I’ve been trying out a new routine since my trusty Fresh Soy cleanser and Chanel Le Blanc Serum ran out, and have been loving a few items so far. Some are new, some are rediscovered, but so far all have been playing nicely together.
My skin’s been on its usual dehydrated gig with a bit more dryness these days and correspondingly less oiliness – which is great as far as makeup is concerned! Day and night, I cleanse now with Rodial’s Stem Cell Super-Food Cleanser. I’ve since lost the included muslin cloth (how very Eve Lom!) but it works just as well massaged on and off in the shower. It’s a great rich creamy cleanser that’s perfect for dehydrated skin types that absolutely can’t tolerate the slightest foam and astringent finishes. There’s a bunch of oils in it (Marula, Rosehip, Coconut), cocoa butter, rose wax, and the brand’s PhytoCellTec Alp Rose Flower stem cell technology. Bar the last one, for its dubious promises of protection against environmental stress and “[improving] cell vitality to protect against future damage”, everything else is pretty sound. It means a silky smooth and almost milky texture that slides around like a dream. A single cleanse will do for bare skins and a double dose will suffice for most everyday makeup removals.
Following that, I swipe a saturated cotton of Kiehl’s Calendula Toner around my face. This is one of those products that is so gentle and mild that I don’t know if it’s visibly or significantly contributing anything beyond a moistened layer on the skin and a pleasantly earthy scent. Since it isn’t doing anything bad and generally calms my skin a little, I’m happy to have it around. If you’re looking for a supremely fuss-free toner that won’t mess up an existing routine, I strongly suggest this. If you are, however, seeking something with active benefits like hydration, brightening, astringence, etc., look elsewhere.
On the replenishing front, I’ve been trying out Alpha-H’s Vitamin B Serum with Copper Tri-Peptide. After a bout of brightening, I’m ready to slap on niacinamide for its fortifying, hydrating and reparative benefits. The key active here is scientifically sound, so I have no problems with it. Copper Tri-Peptides are a bit of a mystery to me, but as far as I know peptide ingredients are farther-reaching molecules that interact with the skin on a cellular level to stimulate collagen production (etc.) so as to improve skin texture, quite literally, from within. The product is, strangely enough, green – and a little stinky. But it feels if anything like a facial equivalent of an absinthe shot without its associated dangers – don’t inhale too deeply and drink it all in.
In the day, I’ve been trying to allow my skin to get a little oily and deal its own moisture. I’ve thus been using richer sun creams to get – primarily and most importantly – SPF coverage with the added bonus of a moisturising layer. I’ve been enjoying Sisley’s Super Soin Solaire Tinted Sun Care with SPF 30 but their latest Phyto-Blanc Daily Defense Fluid is very good too. I’m more partial to the Super Soin Solaire now because it is a dedicated sunscreen and more (well, relatively) affordable than the Phyto-Blanc which is intended as a treatment cum protective product. Anyway the SSS has a reasonable factor number to me that’s got sound UVA and UVB coverage. Other assorted bonuses include: Vitamin E/tocopherol and Edelweiss extract as an antioxidant to protect against free radical damage, and camellia oil for its nourishing benefits and lovely smell. Overall, it’s fantastic under makeup, provides enough moisture, doesn’t leave a cast, and smells like fresh gingery sage heaven.
If I’m not using such a rich sun cream or doing my face post-meridian, I’ll moisturise with Blithe’s Tundra Chaga Pressed Serum. This brand is pretty new to Sephora Singapore and I had the good fortune of meeting some of the brand’s very earnest and excited representatives at the press day here. Basically what I’ve taken away is that the line of pressed serums are formulated very intensively to essentially have the prowesses of serums alongside the more spreadable and emollient textures of creams or gels. The Tundra Chaga, in particular, has a most fascinating texture that’s best described as a glossy peanut butter spread that’s melted a little. Any which way, it is an absolute bomb of hydration in a very absorbent gel texture that spreads with ease and disappears after being patted and massaged in shortly. It’s so hydrating, in fact, that it works just as well without the Alpha-H before it – but I prefer loading on that light serum layer.
Makeup wise, I haven’t strayed far from my intents to finish up products before trying new things. The routine as it stands is NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation over the Sisley because it wears quite matte; Radiant Creamy Concealer over small patches of discolouration; Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage on the few spots I have; NARS Light Reflecting Pressed Powder to set; Diorskin Nude Air powder for a glow; YSL Les Sahariennes Bronzing Stones for the illusion of wellness all over and definition on the eyes; Sisley Phyto-Blush Eclat for rosiness; and then whatever brow product is within reach.
I’m currently also working on testing out two exfoliating scrubs/mask sort of things but reviews for those soon. One I’m already thinking I can’t live without… so good things ahead.