Happy Saturday! ♥
Over the past few months I’ve become a bit of a skincare addict – I realised over Winter how dull and lifeless my reflection looked and decided to do something about it. I worked really hard to find the right products to suit my skin type and eventually secured an effective daily routine.
I am in no way stating that my skin is ‘beautiful’ (in fact, I still have a way to go in my eyes), but I’ve seen a huge difference since I adopted the routine. I want to share my 5-step routine with you, including a mix of my favourite skincare products, with the hope that you can secure your own version and achieve the reflection you aspire to see. I’ll pre-warn you, there is a lot of Clinique – this post is in no way sponsored by the brand, I simply love their products and they work brilliantly for me!
I’ll leave a link for each of the products I mention at the bottom of the post so that you can find them yourselves. Or, if you spot something you love and can’t wait, I’ll leave links throughout the content, too (don’t worry, they’ll open up in a new window so you can flick back to where you left off!).
STEP 1: Remove makeup/cleanse
This isn’t just the first step of the routine; it’s also the most important. It’s vital that you remove all makeup before going to bed (or even as soon as you’re home if you can) to limit the amount of time your pores are being clogged up and increase the amount of time that your natural skin can breathe.
The first and second step in my routine both include cleansers, but for different reasons. Double-cleansing has quickly become a popular habit – keep reading to find out why!
I’m a big fan of Clinique’s ‘take the day off’ range for removing my makeup. Both products effectively remove almost all (if not, all) of my makeup.
The Lids, Lashes & Lips makeup remover is great for stubborn mascaras and lip tints. I’m very hesitant to use most skin cleansers on my lashes because they’re not sensitive
enough or they’re fragranced and cause irritation. Mascara removal must be gentle as eyelashes are extremely delicate!
The Cleansing Balm holds a strong 5-star rating on Clinique’s site and I very much support this. It does a wonderful job to remove facial makeup and isn’t greasy or drying on the skin (therefore making it suitable for all skin types, yay!). I haven’t been using this product for long but it’s already hit the top 3 in my list of favourite makeup removers.
*catch a bargain*: you can find these items plus a High Impact mascara in a gift set for just £25 (worth £61)! It’s an incredible price considering the balm is £24 on its own – click here to find it. (while offer lasts)
The Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish cleanser is another product that effectively removes makeup for the first step of your routine. The main reason I’m such a fan of this product is because it’s so practical – you simply apply it to dry skin and massage the cream across your face before polishing off with a cotton cloth!
A third alternative (and probably the quickest) is Garnier’s Sensitive Micellar Water. This can be applied with a cotton pad and swept across your skin, effectively removing your makeup before moving on to the second step.
STEP 2: Second cleansing
Double-cleansing has become a strict step in my routine since doing some more research. Although you may have used a facial cleanser in step 1 to remove your makeup, it wasn’t applied directly to clean skin, meaning it didn’t work to its full effect. Cleansing a second time allows the product to work its magic on your natural face and soak deeper into your pores.
The product you choose for this step in the routine should ideally be one targeted to your own complexion – find one that works for your skin type and preference.
The Clinique Liquid Facial Soap comes in a number of different formulas depending on your skin type which is really useful. The ingredients and their intensities are altered to suit each complexion (whether that be dry, normal, combination or oily). It’s a gentle product that feels smooth on your skin and easily rinses off to reveal a super-clean appearance.
Tropic’s Smoothing Cleanser works similarly to the Liz Earle cleanser, however it does come in a larger bottle (at the same price) and contains completely natural ingredients. No Nasties whatsoever. You can read my full review of this product here.
STEP 3: Toner
Toners contain all of the essential vitamins and ingredients that your skin needs to stay happy and healthy. They’re usually the most acidic feeling/smelling product in your skincare routine so if you prefer not to include one, you can use a daily exfoliating scrub instead.
I own two of Clinique’s Clarifying Lotions as I like to alternate them depending on my skin’s needs at the time.
The standard Clarifying Lotion (in pink) is your classic twice-a-day exfoliating toner that works to clean out your pores and smooth/tighten your skin ready for moisturising. Again, there are a number of different variations available to suit everybody’s skin type. If you’re like me and have combination-to-oily skin, the lotion also works to remove any excess oils.
The Anti-Blemish Clarifying Lotion has the added benefit of working to reduce (you guessed it) blemishes. I used this toner a LOT during my teenage years and it worked brilliantly to minimise redness and avoid any scarring after removing spots. It’s (in my opinion) more sensitive than the standard version.
Another recommendation would be the Tropic Vitamin Toner – this has the added practicality of being a refreshing face mist, too. After cleansing I like to spray this onto my face and leave it to sink in whilst refining my pores. Like every other Tropic product, it contains completely natural and cruelty-free ingredients.
STEP 4: Moisturiser
Another vital step in your skincare routine. Moisturisers help to keep your skin smooth and hydrated as well as prepping it for makeup. You can find many types of moisturiser, such as tinted, gel and cream targeted to different areas of your face.
A particularly popular moisturiser is the Clinique Dramatically Different gel which is suited to those with combination or oily skin. It helps to hydrate and strengthen the skin so that it is less likely to lose moisture. I’m a big fan of this gel because it’s so lightweight and absorbs so quickly – I tend to stick clear of creams because I find the formula too thick.
A good Clinique alternative if you have drier skin is the Moisture Surge moisturiser. I use this a LOT throughout Winter (as you can see) and it hydrates my skin more than any other product I’ve tried. My skin feels super smooth and my dry areas completely disappear by morning.
A cream/gel specifically for your eyes is also another product that you could incorporate into Step 4. This is a good idea if you suffer from puffy eyes or dark circles as normal facial moisturisers don’t usually target these issues. The Elf Illuminating Eye Cream is lightweight and soothes my tired eyes in the morning.
STEP 5: Treatments
The final step of my skincare routine will vary for each of you. It involves products to suit your specific skincare needs, such as wrinkles, blemishes, dark circles or dry lips. These products can be applied after moisturising and left on to work their magic over the day/night to improve your complexion.
The Tropic Lip Fudge conditioners are a new favourite of mine as I do suffer with dry or chapped lips and many lip balms just don’t seem to work for me. I apply this before bed and throughout the day as and when needed to soften my lips and plump them. Pictured above is the non-coloured version, however you can also buy the Lip Fudge in 2 different shades of pink to add a pop of colour over the day (they’re really pretty colours). I also have to add: they smell divine.
For spot treatment, I recommend Avon’s Instant Spot Treatment gel. This works very quickly to reduce redness and clear blemishes on your skin. Different treatments will always work best on different people, but I’ve found this one to be particularly effective for my own skin. It contains 2% salicylic acid which is well-known for it’s skin-clearing and pore-cleansing abilities.
By following this 5-step skincare routine, you’re guaranteed to notice an improvement to your skin. It’s important to get into the habit to improve your skin’s health and prevent any problems in the future. We tend to spend a huge amount of money on ‘poreless’ and ‘airbrushed’ foundation, but the real secret to having an ‘Instagrammable’ appearance is all down to the base you’re applying it to.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading – comment below and let me know which skincare products you cannot live without!!
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Products mentioned in this post:
Take The Day Off balm
Lids, Lashes and Lips remover
Liquid Facial Soap
Anti-Blemish Solutions Clarifying Lotion
Dramatically Different Moisturiser
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