These days there are so many different skincare products on the market, it can be quite overwhelming and confusing at times (unless you are a bit of a geek like me & then it's a wonderful world of plenty ready for you to explore). But however much I love testing out new products, I have my core skincare staples that I always come back to. On an everyday basis there really are only 3 - 4 steps to the routine (unless disaster strikes and I wake up with a massive spot in the middle of my forehead... but I digress...). So without further ado, here are all the products I use in the morning to make myself look & feel presentable: 1. Cleansing (Clinique Take Off The Day Cleansing Balm)I've written about this product before here, so I will not go too much into the specifics. All I will say is: you do need a cleanser. I know that a wipe may take a little less time but it will also not actually cleanse your skin, just wipe off a very superficial layer of sweat and grime & possibly irritate your skin. My preferred cleansers are oils or balms as they are gentle but there is a multitude of amazing cleansers out there. Giving yourself a little facial massage in the morning will also get your circulation going & drain away some of the fluid that causes puffiness. To rinse off just use a flannel (mine are mostly from Penneys / Primark) and warm water. Your face will feel clean and fresh without being stripped or tight.
Clinique Cleansing Balm €28 from Boots
2. Toning (Clarins Gentle Exfoliating Toner)Now, toning is the forgotten step of skincare (seems a little bit 90's) but it's so worth incorporating into your day! An exfoliating toner will help get rid off any dead skin, making it more glowing and youthful looking. There is a lot of exfoliating toners of different strengths available on the market (Pixi, Ren, Shiseido...) and most of them can be used morning and evening. The one from Clarins is amazing, I use it every morning as my skin is very hardy & can take a little bit more exfoliation. For more delicate skins I would recommend using this toner every other day.
Clarins Gentle Skin Exfoliator €31 from Boots
3. Serum (Indeed Labs Hydraluron)This is an optional step if you feel you want to be extra nice to your skin or have a particular skin concern. I am using Hydraluron, which is a no fuss serum that contains a pure form of hyaluronic acid and basically helps your moisturiser go that little bit further. It gives your skin plumpness and elasticity, which will reduce signs of aging in the long run.
Indeed Labs Hydraluron €32.50 from Boots (often on offer!!)
4. Moisturiser (Dr Perricone Photo Plasma & Origins GinZing)Again, Photo Plasma by Perricone MD is a product I have written a post on before here. Because I use an exfoliating toner I need to protect my skin with a high SPF during the day. There is a multitude of fantastic moisturisers for all skin types and skin concerns so take your pick but DO NOT skip this step! Even if you have oily skin, you really need to replenish moisture in your skin to prevent premature aging and a multitude of other skin problems. I also use an eye cream - important for me as my under eye area gets quite dry sometime and, unfortunately, I am prone to puffiness and dark circles.
If a routine like this is too much fuss for you reduce it to cleansing and moisturising, these steps are truly essential and will make a huge difference if you are consistent (every day, twice a day). I do realise that the products above are on the pricy side, so if you are on a budget you can replace a cleansing balm with Coconut Oil (available in most supermarkets), it is very gentle and absolutely perfect for cleansing and it can also be used for moisturising. Alternatively, the Una Brennan Vitamin C Cleansing Oil is a very good option too (less than €10 in Boots).
What are your skincare staples?
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