Stripped back: A 5-piece skincare routineWednesday, April 13, 2016
No toners, no masks, no mists, no scrubs, no serums, no oils...
THE BACK STORY:
THE BACK STORY:
Trust me, I've been there; I've been the girl with a skincare wishlist as long as my arm, spending every available minute in SpaceNK or on the Cult Beauty website lusting over new additions to add to my stash. At one point I even lost most of my interest for new makeup and was on a full blown skincare high - it was all about which cleanser was all the rage or which face oil I just had to try. I spent more money that I had ever imagined possible a few years earlier on lotions, potions, and all things 'life-changing'. It was all quite exhausting - a constant search for the 'one' when really that perfect skincare routine never really existed, always being shifted and updated every time something else tickled my fancy.
Looking back, my skin never really benefited from any of it. It didn't really deteriorate either, but hundreds of pounds worth of 'goo' (for lack of a better word!) was being generously applied day and night for months without really achieving anything. Then, towards the end of my university career, I decided that I was sick of all of this money and effort going towards a routine that wasn't working. I finally snapped - I was right before my graduation ceremony and I was sick of not having clearer skin like I felt I deserved after all of the time and effort I had been spending on my face. My skin wasn't bad, but I felt like I was still dealing with a teenager's skin as a 21-year old rather than calmer, clearer skin like most of my friends had (some of who even used soap in the shower to wash their face, much to my horror!) I ended up crying down the phone to my mum one day, and she suggested that I go for an appointment at the place where she gets her skin checked and often pampered. An appointment was booked, and as they say, the rest was history (you can read more about what happened here).
MY UPDATED SKINCARE ROUTINE:
DAY: cleanser + day moisturiser
NIGHT: makeup remover + cleanser + spot treatment/night moisturiser
An oldie but a goodie from The Body Shop. This is the only part of my routine that wasn't 'prescribed', but it's a product that I remain faithful to because it really is the best eye/lip makeup remover that I've come across. As suggested, I only use this around my eyes and on my lips when needed, as to not interfere with the rest of my face, and it's never caused me any problems.
This is the second cleanser that I've tried out since switching routines, and it's been the best for me. The salicylic acid helps to dry out any oily skin and chemically exfoliates my face at the same time so that I am left with a well-balanced, exfoliated and happy skin! Not to mention, the menthol used in the formula is really soothing on the skin and helps to calm any irritated areas.
Tretinoin has been a life saver for me throughout this process, and I'm sure that I wouldn't be where I am right now without its help. I was started off with a weaker strength (0.025) but have since bumped up to 0.05 to help with the more stubborn spots and scarring. The retinoic acid in it has helped to even out the texture of my skin immensely, as well as promote the fading of some of my more noticeable scarring.
This moisturiser is completely different to anything that I would've used before I started this entire process (oil-free??) but I guess that's how wrong I was doing before! I mentioned my oily/dry skin dilemma in this post, and this moisturiser manages to control any oily zones and hydrate any drier zones, all whilst providing a great level of SPF, and smelling great!
If I'm honest, I use this moisturiser more than I've been recommended to - oops! I'm only supposed to use it every so often if the cleanser and tretinoin have dried out my skin too much, but I usually end up using it ever 2/3 days. Like I said, my routine can be pretty drying, so some nights I need to give my skin a nice bit of moisture so that my skin doesn't look too dry the next day. It's pretty touch and go, though - sometimes my skin is fine without using it for a week, and sometimes I have to use it three nights in a row, there are just so many factors that can end up affecting it!
Could you be using too many products in your daily skin care routine? Have you ever tried simplifying things a bit? I'd love to hear your thoughts!