. Proper daily SPF use helps to prevent this as well as sun damage, hyperpigmentation, accelerated skin ageing including fine lines and wrinkles, as well as skin cancer. 

For those of you with acne or rosacea, or who use retinol products in your skincare routine, daily SPF use is even more crucial. Acne breakouts may result in post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH); wearing high protection SPF prevents this skin discolouration from worsening. SPF also helps to reduce the likelihood of rosacea flare-ups and protects skin that has been sensitized by retinol use.

As skin professionals, we always recommend using a dedicated SPF product rather than, for example, a moisturiser or foundation which includes SPF. Your SPF should be applied every morning according to the product’s instructions and ensure you use the recommended amount. Don’t forget the reapplications too! 

STORY clinics carry a range of wonderful SPF products suitable for all skin tones (no white cast!) and skin types. These include, lauded skincare expert, Caroline Hirons’ favourite SPF, the Mesoestetic Melan 130+ Pigment Control SPF 50. She says of this bestseller, “Melan 130+ Pigment Control is super light, has a light tint that works across skin tones, a UVB of 131 and a UVA of 67.”

MESOESTETIC MELAN SPF alumier mD vitamin c serum neostrata exfoliator lotion STORY clinics skincare

Top STORY skin treatments for Spring

Our top in-clinic Spring skin treatments are:

Custom chemical peels from the STORY Skin Peels Boutique

Skin peels are a form of chemical exfoliation which decongest your skin for a refreshingly deep clean. After the dead skin cells and debris have been cleared away, we flood your skin with a bespoke cocktail of customised ingredients. These can address any additional issues or goals.

People are becoming increasingly savvy about their skincare and we saw a number trying out active enzymatic skin peels at home during lockdown. However, these offer a very different experience to in-clinic peels performed by a professional.

“All STORY aestheticians customise our range of chemical peels to your specific skin type, skin tone and unique skin requirements, as well as your goals,” advises Sophie. “These sophisticated skin peels can be tailored to your lifestyle requirements too, so you can let us know whether you are prepared for any downtime or not, and we can adjust the strength of the peel accordingly.

“We can also then apply additional skin boosting products to your exfoliated skin, to help address any concerns you may have – from dehydration to acne or pigmentation.”

Whilst you may like a single custom chemical peel to kick off your Spring skincare regime, you’ll actually see much better results from a course of three. You can also book them in, in advance so you have some regular pampering to look forward to!


Our dermaplaning is an incredibly popular physical exfoliation which also removes facial hair. Your STORY aesthetician uses a sterile scalpel to painlessly swipe away “peach fuzz” and dead skin cells. This reveals smoother, more radiant skin and can provide a better base for makeup application.

With no downtime and an immediate skin glow, this is a great option for a quick and effective exfoliation. You can also add dermaplaning on to most STORY skin treatments if you’d like to make the most of your time with us – just let us know when you book your appointment.

The STORY Signature Facial

This bespoke treatment is essentially a ‘greatest hits’ of skin treatments! Tailored to your specific skin needs and goals, it always starts with a thorough cleanse. It then features a range of customised treatments, including lymphatic drainage, dermaplaning, HydraFacial® (STORY Southwell only), Plasma Shower therapy (STORY Marylebone only), LED and a clever skin peel that doesn’t cause visible peeling.

The STORY Signature Facial is a real treat that offers instant results with no downtime. It provides a range of benefits, from helping your skin to look healthier and reducing the appearance of fine lines, to adding a youthful, glowy plumpness.

Custom Hydrafacials (Southwell only)

“Our custom Hydrafacial treatments support your skin at any time of the year,” says Sophie.  “It improves general skin health, creating radiance, improving your complexion, hydration levels, reducing the signs of ageing and decreasing pore size. A course of 3-6 treatments, with one every 4-6 weeks, is advised to achieve optimal results.” 


Take expert advice

If you are unsure of what exactly your skin needs, or if you have any questions or concerns you’d like answered by experts, book a free STORY skin consultation. This will allow our aestheticians to explore your current skincare and results, then make recommendations accordingly. It’s a free makeover for your skin products! 

Find out which of the products you’re using may not be working well, what to keep and what could be improved, along with ideas for the types of products to slot into your routine to see a real difference. Make sure you’re spending your money on products that are going to work for you to get the most from your regimen.

“We advise reviewing your skin with your aesthetician every three months. It takes around 28 days for the epidermis – the outer layer of your skin – to fully renew. However, it’s always recommended that you wait three months to assess the results from consistent use of new products and skin regimes. If you come to see myself, Maja or Lucy, we’ll be able to assess your skin’s needs and tailor a great skincare and treatment plan, including regular check-ins and homecare support. We’re here to help get that spring back in your skin!”

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