“Where Do I Start???” – How To Build A Skincare Routine

Oftentimes, I get wrapped up in talking about new beauty or skincare products – wrapped up enough that I’ll forget: some people are still figuring out how to build a basic skincare routine.

No shame in starting from scratch, & no such thing as a dumb question…so, after a few requests, here’s a very simple routine/top shelfie that you can use for guidance. Let’s do it!

First, let me just make it clear: my skin type is dry/sensitive. Products that work really well for my skin type may not work as well for someone with oily or combo skin. It’s hard to accurately determine your skin type online – always best to go to a dermatologist – but if you can’t make it to one, try this skin type quiz by Soko Glam, an online K-Beauty retailer. Remember: online quizzes won’t give you the most accurate results, but they can be a good place to start.

With that in mind, let me outline a simple 3-step routine. If you don’t want to spend a lot of time on your skin, but want to see some improvement, it’s a good place to start.

  1. Cleanse
  2. Tone
  3. Moisturize

At the end of the day (or beginning), it really comes down to these three steps. Cleanse your face to refresh/remove dirt, oil, & other “bad stuff.” Tone to brighten, hydrate, & purify. Moisturize to keep your skin soft & hydrated all day or all night. Remember, even if you have oily skin, you should be moisturizing. Not moisturizing the skin can cause dehydration – dehydrated skin usually leads to micro-abrasions, which can let in bacteria. This leads to breakouts & acne. So – no matter what skin type you have, make sure you’re moisturizing!

Some of you might already know the three step routine, & that’s great – but you might not know when or how to use serums & oils. Here’s how the three step routine would look plus serums & oils. Remember: you don’t have to use serums or oils; they’re a great way to up your skin care game if you’re not completely happy with how your skin is looking or feeling, but they’re not the must-haves (in my opinion).

  1. Cleanse
  2. Tone
  3. Serums – if you’re using several, work your way from most “watery” to most “gel-like.” In my experience, watery serums will sink in faster & easier if you put them right after a toner. Gel-like serums take a little longer to sink in, so they could use a little extra time…after you’ve finished with the watery serum(s)
  4. Oil – just like with serums, work your way from most diluted to most rich. Any oil will have a different texture & consistency than a serum; that’s why they’re categorized differently
  5. Moisturize

So that’s how you “up” your skin care game, if you’re already used to the three step method.

Without further ado, here are some of the products I use most often (as well as a few new ones). Almost all of them are under $30; there are two exceptions. Remember that you can get effective & affordable skin care products – these two qualities are not mutually exclusive!

Cleansers Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser, CLĒ Cosmetics Oxygen Foam Cleanser

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On the left: Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser. On the right: CLĒ Cosmetics Oxygen Foam Cleanser

As you can see by the rather banged-up bottles, these are the two cleansers I reach for most often. Let’s start with Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser, a product I’ve been using (& loving) for almost two years now. I love MJC because it’s such an effective non-foaming cleanser. Most foaming cleansers dry out my skin; Milky Jelly doesn’t lather up, but it does get rid of dirt & oil, just like any other cleanser would. The delicate floral scent is amazing, too. I like to use two pumps of it on dry skin in the morning, making sure to massage my face as I work the cleanser across my skin. It’s like a mini spa treatment – every single morning – & it only takes 2 minutes. I rinse off with luke-warm water, then move on to toner. Read my #MiniReview on Milky Jelly here!

As a bonus, here are some other options for non-foaming cleansers – for those of you who live in countries that Glossier doesn’t ship to, or for those of you who just aren’t interested in Milky Jelly:

Next up: CLĒ Cosmetics Oxygen Foam Cleanser: this is probably (okay, definitely) the only foaming cleanser I can use regularly without worrying about my skin drying out. I like to use this best in the evening – it does an amazing job of getting rid of any leftover makeup that my micellar water might have missed, & it’s admittedly very fun to use. When pushing down on the pump, a goopy substance similar in texture to Milky Jelly comes out (no scent!). Massage that over your face, & it quickly foams up. Leave on for 30-ish seconds, then wipe off with a damp towel, or rinse off with water (I prefer the latter). Most definitely the only foaming cleanser I can use without worrying about drying out my skin, even in the cold dry winter months. This cleanser is magic. Read my review of Oxygen Foam on CLĒ Cosmetic’s blog right here!

Toners

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On the left: Glossier Solution. On the right: Thayer’s Witch Hazel Alcohol-Free Lavender Witch Hazel Toner 

For a few years, I religiously used the Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs, & Rosewater – yup, the one that everyone used (& still uses). Although I’ve seen a lot of people complain about it online (not pure, makes them break out) I’ve never had an issue with it – I just eventually encountered options that were more my style. It took me a while to convert to “cotton pad toners,” as I like to call them (as opposed to a spray, like Mario Badescu) but the one that sold me was Thayers Alcohol-Free Lavender Witch Hazel Toner. I got it at Target for $11 in October – & I’m still on my first bottle. The alcohol-free option is really nice if you have sensitive skin, & lavender is especially soothing on my skin, so I was really happy when I saw that this was one of the few options left on the shelf. Witch hazel is a natural astringent, so it clarifies the skin – but it also soothes & reduces any inflammation that might be present. Also in the formula: aloe vera, plain old water, & glycerin – all calming & soothing for the skin. If you’re hyper-sensitive, Thayers has a non-scented version of their toner. If you still prefer spritz toners to cotton pad toners, Thayers now has a lot of their toners in spray bottle packaging – check them out here. Read my #MiniReview of this toner here!

(Side note: When using a cotton pad toner, I use Shiseido cotton pads. I know, I know – fancy…but seriously, they’re worth it. Even better, they’re actually quite affordable if you do it my way: cut them in half! Use one half for your morning routine & the other half for your evening routine. This way, you cut the cost in half, & you still feel all the benefits of using the Shiseido Facial Cotton (these truly are a huge upgrade from drugstore cotton rounds…trust me). If you have sensitive skin & feel like a lot of cotton pads/rounds are scratchy on your skin, these are for you. 

Another “toner” I’ve been incorporating into my routine: the latest from Glossier: Glossier Solution. This is the brand’s first release of 2018, & it’s been getting a lot of attention – it’s one of the first Glossier products that really focuses on clearing & brightening skin, as well as reducing acne/hormonal breakouts. Solution is a chemical exfoliant, meant to be used once a day in replacement of a toner. The AHA/BHA/PHA blend dissolves dead skin cells, brightens, softens, & refreshes skin, as well as reducing redness, acne, & breakouts. Read the full scoop here; first, though, let me say this: if you’re using Solution – or any other chemical exfoliant – wear sunscreen! When using any kind of chemical exfoliant (this one included) your skin is more sensitive to the sun. You should wear sunscreen no matter what, but if you’ve been guiltily ignoring that, it’s time to start protecting yourself – especially if you’re using a chemical exfoliant. I’ll give you some of my favorite options in a moment. Stay tuned.

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Heritage Store Rosewater & Glycerin

Finally – I mentioned that my first toner was a spritzer (by Mario Badescu). Here’s one that I’ve revisited & been really loving lately: the Heritage Store Rosewater & Glycerin. Think of it as the Mario Badescu Facial Spray…but make it purer. There are three ingredients in this: purified water, pure rose oil, & natural vegetable glycerin. If you’re worried about a cloying scent, worry no more. This has a very delicate, floral scent – similar to that of Glossier Milky Jelly. It’s described as “multi-purpose,” because it is. Use it for your hair, use it as a toner, use it as a setting spray, use it as a refresher when 3 pm hits & you still have a few hours to go (but your skin isn’t feeling it) – face, body, hair…go ham. Just don’t drink it. I haven’t used this for a minute, but I’ve been revisiting it – & I’ve appreciated it as a toner, a refresher, & a setting spray this past month. Oh – & it’s only $10. Find it online, in some Whole Foods, some Urban Outfitters, & perhaps even some Targets, if you’re lucky.

Serums 

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From left to right: Glossier Super Pure Serum, The Ordinary Vitamin C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2%, & Valjean Labs Hydrate Serum

Like I mentioned when talking about how to build up your skin care routine to something more complex or “fancy” – serums aren’t necessary, but they can be great ways to really improve the texture, tone, & even the health of your skin. I typically don’t wear more than two serums at once – because too much of anything is a bad thing – & I usually wear different serums at night than I do in the day. I won’t delve into that, because this is just about how to build a simple routine – so here are a few serums that I’ve been enjoying. Some are old favorites, others are new discoveries – but they’re all under $30, which is great. Let me start with the Valjean Hydrate Serum – I have a #MiniReview on this, which I’ll link here. If you’re just looking for a super quick review, though, here are my two cents on it: I liked the texture of Glossier’s Super Bounce Serum (another hyaluronic acid serum), but wasn’t seeing results that made the $28 price tag worth it to me. I tried The Ordinary’s Hyaluronic Acid serum (way cheaper) but like a bunch of their other serums, this one was tacky, dried down oddly, & I didn’t even feel like it was hydrating. Stumped, I kept hunting. I saw “Valjean Labs” pop up across a few photos on Instagram before I asked some friends about the serums, & I heard only good things. I got the Hydrate serum first – followed by Glow & Firm. I like Firm – it’s a hydrating & plumping serum that contains ferulic acid & Vitamin E – but I’m not a fan of Glow (a Vitamin C serum). It just didn’t really seem to do anything. So: Hydrate remains my favorite serum from Valjean. It’s a thin, watery texture, but doesn’t dry down tacky. It’s cooling & soothing – really helps reduce redness – & it feels like a cool drink of water for my skin. I use it morning & night. It layers under other serums/moisturizers really nicely, too. Pick it up for $15 at Urban Outfitters, or keep your eyes peeled at your local TJ Maxx – Valjean serums go for $4.99 at TJ.

Next up: an old favorite; an old friend: Glossier Super Pure Serum. The Glossier Supers hold a special place in my heart; Super Glow was the first serum I ever put on my face when the trio launched in fall of 2016. I’ve hopped back & forth between Super Pure & Super Glow as my favorites, but at this point I can confidently say that Super Pure is my favorite. This is a serum that is, in fact, worth the $28 price tag (for me). It calms redness & inflammation in the short-term; long-term, it reduces breakouts & just clarifies the skin overall. The water-gel consistency is not sticky or tacky; it doesn’t pill; it wears beautifully under makeup/moisturizers…I have no bad things to say. Check out my longer review here

Finally – a brand-new addition to my routine: The Ordinary Vitamin C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2%. It’s so new, in fact, that I’ve only used it twice so far. Before purchasing, I snooped around for some opinions, & immediately got some “NOOOO! IT IS SO SCRATCHY!” comments. Naturally, I was a bit scared when it arrived – but I’m glad I had that “background knowledge” of the texture of the serum before giving it a go myself, because it influenced the way in which I applied it. Obviously, I can’t give that big of a review, because I’ve only used it twice, but here are my first impressions: definitely the “oddest” serum I’ve used yet, mainly because it’s “water-free” – that means that it looks like a cream; maybe a runny moisturizer. The “scratchiness” comes from “dehydrated spheres” of hyaluronic acid, which “offer visible surface smoothing.” I wouldn’t call it scratchy; it doesn’t feel like a sugar/salt scrub; it feels more like someone put sand into a light moisturizer (I know that sounds odd). There’s no denying that it’s a bit abrasive, especially if I were to rub it into my face – but thanks to everyone’s warnings, I was able to avoid that situation. When applying, I put some on my fingertips, then gently press it into my skin. Wait a few minutes, & sure enough – the “dehydrated spheres” melted into my skin. Then, it’s simple: apply moisturizer, & be at peace. There’s no denying that it’s one of the oddest products I’ve tried so far, but I’m intrigued. The Ordinary has great prices, & it’s even more accessible, now that it’s being carried (online) at Sephora. I’ll be sure to keep you all posted.

Oils

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The Ordinary 100% Cold-Pressed Organic Rose Hip Seed Oil – good for all skin types 

I’m a fan of facial oils, but I’m not the biggest fan – basically, creams > oils in my opinion (& keep in mind: everyone’s skin is different). While creams are my priority, I found oils to be way more confusing, especially when first thinking about using one. Won’t it just make my skin greasy? Will I break out more? Why would you put oil on your face…?

The answer to the last question: there are many reasons for putting oil on your face, & if you remember that you’re not putting vegetable oil or bacon grease on your face – you’re putting rosehip oil, tea tree oil, marula oil & so on (all of which have their benefits) – the fear of breaking out or looking greasy will soon fade. Oils won’t make your face greasy – you just have to choose the right one. That depends on your skin type, & since I can’t tell every single one of you what your skin type is, I’d leave the serious oil recommendations to someone more qualified (ask a skin care consultant at Sephora, or go to your dermatologist, or just do some reading after you know a little more about your skin type), but I can tell you one oil that works really well for all skin types: rosehip!

Rosehip oil calms redness, reduces inflammation, & hydrates – of course. It’s lightweight, doesn’t feel heavy, sticky, or greasy, & it wears well under a cream. You can also put a little more on & forget a cream all together. One of the cheapest options out there is The Ordinary’s 100% Cold-Pressed Organic Rose Hip Seed Oil. Described as “a daily support formula for all skin types,” this oil is rich in various vitamins & fatty acids, all of which plumpen, hydrate, & boost skin’s circulation. It smells slightly floral, but I can hardly detect a scent. It’s not the highest-quality oil, but it’s under $10, I wouldn’t call it bad, & it’s a great way to experiment with facial oils without dropping a lot of money. Next on my list of things to try: Pai Skincare’s Rosehip BioRegenerate Oil, which has rave reviews on many platforms. It’s a step up from the $10, but from what I’ve seen, it looks to be worth it.

Moisturizers 

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On the left: Dr Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Cream. On the right: Glossier Priming Moisturizer Rich

Currently, I’m using two moisturizers: a day cream & a night cream. If you use one & your skin is happy – great! My dry/sensitive skin gets a little finicky, especially when it comes to hydration, so my skin most definitely appreciates the two different moisturizers I use.

For daytime, I use the Dr Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass CreamI held off for a very long time on buying this, mainly because I looked at the amount of product in the tube & rolled my eyes. I wouldn’t be forking over that amount for this little tube of cream…but then, I got it as a free sample with a Sephora order I made over winter break, & when I tried it out, I finally understood. This is an extremely dense cream; it’s almost like an ointment. This was worrying to me, at first: would it feel greasy? Would it clog my pores? The answer to both of these questions: nope! It most definitely doesn’t feel greasy, it certainly doesn’t clog my pores, & I’m glad I chose this sample, because by the time I ran out of the baby version, I was convinced that the full-size was truly worth it.

You need the tiniest amount – the tube looks like a tube of toothpaste, & that’s just about how much I use for my face: imagine that you’re putting a smear of toothpaste onto your toothbrush, & that should just about cover it for your whole face. I put the ointment between my fingertips to let it warm up a little, then gently press it into my skin. If I have the time, I’ll follow that up with a quick facial massage with my jade roller. If I don’t – I’m still good. The cream has really helped reduce any redness, which is something I struggle with (especially in the winter time). I would constantly complain about the dry area under my nose – not after a week of using this cream, though. January is one of the hardest months on my skin…& this year, I have zero dryness/irritation in my usual dry patches, my skin is relatively redness-free, & I get to use a very cool toothpaste-y product that smells like freshly-mown grass. Worth it? Definitely.

For night time, I use Glossier Priming Moisturizer Rich – a product I’ve been religiously using & refilling since Glossier put it up for sale in January 2017. Basically: I’ll never stop screaming about this (screaming in a good way). I’ve been through a few jars, but I don’t go through it outrageously quickly, because it truly is “rich.” “Rich,” yes. Oily? Not even a little bit. I have dry skin & love it; I know people with oily skin who love it equally. People in the middle? Yup, PMR has your back, too. Red algae reduces redness, lavender makes you feel like you’re in an aromatherapy session, & the cream has this incredible buttercream texture that’s addicting. Every night, I smooth a little spoonful (I use the NIOD Stainless Steel Spoon to keep my creams sanitary) into my skin, I massage my face with my hands &/or my jade roller, & then I sink into my pillows with a sigh of relief. It’s the perfect way for me to end my day.

Sunscreens

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On the left: Glossier Invisible Shield. On the right: Dr. Jart+ Every Sun Day UV Sunscreen 

One of the most important – but one of the most ignored – steps in a skincare routine is protecting your face from the sun. Even if you don’t work outside…even if you’re not going for a long walk…even if you live in a country where you don’t see much sunlight during the winter…you should still be wearing sunscreen. UV rays cause long-term damage, & you might not ever feel a sunburn – but you may still be at risk for skin cancer if you don’t take the proper steps to protect yourself. That sounds like a threat, but it’s just me saying be careful! You can greatly reduce the risk of skin cancer simply by throwing on some sunscreen every single day.

The two I swear by are Glossier Invisible Shield (SPF 35) & Dr. Jart+ Every Sun Day UV Sunscreen Broad Spectrum (SPF 50). These products are quite different from one another, though ultimately, they both do a good job of protecting your skin from harmful sun exposure.

What’s the difference? The Glossier sunscreen is a chemical sunscreen; the Dr. Jart+ sunscreen is a physical sunscreen. “Chemical” sounds scary in most situations, but just as is the case with “chemical exfoliation,” “chemical sunscreen” is not dangerous or harmful for your skin. It just operates in a different way than “physical sunscreen.”

Chemical sunscreens contain organic, carbon-based compounds which create a chemical (hence the name) reaction, changing UV rays into heat, then releasing that heat from the skin. No – you won’t get burned, & no – it doesn’t feel hot upon application. Don’t worry.

Physical sunscreens like the Dr. Jart+ one contain active mineral ingredients, also referred to as physical blockers (again – hence the name). Most commonly, the physical blockers are titanium dioxide or zinc dioxide – that’s what gives physical sunscreen its famous (or, if you’re like me, infamous) scent. These blockers sit on top of the skin, deflecting & scattering UV rays away from the skin.

So – which do I prefer? Personally, after I tried a chemical sunscreen, I heavily lean towards that side of the spectrum. Most physical sunscreens feel very sticky & heavy on my skin & I’ve broken out from quite a few. Most don’t wear very well under makeup for me, either. I prefer the gel-like texture of a chemical sunscreen. Also – it’s much easier to reapply, since you don’t have to massage it into the face as intensely as you might have to with a physical sunscreen – chemical sunscreens leave no white cast on the skin, which is another bonus.

Still, I really like the Dr. Jart+ one. After I started taking immunosuppressive drugs that make my skin even more sensitive to sun, my mama & I panicked & looked for the most powerful & best sunscreen out there. SPF 50 is pretty much as high as you can get, & this Dr. Jart+ option is probably my favorite physical sunscreen. It’s very lightweight, it lacks that odd scent that so many physical sunscreens have, & it doesn’t feel greasy or sticky – doesn’t break me out, either. If you’re not into chemical sunscreens, this is a physical sunscreen that I truly do like. The price isn’t half bad, either – especially for a Dr. Jart+ product.

As for the Glossier Invisible Shield – like I said, I now prefer chemical sunscreens, after having tried both, & this one is a great choice. Recently, Glossier reduced the price to $25, which I feel is a much fairer price than the original $34. In my opinion, there isn’t enough product in the Invisible Shield bottle to justify spending $34 on it; now, with the adjusted price, I can give Invisible Shield 5 stars without feeling like it’s just a biiiit too expensive to rate so highly. I use about 3-4 pumps, & gently swipe the gel over my face after I’ve finished moisturizing (but before I’ve applied makeup). I let it sit for a few moments; it has a cooling sensation which is really soothing. I like the citrus-y scent, too.

A lot of people ask what the best amount of SPF is. Most dermatologists agree that anything between SPF 30 & SPF 50 is going to give you the same results. SPF 50 isn’t really going to give you more protection than SPF 30 – in fact, some people get less protection even while wearing SPF 50, since they feel like they don’t need to apply as much product. No matter what, be sure to reapply sunscreen if you’re spending periods of time outside, & don’t stress about SPF 50 working better (or worse) than SPF 35 or SPF 40. In the end, as long as it’s over 30, you’re good. Stay protected!!!

Spot Treatments 

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Oh – almost forgot about this very important category. For a while, I was a non-believer. It seemed as though everyone swore by the Mario Badescu Drying Lotion; I’d given it a few goes & hadn’t seen anything special. Overnight results? Sounded unrealistic…& I never got that from the Drying Lotion.

For the past 7-8 months, I’ve been using & loving the Origins Super Spot Remover. It’s a clear gel spot treatment, which is nice – it sinks into the skin instead of rubbing off on your pillowcase (sound familiar?). It can also be worn under makeup, which, again: something the Drying Lotion cannot do.

When I ran out of my second little tube of the Origins treatment, I headed to grab a refill – only to see that it was sold out both online & in store. A Sephora employee redirected me to the Tarte Blemish Bully Acne Spot Treatment – same consistency, same texture, same end results. The formula seems to be essentially the same; I did notice that the Tarte formula contains caffeine, though, which is nice – it aids in depuffing whatever area you’re trying to target. I’ve been using it for about a week now, & have no complaints thus far. It seems to work just as well as the Origins treatment, & you get a little more product for the same amount, too. I’ll see how this one lasts in the long run, but for now…I’m liking it. Side note: the Origins spot treatment is now back in stock on Sephora’s website. 

Sometimes, one product just doesn’t work – if I’m really having a problem blemish (or two) I’ll layer two products: first, a thin layer of the gel spot treatment – in the past, Origins; currently, Tarte. After the gel has dried down, I’ll pat a small amount of Mario Badescu Drying Cream on top. That’s right – cream, not lotion. They are two different products. The Drying Lotion is the one you see most often: the pink sediment at the bottom of a vial of clear liquid. The Drying Cream is a yellow-beige paste that comes in a little jar. Described as “a unique spot treatment featuring sulfur,” the Drying Cream is ideal for under-the-surface bumps as well as good old blemishes. Sulfur & zinc oxide draw out impurities, but ingredients like aloe vera & Vitamin E ensure that you won’t wake up with a painful dry patch of skin where your blemish used to be. This does transfer, so if you wear it overnight, just be aware that some might rub off on your pillowcase. It’s worth it, though – I can’t say that this combo always works overnight, but it comes pretty damn close.

Well – that’s the finale! If you’re new to skincare, I hope I helped you figure things out a little more; maybe you have something to work with now. It can be very overwhelming when starting to be “serious” about skincare or makeup, simply because there are so many products. I can’t say that all of these will work as well for you as they do for me, but I hope I help at least a few of you. What’re some of your holy grail skincare items – whether you’re new or old to the skincare game?

Catch you next time! Let’s talk about face masks next, shall we?

Love,

Sofia ❤

High & Low – My Favorites of Each

We all know that some high-end skin care really isn't all that. At least, I know it…I hope you do. We've all seen beauty gurus doing their "hot or nots" on Youtube, trying out $200 face primers, $100 face masks, & $60 lip balm by La Mer (Jackie Aina says it's not worth the money; I'll trust her).

All that sounds super appealing – I mean, the thought of putting a gold leaf sheet mask on my face just because of the aesthetic concept. But…I know that some of my dirt-cheap, K-Beauty face masks will do more than any gold leaf ever could. I know that oftentimes, I'm just paying for packaging when I buy a higher-end product. However…there are some that are worth the money, just like there are some that are not. I'm going to give two of my top high end skin care products, & two of my top low-end skin care products – & provide reasons as to why they're worth it, or why they're so cheap & still so good. Read on!

Drunk Elephant Babyfacial – $80

 

I've purchased this only once (in early March) & I am not close to being finished with it – even so, I know I will be buying it again. One of the reasons I'll be buying it again is because I'm still not done with it! A high-end product's longevity is a huge concern for me. Yeah…the full-size Caudalie Beauty Elixer is beautiful & wonderful & I adore how cooling it is on my skin – but I cannot drop $50 on a facial spray, no matter how much I love it (I get the $18 travel size when I want to give my skin a special treat). So, since I only need 2-3 pumps of the Babyfacial – not more than two times a week – I can justify the $80 price tag.

Also: the Babyfacial has drastically improved my skin, & continues to do so. It's a powerful, effective detox – I always have softer, clearer skin after using it, & despite my sensitive skin, I've never gotten a bad reaction to it (like a burn or a rash). Plus, Drunk Elephant's super hygienic packaging (Babyfacial comes in an airtight container that doesn't expose it to the light) is just one more reason for my immunosuppressed skin to love it. I'm not ashamed to say I bought the Babyfacial, & I'm not ashamed when I say I will continue to buy it. This stuff lasts, it's effective, &…yes, it has beautiful, pale-pink packaging.

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Saturday Skin Wide Awake Brightening Eye Cream – $46

Eye creams don't really…work on me. I have dark circles constantly – thanks anemia! – which I'm not really bothered about. I think they give dimension & contour to my face & have come to accept, even love them. However, what I do not accept or love about my under-eye area is the puffiness I wake up with in the morning. This is all thanks to late nights – thanks chronic pain! Thanks anxiety! – & even though I tried a couple eye creams before this one, they didn't do anything to help my puffiness. Sure, my skin under my eyes was softer…but that didn't make me look any less sleep-deprived.

Literally the next morning after I used this cream for the first time, I woke up with absolutely zero puffiness. Yes, I was still tired, & grumpy, & wanted to get back in bed – but it didn't look like I felt that way. I was truly shocked. I don't expect most products to work overnight; I understand that sometimes, skin takes a while to get used to/garner full effects of a product…but this one wasted no time. Now, I use the Saturday Skin cream every night, paired with the Milk Makeup Cooling Water Stick (also a great product that I adore – just not truly categorized as "high end") & (eventually) fall asleep, content with the knowlege that no matter how tired I am when I wake up, I sure as hell won't look that way. This will keep being refilled on my top shelf. Thank you x 10 to Saturday Skin for keeping me looking fresh!

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Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs, and Rosewater – $8 or $12

Truly ride or die. This isn't just good because it's cheap…it's good because it's good. I have backups of this absolutely everywhere; I use it as a toner, as a light hair fragrance, as a refresher in the middle of the day when I'm feeling parched & dull, & as a setting spray. It's so multipurpose, so effective, works for all skin types – & you can purchase it in the tiniest little 1 oz. bottle (at Ulta's checkout) for your weekend getaway for $5, in the 4 oz. version for $8, or the jumbo 8 oz. bottle for $12. I have it in all three. You'll always catch one in my purse, two on my top shelf (one for a backup, one for use) & probably another tiny one in my bag – just in case. Are you afraid it's going to smell like your grandma's potpourri? Don't be – it's fresh, light, & absolutely not grandma-y. No offense to grandma. Mario has treated me better than any man ever has – & he'll be here with me til the day I die.

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The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10% – $6.79

You know the Sunday Riley Good Genes Lactic Acid Treatment? The one that costs $105 for 1 oz.? Try this lactic acid, instead. You get 1 oz. for $6.79. No, it's not as good as the Sunday Riley – but it's nearly as good, & is more than 10 times cheaper for the same amount of product. The 5% version made Into The Gloss'sBeauty Editor's May Favorites article – I initially used the 5%, then worked my way up to 10%. I can't say that the 10% is significantly better than the 5% (10% does tingle more & sometimes I wake up with brighter, clearer skin than when I used the 5%, but it's hard to tell whether it's that product or just chance)…but I can say that they both work beautifully as a chemical exfoliant – even on my poor, dry, sensitive skin. Seriously, it's amazing. Just ignore the smell…some call it "maple syrup," some call it "burnt plastic" (I'm team "burnt plastic") & some say, oh so eloquently, "ass but it still works really well so I don't care" (thanks to one of my followers for giving me that priceless description). Regardless of what you think it smells like, this stuff works. Give it a chance; I don't think you'll be let down. In general, try all of The Ordinary's products – you won't break your bank, & you won't be let down. You might even be let up.

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There you have it! Two things I'm unashamed to say I love (& why) & two things that, even if a higher-end brand has something similar, I'll politely pass on & continue to use my cheap, effective, good products.

Remember – a high price tag does not mean a product will be life-changing! Oftentimes you might just be paying for a name, for packaging, & just because some pricing markups are ridiculous. Don't feel bad about not getting that $60 La Mer lip balm. I'm happy with my $12 Balm Dotcom.

Love,

Sof ❤

Get 20% off any Drunk Elephant purchase here, & get $10 off a $50 purchase from Peach and Lily here!

“We Know You’re a Rep…What Do You REALLY Like?? Are You Fake About Glossier?”

As you know, I’m a rep for Glossier! That means that when you shop with me, you’re not only getting products that you (hopefully) like, you’re also helping me out! I get a percentage of the sales…which helps me buy different products to review for all of you, get some Starbucks (you probably know my order) &, yes, gives me the opportunity to have a job! I’m chronically ill, & my current physical condition makes it pretty much impossible for me to work retail, food service, or any other job that requires standing, shifts, etc. So this is a wonderful opportunity for me to earn money, for something about which I’m so passionate: skin care, & healthy skin!

But since I’m a rep for Glossier, that means that I might be pushing you guys to buy things that I might not even like…just because I get paid for it. That’s a totally reasonable suspicion. All the YouTube scandals about beauty gurus talking about products that are bad quality because they have affiliate codes have raised suspicion among customers.

HOWEVER. I knew all of this coming into the Glossier Rep Program. I’d been using Glossier for about a year (with my own money) by the time I was accepted into the program in April. I already knew what I liked, & what I didn’t like. & I have shared that on social media before! I am very careful to tell you guys what I love, & what I think you could pass on (depending on your skin type).

Also, since everyone’s skin is different, that means that the same product (Glossier or otherwise) might work completely differently on someone else’s skin. For example, I have friends who rave about Glossier’s Face Mist. They can’t get enough of it. I prefer my Mario Badescu facial spray! I have friends who hate Super Pure Serum…Super Pure is my absolute favorite Glossier serum! I’ve seen beauty bloggers say Glossier’s sunscreen made them red & irritated when that wasn’t the case for me.

My point? Everyone has different opinions about the same product! That’s because everyone’s skin is different. I never post about the Glossier products I don’t like…because I don’t like the way they work for me! At the same time, I’ll see someone else post about the product I don’t like, raving about it. Do I think they’re being “fake?” Honestly, no. I try to see the best in everyone, & it’s very possible that that person truly does like that product…because, again – everyone’s skin is different.

So, without further ado, here are my all-time favorite Glossier products (some skin care, some makeup) that I will unashamedly blast my love for. Because they’re affordable, they’re pretty, & they work for me. Have a different opinion? That’s absolutely fine! We’re all different, & not everything works for everyone. But here’s the things that I love – & I hope that you’ll give them a try, & love them too. (Side note: Glossier’s GTeam is very responsive, helpful, & will always let you return a product you don’t like. Once, I mistakenly ordered two Balm Dotcoms & asked for a refund for one so I could return it. They just told me to keep the extra, & refunded me anyway. Say what you like about Glossier…but that’s good customer service.)

Milky Jelly Cleanser 

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My introduction to “Skin Is In.” This is probably…scratch that. I don’t even know how many bottles I’ve used, actually. 
The product that started it all for me. Milky Jelly was my first introduction to a non-foaming cleanser. I was super skeptical – aren’t cleansers supposed to foam to get dirt off? – but I changed my tune about a week later, when I saw softer, clearer, more moisturized skin. No more feeling tight, & a whole lot less blemishes – probably because the cleanser I’d been using before was too dry, causing micro abrasions – which, as you know, are an invitation for bacteria to set up camp on your face. It smells floral, but isn’t stuffy, & the velvety texture is addictive. It removes makeup, including mascara (as long as it isn’t waterproof) & can be used on wet & dry skin. It lasts a good while, even if you use it twice a day (like I usually do). I use two pumps in the morning, two pumps in the evening, & it lasts me 1.5-2 months (I always have backups, though. Because I’m paranoid). I wish they had a travel size, because it’s too big to take with me on flights…but I just use a little container & pump some in. Infinite love for this tubby little bottle.

Boy Brow

Even Glossier haters can’t say sh*t about this one…boy brow was truly a game changer, was in every single fashion magazine when it came out, had a waitlist at one point because Glossier couldn’t keep it in stock, & continues to be their number one best-seller. When I first purchased boy brow, (my second Glossier purchase) I got it in brown. Now, they added another shade – clear – which I also love. I use clear when I just want to keep my brows in place with no added color, & brown when I really want my caterpillars to stand out. This goes on my face even if I’m wearing nothing else.

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#BoyBrow. No matter what.
Super Pure Serum

Part of the trio that makes up “The Supers” Super Pure has been my favorite since The Supers became available in September 2016. It’s perfect for my dry, sensitive skin – although it keeps my skin clear & reduces blemishes that I might have, its gel-like texture is soothing enough to reduce redness & doesn’t dry out my skin whatsoever. If you have dry but acne-prone skin, this serum is a great, great choice.

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Almost out of this bottle! I have a backup.
Mask Duo

I purchased these pretty early on in my Glossier “adventures.” They looked really appealing, & I liked the concept of using both at once: multi-masking, as I learned in one of Glossier’s “Get Ready With Me” videos on YouTube. Both of these masks have served me well. The Mega Greens Galaxy Pack Mask is a detoxing mask, made of clay, described as “a juice cleanse for your face.” It soaks up impurities, reduces redness, but isn’t too drying. Even if it is, though, the Moisturizing Moon Mask is the perfect follow-up. It also reduces redness, soothes skin, & can even be used as an overnight mask for extra moisture. It makes me look super dewy, & I love the smell – it’s like fresh yogurt, in the best possible way. The cute galactic doodles on the packaging also make them a pretty addition to your top shelf collection.

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Galaxy, moon, & planet doodles on the Mask Duo packaging.

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Descriptions, & the amount you get – 3 fl oz. for each mask.

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A closer look at the texture. Mega Greens is a soft clay; Moon is a yogurt-like texture (& smells like it, too).
Priming Moisturizer Rich

I squealed when Glossier released this moisturizer in January 2017. I live in the Midwest, where we have cold, dry, harsh winters. My dry skin does not take kindly to it, & I’m hard-pressed to find a moisturizer that keeps me from being painfully dry, red, & flaky during the winter. I found it with PMR. On my favs list on my rep page, I cannot get enough of PMR, especially during the winter. It feels like a super expensive, luxury cream, but only rings in at $35 – a good deal when no other cream except a $65 sample from Sephora does the job. This lasts a long time – I just ran out of my first jar (which was purchased in January) & am now on my second. I used it as a day & night cream during the dry winter, but now use a lighter moisturizer for the day as it’s hot & the air has more moisture. I still use it as my night cream, though – the smell is super fresh & soothing, I feel baby soft every time I apply it, & it reduces my redness I get around my nose. I bow down to PMR.

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Luxury packaging, luxury feel – but only $35. I’ll take it. 
Cloud Paint in Beam

I hate blush. I truly hate it. With my super-fair skin, I feel like it never looks good – just clownish. The only blush I owned before Glossier released their Cloud Paint blushes in early spring was NARS Orgasm – mostly because of the name, I’ll admit it. It was pretty…but I was just so scared of putting on too much, & “looking a clown.” I usually would use it as an eyeshadow, & sometimes, hands shaking, would dare to slightly tap it onto the apples of my cheeks. Thankfully, NARS Orgasm is sheer, & shimmery, so it could always pass as a pink-y highlight if I made a few missteps.

Cloud Paint, however, changed my blush game. When they first came out, I ordered Puff, thinking that the rosey pink would suit my pink undertones best. When it came, I tried it on, &, yes! It was lovely. But I ended up getting all four, & when I put on Beam, I knew it was the one for me. Fun fact: my second favorite is Haze…both are the shades I got last, thinking I would like the least. Glossier got me once again.

This blush is the perfect summer shade – something that even I can’t mess up. It’s super sheer, but also very buildable; you can put on as much or as little as suits you. I like tapping a little bit onto the apples of my cheeks, blending into my highlight, & then – my favorite trick – put some on the bridge of my nose, & blend that out as well. It makes me look like I’ve been in the sun for a bit, minus the sun-damage & sweat.

I never thought I’d say I like an orange-y peachy coral shade for a blush. & yet, here I am, singing the praises of Cloud Paint in Beam. There’s a reason this sold out before all the other Cloud Paints: it looks good on everyone. Even me, your local Snow White.

Lip Gloss

Every holiday season, Glossier comes out with a limited edition “holiday set.” This past year, that was the Black Tie Set, featuring Phoebe Tonkin, & including a #glossierpink nail polish, a Haloscope highlight in a limited shade Moonstone (now permanently available), an eyeliner, a black ribbon (hence “Black Tie”) &, yes, the Clear Lip Gloss.

There was a whole clamor to get the set, which cost $50, which I just didn’t have at the time, so I wistfully sighed over the lip gloss & highlight, & watched them disappear (nail polish, I miss you too).

Luckily, both are now available! I was excited when Moonstone became part of the permanent Haloscope shades, along with Quartz & Topaz, but I was especially excited when Glossier started hinting that their lip gloss might be making a return.

I was tired of the matte lip trend, tired of liquid lipsticks, & super tired of having to scrape paint off my lips whenever I did decide to go along with the current trend – so now that lip gloss was a thing, I jumped on the bus, & so did my dry lips. Besides…the packaging is gorgeous.

It’s simple, but…gorgeous. I like to call it the lava lamp of lip glosses. It’s clear (with a slight pink tint, but appears clear on the lips), oh-so-glossy, not sticky, not sparkly, & so moisturizing that I sometimes wear it as a lip mask at night. This isn’t an oily gloss that leaves lips parched. This stays for hours, fades gracefully (since it’s clear), & never, ever dries out my lips. I’m in love with it. I’m never going to be without it, ever again.

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The signature “G,” a minimalistic packaging, a pink tint to the bottle, & those oh-so-satisfying bubbles. 

And there you have it. Those are my favorite Glossier products I’ve tried, ever. But also the haloscopes. &….the skin tint…maybe the stretch concealer?? But I promised you my absolute favorites. & these are it. For now. Maybe they’ll change, as Glossier continues to expand, & release more products that will steal my heart. But I doubt any product will replace Boy Brow, & although I’ve found other facial cleansers & serums that I like…you will always find these on my top shelf. & you’ll always find a Boy Brow on my makeup table (& one in my bag). Same goes for the lip gloss. & I use those masks at least once a week! (If you don’t believe me, follow me on Instagram, & watch my stories.)

But seriously…I know that there’s a lot of skepticism out there about Glossier reps, & whether we truly love the products we rave about. I can’t speak for all of us! But speaking for myself, I only share the Glossier products with you that I truly love, & that have truly worked for me. I’m not going to write a hate article about the products I don’t like as much, because other people love them! Everyone’s skin is different, & everyone has a different goal. That’s fine; great, even! But these are my personal favorites at the time that I type this, & I have no shame in sharing them with every single one of you.

That being said…shop with me at Glossier! Try out some of these products that I love…or, if all of these make you wrinkle your nose, try something else. We’re all different! & that’s a beautiful thing.

Love,

Sof ❤

#TopShelfie: What I Love, What I Hate, and What I Make an “Eh” Sound About

I first posted my Into The Gloss-inspired #TopShelfie on Instagram and Tumblr, but decided to make a more in-depth post about it on here! This covers some new products I have been trying out lately as well as some old favs/holy grails! Yes–some of them will be Glossier…of course. But I’ve got a lot of other things too 🌤so go ahead and take a peek!

(P.S. some products pictured in my #TopShelfie won’t be talked about here, & some products that aren’t pictured in my #TopShelfie will be talked about here. I’ve provided links to all the products, & there are some discounts at the bottom for all of you! <3)

  • Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser – I have to start off with this product. Other than Balm Dotcom, it’s the first Glossier product I gave a go. I was extremely skeptical of a “non-foaming cleanser” a year ago…but it’s stood the test of time, & countless bottles later, my skin is clearer, softer, & always smells slightly of flowers. I always have loved it, I always will, & I can’t live without it. The non-foaming formula actually saved my sensitive skin–most foaming cleansers strip my dry skin of any moisture– & I continue to sing its praises even though I’ve already recommended it so many times.
  • Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs, & Rosewater – this is truly the holy grail of toners for me–AND it’s so so so inexpensive compared to most other toners. I love it so so much; I’ve tried a lot of toners but honestly, this one has to be the best. I don’t think I’ll ever find a better one. I have the big size, the normal size, & the tiny tiny travel size. It’s also a great way to keep cool during the summer–I just spritz it all over my face when I’m feeling a bit sticky.
  • Milk Makeup Matcha Solid Toner – so apparently this is the world’s first solid toner, which is pretty cool! It pairs with a matcha cleanser as well (you have to buy them separately). I personally wouldn’t use the cleanser daily as it’s a bit too exfoliating for my sensitive skin…but I LOVE the toner. It majorly reduces redness (most green tea products do) & both are great options for traveling because they’re solid so you avoid the whole TSA inconvienience.
  • Saturday Skin Wide Awake Brightening Eye Cream – i have dark circles but don’t mind those; i DO mind that i wake up with puffy eyes & literally the first day i tried this & woke up looked in the mirror the puffiness was gone. it worked right away for me, no waiting period! Love, love, LOVE. Saturday Skin kindly sent this to me, but I already know I will be purchasing one myself when this one runs out!
  • Dr Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Color Correcting Treatment with SPF 30 – I LOVE THIS SO MUCH! It was a splurge for me…but I don’t really like the feel of face makeup anymore; this is the perfect thing for people who don’t like that feeling. I little goes a very long way, so it’ll last me a good while. It looks green in the container, but adjusts to your skin tone when you apply it on your face, kind of like a CC cream. It’s especially great for getting rid of redness, & also has SPF 30 in it….major bonus for my extremely sun-sensitive skin. It smells like freshly mown grass, which some may find odd, but I really like it! for those who do like face makeup, but also like to color correct, this can be used under makeup too! It’s very multipurpose.
  • Anese Slay Serum – I have only used this ONCE. Just once. I woke up the next morning with incredible glowy dewy skin. It’s super hydrating & very concentrated. You probably need only 2-3 drops for your whole face.
  • Glossier Invisible Shield Sunscreen SPF 35 – Yup, the one everyone’s been yelling bout! I don’t care…my skin loves it & so do I. I have had no problems & have been using it almost daily for a good 14-16 days now. I think chemical sunscreen scares a lot of people, just like the word “acid” does. Neither are necessarily harmful! It’s about different formulations & different ingredients. Some prefer chemical, some prefer physical. I like both, as long as they don’t break me out, or leave a white, sticky cast. This one does neither. It sinks into my skin very well–so well that I feel like it could double as a primer! Overall, a 9/10. The only thing I have to say is that I wish it’d last a bit longer. (For those who prefer a physical sunscreen, see the next two products)
  • Dr Jart+ Every Sun Day UV Sunscreen SPF 50 – This is a physical sunscreen–so for those of you who aren’t interested in chemical ones, it’s a great option; it doesn’t leave a white cast on me (although…keep in mind I’m very pale, so it might leave one on others with deeper skin tones) & doesn’t smell sunscreen-y. It does contain titanium dioxide & zinc, which is normal for a physical sunscreen. If your skin doesn’t like those ingredients obviously stay away!
  • Glossier Super Pure Serum – Another holy grail. I will never stop buying this. It’s my favorite thing to use in the morning, since I often wake up with redness around my nose. This gets rid of it very quickly, & also reduces breakouts/maintains my skin’s clarity. Love!
  • Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum – Okay. This one’s super expensive. A friend who didn’t like the smell gave it to me (I really don’t mind products that have an odd smell as long as they do the job!) & I tried it a couple days in a row. The first day, I got a little irritation since it’s SUPER concentrated (most Drunk Elephant serums are) but by day 3 my skin was brighter, firmer, & more glowy. Like I said, I got this for free! But i am seriously considering buying it myself once I run out. Also: a little goes a long way because like I said, it’s super concentrated. (P.S.: the smell i can only describe as being kind of smoky? That’s weird to say but if you want more detail about it I’d read Sephora reviews or Drunk Elephant website reviews about it!)
  • Drunk Elephant T.L.C. Sukari Babyfacial – Also expensive. This was the first Drunk Elephant product I purchased…but boy am I glad I did. This lives up to all of the hype it has. I’d never heard of “masques” (aka a treatment for any skin condition you want to take care of, usually made up of ingredients like clay, algae, essential oils, carrier oils, herbs and vitamins) before this one, & so of course I got a sample from Sephora before purchasing (with a discount) from the actual Drunk Elephant website (hack-if you use the code at the end of this post, you’ll be able to get this $80 product for $65). After two uses, I was hooked. The Babyfacial makes your skin softer, smoother, & gets rid of bumps & texture. It burns a bit when you apply it, but that’s totally normal. You’re only supposed to use it once a week, since it’s high in AHA levels. (This also makes you more sensitive to sun, so make sure!!!! You use sunscreen when using a product like Babyfacial) Anyway…I will absolutely be repurchasing & repurchasing the Babyfacial. It’s a unique product that works extremely well for all skin types.
  • The Ordinary Lactic Acid 5% – SUPER cheap. I love this because i got one of the 100 point Sephora samples of the Sunday Riley Good Genes lactic acid treatment & really liked it…buuuutttt didn’t have $125 to drop on the product. So, I did some research & found The Ordinary’s lactic acid. They also have a 10% version, but they recommend you start with 5%, even if you don’t have sensitive skin. I really like what it’s done for my skin. It helps retexturize & clarify, just like the Good Genes! It does have a weird smell (someone said it smelled like burned plastic; but like I’ve said, I don’t mind a smell as long as it works) & can be a bit tacky on your face. It can also can be a bit drying, so I definitely recommend you use a GOOD moisturizer afterwards. Overall?? I really, really like it & it’s helped me out a lot. It just makes my skin more transluscent & clear. I’m considering trying the 10% version once my 5% is out! We shall seeeeeee.
  • Glossier Priming Moisturizer Rich – Cannot live without it. You’ve all heard me scream about it God knows how many times. As it got warmer & more humid, I was worried it was going to clog my pores like a lot of richer creams do. Nope! Still works well, still reduces redness. I love my PMR!
  • Sunday Riley U.F.O. Ultra-Clarifying Face Oil – This product has a special place in my heart. It’s the first truly expensive skincare product I ever purchased. Granted, it was purchased with Christmas money, but still. I’d been complaining to a friend about the condition of my skin, & she immediately sent me a link to the UFO. I almost had a heart attack over the price, but I tried a few Sephora samples & finally caved. It was worth it. Super clarifying, smells like a forest, is bright green (which is cool) & clarifies your skin without burning it or drying it out. Another great fact: Sephora started selling a smaller size for $45 as well as the full size which is $80. If you’re unsure about the product, go for the smaller size. It’ll still last you forever (I’m not even half done with mine) & you won’t be dumping a pile of money on a product you’re not sure about. As of late, it’s known to be used by Harry Styles. So…I mean……if that isn’t reason to buy it…..not sure what is.
  • Origins Super Spot Remover – I always whine about spot treatments claiming to work overnight when they actually don’t. For me, this one really does work overnight. The bottle/vial is small for a $15 product, but you only need a tiny tiny drop. I feel like it’ll last a long time. Besides, if it works overnight, I’m happy to spend $15 on it.
  • Origins A Perfect World SPF 40 Age Defense Moisturizer With White Tea – It is classified as an age defense moisturizer,  so you probably don’t NEED it if you’re a young person. However, this was sent to me by Origins so I decided to give it a try. Initially, I was a little iffy about it since it’s a cream PLUS an SPF which could potentially make it heavy, sticky, or both. However, I’ve used it overnight a multiple times by now & haven’t had any issues with breakouts. The smell is also very fresh, almost therapeutic, which I really like! I was also doubtful about using it in the day time, as it seemed kind of heavy for day. At the same time, however, I felt like it is INTENDED for the day since it contains SPF. I didn’t know what to feel about it, but gave it a go. No complaints, no breakouts. It’s not my absolute favorite cream ever, but I like that it didn’t feel heavy or sticky during the day or night, & it’s a great option for when you don’t feel like adding the sunscreen step to your routine.
  • CLĒ Cosmetics Oxygen Foam CleanserI love this for the evening. This is seriously the only foaming cleanser I can use without feeling like my skin has been stripped of all its moisture. It’s very soothing & I like watching it bubble up on my face! I don’t know how they managed to make such a soothing cleanser that was also foaming, but they certainly did that. I thought they sold all of CLĒ at Ulta, but they don’t sell this cleanser; just their other cleanser which is a non-foaming one. However, you can buy the Oxygen Foam Cleanser on CLĒ’s website, as well as a bunch of other really cute cosmetics (most of them with SPF inclusion, which is great) so I highly recommend checking them out!
  • Tonymoly Makgeolli Sheet Masks – I really don’t have a problem with any of the Tonymoly masks because they all work very well. However, when I want my skin to clear up, these always have my back. Their rice sheet masks are also clarifying, but the makgeoli version works best for me! It makes my skin more transluscent, doesn’t dry me out, & reduces redness. Magic, & super cheap.
  • Origins Retexturizing Mask with Rose Clay – another magical Origins product. I got the travel size one as a 100 point Sephora reward, and I cannot wait to run out & purchase the full-size as soon as my mini runs out. This is very similar to the Lush Rosy Cheeks face mask, since both reduce redness & irritation. This one, however, I like just a little bit more. Something about the slightly exfoliating texture makes my skin about 100 times softer after I remove it. I always feel refreshed, soft, & free of irritation or redness after using this baby.
  • Glossier Mask Duo – my last two cents (for now). I love this mask duo, especially in the summer. It has everything that you might need for summer skin, all contained in two masks. The first one, the Mega Greens Galaxy Pack, is a clay mask that reduces redness, clarifies skin, & detoxifies–described as a juice cleanse for your face. The second, the Moisturizing Moon Mask, is my favorite summer mask. I especially love it chilled in my fridge–it provides an extra boost of coolness, & it smells absolutely amazing: kind of like fresh yogurt (in the best way possible. I don’t even like yogurt that much but this smells amazing to me). The best hack for this mask? Chill it in your fridge, apply it before you step in the shower, & bask in a cooling mask & a steamy shower. Amazing. Oh, & it plumps your skin. Oh, & you can use it as a sleeping mask, too. Okay. I’m done.

I promised you discounts, & here they are! 20% off Drunk Elephant (you need. the. baby. facial), 20% off Anese, $10 off Peach & Lily (get the Saturday Skin Eye Cream!!!!) & $10 off the Tonymoly website (literally any & all of their sheet masks are good).

And, of course, I would absolutely love it if you shopped with me at Glossier. You can see my favorites, my cute (and a bit awkward) video, & get some good skin stuff..and good makeup stuff. Just good stuff in general.

My first “skin care” post on here, but many more to come! Comment & tell me what you’d like to see, or what your favorite/holy grail products are! Or tell me what you think I should try next that I would love! Just comment.