Happy Monday, everyone! It has been quite a while since I’ve posted but I’m here and I am ready to share!
So, since my last post I’ve done the following: graduated from my MBA program (the major reason for my hiatus), slept (A LOT), and tried a butt ton of products.
During this time I’ve really tried to isolate some of my favorite products to share and you know what, it was hard to choose. You see, all of my “rave worthy” products (at the moment) happen to be involved in my daily skin care routine.
If you live in New England (or any place where seasonal changes are noticeable), you’ve probably noticed that temps have DROPPED. We’re no longer basking in the summer sun & swimming in humidity – this can be problematic for the skin (obvs).
It’s like, as soon as you get to a good place with your skin, BAM! It’s cold all of a sudden. Fortunately, for us living in the quadra-season areas (let’s be real in New England its like summer then winter), one thing is for sure; winter is coming and it’s going to be here a while. So here are some products I’ve been working into my day to help ease my skin through this transition.
I must note that these recommendations are based solely on my experience as a woman with hormonal/ borderline cystic acne, with combo skin. So if you identify on some level with the problems that come along with this skin type, or if you’re curious, read on….
Over the last couple of months I’ve really been feeling everything Dermologica. This brand was birthed from the idea that skin care should really revolve around overall health of the skin. Having been created by accredited esthetician Jane Wurwand (of the UK, fancy), Jane knew of the harms that chemicals and common irritants in products that have led users unfulfilled. This is definitely something I can jive with – I am someone who is more concerned with the quality and overall health of my skin versus just looking good in the short term (how righteous of me, amiritght? Eye roll). I’m not here to preach, if you’re interested in learning more about the brand and its mission check out their site, here.
Ok, so what am I using? Since my skin can be oily AF (woo combo skin!), I’ve incorporated the Dermologica Pre-Cleanse oil as STEP ONE. Now, this may seem counterintuitive, to slather oil all over your face when it feels oily, but trust me. The purpose of the oil pre-cleanse is to prep your skin for your cleanser. The oils in the pre-cleanse work to help effectively remove makeup and excel oil from the skin that would otherwise get worked into your pores during the cleansing process. In addition to effectively removing the yucky stuff from your visage, the oils also provide your skin with a dosage of fatty acids that act as a nourishing agent. Also, it feels pretty damn good when you’re massaging your face. After about a minute, I take a warm/ damp face cloth and press it to the skin and lightly remove the oil (in a soft/ patting motion).
In STEP TWO, I ‘ve begun using Dermologica’s Microfoliant cleanser. I have always had my reservations with daily exfoliates because excessive cell turn over of the skin can cause break outs or overly dry skin, but this product proved to be something different. YES it is a daily exfoliate BUT it is ULTRA fine – it looks like baby powder (consistency). Oh wait, did I tell you this was a powder cleanser??? WHAT?! Okay, lets take a step back. Unlike any other cleanser I’ve used, this product comes in a powder form. Usually I pour out about a quarter size od powder and add a few drops of water to activate before applying to my face. I was on the fence at first but now its kind of fun for me. I could go on and on about the ingredients, but since I’m not in it to bore you I’ll just highlight the import ones. So the Microfoliant is a rice based powder that gently removes dead skin cells and promotes cell turnover. Included in this rice blend is Green Tea Extract, Ginko and Oatmeal to cleanse, purify and brighten skin. I usually massage my paste concoction for about a minute then rinse.
STEP THREE is not super exciting but essential. After cleansing, I apply Thayer’s Witch Hazel to a cotton pad and apply to my face. What I love about this product is that it’s effective and SIMPLE. It’s an alcohol free toner that cleanses, tones, and soothes the skin. In the past, I haven’t been a “toner” girl, but after a month of using this product, I don’t think I could go back. My pores are visibly tighter and it really has helped calm my skin after steps one and two.
Remember how I told you I have bouts of cystic acne? Well this is where STEPS FOUR and FIVE come in. I’ve been using Sunday Riley’s U.F.O Oil and Tidal Enzyme Water Cream together and BOY HAVE I BEEN WOKE. Okay, let break it down. So after toning, I apply 1-2 drops of the U.F.O Oil to all the points of my face (forehead, cheeks, nose, chin). Then I gently massage the oils into my skin. What makes the U.F.O Oil so great is the purpose of it – it’s a clarifying face oil that helps reduce breakouts for adults – HAZZAH! This little beaut has a healthy dose of Salicylic Acid (to fight acne and clear congested pores), Tea Tree Oil (to clarify), and Licorice Root (to help brighten the skin and reduce dark spots). Lets just say I’m obsessed.
Once I’ve applied the UFO Oil I take a pea-sized amount of the Sunday Riley Tidal Enzyme Water Cream (approved by @ladyyjo of @UnderTheSkinfluence) and apply it on top of the oil. In previous years, I’ve shied away from face creams. I thought that the additional weight had been contributing to my oiliness – but little did I know my skin was severely under hydrated! Woops. Incase you didn’t know, your skin produces excess sebum (gross), which can lead to an oily complexion, breakouts, and persistent blackheads. As I was saying, I apply a pea-sized amount of this little miracle and work it into the skin. Since this cream is water based, it is not heavy and provides your skin with the nourishment it thirsts for. Tidal is also a key player in reducing fine lines, plumping skin, and reducing dark spots – you’re welcome!
And voila, we’re done. I typically perform this routine in the AM before applying any makeup and at night. I must note that this is not a cure all, it is just a routine I’ve developed and has worked for me, and skin types like mine, the last couple months of transitional weather. As you can see from the pictures, above, my skin is not perfect, blemish free, or without scarring. What I can say, is that it has dramatically changed, for the better, and I am feeling more confident in my skin. IS that what it’s all about, confidence? Worst case scenario, there is always the Flower Crown Snapchat filter(snapchat: samantharei89).
Let me know what you thought of the review or if you have tried any of the products. I’m eager to hear what you have to say and I am so happy to be back.
- XO, Sam