I sometimes get questions about my skincare routine, and I have trouble coming up with a quick, easy answer. I often vary the products I use based on the weather, since my skin gets oilier in the summer and drier in the winter. Plus, I’m still searching for my ideal solution for certain products so I’ll switch it up until I find that perfect product. Still, there are some semi-constants, and I figure it may help satisfy some curiosity! So without further ado:
- Cleanse either with PSF Green Tea Cream Cleanser, a gentle foaming cleanser from a natural brand (I get these as EDS freebies sometimes — currently using up ones from PSF and Juice), or my own emollient oil blend; usually gently exfoliate with a microfiber baby’s washcloth; sometimes Clarisonic.
- Tone with MyChelle Fruit Enzyme Mist or PSF R&R Toner or another natural freebie, currently something by Juice — just spritz on and rub with fingers; no need for cotton balls
- Moisturize with a few drops of homemade emollient facial oil — base can be macadamia, avocado, argan, or occasionally coconut.
- Moisturize eye area (sometimes), currently with Osea Eyes & Lips but I’ve also liked 100% Pure’s caffeine cream.
- Wait 5-10 minutes so everything can absorb a bit, assuming I have time!
- Protect and moisturize with Devita Solar Protection Creme 30; sometimes I use the body version since it’s much cheaper. Sometimes I’ll mix in or just use Burnout in super-sunny or sweaty weather.
- Also in super-sunny or sweaty weather, I’ll dust with my O’Hui sunblock powder or some Peter Thomas Roth powder.
Face (PM) — I’ll list what I WISH I did, because to be truthful, I often skip face washing at night. Which I know is terrible.
- Ideally I would cleanse with one of the above-listed cleansers and toners.
- Then I’d moisturize the eye area with 100% Pure Caffeine Coffee Bean Eye Cream or Osea Eyes & Lips
- Then I’d wait AT LEAST 30 min. for everything to absorb and for my skin to be totally dry, per Retin-A instructions
- Then I’d mix a few drops of emollient facial oil blended with a pea-sized dab of Retin-A (micro-gel, 0.4% is what I like, cream 0.5% is what I currently use) and apply evenly over face and neck, including the eye and lip areas because I’m crazy like that.
- Sometimes instead of Retin-A I’d take a break from it, and instead dab Osea Essential Corrective Complex, PSF Acne Treatment Mud or my own essential oil blend onto individual blemishes/problem areas.
- I scrub once or twice a week with either Naturderm EpidermxII or MyChelle Fruit Enzyme Scrub or Best Bath Store Dead Sea Facial Scrub, but when I run out I just stick with with microfiber washcloths and my Clarisonic. And also, the fantastically weird rubber scrubber thingies I got in Japan.
- I don’t usually do treatment masks, but that may change. I like to mix my own masks, usually. I’ll use bentonite clay and essential oils, usually lavender, and I’ll often add a bit of honey. But I find my skin isn’t crazy about masks and I don’t have loads of time or patience for them or their cost, so this is pretty rare for me.
- When I have some, I occasionally dab on Juice Beauty’s Green Apple Peel, but I think I’ve decided that I’m not really a fan of chemical peel products, and that I prefer a gentle microfiber rub to exfoliate. I’ve also used the occasional Diana Yvonne AHA gel, but again, my skin isn’t wild about it.
- Lately, I’m using Shi Kai bath gel, which is meh but is sold at many stores near me. I’ve also used 100% Pure shower gels in various scents, and loooved them.
- I always scrub with those drugstore spa/shower scrubby gloves, and that’s a better exfoliation job than any grainy scrub on the market, in my opinion. Cheaper, too! The waffle textured ones are the best.
- I’ve been shaving with either my bath gel or my own blend of oil (mostly soybean and avocado), and I sometimes combine it with some Juice Beauty Green Apple Peel to help exfoliate dead skin.
- I usually moisturize with an oil blend, mostly macadamia and avocado. I do this right after showering, or even while I’m still in the shower, to lock in moisture. I also sometimes use 100% Pure lotion, or just pure coconut oil.
- My feet get Burt’s Bees Coconut Foot Creme or MyChelle Barefoot Treatment. I much prefer the former. But I’m starting to hate the company, so I may make my own soon (with salicylic acid to slough dead skin and cuticles). My poor feet are desperately in need of TLC lately. I also use a callous shaver sometimes on my heels. Eep, but it works.
- Cuticles get Burt’s Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream or my own cuticle oil blend, but sometimes my whole hand (including cuticles) gets this Surfer Salve a friend gave me, which has comfrey, chamomile and lavender to heal and soothe.
- Lately I’ve been Ojon Funk Butter after shaving, and just Degree or Secret or whatever on normal days. I’ll probably switch back to making my own when I get pregnant someday, but for now the effective stuff takes the cake.
- I’m straightening my hair a lot lately, so I’m using a much less natural routine since I have to load up on silicones to protect the hair shaft from high heat.
- My default shampoo/conditioner set is Redken All Soft, which my coarse hair loves, but which my finicky scalp doesn’t like so much. When my scalp acts up I switch to Pure and Basic’s dandruff shampoo, or sometimes I steal Grant’s Head and Shoulders. I usually use that chance to try out a different conditioner then too, but I get enough samples/random bottles and gifts that I haven’t purposefully shopped for an alternate conditioner in ages. In a perfect world, with a perfect salary, my alt conditioner would always be John Masters Organics’ Honey Hibiscus Reconstructor. Smells like paradise, if it were inhabited by bees. I also sometimes use a prescription dandruff shampoo because it lets my scalp tolerate the Redken for longer stretches. And sometimes (rarely) I’ll do conditioner-only washing with no shampoo — but I still haven’t found a perfect formulation for that.
- Styling products are a mix — sometimes a silicone like Paul Mitchell The Super Skinny Serum or Moroccanoil or Aveda’s blue tube straightening glossing whatnot, sometimes blended with a Kiehl’s leave-in conditioner or a L’Oréal leave in conditioner or the Moroccanoil styling cream that feels more like a leave-in conditioner, and sometimes not. I’ve also taken to using a dab of Frederik Fekkai Glossing Creme, or a spritz or two of Frederik Fekkai Glossing Sheer Shine Mist or a dab of Kevin Murphy Easy Rider styling cream. When I had bangs, I relied on Bumble and Bumble Hair Powder in Blondish, and on days of unwash I use Lulu NYC or Cake Beauty hair powder. I also have samples/trial sizes of Oscar Blandi and Alterna powders that I’ve liked OK, but Lulu is my fave (no surprise there).
- My fave hairbrush is my Mason Pearson Nylon and Boar Bristle brush, in Pocket size. (I got mine on eBay for way cheaper than normal retail.) I also have a cheap but nice wooden paddle brush from Sephora, and I sometimes keep a drugstore brush on hand for use on powdered hair since it’ll get gunked up faster.
- My makeup brushes are mostly Too Faced — their Teddy Bear Hair is just the softest, loveliest synthetic hair. I also have a couple from Sephora and Japonesque and Sonia Kashuk, but the Too Faced are the nicest, especially for big fluffy brushes like the Baby Buki or the powder/blush brush. I also got lots of cheapo ones from a Lumiere sale, and I have a few from EcoTools which is a decent drugstore brand. I prefer the feel of synthetic brushes.
- My tweezers are Anastasia of Beverly Hills. I can’t stand using any other kind after getting used to these ones!