Hi Beauties! Today I wanted to show you my morning skincare routine ☀️💧 I don’t think we should take up a ‘one fits all’ policy when it comes to routines, because each one of us has different needs, as well as time and budgets. So my thoughts surrounding this post is to perhaps give you some ideas, on how you can lift your skincare ‘game’ if you want to try something new and maybe learn some tips along the way 🙃
There’s one really important word and ‘philosophy’ to keep in mind when completing your skincare routine (be it morning or night) and this is consistency. Whether your skincare routine is two steps or ten, the biggest difference will be made to your skin if you are consistent and make your routine a daily habit. Now I am not perfect in this regard – I find it tough some mornings to complete my routine. If this is you, keep things as simple as possible. There’s no point trying in vain to implement a ten-step morning skincare routine if you are not a morning person and have 5 minutes in the morning to get ready for the day. I will mention some tips below on saving time on your routine below ☺️💛🧡
Step 1: Cleansing 💦 🌱
My first step is cleansing! And here we have our first controversy (already!) lol. A lot of dermatologists are divided about whether morning cleansing with product is necessary. This is because cleansing can strip your skin of oil and leave your skin ‘exposed’ to the elements and nasties (whilst destroying the pH level of your skin). Not everyone wakes up with ‘dirty’ or overly oily skin in the morning (if you have cleansed your skin thoroughly in the evening). If your skin is normal to dry (especially mature skin types) splashing/rinsing your face with water in the morning may be all that you need to get rid of any surface level debris on your skin.
I cleanse my skin in the morning because I have indoor pets that wander around wherever they like, so dirt and debris naturally get carried around. I often wake up with skin that feels dry and dehydrated, but can also feel oily in my T-zone. So cleansing with a gentle cleansing product in the morning, helps remove this oil and balance out my skin.
Currently I am loving Alpha H’s Balancing Cleanser with Aloe Vera. It is such a wonderfully gentle yet effective cleanser for all skin types. It’s also not too expensive. My other cleanser of choice for the mornings is Rationale’s ProCeramide Cleanser 💙 This is a cleanser that I use when my skin is feeling very dehydrated, dry or very sensitive. It’s like a treatment in a cleanser. It’s amazing 🧡💜
If I am rushing in the mornings, I like to use a gentle micellar water cleanser. You pour a little onto a cotton pad and wipe your skin with it (I use two cotton pads – the first removes all the dirt and oil on my skin, while the second ‘cleanse’ refreshes my skin). If you have very sensitive skin you should rinse your skin with water after using the micellar water because the micelle particles are very, very small and can dry out your skin throughout the day if left on. I don’t find this happens to me so I generally don’t rinse my skin with water afterwards. This option of cleansing takes about 30 seconds in total! My favourite micellar water is from Bioderma; Hydrabio H20 Micelle Solution 💧
Whatever cleansing option you chose for your morning routine, make sure your cleanser is as gentle as can be. Cleansers designed for sensitive skin are a great option for morning time cleansing (no matter what your skin type is!).
Step 2: Facial Mist
I started appreciating facial mists and the benefits of thermal water about 2 years ago. I had an epiphany – it makes sense that damp skin absorbs products more easily. If you’re a gardener or have witnessed a drought in your lifetime, you may have noticed that very dry, hardend ground that is finally watered (or when it rains suddenly 🌧) has a hard time soaking up the water. Skin is very similar in this way. Added to this, if you spray your face with a facial mist of thermal water spray and then add a product on top of your dampened skin (like a serum or moisturiser) the ingredients in your facial spray (vitamins, minerals, hydrators, antioxidants etc.) get trapped and are fully absorbed by your skin (it can’t evaporate and escape!). Any product applied on top of your dampened skin is also better absorbed. It’s a serious moisture boost for your skin! Paris from My Women’s Stuff Blog, called this a ‘moisture sandwich‘ 😄
I’ve used a range of facial mists but lately I’ve been loving thermal water because of their high mineral content and neutral or alkaline pH levels. Using thermal water after cleansing helps return skin to it’s natural pH levels, making skin feel comfortable and softened. It is thought that the high mineral levels in thermal water helps decrease inflammation (especially if you suffer from inflammatory skin conditions like acne or eczema) because your skin naturally has a delicate skin ‘biome’ which is made up of minerals, fatty acids and good bacteria. Washing your skin and using water that isn’t highly mineralised, can mess up this delicate skin biome, so thermal water can help rebalance your skin. I also just like the ‘simplicity’ of using thermal water 💦
There’s a lot of thermal waters on the market, but I love using Uriage’s thermal water most of all, because its mineral content is much higher than other thermal waters on the market (it’s 55 times more concentrated than Avene’s thermal water! Thank you Michelle at Lab Muffin for comparing the mineral content of popular thermal water sprays). If I’m going to pay for water, I want it to be highly concentrated thank you! 😅💙 Uriage was once available at Priceline but they don’t seem to stock it anymore… so I pick mine up at French Beauty Co (and online Australian stockist of French beauty brands).
Step 3: Toner or Essence
This is one of those steps that isn’t a ‘must’ or necessity in my books, but it a very nice addition to any routine. Granted, a thermal water mist after cleansing returns skin to a comfortable pH level (this is the primary function of a toner) but the Erno Laszlo Hydraphel Skin Supplement toner is more of an essence than a toner in my books… and I love it! It hydrates skin wonderfully thanks to it’s gel like consistency. Skin feels very plump and protected (soothed) without feeling ‘exposed’. It’s like it gives skin a fine layer of hydration and protection. All skin types would love this ‘toner’ slash essence.
Why are essences beneficial to skin? They have a lighter molecular weight than moisturisers, which allows them to seep into the deepest layer of the skin. They can also include antioxidants and other beneficial ‘nutrients’ and actives. I just love that they leave skin feeling ‘bouncy’ and healthy! The Erno Laszlo Hydraphel Skin Supplement besides providing a hit of moisture to the skin, soothes skin with the addition of panthenol (provitamin B5), comfrey root and allantoin. The other skin essence I can highly recommend is Tatcha’s ‘the Essence’. Now that’s a hydration bomb perfect for dehydrated skin! 💥 It also contains ‘heavy hitting’ fermented anti-oxidants 👊
Step 4: Serum
The goal of your morning skin care routine should be to protect your skin from pollution, environmental stressors (free radicals) and damaging UV rays. The best antioxidant for combating free radicals during the day in my opinion is vitamin C 🍊 Vitamin C helps firm your skin by boosting collagen production, helps prevent skin discolouration and brightens skin pigmentation. It’s an ingredient which has been clinically proven to do theses things. Look for a vitamin C concentration of at least 14% (if it’s a formula using ascorbic acid). If you can find a vitamin C serum that also includes 2% vitamin E, that’s even better (both these vitamins recharge each others protons and hence they work for longer in the skin).
*Tip* I also use my vitamin C serum around my eyes. Eye creams are ‘diluted’ when it comes the the actives they contain because the skin around your eyes is very delicate and sensitive. The skin around my eyes tolerates active ingredients very well, so I use them on the eye area also. If you want to begin doing this, trying using your daily serum around the eye area every ‘other’ day, to get your skin used to the ingredients. I want to fight ‘tiredness’ with everything I’ve got!
There’s soooo many vitamin C serums on the market now it’s mind boggling. I’m a sucker for trying new formulas and types of active vitamin C. At the moment I am using the La Clinica Essentials 30% Vitamin C Anhydrous Humectant Serum. It contains 30% Ethyl-Ascorbic Acid which is a form of vitamin C I have never used before. It’s a serum that’s suspended in an oil base and it is very hydrating. I’ve been using it for maybe around 3 weeks now, so I will do a full review for you soon… 😉
Other vitamin C or ‘day serums’ I have reviewed on the blog include; Emma Lewisham Skin Reset Concentrated Pigmentation Serum, Tatcha Violet-C Brightening Serum, Aspect Extreme C 20 Serum, Dermalogica BioLumin-C Serum, Antipodes Worship Skin Defence Antioxidant Serum and Futurederm’s Vitamin C 20 Vitamin E 2 Serum.
Step 5: Eye Cream
I’m a fan of using a dedicated eye cream. I suffer from bad dark under eye circles, so anything I can do to make this area look better, I’ll do it! I look for eye creams that boost circulation, hydrate deeply and ‘protect’ skin (so I love eye creams with thicker almost balm like consistencies). The eye area doesn’t produce any sebum or oil, making it prone to dryness and ‘wrinkly’ skin, hence I can’t help but love thicker textures in eye creams. At the moment I am using Tatcha’s Ageless Revitalizing Eye Cream. It’s gloriously luxurious and very hydrating. The price tag for this one is very high however, so I will probably end up going back to my old-time best pal, Bobbi Brown Extra Eye Repair. In my books, Bobbi’s eye cream is a classic! 👌
Step 6: Moisturiser
And finally, moisturiser! This is a no brainer I’m sure ☺️ Pick a moisturiser for the day time that contains antioxidants – they help protect your skin from oxidative stress, pollution and UV rays. Great antioxidants include green tea extract, vitamin C & E, Ferulic acid and licorice extract.. They next thing to look for is the most important… hydrators!
Hydrators and skin-replenishing ingredients that add moisture to the skin, keep it there and enforce your skin’s barrier function. Skin will look and feel soft, supple, comfortable and plump! You should instantly look and feel better. Look for ingredients such as; hyaluronic acid, sodium hyaluronate, ceramides, glycerine, glycerol, silicones, petrolatum, salicylic acid and alpha hydroxy acids (the acids if you have oily/acne prone skin).
My current daily moisturiser is Tatcha’s the Dewy Skin Cream. It’s soooo lush! It has a whipped texture, but it feels so incredibly hydrating and ‘pillowy’. It’s not a ‘light’ texture but perfect for Winter and cooler months. I haven’t done a full review of this moisturiser on the blog yet, but it’s also coming!
Facial Oils: I use facial oils in my morning routine when my skin is feeling dry or ‘meh’. They turn up the ‘glow factor’ for sure! I apply my oils after my daily serum and before moisturiser. The secret to using oils is to not use too much. A few drops is all you need. Mist your skin with a facial mist or thermal water spray and pat the facial oil into your skin for maximum absorption.
I love the Jojoba Company’s 100% Australian Jojoba. I haven’t used jojoba in a long time and you know what, I think I miss it… Jojoba isn’t ‘technically’ an oil – but you use it in the same way and it’s excellent for oily and acne prone skin! 🌟 Another favourite of mine in Tatcha’s Camellia Beauty Oil. That oil Beauties, is an amazing treat! 💛💜 Another goodie is Josie Maran’s 100% Argan Oil. I haven’t reviewed it on the blog, but it’s a high quality Argan Oil that I can highly recommend.
That’s it Beauties! 6 steps. It’s a well rounded routine I think 😛 Advanced but not pedantic lol! It takes me no more than 5 minutes in the morning. You could of course skin the essence/toner step if you want to keep things as simple as possible… Some might also say that you can skip the facial mist/thermal water step but you know what… since using a mist morning and evening, I can’t imagine applying my serum or moisturiser to dry skin. Even the thought of doing that now send shivers up my spine LOL it just doesn’t give you the same comforting and pleasant feeling…. I really do think that once you start using a mist, you can’t go back. I can’t recommend it more highly enough!
One other note to make is that sunscreen is most certainly a ‘skincare’ step (and a mandatory one!) however, I want to do a new post soon, showing you my top three sunscreens of the moment. So that post is also on the way I promise 🤞
Some optional skincare products that I use in the mornings depending on how my skin is feeling is, facial oils. I use facial oils after my serum but before my moisturiser. I use facial oils maybe once or twice a week… usually when it’s feeling dry or ‘meh’. They turn up the ‘glow factor’ for sure! The secret to using oils is to not use too much. A few drops is all you need. Mist your skin with a facial mist or thermal water spray (even after applying your serum) and pat the facial oil into your skin for maximum absorption. I love the Jojoba Company’s 100% Australian Jojoba. I haven’t used jojoba in a long time and you know what, I think I miss it… so I’m going to look into getting a bottle of this gem again. Jojoba isn’t ‘technically’ an oil – but you use it in the same way and it’s excellent for oily and acne prone skin! Another favourite of mine in Tatcha’s Camellia Beauty Oil. That oil Beauties, is an amazing treat 💛💜🥰🥰
I think if I had to sum up what my daily skincare routine delivers it is, refreshed, protected (with antioxidants and hydrating emollients) plump skin! To me that equals healthy skin in the long term.
I hope you found this post informative and useful. If it’s inspired you to try something new, I’m glad! Feel free to ask any questions down below in the comments or to give us your recommendations.
Catch ya next time Beauties,