Finally Happy With My Skin: My AM/PM Routine

On the third episode of my podcast and on the blog (you know, the thing you are reading), I talk a lot about skincare. But I’ve never gone through my personal routine here. Over the years and even in the past few months, it's changed a lot. But, I’m finally at a place where at least at the moment, I’m really happy with how my skin looks. I’ve also found by using multi-tasking products, I’ve been able to cut down on the number of bottles in my medicine cabinet, but with much better results. 

AM

In the morning, I use Shiseido Pureness Foaming Cleansing Fluid. I’ve started using it in high school and while I’ve tried so many face washes, I really think this my favorite for several reasons. It’s very sudsey and foamy. Unless a product really foams, I never feel like my face is thoroughly clean. I use ¼ to half a pump. Which brings me to the next reason why I like it. It’s cheap. Because the product is so concentrated, every bottle lasts several months. Did I mention my husband also uses it? I can’t imagine how long a bottle would last if I didn't share it.

I always cleanse my face with a Foreo Luna 2. I love this device because it deep cleanses, exfoliates and prevents aging. It’s also one of the most efficient products I own. Because it’s made from silicone, there are no replacement heads. Let’s get real for a second here. Cleansing devices are an investment, but knowing you don’t need replacement heads and you’re only buying this once, makes it smart. It also stays charged forever. I’ve had mine for two years and I think I’ve charged it less than ten times. Because it exfoliates well (but gently), I also don’t need to buy a separate exfoliating product. 

Post cleanse, I use Kopari Coconut Rose Toner. My skin has become a lot more sensitive lately (I’ll explain why in the PM) and most toners burn like a pre cranberry juice UTI. Haven’t we all been there? Like a bad TV special, “After When Animals Attack, stay tuned for When Toner Burns.” Kopari Coconut Rose Toner is alcohol, phthalate and cruelty free. It’s also vegan and non-GMO. I ether use a cotton pad or spritz directly on my face, for a mid-day refresh. It has a mild, natural scent and not like a gas station air freshener, which is often a risk with anything rose or coconut. 

I follow up with Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum, which is kind of like a personal assistant for your face. It firms, lifts, brightens and reduces the appearance of photo aging (aka what happened when I went to Miami, didn’t wear sunscreen and came home with brown spots that stayed for too long like that friend who won’t leave your house at 4:30am). This serum also gives you a glow, which is nice if you are going makeup-free.

Another thing I like about this product is that it stays active on your skin for up to 72 hours, so if I put it on, workout and shower, I know it’s still getting the job done. Sometimes I mix the serum with B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Gel if my skin needs an extra dose of hydration. Both of these products absorb quickly.  

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Finally, I apply StriVectin Intensive Eye Concentrate For Wrinkles. I love this eye cream because it doesn’t just help with wrinkles; it also helps with dark circles and puffiness. Perhaps it should be renamed StriVectin Intensive Eye Concentrate For Wrinkles + All Other Eye Related Problems. Maybe StriVectin needs to hire me to name their products.

PM

My PM routine depends on the night. If I’m wearing makeup, I always remove it with Kopari Coconut Cleansing Oil. This product is life changing. And I rarely say that. In fact, I often make fun of people who use “life changing” to describe anything beauty related. But, if you’ve ever sat there for fifteen minutes, trying to scrape every last bit of makeup off your face, you know the struggle is real. I take a few pumps of oil in my hands, massage it into a dry face for a minute and then rinse off with a hot washcloth. No trace of makeup is left behind. Seriously. Then, I double cleanse K-Beauty style with my Shiseido Cleanser.

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What happens after the PM cleanse is a tossup. I try to use Retin A Micro every other night. It’s a prescription treatment for acne, but has been proven to help with the affects of aging. While any retinol-based works, trust me when I say that a prescription pad is your skin’s best accessory.

This product takes the place of three others I used to need. I've stopped using an additional exfoliator, night serum and tossed my pimple spot treatment.

But beware, Retin A is POWERFUL. It’s drying and has made my skin a million times more sensitive. So, I have to be extra diligent about moisturizing. Luckily I have a not-so-secret weapon.

Sometimes, my skin gets too sensitive and dry even for the gentlest moisturizers and it feels like my face is on fire. Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil is the only product that not only doesn’t hurt my face, but also clears up any sign of irritation overnight. I don’t even know how that is possible, but marula oil works miracles.

Now, I know I’ve mentioned two oils in this post and people with combo skin are probably freaking out. Please don’t. Oil will not make your oil situation worse. In fact, since I’ve committed to using oils, my skin is actually more balanced because my skin has stopped over producing its own oil supply. I know doing this requires a leap of faith, but you need to face your fears for better skin. 

My final step in both the AM and PM, is the same, applying StriVectin Intensive Eye Concentrate For Wrinkles around my eye area. Obvs, not in my eyes because that would be dangerous. Please read all instructions.