How Paula’s Choice Essential Skincare Routines Work

For the fast-paced lifestyle of any modern woman in Singapore and Southeast Asia, the convenience and efficiency of skincare are extremely crucial. At Paula’s Choice, we fully understand that, hence we came up with the Essential Routines that take care of your skin and help keep it in top condition with three easy steps, from morning to night.

Essential vs. Advanceda

Simply put, the Essential Routine is a simplified skincare routine that addresses the skin’s core needs, such as keeping it healthy, smooth, and well-protected. Comparatively, the Advanced Routine includes a broader combination of products to target more complex needs with higher intensities.


Removes makeup, oil, and other debris to give skin a clean start so the rest of your skincare routine can work as effectively as possible.


Improves the appearance of dull, rough, flaky skin, uneven tone, clogged pores, and signs of aging. Works synergistically with your moisturizer to improve the look of ageing skin.


Provides broad-spectrum sun protection targeted to your skin type, a critical anti-aging product that prevents premature aging of the skin.




Delivers nourishing hydration and key nutrients that improve skin over the long haul.



Which Essential Kit is Right for You?


RESIST Anti-Aging Essential Kit for Wrinkles + Sun Damage

For | Normal to Dry Skin

Replenishes moisture to combat dryness while refining the appearance of wrinkles and skin tone for younger, more revitalised skin.

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RESIST Anti-Aging Essential Kit for Wrinkles + Breakouts 

For | Normal to Oily Skin

This skincare series works to improve the appearance of wrinkles, pore size, skin texture, and hydration for an even-toned, smoother complexion. 

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For | Normal to Dry Skin 

Hydrates skin, creating a smoother, visibly younger-looking complexion.

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For | Normal to Oily, Combination Skin

Minimise shine, shrink the appearance of enlarged pores, and create a brighter, healthier-looking complexion.

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3. What About Additional Skin Concerns?

With the basics covered, the Essential Skincare Routine can easily be enhanced if you want to address a specific concern. All of our products are designed in order to work synergistically within a routine. For example:


Hyaluronic Acid Booster

For | All Skin Types

Combine with your moisturizer for plumper-looking skin.

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1% Retinol Booster

For | All Skin Types

To supercharge the anti-aging fight against wrinkles and boost the effects of other products.

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Dive Deeper

Here at Paula’s Choice Skincare, an Essential Skincare Routine consists of three steps, each designed to treat the core needs of any skin type—the absolute minimum your skin needs to keep it healthy, smooth, and protected, day and night. This approach is all about streamlining and simplicity.

What is an Essential Skincare Routine?

Essential Skincare Routines are ideal for those with minimal skin concerns or for those who just prefer using the least number of products possible. Regardless of your skin type, your Essential Skincare Routine will include a cleanser, exfoliant, sunscreen for daytime, and a nighttime moisturizer. These core products meet all the basic needs of your skin; anything less and you would be hurting the health and appearance of your skin in the short term and long term.

How an Essential Skincare Routine Differs from an Advanced Skincare Routine

Our Advanced Skincare Routines go beyond the Essential Routines. They include a skin-replenishing toner, an antioxidant-packed anti-ageing serum, and an additional, more potent alpha hydroxy acid(AHA) or beta hydroxy acid (BHA) leave-on exfoliant formulated for use at least once per week. This combination of products addresses skin types and concerns such as enlarged pores, uneven skin tone, the appearance of wrinkles, dull, dehydrated skin, and other advanced signs of aging.

Keep in mind that you can start with an Essential Skincare Routine and see how your skin responds before deciding if an Advanced Routine will better serve your needs. Some of our customers will eventually choose to add a Targeted Solution product to their Essential Routines if they have only one additional concern, such as dullness. This can be an easy way to ramp up your Essential Skincare Routine without adding products excessively.

To sum up, think of the Essential Skincare Routine as the main course and the Advanced Skincare Routine as the luxurious addition of an appetiser and dessert for a more inclusive "meal" when your skin "hungers" for more!

Your Essential Skincare Routine Step-by-Step

Once you have determined the Essential Skincare Routine that is most suitable for you, here’s how the products in the order of every step work:

Step 1: Cleanser

A gentle, water-soluble cleanser is essential for all skin types and is an important start to your AM and PM skincare routine. Those with normal to oily or combination skin will want to use lightweight foaming or gel cleanser that leaves the skin feeling refreshed without a dry or tight sensation.

In order to effectively cleanse the skin while leaving it soft and revitalised with no dryness or tight feeling, it is recommended that people with normal to dry or very dry skin use a more emollient, creamy cleanser.

Paula’s Choice cleansers do all of that and more, capable of removing makeup and the traces of city pollution or sweat without exposing skin to sensitising fragrance ingredients.

Step 2: A Leave-On AHA or BHA Exfoliant

This step is unique to Paula’s Choice and needs a bit more explanation—especially if you’re used to using face scrubs.

An AHA or BHA exfoliant has multiple benefits for skin that go beyond what any scrub or stiff-bristled cleaning brush can offer. Scrubs and rough cleansing brushes cause micro-tears in the skin, and that ongoing damage is not healthy for the skin.

On the other hand, well-formulated AHA and BHA leave-on exfoliants help skin gently, imperceptibly, and naturally shed skin just like it did when we were younger. These types of exfoliants help remove the buildup of dead surface skin, which contributes to dull, rough, flaky skin, uneven skin tone, clogged pores, and signs of aging. AHA or BHA exfoliants are truly multi-tasking skincare heroes that are the game-changing part of your Essential Skincare Routine.

In terms of how often to apply your exfoliant, many find that the best results come from applying the AHA or BHA twice daily, morning and night, while others find once a day at night is all they need. In order to determine what works best for you, experiment with the frequency of application and keep track of the results.

Wondering whether to incorporate an AHA or BHA exfoliant into your skincare routine? Let us first arm you with sufficient knowledge on their benefits in this helpful blog on how to exfoliate your skin.

Step 3: The Daytime (AM) or Nighttime (PM) Moisturizer

For daytime, your moisturizer must contain a broad-spectrum sunscreen rated SPF 30 or greater, something your nighttime formula doesn’t need, which is why they are different. However, both should contain a comprehensive mix of anti-aging antioxidants, skin-replenishing ingredients, and skin-restoring ingredients. These fundamental critical ingredients found in every Paula’s Choice Skincare moisturizer work to intervene and interrupt environmental damage, improve the appearance of signs of ageing and uneven skin tone, soften and alleviate dry skin, calm redness, and enhance your skin’s radiance and feeling of firmness.

Choose your daytime and nighttime moisturizer based on your skin type. If you have normal to oily or combination skin, select from our lighter, weightless gel, sheer lotion, or fluid-textured products; if you have normal to dry or very dry skin, one of our enriched lotions or creams would be best.

Is a Three-Step Routine All You Need?

Paula’s Choice Essential Skincare Routine focuses on meeting the basic needs of a particular skin type, ensuring that it’s protected from ongoing damage. Each routine also provides restorative benefits to help skin stay healthy-looking as well as look and feel remarkably younger.

However, as we mentioned above, any Essential Skincare Routine won’t be enough to address more complex or stubborn skin concerns many people struggle with. If you have advanced sun damage from unprotected sun exposure, breakouts, clogged or enlarged pores, more noticeable signs of aging, or persistent dry skin, among other concerns, our Essential Skincare Routine won’t be enough.

In order to properly manage concerns such as those, you’ll need to consider adding a skin-replenishing toner, one or more of our boosters, or serums and treatments. Other steps that may be helpful to your skincare routine may include using a higher concentration AHA or BHA exfoliant once a week, trying out skincare-infused makeup remover for stubborn makeup, or investing in more potent skin-brightening products.

As your skin changes with time and other environmental factors, keepan open mind and experiment with products from trusted brands. Let Paula’s Choice Singapore help you achieve the skin of your dreams.

Curious about our products? Drop by any of our retail store outlets to see them for yourselves.

Still have questions? Reach out to us or continue reading our blogs.

References for This Information

Science, February 2015, issue 6224, pages 842-847
Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, July 2006, issue 1, pages 1-19 and June 2005, Issue 6, pages 959-962
Journal of Investigative Dermatology, December 2010, issue 12, pages 2719-2726
Clinical Cosmetic Investigational Dermatology, November 2010, issue 3, pages 135-142
Clinical Dermatology, September-October 2009, issue 5, pages 495-501