My Current Skincare Routine

October 26, 2012

Many have asked me to share my skincare routine. I had plans to write about it earlier in the summer, however just when I was ready to publish the post, my skin decided to act up (about 3 months ago) and certain problem areas would not clear up. I thought it could be attributed to stress or weather changes. I tried a number of different things: I drank more water, changed my eating habits, washed my brushes and pillow cases more frequently etc. After several months of no improvements, I decided it was time for a skincare change. My prior routine consisted of: Clé de Peau Beauté’s Gentle Cleansing Foam or Clinique’s Rinse Off Foaming Cleanser, La Mer’s The Tonic, Clé de Peau Beauté Eye Cream, Le Métier de Beauté Peau Vierge Day Cream, and Koh Gen Do’s Cleansing Water (plus the occasional mask treatment). I suppose my skin became so used to holy-grails that the items became less effective (if that makes sense).

Thanks to the help of my trusted sales associates from various brands, I was given some recommendations and mini sample packets to try. In just a short time, my skin has cleared up and is almost back to it’s normal blemish-free state. I also changed my foundation routine. My holy grail loves started to seem a bit heavy (but still amazing).
My current skincare routine is split up into two categories, The Basics and The Extras. I’m not a skincare expert and unfortunately can’t elaborate on the benefits of each product, nor do I have the ingredients listing on the items. This is a list of what works for me. I’m hoping others who have tried the same can chime in the comments below. Also check out Makeupalley Product Reviews – this is an excellent resource.

The Basics:

  • Morning CleanserClé de Peau Beauté Gentle Cleansing Foam ($63) is one of my holy grail cleansers, it’s a gentle foaming cleanser, a little goes a long way leaving the skin feeling clean but not dry. I’ve repurchased this numerous times.
  • Night CleanserDior Purifying Foaming Cleanser ($33) was recommended to me by my local Dior artist. The Cle de Peau became less effective for me, so she recommended that I try this one from Dior. I found it to be amazing in terms of really purifying and cleansing the skin. Given the weather changes, I found it to be a bit too stripping for both morning and night, I like to use this one in the afternoon/night because it removes the makeup better.
  • Toner Giorgio Armani ‘Regenessence 3.R’ Pre-Regenerative & Retexturizing Lotion ($48) is a gentle toner that works to refresh the skin and noticeably improved my skin texture. I have not purchased this item yet, I received a generously sized sample in one of the Neimans Armani Gift With Purchase sets (they have generously sized skincare samples). So far it’s lasted me 3 weeks and counting. I intend on purchasing once it’s used up.
  • Moisturizer/Serum Giorgio Armani ‘Luminessence’ Bright Regenerator Concentrate ($150) is a brightening concentrated serum. I actually really liked some of the creams by Armani but my Armani artist felt that they would be too heavy for my skin and age (31). He personally said he loved the Luminessence Concentrate and used it under makeup alone (no other moisturizer or creams, other than eye cream). He made a small sample for me which I’ve been testing. So far I love it. I’m waiting for a gift with purchase event before I buy since it’s pricey.
  • Eye Cream Clé de Peau Beauté Intensive Eye Contour Cream ($250) was gifted to me by Cle de Peau and Neiman Marcus a year ago. I had my doubts about it’s effectiveness, but it’s everything it says it is. I’ve tried a number of eye creams (Clinique, NARS, Shiseido, Chanel, Lancome, Dior) but am still at the stage in my life where eye cream isn’t a necessity yet. I don’t have under-eye wrinkles or creasing (yet). All women told me to start using eye cream in my early 20’s so I did occasionally. I never saw any changes, nor did I feel anything different. The Cle de Peau is the first that I’ve actually seen and felt results. It fully hydrates the eye area and gives a smoothing finish with the moisture. It doesn’t dry out and it isn’t too greasy. It’s the perfect prep for a bit of concealer under the eye because it primes the skin for a more natural look (sometimes concealer can look a bit cakey under the eyes, the CdP helps prevent that). My husband uses this too.
  • Essential CottonShiseido Facial Cotton ($9.50 for 165 squares) is by far the best facial cotton out there. I’ve tried many other brands and nothing compares for me. The Shiseido is perfectly sized, very soft and gentle and sold at a decent price. They are more expensive than drugstore cotton but well worth every penny.

The Extras:

  • Cleansing WaterKoh Gen Do Cleansing Spa Water ($39) reviewed here is my go-to for removing makeup from the face in the afternoon (before cleansing), it’s also perfect for cleaning up eyeshadow-fallout around the eyes.
  • Mask Koh Gen Do Brightening Moisture Mask ($75) is pricey but lasts a long time. I did a brief feature here before. To recap, this is a great purifying yet moisturizing mask. The Macro Vintage Face Masks are equally amazing, but the Brightening one helps purify while the Macro Vintage moisturizes and hydrates more.
  • Eye Makeup Remover Chanel Gentle Bi-Phase Eye Makeup Remover ($32) is one of the few eyemakeup removers that really removes all traces of mascara without burning my eyes, Neutrogena’s is also awesome but has a slightly more emollient feel.

I hope this helps give you ideas on what works for me. Everyone’s skin is different so I can’t say these will work for everyone. My skin is normal but sensitive. I try to keep skincare items I use minimal. Most of the testing has to be done over long period to see if it really works. I also usually test only one new thing at a time while keeping the rest of the routine the same to test the effectiveness of that one product (even though sometimes it’s a combination of products that may make something work better). Also due to the pricey nature of skincare, I try to spread out my purchases. Most of the items are long-lasting with a little product going a long way.

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  • I also use the chanel eye make up remover for the same reason!

  • I'm always fascinated by other's skincare routine. I have yet to find the perfect products for my skin. I still have those same problem spots and it drives me nuts! I feel like I have gotten a lot better with skincare as I get older. The Clarisonic also helps me become more responsible in taking care of my face. I'm going to start using some SK-II products soon that I got from Sephora. I'm crossing my fingers for some good results!

    I'm going to look into getting the Cle de Peau cleanser you mentioned. My close friend told me the SK-II cleanser was nothing spectacular so I passed.

  • I love learning about new skincare routines!!! Thanks for sharing, you just showed me so many new products. I've been wanting to try Clé de Peau products but they are just so pricey!



  • I love the Chanel eye make up remover, as well! It's the best! I also really love their exfoliator and Hydra serum. As for skin care, if you have sensitive, fussy skin that breaks out occasionally, I highly recommend the Gentle Balance cleanser from Cosmedix or the White Tea cleanser from Arcona. I really believe in products that are/contain natural ingredients and both of those brands are top of the line. I've started esthetics schools, so if you need any suggestions for products/techniques, let me know!

    xo Hannah

  • I also use the Shiseido Facial Cotton – once I tried it, I can't use anything else! I tried the Koh Gen Do, but I don't like them as much – larger but not as soft!

  • Petunia

    have you ever been to or thought of going to a dermatologist for professional advice? not that the sales associates aren't professionals, they are just in a different profession. i'd be interested to hear your thoughts about seeking advice at the cosmetic counter versus the doctor's office.

  • Tatiana

    I'm on the other side of 50 than you. I also use the Clé de Peau Beauté Intensive Eye Contour Cream. Got it as a sample in a Barney's beauty bag, once. When I was finished with that sample I could really see the difference in my eye area. I will keep repurchasing it as long my eye keeps looking as good as it does now. The Le Metier de Beaute Day Cream did my skin no favors either. Caused me to break out. At my age, that is not a good look. The Chanel eye makeup remover is just amazing! Thanks for this peek into your skin care regime. Have a great weekend!

  • i love both those koh gen do products… I want them so badly! 🙂

  • I'm 54 and am often complimented on my skin, even when I have no make-up on. My skin care routine is very different, but I am suggesting it because it might be a nice "break" once in a while.

    I too use Chanel eye makeup remover — best stuff on the market!

    In the morning, I either do nothing at all (no washing, etc.), or a wipe my skin with alcohol-free, rose-scented witch hazel, available at any health food store. Then I put a few drops of Argan oil on my hands, rub them together, and pat it on my face. After that I do my makeup, or just have a bare face for the day. At night I do the same thing.

    About once a week, I use a micro-demabrasion scrub by Derma-e. It's wonderful, very fine. And once or twice a month I use the M.D. Forte French clay mask.

    That's about it. I think there is something to be said for allowing your natural skin oils to remain on your skin, and the exfoliate/mask periodically to remove dead skin cells.

    I do sometimes use the Natura Bisse Diamond Body Cream on my face and eyes (and body) if it's super-dry outside (I live in the high desert), over the Argan oil. They make an eye cream too, but it stings my eyes and the body cream works great, so I stick with that.

  • Mary

    KarenSantaFe—-I am of the same thinking as you and like to be as natural as possible with skincare and like to let my skin's own natural oils stay in place as it is the best protectant. It's there for that reason. My daughter has studied bioscience at Masters level and she opened my eyes about all this.
    I use Organic Rosehip Oil and Argan Oil. About once a week I use Shu Premuim Cleansing Oil for a good clean and exfoliate just after that.
    I'm 50 and thankfully have good skin. I use Bioderma to remove makeup which is very mild and perfect for me as it doesn't strip the oils from my skin.
    I do wear foundation and primer and bronzer but love to get it off when I get home and pamper my face with one of the oils.
    Am most interested to try the Chanel eye makeup remover.
    Sabrina—–you have wonderful skin and will be trying the Shiseido cotton pads and the Chanel Eye Makeup Remover. Great to hear your skincare routine.

  • I'm really curious about that Intensive Eye Contour Cream now–it sounds amazing! Hard to find a good eye cream, I'm glad that one seems to work so well for you. It's going on my list! 😀

  • Grey Garden

    I'm 48 and work in a medical spa. At first glance your skin care routine seems a bit inappropriate for a 31 yr woman living in SoCal. Those products are meant for dry, mostly mature skins, and they're all very expensive, without any real science behind the prices. Maybe that's why you were breaking out? Everything too heavy? I honestly suggest checking out the lines made with true skin care expertise, such as Kate Somerville, Natura Bisse, even Vichy and Avene have wonderful products at a fraction of the price.
    I recommend the Clarisonic, with the gentle brushes, and even if you use just a few times a week, it's great at getting all makeup and sweat out of the pores.
    AND I'm going to speak the truth here–eye cream is a huge marketing ploy. Eye wrinkles aren't caused by lack of moisture!!! Sun, smoking, allergies, bad diet play a HUGE role. Don't bother with eye cream unless you live in the Yukon and your skin is at risk of freezing off….lol.

    • Wow! thank you ladies for sharing all your skin care routines. The sun is the main culprit for wrinkles and it is always best to use all natural and organic products in taking care of our skin. I will definitely try Argan oil. 😉

  • Here's my rule buy makeup from a company that specializes in makeup and buy skincare from a company that specializes in skincare and preferably not one owned by L'Oreal or Estee Lauder!

  • Love this post! I recently started using Koh Gen Do Cleansing Spa Water Cloths, and am hooked. I either use them to take my eye makeup and lipstick off (since I don't wear foundation or powder), or on nights where I've stayed out too late and am too tired tk do my regular nightly routine. The best!!

  • P.S. I'm more convinced than ever that we are beauty sisters! Haha! The Clé de Peau Cotton is hands-down one of the best beauty finds in awhile. They feel like silk! I can't use those cheap cotton rounds from drugstores anymore. These cotton pads are so gentle. There's no going back.