Sunday, 8 March 2015

The Skincare Routine

The Introduction
Let's just put it out there - I bow down to Caroline Hirons for my improved skin and skincare knowledge. I was going through a pretty rough patch skin wise when I stumbled across Caroline's post on Perioral Dermatitis.  I'm only self diagnosing here but this seemed to describe exactly what was wrong with my skin and so I was immediately interested in her blog.

I also saw her 'Cheat Sheet' on skincare routines which was incredibly helpful. When I wanted to move my skincare past the basic stages of cleanse, tone and moisturise, the cheat sheet helped me decide what types of products I needed to add into my routine and what order to use them in. Since then I've seen a huge improvement in the condition of my skin.

The order of my skincare routine is pretty much the order in the post below. Plus I don't currently have separate am and pm routines as I use a lot of the products morning and night. Oh and in case you're wondering I have sensitive, combination skin.

 The Cleansers
Lancome Galatee Confort Cleansing Milk- £36 (400ml)
I use this as my morning cleanser and a second cleanser in the evening. Not great from taking off make up but particularly good at cleansing bare skin and leaving it super soft. Directions say to remove this with a tissue but I prefer to use warm water and a muslin cloth to remove any residue.
This was a very generous gift from my mum along with the Lancome toner below!

I use this oil in the evening as a make-up remover (i.e. before using my Lancome cleanser) or if I just want to give my skin a deeper clean. It's incredible at breaking down make-up, particularly eye make-up. Directions say to emulsify the oil with water but I find using a damp muslin cloth is a much better method for riding the skin completely of make-up. This is one of the steps I added after reading Caroline's cheat sheet!

The Toners 
Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Exfoliating Facial Pads - £12.99
I was a little nervous at the prospect of a chemical toner - images always sprang to mind of people's skin after a chemical peel. However, these don't irritate my sensitive skin at all. I'm pretty sure this product is geared towards older skin but I don't have any problems with it. It strips my skin back (not in a bad way), refreshes, resurfaces and tightens. Bonus - it completely dries out any blemishes.

Lancome Tonique Confort - £36 (400ml)
I use this as a 'moisturising' toner after using the exfoliating pads (I use both toners morning and night). I was also sceptical about this toner as I'd previously been using a spritz rose water toner from Lush. This is much more of a milk consistency which requires pouring it onto a cotton pad (bit of a fuss) but it's super moisturising. This actually feels very cooling and I find it really soothes and calms my skin. If you find the Lancome cleanser and toner are both to your liking, then definitely purchase the duo here which is £43 instead of £72 if bought individually.

The Eye Treatments
Boots Vitamin E Gentle Eye Cream - £2.54
At the age of 23, I don't feel it's quite the time to start investing money I don't have in expensive eye creams. This one is nothing special but it does the job. I particularly like using a eye cream  in the evening to allow it soak in over night. I use a small dot before my serum and use my ring fingers to pat it in.

Simple Kind to Eyes Revitalising Eye Roll-On - £5.49
Again, a pretty inexpensive eye product here - this time for mornings. This one has a metal roller ball and a gel type formula which is extremely cooling and brightening around the eyes. My eyes don't really get puffy in the morning but it's just a nice sensation to wake up the eyes with!

The Serum
I had to do some research into what serums actually did to justify needing one (note - Nip+Fab say it has smaller molecules than a moisturiser so it can penetrate deeper into the skin). When using this I notice a considerable difference in how plump and firm my skin is, and I find it also reduces the frown line I have on my forehead (note to self - stop resting bitch face). I found this slightly difficult to work with at first as it dries quickly. However, I've gotten used to it and find if I dot the product about my face and then smooth it out this works fine.  

 The Moisturisers 
This is the moisturiser I've been using as my morning moisturiser. It's a thick consistency which I find odd for a day moisturiser but it's lightweight and sinks into the skin very quickly. It's easy to put make-up on immediately after and almost acts like a primer once it's sunk into the skin.  Only problem I have with this is the packaging - the word 'hygiene' springs to mind when I have to dip my finger into the pot. 

I've been using this as my evening moisturiser. Nothing particular to report about - it's inexpensive, does the job and sinks into the skin well. However. I have noticed that this moisturiser can sometimes 'roll off' my skin, although I'm not sure if this is the moisturiser itself as I've heard serums can make this happen. 

Passed down from my mum who purchased this in a French pharmacy (i.e. not so easy to get your hands on). The smallest amount of cream comes out of the pump but a little definitely goes a long way. I particularly liked using this when I was having bad skin flare ups to combat flakiness but it's also good for sore skin e.g. when you have a cold. Not something I reach for every day, perhaps more a winter product, but definitely good at delivering a intense shot of moisturise to severely dry skin. 

The Extras

Lush Mint Julips Lip Scrub - £5.50
I have extremely dry lips but also happen to love matt lipsticks so a lip scrub is something I need use daily. I like to use this after cleansing so I can wipe any extra scrub off with my toner. Although, you hardly need to wipe it off as it's so natural (literally castor sugar and oils) that you lick it off after your done. This particular one tastes like mint chocolate (they also do bubblegum and popcorn flavours).

Lush Mask of Magnaminty - £9.75 (315g)
I recently used up Lush's Catastrophe Cosmetic and bought Mask of Magnaminty in it's place but I am yet to use it so unfortunately can't comment on it's effectiveness. Lush staff told me this is a great mask for 'sucking' things out of the skin which is great as my skin had been feeling particularly congested at the moment. Plus it contains evening primrose seeds and ground aduki beans which act as a scrub when you're removing the mask.

Apologises for the length of this post - I've really been getting into skincare recently!
Do you have any holy grail skincare products? Let me know in the comments!


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