It takes a lot to convince me to buy a new skincare product. Basically, it’s a doctoral dissertate scale process that includes an in-depth study of ingredients lists, peer-reviews, charts, video presentations, lab tests and focuses on key elements such as antioxidants, alpha hydroxy acids, anti-inflammatory agents, stem cells, minerals, enzymes and even probiotics.
Luckily for the geeky beauty enthusiast in me, natural skincare had advanced greatly since I first started researching it years ago with shea butter and aloe vera gel and today there are countless incredible “high-tech” products based exclusively on natural ingredients making the cult beauty product lists.
I recently decided to take the time and update my skincare routine that was outdated by years. This meant days spent online and on chats with my best friend and fellow beauty-nerd, but the results were well worth it. After only a couple of weeks I can safely say my skin had never looked better – the redness, puffiness and inflammation are gone, I have successfully eliminated all painful cystic breakouts, for the first time in my life have whiteheads under control (as long as I keep away from dairy as well) and can see something that looks like a glow in my skin. If I sighed with relief when covering up the mess that was my face just days ago, I now get a huge grin on my lips when I wash my face in the morning and look in the mirror.
I’m happy to share my newly discovered skin care routine below and will be thrilled if it helps you rediscover your confidence as well.
Daily Exfoliating Tonic – Pixi Glow
This gently exfoliating tonic does what it says to the point. Due to its glycolic acid and witch hazel (high in salicylic acid) content, it removes dirt and dead skin cells and reveals young, fresh and glowing skin. Because it contains plenty of aloe vera, it soothes and hydrates the skin while other natural ingredients firm and tone it. It is gentle enough to be used twice daily but your skin will feel instantly refreshed even after the first use. I honestly could not stop touching my face in amazement (I know, a huge no-no) for the first few days.
Exfoliating Treatment – Alpha-H Liquid Gold
Even though the Pixi Glow tonic already contains glycolic acid, the concentration in Liquid Gold is much higher, so it can be used as a treatment twice a week at night instead of your regular tonic. When my best friend used it as part of a facial on a client, she couldn’t believe the instant results she saw and we now both swear by this product. I was also surprised to see an incredible improvement in skin tone and redness control within days of starting the use of this product. Hello new skin, goodbye chaos.
The Ultimate Collagen Booster – Add Actives C20 Tetraforce Vitamin C Serum
A good vitamin C serum should be in every girl’s cosmetic bag. This important vitamin is key to keeping collagen levels high, ensuring our skin stays firm, elastic and wrinkle-free, as well as erasing signs of discoloration.
I admit the price of the Add Actives serum can be intimidating, so imagine my excitement when it was on offer for under 50 EUR. It is truly THE vitamin C serum with a stable, oil-soluble variation of vitamin C (Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate), sebum-like squalane as the carrier and added coenzyme Q10, alpha lipoic acid, vitamin Es, as well as rosehip and pomegranate seed oil. What makes it worth the price tag is the fact most vitamin C serums contain the ascorbic acid form of the vitamin that is unstable and, by the time you apply it to your face, useless, as well as water-soluble, making it harder to penetrate skin and hence much less effective in stimulating production of new collagen. The serum is so potent, you only need 3 drops for your entire face and can dilute it to just 10% in your regular serum or face cream while retaining its effectiveness.
Antioxidant Powerhouse – Oskia Super 16 Serum
I actually received this as a sample, which was kind of a trap, because I am now an addict. To be honest, I never tried using oils instead of creams to moisturise and nourish my skin, because I always felt oils were messy, greasy and just never absorbed. After starting my generous sample bottle, I realised what I was missing out on. I have no idea why, but massaging this oil onto your face makes your dull, stressed and dehydrated skin go ‘aaaah’ in relief and is so calming, gentle, hydrating and incredible-smelling, it becomes a favourite nighttime ritual. It can even be used in the morning as a makeup primer and I also use it to give my lips a nice hydrating treatment.
The brand promises a boost in collagen production, firmer skin and reduced appearance of wrinkles but as my skin is not yet quite mature but is dry, dull, clogged and stressed with patches of redness and a tendency to break out, the effects I noticed were instantly relaxed, supple, visibly hydrated, radiant, awakened skin with a noticeably more even tone. Oh, and it’s not messy or greasy at all as the oil absorbs quick enough.
My next splurge will surely be this moringa cleansing balm that has become one of the internet’s cult beauty products and has won so many beauty awards one cannot keep track of them. It promises to gently melt make-up off your face and deep-clean, leaving skin clean, radiant and soft while also tightening pores. Users praise it for its spa-like feel, cleansing effects and skin-balancing properties, even for sensitive and combination skin. The oil-cleansing concept is not new to me as I had previously tried the oil cleansing method with castor oil with great results. The trick is supposed to be the fact oil dissolves oil, meaning oil-based products can penetrate our pores that are filled with sebum, mixed with dirt, giving us a much deeper cleanse than water-based products.