The foundation of beautiful skin starts with skincare. Today I wanted to share with you what I am currently using. I have some items that are considered my everyday staples, however, in my quest to find the most effective items for my skin type, I will often sample products to test its efficacy. I took an interest in taking care of my skin during my teenage years and the products I've used over the years have evolved as my knowledge and understanding of skincare has grown.
Now that I am older and a little bit more wiser, I look for products that will help to not only prevent premature aging but to keep my skin feeling hydrated and nourished. There are several lifestyle and environmental factors that can wreak havoc on your skin, such as stress and free radicals, so establishing a good skincare routine is very important. It's a worthwhile investment that I feel will yield positive results in the long run. These are the products I'm currently using by category. I am not an esthetician nor am I a skincare expert. Please keep in mind that what may work well for me, may not work for you. For reference, my skin type is rather normal. Occasionally, I will experience some dryness and the displeasure of a breakout or two. Fortunately, my skin is rather blemish free and I can attribute this to the years that I've spent caring for my skin.
Fresh Soy Cleanser - I use this cleanser day and night. I have tried other cleansers but I keep going back to this one and for good reason. It gently cleanses my skin and does not strip it dry. I can even use it gently around the eye area without any irritation. According the the product description, it contains soy ingredients and is rich in amino acids that support moisture retention. It also contains rosewater to balance and tone the skin. My introduction to this line started years ago with with the inclusion of this product in the limited edition Cherry Blossom Clarisonic Plus Set that I purchased from Sephora. I'm currently using it with the Cashmere Cleanse Luxury Face Brush Head, which feels so luxe, soft and amazing on my skin. The Clarisonic cleanses your skin 6x more effectively than washing with your hands manually. Better cleansing=better absorption of skincare products. I only use the Clarisonic in the evenings to give my skin a deep clean and I don't use it every single night. There are days when I'm tired and I will skip this process for a simpler wash so I can get to bed.
Kate Somerville's Exfolikate Intensive Exfoliating Treament - I use this about once a week. It is very easy to use and I love the tingly fragrant cinnamon scent. After washing my face, I put a thin layer of it onto my face and let it sit for about a minute before gently wiping it clean. I notice that my skin feels brighter and smoother after one use. The original 2oz. size is priced at $85, however there also exists a 0.5 oz size for a fraction of the price at $22.
Dr. Jart's Dermaclear Micro Water- I recently received a deluxe sized sample of this item in The Great Cleanse set that I purchased at Sephora inside JC Penney. After trying it, I had to have the the full size. It removes traces of anything that I might have left behind. I have also used this to wipe away my eye makeup and heavy lip stains, and it works amazingly well! Here is a description of the product via Sephora's website: "Dermaclear Micro Water is made with 85 percent active hydrogen mineral water instead of refined water and is formulated with 90 percent natural ingredients. This unique formula allows it to remove all impurities, makeup, and even mascara without irritation while it provides nutrients and superior moisturizing." I think this will remain one of my skincare staples. I use my favorite cotton pads from Shiseido to gently wipe away any traces of dirt, grime and makeup left behind.
Ole Henrikson Truth Serum Vitamin C Collagen Booster I use this serum during the day after cleansing and before putting on my moisturizer. It contains Vitamin C which helps to lighten, brighten and tighten the skin. It has a very fresh citrus scent and I've noticed that my skin feels more radiant, even underneath my makeup. I'm often complimented that my skin glows and in part, it is because of this serum. The first time I used it, I almost dismissed it because it can feel a bit sticky when it settles onto your skin. Just give it a few minutes before putting on your moisturizer and it should feel fine.
SK II Facial Treatment Essence This product is well known as a "miracle water or holy water" in the East. It's also known for comprising of 90% Pitera, which it claims is the main ingredient for helping to promote a healthy skin cell renewal cycle. It is pretty pricey, so I decided I would wait to purchase the product when Sephora had one of their VIB 20% off appreciation sales. A couple of years ago, I initially purchased the SK II Pitera Essence Set to give it go. I was a little skeptical about how well this facial treatment could perform and my initial misgivings were put to rest as I started to notice that my skin was not only brighter but had more clarity. I use this product only at night as I use the Ole Henrikson Truth Serum during the day. After finishing the bottle included in the set, I continued to re-purchase the treatment essence. This is what I consider to also be one of my skincare staples.
Day: Fresh's Lotus Youth Preserve Cream I can't begin to tell you how often I have purchased this cream. My Sephora purchase history is a testament to how much I love and use this product. It is a very lightweight moisturizer that helps to keep my skin hydrated during the day. I spend a large amount of time in the classroom since I work primarily as an educator, and my skin has definitely benefitted from its hydrating properties.
Here is a description of the product via Sephora's website: "The Lotus Youth Preserve Face Cream is a lightweight, daily age-defying moisturizer for all skin types proven to minimize and prevent signs of aging, deliver intense hydration, and improve elasticity. It is formulated with Fresh’s proprietary Super 7 Complex—an age-defying, hydrating, and radiance-boosting blend of seven super-charged ingredients to defend against wrinkles, preserve collagen, promote the production of hyaluronic acid, seal in moisture, and soften the skin."
My skin not only feels nourished, it also feels soft and supple. I would recommend this product for those of you looking for a lightweight, everyday moisturizer that not only delivers hydration, but so much more.
I wrote about the importance of including sunscreen in your everyday skincare routine in my very first blog post that you can find here. After applying my moisturizer, I work a little bit of this moisturizer onto my face. This is my current go to moisturizer that I have been reaching for often this summer. It provides broad spectrum protection from the sun's harmful UVA and UVB rays. Sun exposure is the number one cause of premature aging, so I always work sunscreen into my daily routine. I have also used primers infused with SPF as a substitute in the past such as Hourglass's Veil Mineral Primer when I've been pressed for time.
Night: La Mer's Moisturizing Cream
During the evenings, I lather on a thicker cream to treat my skin as I sleep. It allows my skin to treat any of the environmental havoc that was caused during the day. For a deeper treatment, I use La Mer's Moisturizing Cream. I take a small scoop of the product, warm it up between my palms, and gently pat it all over as the last step before going to bed. Upon waking up, my skin feels nourished, revitalized and smooth. My skin feels replenished and I have really come to love using this product. I tried several samples of this product before I committed to purchasing it, since it is quite pricey. It has been worth the investment!
Eye Cream: Shiseido Benefiance Contour Eye Cream I have been concerned with developing crow's feet, so I have been religiously applying eye cream both day and night. The first signs of aging appear in the delicate eye area. I try to get at least 7 hours of sleep at night, but the demands of work and grad school has taken a toll. I take a small amount product and use my pinky finger to gently press the eye cream around my orbital bone and up to my brow bone in a circular motion. So far, it has helped me to smooth out the eye area and has also provided hydration. This is a preventative measure that I hope can help to slow down the process of aging and increase my skin's elasticity.
I use masks once or twice a week depending on my skincare needs. It helps to provide more targeted treatment for my skin and will give me a boost when I need it most. I will write a more detailed post on the masks I use at a later time. These are the masks I currently have in rotation:
In addition to the products referenced above, I try to get 8 hours of sleep, drink plenty of water and maintain a healthy diet and exercise regimen for my overall well being and optimal health. I would love to hear your recommendations. Thank you for reading.