As I’m sure most of you already know, I sometimes have quite the chaotic skin type. For the most part my skin tends to behave properly but can become really unpredictable very quickly and usually without warning. One of the best things I’ve done to help my cystic acne was to strip back my skincare and keep only the products that I knew worked for me. As a beauty blogger I test out a lot of products but find it comforting to have actual routines in place as well that involve tried and true favorites I can easily come back to.
For those of you who are new to the blog, I’ll give you a little background on my skin type and concerns. I’m in my beginning 30’s and have normal/dry skin that can be a little temperamental at times. I suffered from horrible cystic acne right before I turned 30, which was a first in acne for me, period. Over the last few years I’ve been able to get it under control to the point where it’s “cured” – that being said, anything from a certain product type or ingredient, diet change, etc., can set it off in an instant and I will find either singular red bumps or clusters literally the next morning. My skin can handle a lot but I have to be careful with what I test before a full-on breakout occurs. My primary concerns are anti-aging, anti-acne, texture and hydration.
- A serum that I seriously can’t live without is the Murad Advanced Acne & Wrinkle Reducer. Ever since I started using this many years ago it has been a complete game changer for me. The dual-focus formula works to prevent blemishes while reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Here’s where the whole anti-aging and anti-acne criteria is matched. The formula is infused with salicylic acid, which helps the product penetrate deep into the pores to help clear and prevent breakouts. Another main ingredient is the powerful Kombucha Collagen Defense, which reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. The Retinol and glycolic acid accelerates skin cell turnover to keep the face looking healthy and glowy with a smooth texture
- The Bliss Micro Magic is my BFF really, it’s been with me through cystic acne and good skin days. In fact, the Bliss Micro Magic was part of the original lineup that helped get it under control. The Bliss Microdermabrasion treatment contains powerful and soothing ingredients that scrub away dead skin cells and any leftover impurities that may contaminate your pores that regular face washing couldn’t get. While the Aloe and mushroom extract reduce inflammation and calms the skin, the peppermint extract refreshes and revitalizes. It is super gentle and non-irritating enough that it can be used twice a week. It won’t leave the skin feeling tight and digs up deep-lying impurities to assure a total complexion clarification. I also feel like the effects are more immediate vs. long-term with use as skin is instantly brighter and smoother afterwards
- Another product I’ve been through countless cans of over the years is Caudalie’s Grape Water. It’s such a classic. It’s one of the best refreshing toner mists that I have tried and I believe has a major voice in keeping my skin clear as well as optimally hydrated. I like to spray this on morning and night between the essence and serum steps for an added boost of hydration. It’s just a great refreshing multi-purpose spray that is super hydrating and even feels slightly cooling on the skin
- Even though the Kiehl’s Ginger Leaf and Hibiscus Firming Mask is relatively new to my routines, I am so loving it! The mask helps to visibly firm skin while you sleep and reduce the appearance of fine lines over time. I’ve been using the mask every other night for the last couple of weeks and so far I’ve noticed that it is helping to soften some of the deeper lines on my forehead and make my skin look much plumper overall. It has a soft creamy texture but it is only moderately moisturizing, I suggest using a light oil or serum underneath
- Another Kiehl’s favorite is the Ultra Facial Cleanser. This is simply just a great basic cleanser. It has a gentle liquid formula that cleanses without over-drying or stripping the skin. Among other skin improving derivatives, it contains apricot kernel oil that moisturizes and softens the skin while helping retain clarity and suppleness. For me, this one is pure love and I’ve been through so many I really think some sort dispenser needs to be setup in my bathroom
- Lastly is the Tatcha Water Cream (reviewed here). This is a moisturizer my skin simply lives for. It’s really the boost of hydration my complexion needs especially this time of year
And that concludes the six skincare staples that I cannot live without. Have you tried any of the products I mentioned? What are your holy grail skincare items?