My Hydration Routine

How I keep my skin moisturized

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Next up in my routine series (see brightening here!) are the products I use when my skin is feeling tight, thirsty, or flaky. My skin tends to lean more dry in the winter and more combination in the summer. However, with traveling so often, my skin can experience dehydration more than usual. These products leave my skin feeling comfortable – not heavy or greasy – no matter what time of year.

Recently, I’ve been starting with the Clinique Take the Day Off Balm*. Everyone raves about this, so I just had to try it. I’ve been wearing tinted moisturizer (Raw Elements reviewed here or First Aid Beauty here) or even Physician’s Formula the Healthy Foundation lately, so I feel the need to properly remove my makeup before starting my skincare routine. This is a soft, lovely balm that breaks down makeup quickly. I love that it rinses off easily as some other balm or oily cleansers I’ve tried left a gross residue on my skin.

Next, I use my Tula Purifying Cleanser which is great for gently cleansing without stripping. It’s a gel formula that doesn’t create too many suds. I love that it comes in this giant 6.7 ounce tube – it has lasted quite a while! The scent wasn’t my favorite at first, but now that I like the product because it’s so effective, it has really grown on me.

This is where I will do a hydrating mask about once a week. I haven’t found one I’m obsessed with yet, so I’d love some recommendations! In the meantime, I’m using the Bliss In the Honey Mask for a little boost of moisture. It smells like lavender, which I personally love, but the fragrance is a bit strong if you’re sensitive. It’s also a bit thick and sticky, so it’s not super easy to remove.

I follow either the cleanser or mask with my Clinique Clarifying Lotion in 2 for dry combination skin. It’s a fast and easy exfoliating step that keeps my skin soft and helps other products absorb better. I can definitely feel a difference since I’ve added this into my routine! This isn’t really specific to my hydration routine, but it helps with flakes and lets my moisturizer and hydrating serums sink in deeper.

Next, I spray my Best Friend Beauty Calendula + Coconut Facial Mist* all over. My skin seems to love products with calendula in them, which is great because this ingredient helps with inflammation (i.e. redness). The coconut is extra hydrating too. I love that this is a women-owned, small business that donates 15% of every sale to fight animal cruelty and testing. This mist specifically is organic, vegan, and all-natural as well!

Also, from Best Friend Beauty is their Anti-Aging Facial Serum*.  This is a game changer in my hydration routine as it’s packed with beautiful oils that add tons of moisture while targeting fine lines and dark spots. A tiny bit goes such a long way since it’s an oil and has the rollerball applicator. This is such an affordable multitasking product with high-quality, all natural ingredients! I’d highly recommend it.

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I’ve been using that with my new Jade Roller* from Gracious Om. This helps the oil quickly sink in better and spreads it around my face as well. It also has been an amazing tool for relieving tension in my jaw and massaging out any puffiness. I can’t believe it took me so long to try one of these! If you’re looking for a great roller that’s not expensive, I definitely suggest checking out Gracious Om. It rolls beautifully and has a nice weight to it. The box is really cute too, so this would make a great gift!

Lastly, this Juice Beauty Moisturizer is my new favorite night cream! It’s lighter than my original HG, the Sunday Riley C.E.O., but still very hydrating. My skin feels so smooth and moisturized every time I use this. I’ve also noticed my skin is less red and softer the next morning. I’m really impressed by this and want to look into some more Juice Beauty products now!

This is a more involved routine because I have more time at night and really enjoy taking care of my skin. What’s your current routine like? And what is your favorite moisturizing mask at the moment?

*So kindly gifted by the brand, work perk via ELC.

My Brightening Routine

An easy routine for radiance

I’ve been using this new Bliss Mighty Marshmallow mask once or twice a week along with some of my favorite brightening products, so I wanted to share this easy routine.

After removing my makeup, I’ll use the Clinique Pep-start 2-in-1 Exfoliating Cleanser. This has fruit enzymes as well as tiny silica and bamboo beads for a chemical and physical exfoliation. It’s effective yet gentle and I feel like it keeps my skin smooth.

Next I’ll use the Bliss mask, which only takes 10-15 minutes. It has a lovely whipped texture that makes spreading a thicker layer on the skin easy. It’s also a cute pink color (texture shot here). Marshmallow root extract and olive leaf extract provide hydration while a blend of vitamin C brightens and evens skin tone. I don’t feel any tingling or irritation and my skin looks more radiant after I use this.

I’ll follow that up with my Sunday Riley Good Genes. This lightweight serum has lactic acid for a deeper chemical exfoliation. I sometimes feel it warming or slightly tingling, but it’s mild and dissipates quickly. This serum does a great job of clearing my pores and plumping my skin with aloe. It also has licorice for brightening. Although this is expensive, even in the mini size, I think it really makes a difference in my skin.

Moving on to moisturizers, I’ve been using a sample of the Revive Anti-aging Eye Serum. I like that it’s hydrating without being a heavy cream; I’m really prone to milia around the eyes and this doesn’t make it worse. It also has light reflecting pigments to brighten and layers well with concealer. However, this is $285 for the full size. There’s also no information about what the ingredients do on their website, which I find really annoying from a luxury skincare company that claims to use so much technology.

Lastly, I’ve been loving this Juice Beauty Anti-wrinkle Moisturizer. The creamy texture feels great and sinks in quickly. It has Vitamin C for brightening and jojoba and shea for hydration. I also think the pump packaging is so smart and hygienic. It has a lemony scent as well, which is one of my favorite fragrances. I definitely need to try more from this line.

So that’s my easy routine for brightening. Vitamin C is key along with two methods of exfoliating to get rid of dead skin cells that can make my skin look dull or flakey. What do you use for brightening or radiance?

My Clean Beauty Wish List (and current favorites)

Opting for more organic, vegan, clean beauty
Clean Beauty Wish List

I’ve been interested in Clean Beauty for a while, but I’m consciously making an effort to switch up my products as I’m learning more and more about toxic ingredients recently. I’m aiming for an 80/20 lifestyle, where I’m aware of what I’m putting on my body and try to mostly use clean products.

A great place to start is the EWG Skin Deep Database – you can search by brand, product, or ingredient. You can also build your own report if an item hasn’t been verified yet. For example, the Wander Beauty powder is not in the database, but I input the ingredients and it’s score came out as a 2. The lower the score, the safer the product.

My favorite clean beauty shop is Credo Beauty  because they have a large selection with detailed product descriptions and ingredient explanations. I also use the Ingredient Conscious page on Birchbox. Target even has a natural beauty page, which is pretty awesome to see how mainstream clean beauty is becoming. Some other brands I really want to try include Pai, Herbivore BotanicalsAlima Pure, and 100% Pure.

Here are some clean beauty products that I already love:

What are your clean or green beauty favorites? Where do you get information on product safety and new brands? If you have a green/clean beauty blog, please share it below!