Recently, I had this sort of awakening that I needed to cut back, in so many areas of life. I have this overabundance of “things” everywhere in my home. I have too many clothes, yet I can never find anything to wear. We buy too much food and at the end of the week, a lot of it goes to waste. And of course, I own WAY too many products, many of which get tossed aside after the initial excitement wears off. Even before I started blogging about beauty this was an issue for me. I have far too much stuff. Something new comes out and I have to try it, even just to convince myself that the nearly identical version of said product that I already own is at least as good as the new one. Or, I think I have a dupe of said item already in my collection, but the only way to know for sure is to own the new thing too.
I am working on trimming down my makeup and skincare collection to the bare necessities while still satisfying my desire to try new things and check out seasonal launches within reason. It has actually been way easier than I anticipated. There are several brands I have always reached for when it comes to beauty products, and rather than list them here, I’ll just say I tend to be more interested in products sold at Sephora, department stores, and sometimes exclusively online. I have always had a penchant for a good deal, but when it comes to what I put on my face, I reach for luxury. That doesn’t mean every cream that comes near my face is in the $100 range, but I’m more likely to buy skincare at Macy’s than I am to buy it at Target. That doesn’t mean stuff from the drugstore is lesser, it’s just my preference. It also doesn’t mean something from Target won’t pique my interest in the future, but 90% of the time, high end is where my interests lie. I’ve weeded through my stuff and for the last couple months I have been using the best of the best. I’ll walk you through.
press samples, bought myself, affiliate links
So first, skincare. I find that when I’m taking excellent care of my skin, I don’t need as much makeup. The glow and radiance I hope to get from my foundation and highlighter are already achieved by taking care of my skin and letting my bare skin glow. No matter how tired I am I don’t skip my skincare routine. I struggle with dryness, occasional breakouts, and lack of radiance so I choose my products accordingly.
Shiseido Perfect Cleansing Oil: I talked about how this won a CEW Beauty award in a post last week. For the last year or so, every single morning I use a cleansing oil as part of my routine. It softens my skin, removes any last traces of eye makeup that might be remaining from yesterday, and leaves me feeling refreshed and ready for makeup. At night I find that it takes off every last bit of makeup and preps my skin for a cleanse. My skin never feels dried out anymore since I’ve started using a cleansing oil daily.
Foreo Luna for Combination Skin: I have the model meant for combination skin, the blue one. I love this little device and I’ll be writing about it soon. It’s made a huge difference in the way I cleanse lately. I was married to my Clarisonic pretty much forever, but this has replaced it for me!
Murad Time Release Acne Cleanser: I am completely obsessed with this extra gentle anti-aging acne cleanser. Murad’s skincare line is absolutely perfect for someone who is concerned with both anti-aging and breakouts. So many of their products are targeted towards helping with both concerns, and since I’ve been using this cleanser consistently, my skin has looked and felt so fresh. The salicylic acid in this formula is time released, so it continues to fight acne even after the cleanse. I feel a tingly clean sensation over my face when I use this, almost like a menthol. It feels so good! It’s a deep cleanse already and feels even more refreshing when I pair this with the Luna. On days I don’t need something so intense, I opt for the Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cleanser.
Borghese Fango Delicato Active Mud for Delicate Dry Skin: I’ve been masking a bunch lately, and this is what I use when I feel like I have a bit of a breakout going on. I love a good mud mask and Borghese has several varieties to choose from depending on your skin type.
Fresh Rose Face Mask: I have a small sample of this from a beauty perk at Sephora. It’s an awesome gel mask that has real pieces of rose petals, rose water, and algae for moisture. It smells SO good and I love using it when my face feels a little dry and needs some moisture and TLC.
The rest of my routine after a cleanse gets a little more complicated! I have discovered some new products this summer and pulled out some old goodies. The main gist is tons of hydration, trying to maintain a tan, and SPF.
Kiehl’s Iris Extract Activating Treatment Essence: I wrote a review HERE about this stuff a while back. I’m still just as obsessed and have been using it morning and night. I love how it seems to infuse moisture and balance into my skin before I’ve applied any of my other skincare.
Clinique Turnaround Revitalizing Lotion: This stuff is really similar to the Kiehl’s! I’m having fun experimenting with both products. The Clinique version is about $10 cheaper. The main difference so far that I’ve noticed is that the revitalizing lotion takes a little bit longer to dry on my skin. I’ll be curious when winter rolls around which one of these takes care of my dry patches the best!
Clinique Turnaround Revitalizing Treatment Oil: During the daytime, this is my next step. I am obsessed with oils and I think they make my skin look so radiant, not to mention they really help my foundation look smoother. When I use an oil, I can usually skip a primer if I want to. That’s how much it helps the look of my makeup! Clinique’s Turnaround Revitalizing Treatment Oil is super lightweight and silky, and makes my skin so soft and smooth!
Clinique All About Eyes: My holy grail eye cream. I have rarely strayed from this. The only eye creams that compare in my book are much, much more expensive than this little gem!
Kiehl’s Super Fluid UV Defense SPF 50+ Sunscreen: I absolutely love that this sunscreen has SPF 50. On days I’m going to be going out in the hot sun, I make sure to apply this before I do my makeup. It is oil-free and the formula is super lightweight. If I’ve just applied the oil, I wait a few minutes for it to sink in to my skin before applying this. When applying sunscreen to your face, don’t forget it usually only lasts 90 minutes before it needs to be touched up!
Murad Invisiblur Protecting Shield Broad Spectrum SPF 30: I like to use this as a primer and I also tote it around to give my skin more SPF as needed without messing up my makeup. I wrote about it HERE.
Vita Liberata Self Tanning Night Moisture Mask: I’ve been using this mask for a couple months. I love that if I use it for two or three nights in a row, it gradually deepens my skin tone. It takes me from a light to a medium skin tone. After three nights in a row of using it, I back off of it for a few nights and use the Clinique moisturizer I talk about next. If I use it every day all the time it ends up making me look a bit orange. If I use it conservatively it gives me a glow that is so pretty.
Clinique Turnaround Overnight Revitalizing Moisturizer: On nights that I’m not trying to get my tan while I sleep, I have been using this. This has been in longtime rotation for me. I love how fresh and dewy my skin looks in the morning when I wear this to bed.
L’Occitane Immortelle Divine Youth Oil: This is a total luxury oil. I wear it a lot at night and during the day but I find it richer than the Clinique oil so I use this one at night so it has time to work its magic while I’m sleeping. It’s lightweight in texture but super rich in the hydration it gives me. I love the scent as well. If you’ve never smelled Immortelle you need to!
Yes, these are the “bare necessities” for me. I need SPF during the day, oils day and night for cleansing and for hydrating, and all the hydration in my moisturizers! Am I the only one who is this high maintenance? You wouldn’t even believe how many products were littering my bathroom until I pared it down to these few!
Tell me in the comments, what do you love for skincare? Anything you can’t live without?