Skincare I Use In A Typical Day

With the coronavirus outbreak going on, I was concerned my content may be a little lacklustre (admittedly it was low down on my list of concerns, but a concern nonetheless.) I can't go out to take photos, I don't feel comfortable buying new things and contributing to the necessity of couriers being out and about.

So I was looking around my stash thinking: what can I talk about? I resolved that rather than reviewing something I've tried for the novelty value for a limited period, or reviewing make up I doubt I'll have an occasion to wear for a while, I'd share something I'm actively using. Not for review purposes, not because I have an obligation to feature it, but genuinely using

A skincare routine is something so many of us are familiar with. It's something repetitive and normal (and if it isn't, get on that. Please.) It's a routine I'm really embracing at the moment, it feels as though my day is structured around it. I have asthma that's on the severe end of the spectrum. Whilst it's not out of control - I haven't had an asthma attack since I was little - despite being on a twice daily dose of steroids to treat it, I'm still using my relief inhaler during the day, every day. I've been self isolating for nearly two weeks now. With no portrait clients to meet or coffees to run out for, my skincare routine is the only routine I have. 

So here's what I'm doing and using, every single day, morning through to the night: 

Day Time
Salicylic Acid Cleanser
Wow first product in and I'm realising you've caught me out on a lie: okay, I don't use a salicylic acid cleanser every single day. I use it every other day. In between I use the second step cream cleanser I talk about below. I alternate it's use because it is an active ingredient and I don't want to over do it and cause irritation. Salicylic acid is good for reducing inflammation, unclogging pores to improve texture, treats active blemishes as well as help promote fading of hyper pigmentation after blemishes. I enjoy using salicylic acid in a cleanser because of the rinse-off formula. The short contact time means the potential for irritation is even less. At the moment I'm using the Agera Labs Cleanser*, but I'd also recommend the CeraVe SA Cleanser

I think this is my favourite step, applying this fragrance free hydrating lotion. It just feels hydrating - it contains hyaluronic acid, you see. It's very watery but it absorbs in quite quickly, even onto already wet skin. 

This is a thick, balm-y eye cream and I apply it immediately after the hydrating lotion to lock that hyaluronic acid into my under eye area. I like the way it makes my eyelids feel - soft, smooth, hydrated; when the skin around my eyes is noticeably dry, I do find this remedies the discomfort. However when my blepharitis flares up (basically like psoriasis on the eyelids) I do find this quite irritating, so I don't use this 100% of the time. I'll finish using this pot but I probably wouldn't repurchase, nor would I especially recommend it.
Skinceuticals Discolouration Defense Serum*
This serum contains vitamin B, also known as Niacinamide. Niacinamide is an ingredient which famously reduces the appearance of hyperpigmentation, improves skin texture and strengthens the skin's barrier. This serum is also intensely hydrating as it contains glycerin - an ingredient which draws water into the skin from the environment - and urea, which locks in hydration. I am really enjoying it. The texture is thin and light (and totally transparent) so it layers well with other products, including make up, with no pilling or sticky texture. It feels very hydrating and I have noticed that the overall appearance of my skin is clear and smooth now (I had intended to take a make up-less selfie to go with this post but obviously a cold sore has cropped up, brilliant) and dark marks of acne-gone-by are barely there to non-existent. It's expensive, but I have to say this serum works and I really do recommend it.

Kiehls Cannabis Sativa Oil
I feel like facial oils are a bit like marmite: you love them or hate them. I have dry skin and use a retinoid (see below) and I find an oil to be a really nice addition to my skincare routine. It feels comforting on dry skin, and I especially like the CBD oils. I thought they were a gimmick at first but they really are effective anti-inflammatories.

Murad Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisturiser
I'm using this because I got it in a gift set, but this isn't a moisturiser I'd typically buy myself. It's a very expensive product with a lengthy ingredient list with a lot of plant oils and fruit extracts, many of which are essentially perfume. But I've been pleasantly surprised. I haven't had an adverse reaction to the fragrance and have genuinely found it to be be an enjoyable product. The oil content is spot on and, although it's a soft cream, it's not too runny and it doesn't leave a greasy residue or 'sweaty' feeling (which I've experienced with other oil-heavy cream formulations.) It contains shea butter which I know my skin takes to really well as a moisturising ingredient, as well as oat sativa which is an excellent hydrator. Using this, my skin feels soft and hydrated, looks healthy, plump and bright and, like I said, I haven't had an adverse reaction to any of the ingredients.

Skinceutials Ultra Facial UV Defense SPF 50*
This SPF is a really lovely light weight lotion that isn't sticky or tacky, so works perfectly well under make up. I don't notice a white cast with this either. It's a pricier SPF but the formula is excellent and very wearable so I do recommend it. I'm still wearing SPF whilst isolating because UVA radiation penetrates clouds and windows.

Night Time

Clinique Take The Day Off Oil
I love the Clinique TTDO collection, and when I've just worn SPF (no make up), I end the day reaching for this cleansing oil. Using an oil as a first-step cleanser will dissolve SPF and 'loosen' any invisible dirt and pollution that's gathered on your face during the day. I like this one, it's fragrance free and I think despite Clinique typically being a more expensive brand, this is actually very good value for money. (I compared it with a more expensive cleansing oil here.)

Lixirskin Electrogel Cleanser^
This is a richy, creamy cleanser and I like it as a second step PM cleanser because it has make up and pollution removing properties so I like to think it picks up any stragglers! The formula is very softening and comforting so it's a nice product to use at the end of the day (it's perfectly fine for a morning cleanse though, I do use this during the day times sometimes!)

Differin is a prescription only retinoid which was explained in this post. Whilst I have used it previously on, and found it an effective treatment for, active mild acne (for context: I have never suffered with cystic acne or particularly long term acne. My acne is generally trigged by stress - when I was at Uni I'd experience it around exam season, for instance - and is quite stubborn. As soon as one spot goes down, two more will replace it, and so on; it tends to need a retinoid and/or antibiotics to shift it, but it has always responded to treatment and I'm fortunate I've never been 'smothered' in acne or experienced that kind of acne where, like, the entirety of your face is inflamed.) I use Differin as more of a preventative these days. People who dismiss Differin as just a treatment for active acne are missing a trick. I am genetically pre-disposed to visibly large pores (which is fine, normal and nothing to do with acne) and using a retinoid is the only product that makes a significantly noticeable, long-term difference to their appearance. Using Differin makes my skin look healthily-taught. Not tight, but smooth and plump and, most importantly: clear. I find that using Differin at intervals - maybe 3(ish) times a year - and generally for periods of 8-12 weeks has really improved the overall appearance of my skin even if I haven't had any bothersome break outs.

Bowe Organics Lash Oil
I received this in my Roccabox* a couple of months back. I use it on my lashes and my brows. It contains castor oil which is an ingredient which is known to help lashes and brows grow, I know a brow/lash technician who swears by it. It's too soon to say if it works long term, but I've just kicked a horrible habit of picking my eye lashes and so I think I have seen a tiny, tiny bit of improvement already, but it's hard to say.

Dermalogica Nightly Lip Treatment*
This expensive lip treatment - a concentrated cream of moisturising and plumping ingredients - is, despite the very high price tag, something I actually really enjoy. I suffer with chronic dry, flaky lips; I always have done, ever since I was little, no matter how many lip balms or how much vaseline I pack on. This has really improved the dryness and I haven't seen any flaking (unless it's been exacerbated by cold air, for example) and it is genuinely very, very softening.

Thank you for reading!

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Disclaimer: links may be affiliate links and PR samples will be marked with *. Items marked with ^ are products I have received previously in PR, but this particular product was purchased by myself.  

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