Everyone wants to age gracefully. French woman swear by taking good care of the skin (at least so says a reliable source = “Be Parisian wherever you are”). My skin is very sensitive and prone to breakouts and redness. Recently I have been itching a lot (probably also due to hormones) so about time I reviewed my skincare routine. Being the facts&figures/planning freak that I am, I did some…well ok a lot of research and found the following tips.
THE ULTIMATE SKINCARE ROUTINE
A skincare routine is vital (says Clinique but also more reliable sources like Paula Begoun and Jetske Ultee). Paula Begoun is a world famous dermatologist who probably makes a lot of money from selling books and doing TV performances. She is kind of the Dr. Phil of skincare. According to her an ideal skincare routine should follow 5 stages: cleanse, tone, exfoliate, treat, moisturize including UV-protection. You can read more about it here (NL) and here (English). A more local expert is Jetske Ultee. She basically gives the same advice but sometimes recommends a less elaborate routine. You can do a skin test on her website and get more personalized advice.
MY OWN ROUTINE
TO CLEAN: I am lazy and don’t like my hair getting wet (especially the fringe) so cleaning the skin is not my favourite task of the day. I have tried to work around this by using cleansing milk instead. It also feels better on my skin than water. I use a cheap cleansing milk like Kruidvat reinigingsmelk or Clinique Take the day off sometimes followed by the Clinique liquid facial soap extra mild (did I mention I am a little Clinique addict??).
TO TONE/EXFOLIATE: I use the Clinique mild clarifying lotion after. From Beautypedia (an excellent website with reviews of cosmetics, managed by Paula Begoun) I have learnt it is something like an exfoliator but also tones a little. Needless to say the website thinks I should replace it by a proper toner and exfoliant (preferably their own brands ofcourse).
TREAT/MOISTURIZE: I use the dramatically different moisturizing lotion and after I use a daycream (always with UV protection) or a nightcream depending on the time of day. Again I am a fan but they are both from Clinique (superdefense daily moisturizer and moisture surge overnight mask). Sometimes when my skin is really dry or irritated I use a bi-phase moisturizer from Babor.
The blog Live Life Gorgeous also has written a lot about their own beautyroutines. It is interesting to read and they have looked into the skincare advice from the dermatologists a lot, check out their articles here.
GETTING PASSED THE MARKETING/ CHOOSING THE RIGHT PRODUCTS
These products are fairly expensive but most of them take me over 1 year to finish (except for the moisturizer that I have to replace more often), so for me it is worth the splurge. I always check Beautypedia for reviews and then choose the highest rated products. That is why I am so loyal to Clinique since they have some excellent products for sensitive skin with good ingredients. However, many dermatologists are not very excited about the 3-phase system, so I am considering to mix it up.
What I also learnt from this site that you really have to look passed the marketing. There are many expensive products that contain no beneficial ingredients for your skin or are made at the same labs as cheaper brands (which means in some cases you get exactly the same content). Even worse: some even cause your skin to be irritated. So I highly recommend looking up your favourites to see if they can really deliver on the marketing promise.
WISHLIST: MORE CLINIQUE?
After reviewing a lot of articles, I am thinking of adding a toner to my skincare routine. Most likely I am going to order the one from Paula’s choice. I just received an email from Clinique with some special gift codes so for now I am remaining a loyal customer. High on my list are some 4 star rated products like the Super rescue antioxidant night moisturizer. Living proof that marketing pays off for these brands :-).
What are your favourites?