Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Let's Get Personal: The Routine Part 1

Sorry for the long wait! Things have been busy and I've been overwhelmed and really lazy to keep up here. As you may have noticed, I've gotten a guest blogger to take over Music Mondays for me, and it has helped tremendously. I will get better soon! So a few weeks ago I went over my back story, and the reason why I have issues with my skin and hormones. If you missed it, you can read it here. I went into some detail about my history with PCOS, and the difficulties I had with my changing skin over the years. Right now I'm at a really happy place. There are a few breakouts here and there, but nothing near to what I was dealing with before. I was actually super pleased when I went to the MAC store to get color matched and the MUA said my skin was gorgeous. I sang on the inside! Before I get to it, I'm going to let you know this is going to be lengthy and I will break it up into 2 parts. Let's get started!

This is everything I use. Looks like a lot, but it works!

My skin type is oily combination. Oily in the T zone and fairly normal on the rest of my face. A few dry patches around my mouth area and cheeks occasionally, mostly when I haven't exfoliated in a long time or when the weather gets colder. Some days - like the past few weeks (eek!) I've been too lazy to do much so I let my skin do its own thing. And it seems to work. Less stress I guess? But I still put some effort into it. Just not the whole routine. I'm also working on weaning off products so I can minimize the amount of products I use and also spend less money in the same boat.


I use a variety of cleansers and exfoliants based on my mood, time and skin. I never used to exfoliate at at all.
No one ever showed me or told me how to do skin care, so I had to learn it through trial and error, looking things up on the Internet, and just winging it sometimes. I mean who knew you had to cleanse, exfoliate, tone, AND moisturize? Plus serums and all that? I sure didn't. I was just a basic cleanse and moisturize gal. Then one day I was introduced to St. Ives Apricot Scrub and that baby has stayed with me since. I switched to the Blemish and Blackhead Control formula and never looked back. More recently, I found out about Clarisonic Mia and once I figured out which brush head worked the best for me (deep pore) I jumped on it and have never been happier. 

Neutrogena Oil Free Acne Wash is one of the first cleansers I have ever used, and it is the one I always end up going back to - because it works. I know that a lot of people say it doesn't matter what is in your face wash because it isn't on your skin long enough to be effective, but I think this proves otherwise (at least for me.) I use this with my Clarisonic to get nice and clean. It suds up really well and I find that certain cleansers don't work as well with the Clarisonic if they don't lather and create a lot of soapy suds. Neutrogena + Clarisonic with deep pore brush = squeaky clean and happy face. I do this combo a few times a week, it's too intense to do it everyday and definitely only once a day.

My everyday cleaner when I don't use my Clarisonic is Mario Badescu Botanical Facial Gel. It doesn't do much in terms of the "
deep cleansing and refreshing" it claims, but it removes dirt fairly well. Makeup - not so much. It also doesn't work with my Clarisonic because of the gel formula, so I just use it on its own. Occasionally I'll use some apricot scrub when I want some massage action going on, or some exfoliation without breaking out the Clarisonic. I usually use the apricot scrub on its own once or twice a week. It doesn't remove all the dirt and makeup, but it feels SO good on my face. I don't use it on dry skin because I find that too harsh. I make sure I wet my face first and get to massaging in circles. 

PIDA exfoliating gel I use every so often. Mostly because I'm lazy and don't like washing my face in the sink. It's great for getting off dry skin though, especially areas where I couldn't leave well enough alone and picked at things. It's a good product and my face is silky smooth after using this. Its not drying at all, I just really wish I could use it in the shower and that I didn't have to use it on dry skin! You can read my review on it here.

Raw honey is more of a mask than a cleanser, but it serves the purpose of both. I put some on my skin and massage it in for a few minutes before I let it sit for 15-20 mins. Then I put a hot washcloth on top and let it soak into my skin before wiping off. My skin feels soft and supple, which makes me wonder why I don't do it more than twice a month! Hmm.. I guess I have to stop being lazy and manage my time better!


Clinique Clarifying Lotion -
Formula 2 (for Dry Combination skin) mixed with some Neutrogena Clear Pore Astringent. Clinique had recommended Formula 3 for oily combination skin, but it broke me out and didn't feel right on my skin. Formula 2 feels better, it makes my pores tighter and I feel cleaner, plus it calmed my breakouts almost immediately. I saw my acne shrink in days. I use this almost everyday. For the times where my skin is extra sensitive, I use plain ol' witch hazel to sooth any irritation and redness. It still cleans thoroughly, but sometimes if I use too much, it leaves a slight film behind and it makes my face sticky.
er times when I'm in a rush, or when my skin is behaving extraordinarily well and I don't have any breakouts, I'll use my FAB Facial Radiance Pads. I don't see too much of their claims to "exfoliate, tone and brighten." But they pick up whatever my cleansers don't pick up and don't sting or dry out my skin. I throw them in my gym bag and they're very travel friendly, especially in a carry-on bag since there's no 'liquid' per-say.

Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peel Extra Strength Formula
towelettes are AMAZING. I know some of you may have seen my Instagram posts of before and after, but within 3 uses I saw a difference in my skin. Acne shrank, red spots cleared up, my skin felt soft, I was glowing! It also really helped my oils and treatments penetrate better. Using the peels after a good exfoliation gave me the best results. I know it's pricey and also not natural, but it works. And for that I can splurge and feel ok with it because c'mon I can see real results here. Not after weeks, but within DAYS. 

I also liked the Murad Intensive-C Radiance Peel. I received it as a sample from Sephora and I was contemplating purchasing the full size before I tried the Dennis Gross pads. It penetrates without irritating my skin, and my inner glow was released. However, I'm all for quick and easy, which the Dennis Gross pads offer. I swipe them across my face and I'm done. The Murad while more cost effective, requires washing off after the allotted time. I don't have time for that!! Plus I'm saving water ;)

And I think I will cut it off here.. Next week's post will be Oils, Moisturizers, and Masks. Whew, that's still a lot! You guys must think I'm crazy, but it works wonders. And eventually I will do an update on the more simplified version of this routine.

One day, one day...
- L



  1. I didn't realize they had put out so much music. Great job, once again!

  2. Girl you got great taste in music! I also nominated you for the sunshine award!

    P.S. I miss you!

  3. Thanks girl! I will deff check it out :) And these Music posts are from my guest blogger, Juan! I'm glad you like.


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