Skincare Essentials: Current Night-Time Skincare Routine
Here's the thing: I love make-up. I love creating make-up looks, watching YouTube videos and finding looks on Pinterest to re-create. Now, I often don't have many glamorous places to go to match my glam-a-zon looks that I create for myself sometimes, but I still love it and a girl has a right to slay it at the grocery store, #amiright?
Here's the other thing: you can have the most hot-fire, slay-me-dead-make-up-look the Internet has ever seen, but if you don't have a solid canvas to paint on, the potential can only go so far.
This is why I think taking care of your skin is so important. Here I will be breaking down my most current night-time skincare routine. It may seem a little extra, but I promise, your skin will thank you.
For anyone curious, I will have a 100% drugstore skin care routine coming soon. The basic properties of each item and the ingredients are really what matter when it comes to taking good care of your skin.
1. Make-up Removal
I am a huge fan of "double cleansing" when it comes to removing all the layers of make-up, oil and environmental pollution our skin is exposed to on a daily basis. On most nights I start with an oil-based cleanser. My current #1 favourite is the Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Oil Cleanser. It's a very light, all-natural oil that doesn't leave you feeling like you have a layer of grease on your face, and it gently and easily melts all my makeup.
If I am feeling lazy, I have really been liking the Garnier Micellar Cleaning Water. It's gentle enough on the skin that it really feels like nothing, but it does the job without tugging and pulling on sensitive areas around the eyes.
If you don't feel like heading to your local drugstore or Sephora, just go to your kitchen - plain old olive or coconut oil will do just fine.
I surprised myself with this, but my usual go-to lately has been a plain old bar of soap: the Drunk Elephant Pekee Bar. It's basically your grandma's bar of soap but elevated. I admit, it's the most gentle feeling bar cleanser I have ever used. It provides an ultra deep clean, but doesn't leave your skin feeling tight or dehydrated afterwards. This is because it's infused with ultra-gentle, ultra-hydrating virgin marula oil and other natural ingredients like honey and blueberry extract. Bonus: you can skip the toner because the Pekee bar is pH-balanced and so acts as a cleanser and toner in one. Added bonus: Drunk Elephant as a brand is cruelty-free and a supporter of the International Elephant Foundation (IEF). Who doesn't want to support the elephants? It's just the cherry on top of an already great skin day.
Okay, so this is where -ISH gets real. My holy grail, can-never-live-without, ride-or-die, will-never-cheat-on nighttime serum is The Drunk Elephant TLC Framboos Glycolic Night Serum. I originally discovered this brand via the YouTuber Kathleen Lights 2 years ago, and have been using it religiously ever since. It's a 12% glycolic acid serum which sounds scary, but you will find it's surprisingly gentle and excellent for sensitive skin types. The exfoliating and resurfacing properties of the glycolic acid is balanced by hydrating AHAs and BHAs, raspberry extract and marula oil to brighten and lock in the skin's moisture. I can do a more in-depth post on skin care ingredients and what they do in a future post.
I have never generally suffered from "bad" or cystic acne (...save a few of those hormonal chin monsters that refuse to pop and just leave mean-looking, hyper-pigmented corpses on your face so you never forget who-is-really-Boss zits...), but I do have a lot of issues with bumpy skin texture due to congested pores. My problem areas are my jawline, cheeks and forehead, where I get what feels like hundreds of tiny little bumps all over. NOTHING really helped smooth this out (including prescription strength retin-A and Benzaclin), until I rush ordered my first bottle of this DE serum (had to get it from Amazon in the US because she was not even available to order in Canada yet at the time!). I applied it ONCE, no joke, and the next day my skin appeared SIGNIFICANTLY smoother, brighter and the texture was almost completely gone. Even a friend of mine noticed the difference after one day.
Nowadays, I use this serum 2-3 times a week, and my skin has never been better. Even my hormonal breakouts I find are less painful and not as severe as they once were. I notice a visible difference in my skin when I stop using it, and always end up going back to it. This is an item that will be always be consistent in my skincare routine.
Ok, so I am 30 now. The fine lines and crow's feet are definitely rearing their wrinkly heads. The skin under your eyes is especially delicate and sensitive, so it's important to pay special attention to this area. As I have grown older, I've noticed the skin under my eyes is a lot drier, and often leaves my concealer looking crepe-y and creased. For this reason, I need a heavy-duty, ultra-hydrating eye cream for bedtime. My current favourite is the Kiehl's Avocado eye treatment. It's nice and thick but not too heavy - I'm loving it.
I told you my routine was extra. After my serum has had a chance to sink in, I always make sure to apply a heavy-duty moisturizer on top to lock in that hydration. I haven't quite found a holy grail moisturizer and I am not currently partial to one or another, but right now I'm using the Youth To The People Kale + Spinach Green Tea Hyaluronic Acid Age Prevention Cream. It's lightweight, non-greasy and does a great job of locking in moisture for hours. I use it both morning and night, as it's light enough not to interrupt my makeup during the day, but packs enough hydration punch to keep my skin feeling plump and youthful overnight. The brand is a small-batch company based out of California. Maybe LA has it right when it comes to all that kale: you might as well put it on your face if you're already eating it.
I started with oil at the beginning of my routine, and things come full circle where I end my routine with an oil. Lately I have been using the Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil Light. I take a dropperful, and just pat it into my skin to seal in all my previous work. By the end of my routine, I'm ready to go to bed and baste like a Thanksgiving Turkey.
This seems like a lot of products and steps, but I have found it's really working for me. What does your night-time skincare routine look like? Leave me a comment below!