In case you didn’t know, skincare is crucial to any beauty routine. Not only does it benefit you in the short term but it also helps ensure that you age gracefully – which one of my life missions.
I have found that the most important part of building a skincare routine is all about finding balance.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked “What is a quick and simple skincare routine that you would recommend?” And the truth is, I don’t have an answer.
Why? Because I believe that, like anything, if you want to take care of something, even your skin, you need to be ready to commit and put in the time it takes to find out what products work for you and then build a routine around that.
It may seem daunting, but I’ve put together a skincare cheat sheet that will help you start (or tweak) your skincare journey and ensure that you don’t spend hours upon hours in front of your bathroom mirror.
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or a skincare professional. I am simply sharing my knowledge after spending years experimenting with different products.
If you have any skincare or allergy concerns please be sure to consult your family doctor or dermatologist before using any of these products. Also, if at any point you notice a reaction to a product, you should discontinue use immediately and seek medical attention.
Cleanse: You’re going to want to go in with a gentle cleanser. I like to use something with a light exfoliant to dislodge any remaining oils and makeup particles from my face. My pick Fresh Soy Makeup Removing Face Wash
Toner: This step is so important, and yet it’s a step that I know many people miss. Not only do toners serve to help tighten the pores against the impurities of the environment around you, but they also hydrate your skin. Remember – hydration is key to skincare! My Pick Fresh Rose & Hyaluronic Acid Deep Hydration Toner
Serums: My favourite serum (and secret weapon) is vitamin c serum. I use this every morning because it helps brighten my skin. The best part is that it gives the illusion that I’ve had a full 8 hours of sleep…even though I know the truth. My pick Caudalie Resveratrol Lift Firming Serum
Sunscreen: This is another step that I know many people skip and I cannot stress the importance of sunscreen enough! Not only does it protect your skin from the harmful UV sun rays, but it also helps prevent dark spots and protect skin from damage and aging. And yes, you still need to use sunscreen on cloudy days! Don’t be fooled by the sun hiding behind the clouds, you need the protection every single day.
So please, if you take only one thing away from today’s post, let it be that you NEED to wear sunscreen every day.
Make sure that it’s at least SPF 30 and make sure you don’t miss your neck! My picks La Mer The Broad Spectrum SPF 50 UV Protecting Fluid, Origins Plantscription™ SPF 25 Power Anti-Aging Cream, La Mer The Luminous Lifting Cushion Foundation SPF 20 + Refill
Moisturizer: Morning moisturizers should be lightweight, especially if you wear makeup or if you’re going to be busy throughout your day. You don’t want to use a heavy moisturizer at this point because not only will it increase your sweat production but it will also inhibit your makeup from properly adhering to your skin. My pick Caudalie Vinoperfect Brightening Moisturizer with Niacinamide, Wishful Honey Balm Niacinamide Moisturizer
Eye Cream: I love using eye cream in the morning to help waken and refresh my under eye areas. I use products that contain caffeine because it helps to plump the skin and give a youthful glow. My picks Kiehl’s Since 1851 Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado, Origins GinZing™ Refreshing Eye Cream to Brighten and Depuff
Pre-cleanse: This is the first step to removing my makeup after a long day. This removes all the makeup and oil buildup that has accumulated throughout the day. Doing this prepares your skin for cleansing and removes the biggest layer of buildup. My pick CLINIQUE Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm,
Cleanse: Next, you’re going to want to go in with a gentle cleanser. I like to use something with a light exfoliant to dislodge any remaining oils and makeup particles from my face.
For days when I wear light makeup or if I need to do a quick cleanse, I usually reach for my gel cleansers. My pick Fresh Sugar Strawberry Exfoliating Face Wash
Toner: Bringing toner into your evening routine is just as important as it’s morning use. By blocking out the impurities, it preps your skin and gets it ready to absorb all of the delicious vitamins you’re going to be using. My pick SK-II Facial Treatment Clear Lotion Toner
Serums: Now, this is where you get to have some flexibility and fun in your routine! Evening serums are your opportunity to play with different products and brands. I use at least two serums each night and use them to address whatever issues I’ve been noticing on my skin.
Remember, when layering your serums make sure that you go from thinnest to thickest so that they are all able to absorb into your skin. We’re going for maximum benefits here! My picks La Mer The Lifting Eye Serum, and Summer Fridays CC Me Vitamin C Serum
Anti-aging Products: When it comes to anti-aging products, the ones that help us prevent wrinkles and signs of aging, the key ingredient is Retinol.
Retinol can make skin extra sensitive so it is vital to ensure that you use a sunscreen every morning for that extra layer of protection. My picks The Ordinary Retinol 1% in Squalane, Josie Maran Argan Beta Retinol Pink Algae Serum
Moisturizer: Moisturizers can be one of the most difficult parts of building your skincare routine because so much of it depends on your skin type. I have normal to dry skin and I find that using a thick nighttime cream is the most beneficial for my skin since I’m in need of more hydration.
However, I’ve also found that oil-free, water-based moisturizers work well for all different skin types. My picks Fresh Mini Rose Deep Hydration Sleeping Mask, La Mer The Body Crème and La Mer Crème de la Mer Moisturizer Mini
Eye Cream: Evening eye cream is the perfect opportunity to use thicker products with anti-aging properties. Make sure that you look for something that contains Vitamin A because it helps stimulate your skin’s collagen production and helps both prevent and reduce the look of wrinkles. My picks La Mer The Eye Concentrate and La Mer The Eye Balm Intense
Face Masks: Use Day or Night
One of the best parts about face masks is that there is no specific time you should use them. They’re beneficial no matter when you’re able to fit them into your day. Sometimes, I enjoy doing mine mid-day when I’ve been busy running after Reign or if I need to de-stress.
For times when I need some real pampering, I will do a facemask in the evening. I’ll brew some tea, throw on my favourite Netflix series, and use a mask that requires more time.
Face masks are such a great pick-me-up and provide your skin with some extra hydration love. Some of my favorite masks are SK-II Pitera Facial Treatment Mask, Glow Recipe Watermelon + AHA Glow Sleeping Mask, La Mer The Lifting and Firming Mask, Caudalie Instant Detox Mask, La Mer Treatment Lotion Hydrating Mask, Tatcha Luminous Deep Hydration Lifting Mask, Shiseido Benefiance WrinkleResist24 Pure Retinol Express Smoothing Eye Mask and tarte SEA Pack Your Bags Undereye Patches
Also check out my DIY Facemask post.
Beauty skincare tools
Skincare tools are an extra source of pampering for my skin and there are a few I just can’t live without. My must haves are Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Pro Facial Steamer, Nurse Jamie NuVibe RX Amethyst Massaging Beauty Tool, Sephora Facial Razor
Face rolling is one of my favourite tools for my routine. Not only does it help in the absorption of face oils and serums but it also helps reduce the puffiness of my skin.
The gua sha or facelifting tool has been a magnificent addition to my skincare tools. Its main purpose lies in relieving facial jaw tension but it is also used for facial contouring. Mount Lai Gua Sha Facial Lifting Tool is my go to.
This beauty roller (Herbivore Jade De-Puffing Face Roller) is a game changer! I’ve been using it for years now and every morning it helps energize and invigorate my skin. It’s ability to soothe the skin is unmatched.