There were just 2 steps.
Wash & Moisturize.
I've never had a facial, and I used whatever that was most convenient.
But it all changed when I met the boyfriend.
It was inevitable since he works in the skincare industry.
So here's what I've learned over the years.
My skin-type is dry.
This means that although I am not prone to blemishes, I would develop wrinkles more quickly as I age. Good heavens, noooo!
Start with a good face wash.
This doesn't necessarily have to be branded or expensive.
Find one that suits your skin the best.
I'm currently using Perfect Whip by Senka.
It's a fun experience using it, and it gives a good wash without over-drying my skin.
Do you actually need a toner?
From what I understand, a toner cleanses and preps your skin before you slap on more things onto your face. I was using Ultra Facial Toner by Kiehl's, but once my supply ran out, I decided to forgo this step entirely. Plus my face wash already does a really good job. So no, I don't tone.
Hydrate with a hydrating lotion/serum.
This next step is important to create a moisture barrier for your skin so that it doesn't look rough & dull as you age. I don't really know why they call them "lotions", coz you'd expect a lotion to be of a cream-like texture. Instead, it feels more like an alcohol-free toner or water. I use a variety of brands, depending on my budget for that quarter. For the budget-conscious, you may opt for Hada Labo's range of hydrating lotions. If you're planning to splurge a little, you can try Clinique's moisture surge hydrating lotion, Kiehl's Iris extract activating treatment essence, or Lancome's Genifique youth activating concentrate (I'd use this more frequently if money wasn't a factor.. LOL). If you're traveling, stop by Loreal's counter and pick up a bottle (or more) of Loreal's Revitalift filler [HA] plumpy water essence. It's not expensive, but I could only find them at the airport shops.
The clearly corrective dark spot solution by Kiehl's is my favourite, but it comes with a very steep price. Pocket-friendly versions would be Loreal's white perfect laser derm white essence, or Olay's white radiance brightening intensive serum (unfortunately, this has a very lousy pump bottle and has recently been discontinued).
Now something for the eyes.
I've always believed that you can tell a person's age from their eyes when they smile. Ugh, wrinkles and crow's feet will be the death of me. Recently, the boyfriend gave me a bottle of Genefique yeux light-pearl eye illuminator by Lancome. Fancy! Before this, I've been using Bobbi Brown Remedies skin wrinkle treatment no. 25. Kiehl's also has an Age defender eye repair, but I haven't used this since they had a new packaging. I guess and hope that it's the same stuff that I've used before, coz that's pretty good too. But ultimately, and unfortunately, eye creams don't come cheap.
I've been patting Kiehl's powerful-strength line-reducing concentrate on wrinkle-prone areas on my face. But at almost 300 bucks for a bottle, I don't think I'll be continuing this step once I run out. Just smile less.
Let's get oily!
"Putting oil on my skin", I know it sounds crazy, but it's probably one of my favourite steps (partly also because it means that I'm almost done with my 7-step routine). I use a day and midnight oil, both by Kiehl's, and it gives my skin an instant glowing-effect. Plus the midnight oil makes my skin feel so good when I wake up the next morning. It's not because I have dry skin, I think the oil does provide benefits regardless of your skin-type. I'm not too sure; best to consult one of them skin experts on facial oils.
I only moisturize during the day. I like Hada Labo's super hyaluronic acid hydrating light cream, and Olay's moisturising lotion (as basic as it gets, but this stuff is good!).
UV rays come in through windows and from fluorescent lights, so don't forget to apply some sunscreen even if you're planning to spend the day indoors. My favourite is the perfect UV sunscreen by Anessa, but if you're looking for a budget-friendly sunscreen, I'd recommend Sunplay's super block SPF130. I use this when I plan to spend the day under the sun or when I take a dip in the pool in the afternoon. Yes, SPF130. Hahahahahahahahahahahaha!
But what happens at night?
When I don't moisturize, I apply a layer of overnight mask after the oily step. Kiehl's has a few types. I'm currently using the ginger leaf & hibiscus firming mask by Kiehl's. They recently discontinued the cilantro & orange extract pollutant defending masque, so if you still see this in stores, grab a jar! It's really good, and it's gonna be gone really soon! I've tried La Mer's prized moisturizing cream, but after reading this article, I've been thinking about giving Nivea's creme a try (edit: on second thought, let's not support Nivea, click here to read why).
I'm currently open to try different stuff, so tell me, what's your skincare routine like, and what products would you recommend?