Last year, my skincare routine was washing my face when I showered. I didn’t even really use soap. Just water. However, over the course of the past year, an effective and consistent skincare routine has become a more and more important part of my day to day life. I don’t really wear a lot of makeup, so I mainly focus my beauty addiction on skincare products that keep my skin as healthy and hydrated as possible. For the record, I have normal skin that gets dry in hotter and drier climates. This is only a “mostly” daily regimen because I don’t use some of the products below every day. Otherwise, this seven-step routine is my favorite way to moisturize and clean my skin at the start and end of each day.
1. Oil Cleanser: The Ordinary Squalane Cleanser
I generally start my routine with an oil cleanser to clean off whatever makeup and sunscreen I had on my face throughout the day. I think oil cleansing is vital because it gets off all of the stuff that could potentially clog my pores and give me breakouts. I really like The Ordinary’s cleanser because it gets everything off my face while also being an affordable option.
2. Water Cleanser: Cerave Hydrating Facial Cleanser
I follow up with a water-based cleanser to get any residual oil from the oil cleanser out of my skin. I really like this particular cleanser because it doesn’t strip my skin at all and leaves me feeling refreshed and clean after using it. In general, I find Cerave’s cleansers to be very effective since they gently moisturize and treat the skin without exposing it to potentially harmful ingredients.
3. Toner: The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution
I only use this toner every other day due to its exfoliating properties, but I really like that it makes my skin feel clean and tight. Usually, I pour a small amount of the toner into the palm of my hand, and I rub it across my skin in upwards-sweeping motions. I also particularly enjoy this specific toner because it is fragrance-free and alcohol-free, so it won’t be too stripping or sensitizing to my skin.
4. Serum: The Inkey List Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating Serum
I absolutely love using hyaluronic acid as an ingredient because it can hold 1000 times its own weight in water. I’ll use this serum twice a day and take a small, dime-sized amount in the palm of my hand and pat it across my face until it’s absorbed. I really like The Inkey List in particular because it’s an ethical and clean company from the UK that provides affordable skincare. I only recently added this product to my skincare routine, but already my skin feels softer and brighter than before.
5. Serum/Oil: The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5% + ECCG
I genetically have dark under-eyes, and my lack of sleep surely doesn’t help. This oil is essentially something that treats that. I use one drop and rub it gently on the skin under my eyes until absorbed in the morning and at night. This part of the routine isn’t really necessary, but I really like it because it lightens my under-eyes a little bit while also nourishing the sensitive area.
6. Moisturizer: The Ordinary Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA
This moisturizer by The Ordinary is my absolute favorite because it works to hydrate my skin while also being fragrance-free and cruelty-free. I love that it doesn’t make my skin feel greasy or oily after using, but instead replenishes my skin’s natural moisture barrier and prepares me to start or end my day.
7. SPF: Supergoop! Unseen Sunscreen
Last but certainly not least is the most important part of the skincare routine: sunscreen. I have pretty fair skin that burns super easily, but even for all of you with melanin, it is vital to your skin’s health to wear sunscreen. I particularly like Supergoop!’s sunscreen because it doesn’t leave a whitecast on my face and absorbs quickly into the skin. Furthermore, it doesn’t smell like your usual sunscreen and doesn’t feel weird and thick on my face. Not to mention, it’s reef safe since it doesn’t have ingredients like oxybenzone.
Optional: Exfoliate: The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution
The exfoliation part of my routine only ever happens once a week to clean out my pores and dead skin cells. This generally happens at night before I cleanse. I use a chemical exfoliant since I have more sensitive skin, and I put it on for ten minutes every Tuesday night. I thoroughly enjoy The Ordinary’s famous peeling solution because I see an immediate difference in my skin since the acids eat away my dead skin cells. (It doesn’t hurt that it looks like I put period blood on my face.)