Since last week’s article about our skin microbiome, I have been wondering if my usual skincare routine is doing more harm than good. So, this month, I’m going to experiment and simplify it.
I’m stripping my skincare routine down to its bare minimum. Which also meant a good clean out of my under-sink cosmetics drawer! It is something I had been procrastinating about, facing a drawer-full of products that weren’t cheap was a bit confronting.
I’m embarrassed to admit, there were more than a few expired products in there. So many sunscreens in the pursuit of my favourite. But, it felt so good to clear out a lot of clutter.
A simpler routine means less time, less money and hopefully, my skin will be healthier for it.
We are coming into spring here and my skin has been dry, yet I have also had some decent breakouts. Ah, my skin. Wrinkles and pimples, dry and oily! I have it all!
My New Simplified Skincare Routine
Morning Skincare Routine
Liquid Castile Soap Cleanse
I used to use an organic detergent-based cleanser with added essential oils, which smelt amazing, but it was too drying for my skin. Plus it was expensive and I could only purchase it in 125ml bottles, so it didn’t last long.
Liquid castile soap lives in my home apothecary. It is made with olive oil, glycerine, potassium cocoate and oleic acid. Liquid castile soap is pale amber in colour, unscented and free of parabens, sulfates, mineral oil, phthalates, formaldehyde, PEGs and it is easy to find non-GMO, vegan and non-animal tested brands.
A little liquid castile soap gives my skin a lovely lather without making my skin feel taught. Liquid castile soap rinses off with easily with water and a washcloth.
I apply this spray after cleansing as it is slightly astringent, but soothing on my skin. I let it dry (usually brushing my teeth while I wait!) before moving on to the next step.
I also apply this a few times a day if my skin is feeling dry or I need a refresh. I’m not heavy-handed with it, and if I’m wearing makeup, which is not usually, I blot off any excess with a clean hanky.
I usually have a few blemishes that could benefit from a quick application of my Apple Cider Vinegar, Neem and Tea Tree Spot Soother to soothe any inflammation and to accelerate healing. I am very careful only to apply it to the spot, not the surrounding skin. I allow it to dry before moving on to the next step.
Sunscreen is a daily must-do for me. Even in winter. I stay clear of the sun during peak midday hours and always wear a hat and when outside.
Also, sunscreen is something I absolutely do not make myself or recommend you do either!
In fact, I am alarmed by so many DIY sunscreen recipes that seem to be online. It’s one thing to use a DIY facial spray that might cause a breakout at worst, but there are enormous potential consequences if your DIY sunscreen offers inadequate protection that results in a sunburn.
That said, it feels like it has taken me an age to find a sunscreen that’s right for me. I tried baby sunscreens, mineral sunscreens, silicone-based non-greasy formulations, tinted primer sunscreens and BB creams.
Each had their own issues, from to being too greasy or a weird colour, or the cream pilling on my skin when I tried to rub it in. My current favourite is Australian Gold Botanical SPF 50 Tinted Face Lotion (note, this is not an affiliate post or link, just my personal recommendation.) It works for my skin colour, offers great protection, is non-greasy and I find it is easy to remove.
Evening Skincare Routine
In the evening right before bed, I cleanse my skin using my Soluble Oil Cleanser. It removes all the residue of the day and rinses off with water and a few wipes of my facecloth.
Optional: Healing Kaolin, Chamomile and Honey Mask
Every few days, I pop on this mask and chill for 15-20 minutes. It soothes any blemishes and leaves my face feeling smooth.
Apple Cider Vinegar Toner
In the evening, I have started using diluted Apple Cider Vinegar as a toner, 80% boiled chilled water to 20% ACV. I spray it on my face (avoiding my eyes and nostrils) and allow it to dry before I move on to the next step.
Finally, I apply a Facial Oil that is a blend of grapeseed, hemp and rosehip oils. I massage the oil into my skin with my fingertips, stroking upwards. I blot any excess with a clean cotton hanky, then, it is time for bed!
I am hoping my new, simplified skincare routine will help soothe my recent dryness and minimize breakouts and help me to maintain my best skin!
Most of the ingredients for my new and simplified skincare routine are sourced from my home apothecary. You can create your own with the help of my Guide to Creating Your Home Apothecary.
Inside you’ll find all you need to get you started! If you are not already a Subscriber to A Farm of Your Home, sign up today and I’ll send you the access password.
Do you have a regular skincare routine? How many products and steps do you do? I would love to hear what works for you, please leave a message below.