Things that have been working for my skin lately
My skin is troublesome most of the time. It is rare for me to have a good skin day, and when I do it is not only great for my self confidence, but it also gives me some relief. Usually I am trying to cover acne or acne scars, moisturize my face enough to smooth down some of the flakiness from acne medicine but not too much so that it’s oily. It is an ever evolving battle.
Though once in a while I have days in which I am happy (well- happier) with the way my skin looks, and I don’t have to leave the house with globs of foundation or the desire to cover my whole face with a large beach hat. If this seems dramatic, maybe it is! But it is the way I feel about my skin and if you have acne, I would doubt that you haven’t felt this way too.
So, about a week ago, after having a LARGE and intense/red breakout all around my chin area during/before my period, and proceeding to get a bit overzealous in my magnifying mirror (which I should absolutely get rid of but cannot), I decided that I need to get serious about making a real skincare routine. Not just certain things that I sometimes do to treat my skin, but an actual skincare regimen that I follow weekly so as to keep it consistent, while of course adding different things in now and then when I feel it necessary.
This came after seeing Byrdie’s instastory of one of their new features, which is essentially different editor’s nighttime routines. Let me just say that I try not to go through insta scroll black holes at night for fear of not falling asleep till midnight (my usual bedtime is around 10 pm if I am lucky) but THIS is something I will stay up for. I watched one of their most recent ones by Aimee Jefferson and it is safe to say that I was completely inspired by her. She has a specific daily routine for her skin and something different happens on each day of the week! Imagine my delight?! I love lists/routines/schedules like no other so this was a dream come true to listen to.
I proceeded to direct message her and asked her to tell me her entire routine. A bit much/stalkery? It’s possible. But hey! I freaking love skincare, want to work for Byrdie so badly, and loved her insta story so much! She was so gracious in answering my questions and describing her routine in depth while asking me about mine. It really made my need to hone my skincare routine to a science even deeper. I also proceeded to immediately buy a dermaroller. What can I say? I am easily marketed to. Did I mention that this amazing woman works out at 5 am each day - another golden nugget that she gifted me. I need to replicate her day to day goings on… I believe she is my idol. This post is getting creepier and creepier.
Ok, I digress.
In an effort to really try and make my regimen specific and consistent, I am considering actually writing/typing it out and putting it up on my wall so I don’t miss steps/forget my routine because of the abundance of steps. I’ll let you know how that goes.
As for items that have been making my skin a bit better than usual:
1. Taking vitamin D. This one is hard to determine as I have begun to incorporate some other products into my routine and I can’t say exactly which has been making the most difference, but anyway, I heard about this initially in a Glowing Up Podcast episode I think? As well as another piece I read recently. I then did some research of my own and turns out that Vitamin D is something that a lot of people are deficient in. Vitamin D cools inflammation, controls insulin response, boosts the immune system, and many other things that make it one of the supplements people are suggested when they have acne troubled skin. I have to say -- I think these people are right! I will keep taking this!
2. Biologique Recherche P50. I know you’ve heard about this before because every blogger/skincare expert/beauty editor in the USA raves about it. It is essentially a toner, but an extra amazing one. Biologique’s website says it best: “P50 balancing exfoliators speed up the epidermis' natural exfoliating process and the reconstruction of the epidermal shield. The fortified epidermis can then fulfill its protective functions completely, enhancing skin's self-regeneration potential. It gently exfoliates the skin, regulates excessive sebum secretion, moisturizes and helps maintain the epidermis' acid pH. It prevents and treats ingrown hairs, and is therefore ideal for pre and post shaving skin care."
This stuff smells very bad. It has horseradish in it and I need to wash my hands after applying it. The wild stinging sensation that people complain about -- I did not experience this and I have been using for about 2 weeks now. I interchange this with my Thayers toner, but this is absolutely making a positive difference in my skin texture, redness and acne.
3. Getting reacquainted with my Clarisonic. I think for a while I was afraid to use this because I heard so many things about it being bad for over exfoliating, it’s bad for acne prone skin, etc. etc. I also think that I was being lazy. Jordan’s routine re inspired me to use it again! Now, she uses hers every single day, and I confirmed with her that she has dry skin. I will not use mine everyday as I think that much exfoliation would not be great for my personal skin type. That being said, I have gotten back into using it several times a week and I have to say -- there is no other clean feeling than that of the one you get after using a Clarisonic.
4. Moisturizer!! You might think to yourself, “Taylor, how are you so obsessed with beauty and skincare and not use a moisturizer?” To that I say: I was nervous that it would make my skin too oily! I have read hundreds of articles touting the benefits of moisturizer for acne prone skin and how even if you have oily skin, you need moisturizer because if you do not use one, your skin will overproduce sebum to combat the dryness, which in turn will make you MORE OILY. Not good, I know. I am no longer scared of using a moisturizer or even an oil (the horror) on my face anymore. So in an attempt to better my skincare routine, I started doing a lot of research on different moisturizers for acne prone skin. I wanted something simple that wouldn’t have too many ingredients, strong fragrance, etc. in it.
To back up a bit, up until this point I have been (inconsistently) using Renee Rouleau’s hydrating gel moisturizer thing, which was good, but I didn’t see it making any sort of difference in my skin and it did not seem to be hydrating enough. So I picked up a couple different moisturizers to try (along with a couple samples from Sephora and Nordstrom) and I have really been liking the one that I have been using: Mario Badescu’s Honey Moisturizer. I love it because it smells soothing like honey, and honey is a great ingredient in acne treatment. It does not have too many ingredients in it, it seeps into my skin nicely while making it moisturized and not oily, and seems to keep my oil at bay throughout the day. I love a lot of Mario Badescu’s products in general so this is not too surprising.
As for the other items/samples I picked up:
La Roche-Posay Effaclar MAT Oil-Free Mattifying Moisturizer. Have yet to try. Got great reviews on Amazon, consumer beauty reports, and dermstore. Simple, drug store friendly.
Sample of Tatcha’s water cream. Have yet to try but it is oil free. Korean beauty, which I love. Fine for acne prone skin and made with rice and other soothing ingredients. When I went to find the link for this I actually discovered that it is quite expensive at $68 a tub.
Sample of Peter Thomas Roth oil free moisturizer. Have only tried on the top of my hand. Seeped into skin very nicely which i loved and has no fragrance which I also loved! This was a bit more expensive but I have various other PTR products which I love, so I am looking forward to trying.
Sample of Dr. Dennis Gross Hyaluronic Moisture Cushion. This one was the most expensive so I only got a sample. $58 is a bit steep for a moisturizer. I will say that i don't mind spending money on skincare that really works for me because, like I said, i have PROBLEM skin. So I will be trying this because I loooove Dr. Dennis Gross’ products and use the peel pads quite a bit. I also really want his Steamer thing but now I am going off on a whole new tangent.
Please let me know what's been working for you ladies lately!