I’ve been ill recently, necessitating a more than a couple of hospital trips, and it means I need a small procedure later on in the year. It’s nothing too serious, but the feeling of being more rundown than usual has been showing in my skin, and as a result I’ve had to break out some of the big guns in my skincare arsenal. Far from being a pain, I’ve found myself really enjoying taking care of my skin recently, mainly thanks to these somewhat … er, luxurious* products. I have two routines, evening and morning, and I’ll take you through them both.
In the evening, I like to give myself a really thorough cleanse, using a lot of massage techniques. Le Belle Oil Cleanser (£28) is a fairly thick oil-based cleanser which doesn’t really emulsify, so is perfect for a really thorough cleanse when you’ve got a full-face of makeup on. And even if you don’t, it’s still great for a really deep cleanse. I rinse using one of my gazillion washi cloths and some hot water, then I give my face a good going over with a Zelens PHA Bio-Peel Resurfacing Face Pad (£65) These are a recent discovery for me, and I LOVE them.
Based on a combination of AHAs and BHAs, alongside PHAs, and with a combination of acids (including salicylic, lactic, citric and polyhydroxy) these are a gentler alternative to my beloved Alpha-H Liquid Gold. They help to resurface, and rehydrate your skin overnight. When my skin is feeling sensitive, it’s easier to use these then the Alpha H, and I can really tell the difference. I follow with a spritz of toner (see morning), then add two drops of Sjal Saphir Concentrate Oil (£125) An anti-ageing oil suffused with sapphire, this stuff is amazing, plumping and firming, it’s a pleasure to use. I use it as a serum rather than a moisturiser, as it’s rather light, so I finish with a tiny dab of Zelens Z Recovery Intensive Repair Balm (£140). Again, on the pricey side, this is the one product on this list that I’d go without shoes to re-purchase. A thick, slightly gummy “balm”, it leaves the skin plump and hydrated, plus it soothes and repairs any dry patches or irritated skin. It’s light and non-greasy, and after applying, I always look forward to seeing how great my skin looks the morning after, if I could marry a product, this would be The One.
I do another oil cleanse, this time with Nude Cleansing Facial Oil (£28) it is lighter than the Le Belle, and emulsifies easily in water. This is my default cleanser – I may dabble with others, but Nude is the one I return to again and again and again, even in this, my fourth (eep!) year as a beauty blogger.
After rinsing with a washi, I spritz again with toner, this time with Sjal Mineral Kalla Energy Tonic (£50), which is hydrating and calming, and sets your skin up for serums and moisturiser nicely. For daytime use, I like Darphin Camomile Aromatic Care (£41), as I find it it both soothing, and protective for my “prone to redness and sensitivity” skin. Finally, I apply a layer of Kate Somerville Goat Milk Cream ($55), which contains both goat milk (good for a lactic acid dose), and aloe vera for soothing, plus avocado and jojoba oils for hydration. Sadly, SpaceNK have dropped the Kate Somerville line, so I beg everyone I know who has a trip to the US planned to pick some up for me, and this is my fourth jar.
I realise that this is an expensive routine in anyone’s book, but what price skin?
* Expensive. Yes, I KNOW.
The Fine Print: I sold my soul to PRs, various relatives, and several online retailers for some of these products, which are a combination of samples, gifts and (in a surprisingly large proportion) purchases. You don’t even want to know what the MiL wanted in return for the Goat Milk Cream …
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