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Simple but effective skin care and beauty strategies

Jessica Padykula is a freelance writer and editor in Toronto, Canada covering a wide range of  topics for several online lifestyle publications. She is a regular contributor for SheKnows, covering travel, style, relationships, health and...

Best beauty tips

Keeping your skin looking great may seem complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. We’ve put together some simple beauty tips that will not only ensure you look fabulous, but that will also get you gorgeous without breaking the bank.

Woman with eye cream

Healthy skin care expert and Skin Authority CEO Celeste Hilling shares her top four skin care and beauty tips with SheKnows. She works with Heather Morris and Chord Overstreet of Glee, among other celebrity clients.

Out with the old

Make a note: Use special caution with jars in which you dip your fingers or hands as those tend to have more active bacteria growth. "It's a good idea to write the date purchased on the bottom of new products so that you know when it has reached the end of its useful life," says Hilling.

Do you keep beauty products for years? It's time to make over your makeup bag and toss anything that has been around for a while, Hilling says. "Discard your beauty products one year after opening them because bacteria can grow in the bottle or jar potentially causing infections or irritation when applied to the skin," she explains.

Simplify, simplify, simplify

Chances are (if you're anything like most women) you have countless beauty products on your shelf or lining your counter and don't have a clue how to use them. Rather than overload your complexion with too many products, Hilling suggests paring back to no more than three to four steps in the morning and at night. In the morning, you need a mild cleanser, an antioxidant such as vitamin C (in the form of a serum or lotion) and a moisturizer containing sunscreen. Before you go to bed, use resurfacing ingredients such as AHAs and retinols in addition to restorative peptides so skin is more easily able to repair itself while you sleep.

Consider cost per ounce

While it may seem as if skin care products are a drain on your wallet, it is possible to save. Shop for skin care the way that you shop for food, Hilling says, by looking at the cost per ounce. She also suggests getting more bang for your beauty dollar. "What you'll find is that beauty products from spas and salons are a great bargain as they include complimentary consultations with a licensed aesthetics expert, which you won't receive when buying products at grocery, drug or discount stores," she explains.

Don't buy products based on price

While we're on the subject of money, just because a beauty product is expensive does not mean it's a complexion must-have. On the other hand, a product that costs less may not be a bargain that will work for you. Instead of shopping by price, evaluate the concentration of active ingredients -- one good way to do this is to see if the advertised ingredient(s) are in the top four ingredients listed on the box. If they're not, you might be wasting your money. Also ensure any treatment beauty product has a pH below four, Hilling says. "Human skin ranges from 4.5-5.5 pH and a product should be below the pH level of the skin for maximum penetration. Otherwise, she adds, you might as well be using water.

Watch: How to clean your makeup brushes

Makeup brushes can harbor dirt and bacteria. Watch this video to learn how to properly clean and care for your makeup brushes.

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