My Skincare Basics

Here we are, a few days into the new year, my new blog and here I am writing a second post- who do I think I am?- I almost don’t recognise this committed person- who IS she? Anyway, I’ve been advised by a dear friend of mine and journalist-in-training that it’s best to keep posts short for reader interest, so I’ll take her wise words.

Just to give a very brief skin overview; I’ve been lucky enough not to suffer with acne, just a few spots through puberty which have left me with scars. The usual breakouts when I’m due for my period or when I’ve eaten too many Haribo Strawbs, the usual oily t-zone down the nose, with some really dry areas on my forehead and other patches. Skin often reacts to products, so largely sensitive. I think it’s what they call combination skin? So, let’s kick it, this is what works for me;

The Micellar Water

Do the planet, your skin and most importantly, the animals a favour and stop using that darn Garnier stuff. I was guilty of using it for years too, because it worked for my sensitive skin and I struggled to find a decent cruelty-free alternative for ages. I tried several and my trail eventually led me to this beauty: the Sukin Micellar Cleansing Water.

This is usually out of stock, probably because it’s so great, so if you see it, snap up a few to keep yourself stocked up.

It’s paraben-free, great for all skin types, removes all traces of dirt/ makeup and leaves my skin feeling great. I use it daily. Sukin is a natural Australian skincare brand, I always purchase mine from Holland & Barrett and their other products are equally great too.

The Cleanser

Milky Jelly Cleanser has been my best friend for the best part of a year. It was one of the first Glossier products I’d tried and it really was the ‘gateway product’ that opened my eyes to good skin and the skincare obsession sparked from here. I’d used the same Neutrogena Pink Grapefruit Wash thing for like 4 years, before becoming cruelty-free, until my skin and the ocean could no longer tolerate the micro-beads. Not all skincare will agree with every skin type, I know friends who don’t like Milky Jelly but personally I can’t live without it. There is no short-cut to good skin unfortunately, I’ve learnt that a lot of trial and error is involved.

The beauty of Glossier is that you can often find minis and samples to test out- I take the mini on holiday with me always. I use mine twice daily and it must be noted that a small bottle of Milky Jelly can stretch for miles; worth every penny, lasts a lifetime.

The Toner

In fairness I’ve tried a lot of very reasonable toners, this is the queen. I discovered the brand Instanatural on BeautyBay and this seemed to be one of their most hyped products across the internet. Spoiler: She’s worth the hype.

Some toners I’d tried and loved from Lush, seemed to work great but left my skin a bit too dry with prolonged use, so I was delighted to find that the Vitamin C Toner didn’t leave my skin flaky and tight at all, ever. I use it daily, spritzed onto cleansed skin. It’s another great, natural-oriented brand that I’ve dabbled a fair bit in and a brand that I will gladly continue to support.

The Exfoliator

This product is proof that we don’t need sandy, granulated, textured formulas to exfoliate the skin’s surface. The Glossier Solution is a chemical exfoliator, a completely liquid formula. I was conscious spending £19 on a non-essential skincare product but because I’d tried a bit of Glossier and loved it, I was willing to chance it. It has now become an essential. I was sceptical at first having gassed half a day’s salary on a bottle claiming to transform skin within 3 weeks. Glossier say “Unlike physical scrubs, Solution uses a 10% blend of skincare acids to “unglue” dead skin and sweep it away, so your complexion appears smoother, softer, and glowier.” They didn’t lie.

I’ve noticed the biggest difference across my nose, where I’d always suffered with blackheads and larger pores, now drastically reduced. My complexion is almost always clear, and I do have this to thank. It’s supposed to be particularly good for acne-prone skin, so surely can do wonders for us all… I use it daily after cleansing, before bed and although I hate how sticky it feels as it dries, I love how it leaves my skin looking- a small price to pay really.

The Skin Salve

It’s impossible to choose my favourite skin salve of these two, both are great, effective salves for lips and dry skin. Balm Dot Com is probably one of Glossier’s most famous products and they do have some incredible formulas. Previous to this I’d tried the Coconut formula, which I think may just be my favourite. The scents are such a beautiful, authentic quality unlike some synthetic scents often accompanying lip balms.

Dr Paw Paw is available in the U.K. at a variety of stockists including TK Max, BeautyBay, Look Fantastic and Oliver Bonas

Dr Paw Paw is a brand I’ve recently become acquainted with and I absolutely love this balm. I’m not sure that I would use their tinted equivalents but if you’re someone who prefers a more subtle tint on the lips, they could be worth a try. This is the original, clear, scentless formula – a staple for good skin.

Having better skin has really transformed my routine, and as a result, the way my makeup adheres to my skin as well. I’ve learnt that taking care of my skin is just as important as brushing your teeth, washing your hair; it’s an overlooked necessity.

Find me on the gram @the.useless.blogger to keep up with my daily (or not-so-daily) uselessness 🙂 x