By NIDA ALI
March 16, 2017
“Your skin is something that you should be taking good care of. That’s not a shallow demand or a societal pressure, your skin is part of your health. Take care of all your organs, including your skin.”
There are skin care routines everywhere, intricate, fancy and high maintenance routines. For the average person that is either on a budget or is just lazy, this normal-person, everyday skin routine might be fitting.
Despite the cost efficiency of drug store skin care products, more often than not, those products have a plethora of ingredients that shouldn’t be going on your face, ever. I learned my lesson the hard way and finally had to take multiple trips to the dermatologist to finally get my skin to where I wanted it to be.
Despite the cost efficiency of drug store skin care products, more often than not, those products have a plethora of ingredients that shouldn’t be going on your face, ever.
I’m all for a good foundation or concealer from the drugstore, but when it comes to skin care, sometimes its important to splurge a little. Your skin is something that you should be taking good care of. That’s not a shallow demand or a societal pressure, your skin is part of your health. Take care of all your organs, including your skin.
Before getting into the routine and the products I use, lets talk about my skin type. I have oily to combination skin with large pores mostly on my cheeks. My skin is acne prone and very sensitive (something I learned as I watched my skin from bad to worse in a matter of a few months and didn’t know why).
Before finally caving in, going to the dermatologist and investing in good skin care products, I hardly took care of my skin, I washed it with random face wash with those plastic micro-beads in it, I didn’t make sure that my makeup was completely off my face at night, I didn’t moisturize or exfoliate my skin and I picked at any breakouts I had.
Picking at breakouts was the worst thing I could do since my skin is very easily scarred. I didn’t form dents or ice pick scars, but I did have marks all over my face at one point. So if you have the same problem, don’t touch your break outs.
I used all types of natural remedies and household ingredients to try to alleviate my skin. I washed it with olive oil at one point, used coconut oil as my face wash, exfoliated every day, toned with apple cider vinegar, put baking soda on my face and drowned it in lemon juice. While there are a lot of benefits in these ingredients, they don’t always work, and especially not if you have sensitive skin with enlarged pores. The oils were clogging my pores and I didn’t notice the effects until after a few months.
Natural oils such as olive oil, coconut oil and jojoba oil can be really good for your skin and especially to remove makeup; however, they all are comedogenic, as in, they can cause black heads and clog pores. If you’re one of those lucky people who can pull off an oil cleanse, then do it! It does leave your skin clean and soft.
Let’s get into my everyday skin care routine:
They say to wash your face when you wake up in the morning to clean off the layer of grease and dirt your skin collected as you slept. But I don’t do this, I let my skin bask in its grossness until I take a shower. The most I do is rinse my skin with cold water after I brush my teeth, just to wake my skin up.
Washing your skin too much in a day (more than twice) can prove to be drying and it can irritate your skin. Your skin needs to live in its natural oils, so don’t over do it, especially if you have sensitive skin. And if you’re really oily, don’t feel like you have to wash your face more with really strong, anti-oil face washes. My cousin in Pakistan told me that she washes her face every time she looks greasy (so six times a day?). DON’T DO THAT. Not only is that not good for your skin, but you’re making your skin oilier by washing it constantly. Your skin starts to feel dry and then compensates by producing more oil.
My skin used to be extremely oily a few years ago, but because of this regimen, the greasiness level has decreased a lot, to the point of my having normal to oily skin.
So after not washing my face when I wake up, I wash it while I’m in the shower. The face wash I use is Cetaphil.
You can get a large bottle of Cetaphil for up to $13 at any drugstore. Not only is it affordable, but it’s really good for sensitive skin. Mainly because it is a nothing face wash. That may not sound ideal when you’re trying to wash your face, but I never recommend this cleanser for makeup removal. It won’t take your makeup off. This cleanser is only good to remove a thin film of grossness and grease off your face because its such a gentle formula. The best part about this is that it never dries your skin out, it never makes your skin feel tight or like all the moisture has been sucked out if it. It does the job of cleaning your face and keeping your skin balanced.
Once I get out of the shower, I tone my skin with a light spritz of water and rose water.
Toner is something you really don’t need, toning your skin is not that serious. A lot of toners in the market contain harsh ingredients and don’t help. Essentially, you don’t have to tone, but if you do, choose something gentle like rose water. Toning is to even out the ph level of your skin.
I bought a small three ounce spritzer bottle from CVS and filled it with a half part of water and a half of rose water. I diluted the rose water because I really don’t like the strong smell of it.
That’s a random bottle of rose water I bought from an Indian grocery store (Patel Brothers). It was three dollars for six ounces of water.
You could even use this mixture as a setting spray for your makeup or a refreshing mist during the day.
Then I moisturize my skin using Clinique’s Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel. This comes in two formulations, a cream and a gel. The cream is for dry skin types and the gel is better for people with oily skin. But you could get away with using either or.
This might be pricey, but it’s not the priciest moisturizer you could find. Its actually amazing. It leaves my skin feeling texture free and smooth. The gel absorbs into the skin quickly and feels good on the skin. I can swear that this product dramatically changed the texture of my skin.
I then go in with an all natural serum for blemish control, the Juice Beauty Blemish Clearing Serum. Its full of natural juices and astringents to brighten your skin, even out your complexion and prevent blemishes.
A serum isn’t absolutely necessary, but if you really want to improve the quality of your skin, it would do you good to invest in one. While serums can be very expensive, this particular one is a little less pricey in the serum department. Which is why I like it so much. It also feels like a safe product to put on my face because of its natural and gentle ingredients.
It doesn’t smell to good, and it does feel a little sticky for the first 30 seconds after you rub it into your skin, but it does help in making your skin less blemish prone. You only need the smallest amount to pat into your skin.
There isn’t an immediate, overnight difference with this serum, but it has made my skin less prone to blemishes and marks after breakouts.
I then go in with my daily makeup routine and move on with my day.
Once its night and I have to wash my face, I know that I need products that will thoroughly remove all traces of my makeup. I don’t like using makeup removing wipes because they break me out and I’m too lazy to sit their and tug at my skin to wipe my makeup off.
I go in with a magical drugstore makeup removing cleanser. The Neutrogena Naturals Makeup Removing Cleanser melts my makeup off. Long lasting makeup, waterproof makeup, liquid lipstick, anything, this cleanser gets rid of it. Its affordable, full of skin safe ingredients, its gentle and it doesn’t dry out my skin.
I’ve tried so many makeup removing products, drugstore and high end, and nothing removes my makeup like this product does.
After I wash off the cleanser, I go in with a small pump of the Ole Henriksen African Red Tea Foaming Cleanser (This might have been discontinued, but their The Clean Truth Cleanse is the same thing).
Yes, its 30 dollars, it is pricey, but its actually good and worth it to be honest. Firstly, it smells like an orange dream, subtle and sweetly scented with notes of orange. Second, although it’s expensive, it lasts a long time. Ive been using the same bottle for five months and it’s only half way done. You only need one pump of this luscious foam to thoroughly get rid of every little left over trace of makeup.
This cleanser makes your skin feel tight and clean, but not dry and when you touch your skin after using it, your skin will feel soft and hydrated.
Once my face is completely clean and dry, I spray my face with some of that rose water mixture to tone. I apply the same moisturizer and let it sink into my skin.
I then apply a small pea sized amount of Aczone gel, a very pricey, prescription, topical acne gel. My dermatologist prescribed me with this stuff and it is expensive magic.
Unlike other topical acne gels, this one doesn’t dry out or irritate your skin. It’s actually relatively moisturizing and doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin. I apply a thin layer on any existing breakout or potential break out, and I swear, it disappears over night. This bottle lasts a really long time because you hardly need a lot. So to me, it is entirely worth it.
That’s pretty much my daily routine. However, once in a week, I’ll use a clay mask and exfoliate my skin. I do both of these things once a week because both of them can be very abrasive for your skin. Clay masks improve the texture of your skin, bring the impurities in your pores to the surface and improve oiliness. However, they can be very strong and drying. So it’s always best to use it only once a week.
And while many people say to exfoliate the skin every day, that is very irritating to the skin and can make matters worse. Just stick to once a week and your skin will improve in texture, complexion and feel.
For a mask, I use either fullers earth with lavender powder, mixed into yogurt, honey and rose water.
Or I use Origins Original Skin Retexturizing Rose Clay Mask. This mask has a gentle rose scent, a light pink color and a beautiful softening affect on the skin. And while it isn’t a cheap mask, it definitely works.
For exfoliation, I simply mix together a small amount of olive oil with sugar and rub it onto my face. Your skin will be baby soft and renewed once you’re done. Thus also helped a lot with my dark spots.
This may seem like a lot, but once you invest in good skin care, you won’t look back based on the results of healthy skin.