July Routine Roundup
Two brands that give pause to my apathetic attitude towards eye creams; a transforming addendum to any skin care routine; another sunscreen superhero for oily skin—these are just a smidgen of the products that lined my beauty cabinet in July. Let’s get started.
Each morning I washed my face and neck with Somme Institute’s Nourishing Cleanser. It’s a sweet spot mash-up of gentle, non-drying cleansing and effective cleansing (more often than not those properties are mutually exclusive). If I wore makeup, I first massaged DHC’s Deep Cleansing Oil over my face and eyes at night. Oil cleansers are the absolute best solution to makeup removal. After emulsifying the oil cleanser with water and then rinsing, I washed with Lerosett’s OTC Cleanser—my insurance for clear skin. Twice last month I also refined the texture of my skin with Kiehl’s Epidermal Re-Texturizing Micro-Dermabrasion.
I employed the help of a toner every night and sometimes in the morning. In July, La Mav’s Pore Refining Toner was my tonic of choice. The spray’s organic formula, rich in aloe, rose water, and a dozen other plant and fruit extracts, hydrates my skin while sweeping away lingering dirt in my pores.
About three nights a week, a clay mask helped detoxify my skin. I alternated between SkinCeuticals’ Clarifying Clay Masque, Paula’s Choice’s Oil-Absorbing Mask, and Somme Institute’s Boost—a clay and pumpkin blend that gently warms on contact (and smells like dessert).
Each morning after cleansing (and sometimes toning), I smoothed La Mav’s Daily Vitamin-C Brightening Serum over my face. The super lightweight formula feels almost whipped, and sinks into my skin.
Every other night I applied Avene’s TriAcnéal over my clean, but dry face. The retinoid derivative (it contains retinaldehyde) is almost as strong as doctor-prescribed formulas and fights blemishes and signs of aging at the same time. A few nights a week I replaced the retinoid with Paula’s Choice’s Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid—it’s not quite a serum (I applied it with a cotton pad)—but it’s not just a toner either. The salicylic acid in the liquid compounded my daily effort to maintain clear skin (and it’s surprisingly hydrating too).
Like the month before, I stuck with Somme Institute’s A-Bomb moisturizer, both day and night. The vitamin-packed silky cream refreshes my skin and supports its glow.
I usually test two eye moisturizers at once—one for each eye—to help me compare results. In July, Elite Serum and Somme Institute’s EYE were on deck. Usually I’m ho-hum about eye treatments, especially since none seem to correct my biggest concern, dark circles. These two, however, I highly recommend.
Elite Serum claims that it’s Botox in a tube. The truth is—well it’s actually pretty close. Although the effect doesn’t last throughout the entire day, the skin around my eyes was noticeably tighter and I could do that neat post-op trick where my lips smiled but my eyes remained frozen in time. If there’s a sagging situation happening around your eyes, make this serum your first choice.
Somme Institute’s EYE is one of the most hydrating formulas to ever touch my face. Although it brightens a bit too—its moisturizing properties are the all-stars, and help concealers glide over with ultimate ease.
When a blemish emerged, I fought it head-on with Paula’s Choice’s Daily Skin Clearing Treatment with 2.5% Benzoyl Peroxide in the morning and the brand’s BHA 9 for Stubborn Imperfections at night. The benzoyl peroxide treatment shrinks blemishes and kills the bacteria that help them flourish, while BHA 9 reduces redness, inflammation, and prevents residual scarring. I highly recommend BHA 9 (as seen on August’s Lust List).
I’ve written before about the best sunscreens for oily skin, and I have another to add to the list. Ultra Sheer Daily Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 30 by Paula’s Choice is superb—lightweight, no gray cast, and it doesn’t clog pores. This is no joke—buy now and thank me later.
When it came to body sun protection, I opted for L’Oreal’s Sublime Sun Sheer Protect Sunscreen Oil. The spray is like the iPhone of SPFs because now I can’t bear to imagine life without it. Equipped with broad spectrum protection and an oil-based formula, I’m one step closer to sinfully gorgeous legs.
I’ve already talked about one of my greatest finds of the year, Restorasis, but let me reiterate how it literally transforms skin in a matter of seconds. Developed as an addendum to any skin care regimen, Restorasis’ two-step system is my reliable partner in skin care every night. Also joining me before bedtime was Somme Institute’s Neckline, which is a bit thicker than A-Bomb and helpful to remind me that necks need moisturizer too.
Lastly, there’s Dove’s Go Fresh deodorant in new Blue Fig and Orange Blossom, which I used daily because that’s what normal people do. With moisturizer integrated into the formula, even my underarms won’t know what it means to experience dry skin.