My Personal Skincare Routine
As a self confessed skincare and beauty lover, I've tried all kinds of routines and products from the 10 step Korean daily routine to washing with just water. I've also realized that skin can change instantly and as it's a living breathing organ it makes sense that it should react to our environment, diet and emotions.
What I've learned is that you don't need to use expensive products, nor do you need to follow 10 steps and that the only steps you really need to follow is this, and remember never use soap on your face:
1. Cleanse (morning and night and you don't need to use a cleanser in the morning)
2. Exfoliate (once a day if using a mild acid, once a week if using a stronger once, twice a month if using an acid exfoliating mask)
3. Moisturize (you can moisturize multiple times and with different products. For example, layer oil under serum, then layer a cream over the top - the rule of thumb is to start with the thinnest texture and finish with the thickest)
Cleansers: I use my Supernatural Oil as a gentle cleanser. Just massage one or two drops of oil onto dry skin and wipe gently with a hot face cloth. If I'm in need to taking off make up I use coconut oil and rub this onto my skin and eyes. I use a hot wet cloth to take off.
I used to use foaming cleansers when I was younger however, as I get older my skin is getting dryer and foaming cleansers tend to contain soap, which strips the skin off the protective outer layer of sebum (oil). This can lead to oily skin becoming more oily, and sensitive/ dry skin becomes more so.
I've tried the double cleanse too and it's pretty good if you have a lot of makeup or waterproof sunscreen on your face. Start with an oil based cleanser such as my Supernatural Oil, then finish with a water based cleanser such as micellar water.
Exfoliators: There are so many advanced exfoliators available on the market that there really is no need to use scrubs that contain microbeads (terrible for the environment and is now banned in many countries) or other natural abrasives like walnut shell. Anything abrasive will cause mirco tears in your skin and strip fresh cells off as well as old cells.
The best exfoliators are acid ones, it sounds scary but they basically melt the 'glue' that holds skin cells together, dissolving old skin and leaving your fresh skin intact and healthy.
My skincare routine when I lived in the UK is very different to my routine in Toronto, which is in turn very different from my routine in Whitehorse, Yukon. I've noticed that the humidity of the UK and Toronto is great for the moisture retention of my skin. I can get away with using less oil or other moisturizers especially in the summer months. High humidity although can feel absolutely rotten I find it helps with the clarity of my skin, mainly because humidity makes you sweat, which in turn helps your skin purge itself of the junk in your pores.
As soon as I land in the Yukon, my skin goes into panic mode. The dryness, altitude (and cold in the winter months) makes my skin dry, itchy, tight and I tend to break out in pimples for a good two weeks before I start to acclimatize to the environment. I tend to use a heavier moisturizer all year round in the Yukon as well as a serum.
Here are my routines, with links to products that I use.
wash face with warm water
one drop of my Supernatural Oil
two pumps of Avene Rehydrating Serum (concentrating on my upper eyelids where I suffer from skin inflammation and dryness)
one pump of CeraVe Renewing SA Lotion
finish off with a tinted sunscreen SPF 50
and sunscreen for lips SPF 30
I also like to spritz my skin throughout the day with refreshing, moisturizing sprays. I like to use Vichy Mineralizing Thermal Water or Caudalie Beauty Elixir, or Pixie Beauty Glow Mist
cleanse with Supernatural Oil
or, if I'm wearing makeup
cleanse with organic coconut oil, wipe off with hot damp cloth
wipe excess oil off with micellar water
exfoliate with an acid mask, I like to use Vichy Double Glow Peel Mask
I like to layer my moisturizers starting with one pump of my Supernatural Oil, then layer with Avene Rehydrating Serum, and then layer with CeraVe Renewing SA Lotion.
If I'm feeling extra dry, I will also layer on a sleeping mask such as LaNeige Water Sleeping Mask, which works... while you sleep. I also like to take this on log haul plane journeys and slather my face with this during the flight.
Twice a month I like to use sheet masks and there are some great ones out there on the market, but remember to read the ingredients on the back and steer clear of those with fragrance added. Dr Jart+ has a selection of nourishing masks that I like.
I use my jade guasha every day. It's an ancient tool that is used alongside traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture. It gives me ten minutes to really focus on myself - almost like meditation. It's great for circulation (leading to clearer skin), collagen production (leading to plumper more youthful looking skin) and a natural mini face lift! I've done my gusha routine on a number of friends and family who all loved it and felt super relaxed after.
I'll be posting a blog post about how to use the guasha soon!
Thanks for reading!