I needed to do a lot of healing this year. I spent a lot of time going to healers of various sorts, traditional and non. I have to say, if you’re hurting, go see a professional. They know what they’re doing. In the process of all this healing, I spent a lot of time (and money) in spas. Another healing thing I recommend. While I was there, I learned a lot. I thought I knew what I needed to know about beauty. Turns out, I had a great deal more to learn.
One of the things I learned was how to really care for my skin. I’ve been on the right course for some time now, but now I know where I’m going. That place, is the alter of moisture. As I’ve long suspected, good skin is moisturized skin. Doesn’t matter if your skin is oily, dry or combo, you need moisture and lots of it.
My esthetician has gotten me in to Dermalogica in a big way. Most of their products are unscented (my allergies say thank you) and they work well with the other products I’m pretty committed to. In terms of my skin care regimen here’s what’s going on:
Cleansing: I’m still using the very gentle Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser. It’s cheap and cheerful.
Exfoliating: I’d been told that as someone with problem skin like mine should not exfoliate. However I was convinced to try it in a controlled environment. It helps that my esthetician has similar skin to mine. As such I’ve felt comfortable getting facials and trying new skin care products with her. So I now use the Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant. It’s very gentle, but helps get gunk off my skin so that it can’t settle in my pores
Toner: I used to hate toners. Mostly because they were all sting and pain. Apparently it doesn’t have to be this way. The right toner should prepare your skin to absorb your moisturizer when you apply it. With a hearty dose of skepticism I started using the Dermalogica Antioxidant Hydramist. It smells nice, so that was something. It also actually made a difference in terms of helping my moisturizer absorb. So that’s me with egg on my face.
Moisturizer: This has always been complicated for me. Most good moisturizers come with SPF. Which is good, because sun damage ages you and that sucks. But most things with SPF make me break out. And that sucks too. But so does sun damage. So I’m usually stuck. Thankfully the Dermalogica Sheer Moisture works without too many ill effects. So for days I know I’ll be outside, I use it.
Other days, I use Darphin Hydraskin Light as it works hard, but it’s too rich (I also use it every other night before bed). Every day I use Darphin Arovita Eye and Lip Contour Gel on my eyes and lips. Aside from some favourable genes, the fact that I have been using eye cream religiously for 15 years, is why I do not look as old as I am. (Seriously, every time someone finds out my age these days it turns into an anti-aging skin care commercial).
Masques: Oh the masks we force upon ourselves. Seriously though, masques rock. I use two different ones, mostly because they aren’t a hassle for me to do. Once a week I use the Origins Clear Improvements charcoal mask. Living in the city and travelling as much as I do, there’s a lot of “ew” that I need sucked out of my skin. I usually put it on as I get in the shower and leave it on while I deep condition my hair. Yay for multitasking.
The other masque I use (and LOVE dearly) is Dermlogica’s Skin Hydrating Mask. I use this one every other night. After I’ve cleaned and toned, I put it on instead of moisturizer and then go to sleep. I then wake up with baby soft skin (and note that many of my breakouts will have healed. Win!). I also put it on when I get on a plane. Planes are awful for hydration, but with this masque, I can get off the plane without my skin drenched in oil (when your skin gets dry, it compensates by creating sebum and your skin gets crazy oily). I also always fly with cuticle oil and a big ol’ bottle of water, but that’s another blog post.
When I look back at this post, it seems like skin care is really hard and complex. Truth be told, it hardly takes me any time it’s so habituated. Also, it really helps that I get advice and treatments from someone I trust. Really, that’s the key. If you find an esthetician you know does good work, listen to them. They will not lead you astray.