9 July 2020

My Skincare Routine: AM & PM

I've been meaning to share my skincare routine on the blog for ages!

Part of the reason why it's taken so long is that I've spent a while trying out different products to see what suits my skin and lifestyle best. What works for one person doesn't necessarily work for another, and I also like to trial just one new product at a time so I can really notice the positive effects {or rarely, any reactions}. 

It's worth explaining that my own routine is very simple - some may even describe it as lazy! When it comes to good skincare, you could go the whole hog and really splash out on some luxury - and effective - products {Caroline Hirons' website is a great place to start for some product recommendations and tips} but I personally tend to choose products which are mid-range or high-street prices. It's all about choosing what works for you.

Before delving into my bathroom cabinet, I would advise that if you are struggling with acne and it's starting to have a negative effect on your life, please see your GP and discuss whether a referral to the dermatologists is appropriate. You can read about my own experiences of severe acne and subsequent treatment with roaccutane here - and don't feel you need to wait before getting professional advice yourself!

M Y   A M   R O U T I N E

Step 1: Elemis Sensitive Cleansing Wash, 200ml - RRP £24.50 {Currently reduced on Amazon*}

I first started using this face wash around 9 months ago, and I've used it every single morning since because I love it so much! It smells beautiful, scented with thyme, German chamomile and Lady's Mantle, and you only need a small amount to lather up and cover your face and neck. It's perfect for my sensitive skin, and always in my overnight bag when we travel. It's also vegan friendly and free of sulfates and parabens.

{Optional Step 1: I aim to exfoliate a couple of times a week as the last time I had a facial - way before lockdown happened, sob - I was told that my skin could do with a bit more. I've been using Liz Earle Gentle Face Exfoliator* before using my facial wash, and it seems to do quite a good job, although I'm not over keen on the scent, so I'm still looking for the perfect product. If you've found a good one, let me know!} 

Step 2: La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo [+] Anti-Imperfections Moisturiser, 40ml - RRP £17.00 {Currently 25% off on Feelunique*}

This feels so light on my skin, which is great for my oily complexion. It's packed full of clever ingredients including niacinamide, lipohydroxy acid, salicylic acid, zinc PCA, procerad and glycerin, and the great thing about La Roche-Posay is that they work closely with dermatologists to ensure that their products are evidence-based and show good results. 

Step 3: The Body Shop Skin Defence Multi-Protection Lotion SPF 50+, 40ml - RRP £18.00

We all know how important sun protection is, but I hate the feeling of suncream on my face - and it often causes my skin to breakout. There are lots of excellent specialist facial suncreams out there, but this is the one I use daily. It has a pleasant smell {an added bonus!} and doesn't feel at all greasy. I aim to put this on every day I know I'm going to be spending any time outdoors - but some experts will argue that we should wear it all the time. I leave this to dry for just a few minutes before applying my make up, and it leaves no tackiness or stickiness which is perfect when I'm in a rush to get ready...

M Y   P M   R O U T I N E

Step 1: Elemis Pro-Collagen Rose Cleansing Balm, 105 g - RRP £43.00 {Currently reduced on Amazon*}

My girlfriends and I went to a spa last October for my birthday, and we all treated ourselves to a facial. As soon as the facialist started to gently apply this to my skin, the beautiful rose scent made me feel calm and relaxed - and it left my skin feeling so soft and clean! It's excellent at removing a full face of SPF and make up, including waterproof mascara {the ultimate test}. You can buy a travel-size version too which is handy for holidays. I apply this to dry skin, and then use a damp flannel to wipe off. 

Step 2: Liz Earle Instant Boost Skin Tonic Spritzer, 200ml - RRP £16.00

Liz Earle's products are renowned for being great, and I love this spray. Again, the scent is wonderful; on the ingredients list are aloe vera, calendula, chamomile, cucumber and pure essential oils, including rose-scented geranium, lavender and sweet orange. I either spray onto a reusable cotton pad and sweep over my face, or if I'm feeling warm and want to feel really refreshed, I spritz directly onto my skin which is lovely and cooling.

Step 3: CeraVe Eye Repair Cream, 14ml - RRP £12.00 {Currently 15% off  on Feelunique*}
Due to my olive skin, if I am just the slightest bit tired I end up looking like a raccoon, with heavy, dark circles under my eyes after just the smallest amount of sleep deprivation. I dread to think what they will look like once Baby Maggie May gets here...! However this surprisingly affordable eye cream from CeraVe does actually seem to help - whilst it doesn't completely get rid of the circles {only concealer will do that} it does help to reduce the darkness and puffiness. I've had no irritation from using it around my eyes, despite having sensitive skin and being a contact lens wearer, so I would definitely recommend it.

Step 4: Neal's Yard Remedies Rejuvenating Frankincense Facial Oil, 30ml - RRP £32.00

A friend of mine recommended this to me, and once she squeezed a couple of drops onto the back of my hand I could instantly see what all the fuss was about. It feels luxurious and nourishing, and is a lovely little treat for dry skin. I've taken it with me on flights before, as it's perfect for when the plane air conditioning leaves your skin feeling ruined! Just a few drops are all you need for an instant moisture hit, and the scent of frankincense is beautifully relaxing.

Step 5: Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel, 50ml - RRP £12.99 {Currently reduced on Amazon*}

I really love this stuff, and it's so affordable! I think I first saw it recommended by the aforementioned Caroline Hirons, and thought there would be no harm in giving it a go. The gel-like consistency means it's both incredibly lightweight and yet super hydrating at the same time, which makes it a bit of a miracle product in my eyes. I'm already on my second tub, as I sometimes use this in the mornings too. It's very cooling too which is great if your skin is inflamed or angry. Of all the products I have mentioned above, if you were to go out and buy one thing, I'd probably recommend this.

I obviously use other products too, and don't strictly stick to the exact items listed every AM and PM, however the ones I have linked to are those which are my fail-safes. As you can see from my skincare shelf {I'm so lucky to have this in our en suite!} I have a range of different moisturisers, toners and serums to use depending on how my skin is feeling, and I think that's an important skill to develop - recognising what your skin needs on a day to day basis, responding to the hormonal and seasonal changes, and adapting what you use to help it out. 

If you have any skincare recommendations that you just can't live without, I'd love to hear them! Either comment below or you can tweet me - especially if you have the magic ingredient for banishing dark circles forever...

This post contains affiliate links*. Full disclosure statement available here.


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