(First things first: Hyacinth Girl has been nominated for the Beautyreview.co.nz Best Beauty Blog Award. If you’d like to vote for us you need to register on the site and then vote here. If you don’t want to vote for us then that is also fine!)
Last weekend I went to a bar with Harriet and Grace. I hadn’t been out in literally so long that I had forgotten how to do it (see this tweet as evidence). Eventually I figured it out – it turns out what you do is buy drinks, drink them, and have fun with your friends. And then afterwards, on your way home you buy a kebab, and two Powerades from the petrol station (there’s always a 2 for 1 deal, it’s like they know). And then you get home and take drunk selfies (see fig. 1), take your makeup off and get into bed and go to sleep and hopefully don’t feel terrible in the morning.
OH WAIT. The taking your makeup off part? Probably doesn’t happen as often as it should. So sometimes your skin needs a bit of encouraging to get back to that perfect glowy radiance it has the rest of the time. Here’s what I use to whip my skin back into shape!
During the week I have a pretty good skincare routine. Even if I’m in a rush in the morning and only have time for foundation, blush and eyebrows (my bare minimum for work), every evening I’m pretty good at removing makeup, cleansing, and applying various creams and lotions. It’s when I pile on a whole lot of makeup to go out (Harriet calls it painting over your face and putting on a new one), and come home at 2am and can’t be bothered going through all that, that my skin starts to protest. It’s immediately noticeable as well – the next day I’m already seeing pimples lurking under the surface, and my skin looks dull.
I’ve been playing around with my skincare a lot lately, which means I’ve found some skin saviours for these kinds of situations. Conveniently, these fall across a nice range of price points and categories, so hopefully there’s something for everyone here.
What I’m finding great at the moment is the Sephora Precision Pore Cleansing Pad. Harriet and I threw these into the last Sephora order we did, just to see what they were like, as they’ve been compared to the Clarisonic and are only $6 USD. I remove my makeup first before spreading a layer of the Trilogy Very Gentle Cleansing Cream across my face and vigorously massaging the skin with the Sephora pad. It’s amazing how much makeup the pad lifts even after you think your skin’s clean! I’ve started using this every time I wash my face for that very reason. There’s nothing worse than imagining applying makeup on top of the traces of yesterday’s makeup. Gross.
Then I like to use a soothing and hydrating mask, to give my skin a refresh. My current mask of choice (what am I saying, it’s the only full size mask I own) is Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask. I got this upon Estée‘s recommendation, and I purchased it with Fly Buys points so I didn’t even spend any money on it! Its main ingredient is honey, which has natural antibacterial properties, good for putting a hold on any blemishes that might be beginning to form. It smells divine, as all Antipodes products do, and it doesn’t upset my skin like their butter cleanser does. I think it is important point out that there’s nothing in the way of active ingredients in this. Good on one hand, as it means it’s not going to cause any irritation, but on the other hand it means the mask doesn’t do much in the way of actively improving your skin either, so you’ll need to turn elsewhere for that.
Next up is something full of active ingredients, to do all the work that the Antipodes mask doesn’t. The Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peel is not cheap, but it is very effective. It’s in the form of two wipes, so you use one on your clean skin, wait two minutes and then use the other. I see a really remarkable difference in my skin texture after I’ve used this, but they’re mega pricey so I don’t use them every day like the product recommends, instead saving it for special occasions and emergencies. You’re getting a double whammy (triple? quadruple? heaps of whammy?) with glycolic acid supported by mandelic acid and salicylic acid in the first step, and retinol and vitamin C in the second, so this is the superhero of skincare products really! (I think the amount of italics I’ve used in this paragraph is testament to how good this stuff is.)
The last guy I want to mention takes care of any pimples that survive this skincare onslaught. It’s La Roche-Posay Effaclar A.I., a targeted breakout corrector which accelerates cell turnover. This basically means that your spots will heal and fade faster! I truly see an improvement in healing time when I use this, applying it locally 2-3 times a day. The other thing about this is that it comes in a metal tube rather than plastic, which definitely contributes to its medicinal feel, so I feel like it’s more effective? I bought it from Boots via Youshop. I’ve actually got Eve Lom’s Dynaspot, a similar product, on its way to me, so it will be interesting to see how it compares.
Be honest, how often do you skip taking your makeup off before bed?