So I will preface this post by saying that I think skincare (and for that matter, haircare and makeup) varies significantly for everyone. That being said, I have tried a lot. Like a lot, a lot. And I think for all of my peers reading, its important to start now when our skin is still relatively awesome because one day it won't be. But let's pretend like science will make crazy advances before we need to worry about that.
Skin Care Regime
1) I start off with the Clarisonic Mia and boy, do I ever have a lot to say about this. This is a relatively new purchase for me (about a month) but I think it is the single greatest thing to happen to my skin ever. No joke. I bought mine from Sephora and it.is.awesome. I decided to go with the most basic model (and this coming from someone who always orders up). I think I made the right call. The technology is in the scrubbing brush and I really don't think the extra $100 you could spend on the Pro model makes a difference. The scrubbing brush is the same on all of them, so you are essentially paying for design and the addition of a "Body Brush," to which I say, use the freakin' face brush that's $100 less on your body!
So you push the button and the brush automatically turns on for one minute of scrubbing goodness! I start on my forehead and work down and it usually takes me two minutes to get all the way through. It's cordless and waterproof and the charger is magnetized (so cool!) so after about a week, I just attach it to the charger for a night and I'm good to go for another week!
2) When using the Mia, I use Arbonne's Clarifying Wash Acne Medication, pictured below.
I got turned onto this stuff by my Aunt Diane and I would say it's the second best thing to happen to my skin (ousted only by the Mia). Just put about a dime-sized amount in your hand and and rub it all over your face. Then I let my Mia work it's magic! And if my glowing recommendation above didn't convince you, you can definitely just use your hands with this stuff. Just rub it on your face, wet your hands and rub for about a minute in a circular motion and then rinse. Voila!
3) Next I use a toner and I would say this is probably the most individualized skin care step. Toner, often alcohol-based, can really wreak havoc on your skin if it doesn't work with your natural oils, so this unfortunately is a trial and error process.
Right now, I'm using Burt's Bees Tomato Toner but I'm also a big fan of Arbonne's Clarifying Toner Acne Medication from the same product line as the wash above(http://www.arbonne.com/products/beyond_basics/toner.asp). So whatever you choose, just grab a cotton ball and soak that puppy in the product of your choice and go to town all over your face and neck!
4) And last but not least, moisturizer! Another tricky one, because the wrong moisturizer can really break out your skin. Again unfortunately, this is another one solved by simple trial and error. When they make a skin care line that works for everybody, I'll let you know...but I can guarantee it'll cost a small fortune.
Currently, I am loving Clinique's Moisture Surge Intense Cream which I got initially as a sample from Sephora. It's a little pricey at $50 but I was lucky enough to find it for less than half of that at the Estee Lauder Company Store (a significant perk of law firm livin' is the private shops I have access to; anybody in the NYC area let me know if you want to take a trip with me!). This stuff rules and teeny tiny bit goes a long way. A really long way...I think I'll have this for at least 6 months!
And just to be clear, this is the "Intense" moisturizer for "Very Dry to Dry Combination" skin which is definitely not me, but moisturizer is supposed to moisturize, right? But if you have really oily skin they do have a less "intense" version, pictured below. And I would say you can't really go wrong with either.
So that's it! I do that in the morning when I am just waking up (a very effective alarm clock) and after all my makeup is off at the end of the night. I will say I do get the occasional stray blemish, but very rarely and I think the longer I keep up the routine above (like I said, I've only been using all of these products together for a month) the better my skin will be! I hope this helps you or at the very least was interesting, but let let me know if you have any questions.
I will being doing another run-through for hair care products and makeup as well so stay tuned!