My Skin Type: I'm pretty sensitive and very dry with occasional blemishes. The dryness is most definitely at the top of my list of issues to conquer with my skincare products.
Right now, my favorite products are by Mario Badescu. I used to be loyal to Clinique, but I absolutely love the Mario Badescu stuff and am really glad I switched. I've noticed HUGE improvements in my skin and have gotten several compliments on it lately. I know it's my new skincare routine.
Here are the products I use and a review:
Step 1: Remove Makeup
I use whatever brand of makeup removing wipes I can find at the grocery store - usually the generic Equate brand from WalMart or the Kroger brand from Smith's. I like the calming nighttime ones. They're cheap and cheerful and work great. The wipes are slightly different textures from brand to brand, but I have never noticed a significant difference in effectiveness. I also use Clinique's makeup remover on my eyes. I can never get all of the mascara and eyeliner off with just the wipes. I have no stance on this makeup remover. It's fine. It works. It doesn't have any fragrance, it doesn't cause any irritation, and I have about 5 bottles of it around my house because I was Clinique-loyal for so long.
Step 2: Cleanser
My main cleanser is the MB Enzyme Cleansing Gel. It's super gentle and I love how it makes my skin feel. None of the MB products smell great. IMO, they all have a kind of grandma-ish smell, but I don't mind it and the results are worth it. This cleanser doesn't lather, which makes some people feel like it's not really cleansing deeply, but I definitely feel like it works and it makes my skin so soft. Every other day, instead of the Enzyme Gel, I use the Glycolic Foaming Cleanser - just at night. It's much more potent and contains glycolic acid (anti-aging). Using it a few times a week seems just about right for my skin. Right on the bottle it recommends that you only use it about every other day.
Step 3: Toner
Love the Alpha Grapefruit Cleansing Lotion. Mild, but helps brighten and even complexion.
Step 4: Serum
On the nights that I use the Glycolic Foaming Cleanser, I also use the MB Vitamin C Serum. 4 drops is all it takes to cover the entire face, and it feels so great. Light and so smooth. Again, helps brighten and even complexion and helps with anti-aging.
Step 5: Moisturize
I use the MB Glycolic Renewal Complex morning and night. It's an anti-aging product, but it's also very moisturizing. Lots of mornings, I just use this as my moisturizer. For me and my terribly dry skin, that's saying something. It is probably my favorite MB product of all right now. It's not too heavy or too light, and I love the moisture it provides.
In the morning, sometimes I use the Complex Moisturizer with Vitamin E - SPF 15. I'll be honest, I don't like it. It feels too greasy and heavy and I feel like it leaves an oily residue on my skin and doesn't let it breathe. I use it for the sunscreen when I know I'll be outside, but I usually just rely on the SPF in my makeup. Would not recommend.
At night, I use the Seaweed Night Cream over the Glycolic Renewal Complex. This is technically double-moisturizing, but I feel like my skin needs it, especially at night. This night cream is really pretty and green, haha. It is pretty heavy and some might say greasy, but I don't mind it. It does seem to absorb after a while, and I've never woken up with greasy skin because of it. I like this product, but next time I'm going to try MB's Protein Night Cream.
If I have any extra dry or flaky spots, I put some Aquaphor on them. I also use this on my lips at night. I love, love, love Aquaphor. I have little tubes of it all over the house. Bathroom, bedroom, baby's room, purse, diaper bag, etc. It's like Vaseline only 100x better.
Step 6: Eye Cream
I use MB Ceramide Eye Cream and really like it. Again, it's pretty heavy and greasy, but it does absorb and I feel like it has really improved my little crow's feet wrinkles. The skin around my eyes is less crepey and more hydrated-looking. I only use it at night, because of the greasiness, but I do like this product and it's a steal at $20.
**A few times a week, I also use a scrub. The MB Botanical is pictured, but I've used other kinds I like, too. One nice thing about this scrub is that it doesn't seem to make my skin break out. Other scrubs, like the St. Ives Apricot Scrub, do. I usually use the scrub on like, Wednesday night, and then on Saturday. Saturday is my beauty day, haha. It's the day I do a face mask (I love trying new ones, so there's not just one I stick with, although I really, really love Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay mixed with apple cider vinegar), give myself a full manicure and pedicure, clean my makeup brushes, maybe take a bath with essential oils and epsom salts. This might sound silly, but one of my New Year's resolutions was to take time for myself and those little luxuries. My anxiety is always an issue and so is my self-esteem, so taking an hour or 2 throughout the week to make myself feel pampered is really great. I definitely recommend having a scheduled weekly home spa day, haha.
Favorite Tips & Tricks:
- Be nice to your face - dab dry, don't rub, gently rub/press in creams (especially around eye area), use tepid or cool water instead of hot.
- Use a clean towel every time you wash your face. I feel like this should be a given. At my house, all the tan washcloths are mine and mine only - just to dry my face. I used to have really bad acne as a teenager and I think that's when my obsession with clean towles started. I have a big ol' stack of tan washcloths in a basket in my bathroom and I really do use a clean one every time I dry my face.
- Follow an actual routine - I'm almost 30...so I felt like it was time to stop using products designed for pre-teens, haha. Like I said, I love the MB products because of the results I've gotten, but I also love that they're not ridiculously expensive. I was seriously considering committing to a skincare line that costs hundreds of dollars per month...and I'm sure it works just great, but...there are MANY other things I'd rather spend my $$$ on. The MB products are more expensive than drugstore brands, but they're definitely not outrageous, and you can buy almost all their products in a travel size first to see if you like them before you commit to a regular-size bottle.
- Never sleep with makeup on. Ew. Your skin will be mad at you for so many reasons, plus you'll have missed a chance to give your skin all the moisture and skin-loving ingredients it can soak up during the night with good products.
Ok, your turn!!! Post a link to your blog in the comments so I can read about your routine!