My skin generally behaves itself. It knows I'm boss. If it starts giving me guff, a stern talking to and some adjustments to my skincare routine usually solve the problem.
But skin is fickle. Like a spoilt toddler, it will comply only for as long as the jelly beans in your pocket last. Once your skin decides it wants something that you're not providing, the tantrums begin. Instead of the banging of chubby little fists against the supermarket floor, you get swelling, redness, flakiness and (gag)... pus.
My obsessive skincare routine is a source of slight embarrassment to me. It includes many steps and many products, and reveals the true extent of my commitment to (and paranoia about) skin. Luckily for me, beaut.ie readers are always sympathetic to any beauty obsession, and enable me mercilessly!
Since writing about my skincare routine last October, my skin has changed. Weather, stress, diet and unreliable lady hormones (damn you and your fluctuating ways...) can all contribute to changes in your skin's needs and behaviour.
I've made a few adjustments to my skincare routine by adding and removing a few products. The old reliables are still in there, though.
My daytime routine hasn't changed since my last skincare post. You can read about it by clicking on the link above. Here are my most recent changes:
Three Nights Per Week
- My classic go-to facial oil has always been Clarins Lotus Oil (€39.50). It is a wonderful oil for moisturising combination or oily skin. It absorbs well, doesn't clog the skin, and encourages oily skin to produce less sebum by keeping it moisturised ( your skin produces more oil when you use drying alcohols on it, and this can lead to breakouts).
- Since happening upon the Body Shop's Vitamin E Overnight Serum-in-Oil (€22), my Lotus Oil hasn't seen any use. A combination oil and serum product, this oil is beautiful and a full €17.50 less expensive than the Clarins alternative. It is also suitable for all skin types.
- The Serum-in-Oil does contain a small quantity of alcohol, but this is more than compensated for by the sheer number of oils contained in this product. It's also free of mineral oil, a useless ingredient that can prevent the absorption of other useful skincare ingredients and clog pores.
- I like to apply this last, after a hydrating serum like Hydraluron, and a hydrating moisturiser. Oils create a barrier that water based products can't penetrate, so be sure to apply them last to get the benefit!
Twice per Week
- Since I don't believe in physical exfoliation (it's just not very good for the skin!) I've always exfoliated chemically but gently three nights a week.
- To cope with recent breakouts and amp up cell turnover in my skin, I've begun to exfoliate more vigorously twice per week rather than exfoliating gently three times.
- Elave's Age Delay Glycolic Cleanser (€26.95) doubles as an excellent Glycolic acid mask. I apply it to dry, cleansed skin and leave it for two minutes before rinsing thoroughly.
- Once per week, I'll follow it up with a layer of Hydraluron serum and then my usual, gentler chemical exfoliant, Kiehl's Overnight Biological Peel (€55).
- The fact that I've increased the amount of Glycolic acid in my skin care routine means that my skin is extra sensitive to the sun. In my search for the ultimate SPF, I've settled on Avène's Very High Protection Mineral Cream SPF 50+ for Intolerant Skin (€19.99). It has a very subtle tint that works on even the palest skins and provides subtle coverage for makeup free days as well as sun protection and an excellent base for makeup.
These are very simple changes, but they are keeping my skin in check while the weather decides what season it is. How's your skincare routine looking at the moment, and have you tried any of these products?