Bonjour, lil beans!
I write to you this day with yet ANOTHER list of affordable skincare products I am loving. And by ‘loving’ I mean ‘desperately using as a crutch to deal with the acne caused by sugar addiction’.
I have struggled with my skin for… Wow, almost a decade now. Time flies when you’re having a breakdown over your reflection every week or so.
I kid, I kid. In recent years, my breakdowns have been reduced to once monthly. And that’s all because of my obsession with skincare! Which I have shared with you here, and here, and of course here. And now HERE! You’re welcome.
Today I’m gonna reveal to you guys the five skincare products that are keeping my face in tip-top(-ish) shape. I am more happy and secure in my skin because of these products, and I want to spread the love. Cuz I’m that kind of girl.
So, without further ado, here are my five skincare superheroes:
I’m just gonna start with the heavy hitter. After taking antibiotics for my acne on-and-off for the last… damn, seven years! I finally started to feel like I didn’t need the tablets anymore. My skin wasn’t—and still isn’t—perfect, but I don’t need perfection.
I spoke to my doctor, and she recommended that I transition by using a cream product instead. She gave me Skinoren. And Lord, I am LIVVINGGGGG.
This cream is supposed to, like, unblock your pores. It contains 20% Azelaic Acid. I have no idea what the hell that means, and I don’t care. Ms Azelaic throws it DOWN.
I use this cream morning and night on clean skin. If I’m leaving the house, I’ll add a spray-on SPF on top. And that’s… That’s it. THAT’S ALL I DO.
After 3-5 days of experimenting and getting used to the product (initially, I would feel a slight itching immediately after applying it), I have come to realise that Skinoren is my best friend and nothing should come between us.
And that attitude has saved me a bloody fortune in skincare products, too!
At first, I was worried that Skinoren would dry out my skin. When I apply it, it feels like it’s drying out my skin.
BUT THEN. AFTER LIKE HALF AN HOUR. MY SKIN IS SUDDENLY PERFECTLY BALANCED, GLOWING, HEALTHY, SMOOTH AND HYDRATED, LIKE A PRECIOUS BABY UNICORN PEED ON MY FACE. OR SOMETHING.
It’s bomb, is what I’m saying here. This has been a public service announcement.
2. The Face Shop’s Rice Water Bright Cleansing Oil (Light)
But how am I getting my face squeaky clean, in preparation for my precious Skinoren?
Well; you know how I mentioned worrying that my skin would be dried out? I have normal-dry skin, and in winter it runs even drier.
So since it’s cold as a [REDACTED] (my mum reads this blog) outside, I decided back in September to try a new face wash. After looking through Twitter for decent recs, I heard tell of the Rice Water Bright Cleansing Oil.
It was affordable and available via Amazon Prime, so I one-clicked that bad boy. And now here we are, five years later, married with three kids and a dog. Life is so funny that way!
Ha. Hahaha. I am never using any other face wash.
The Face Shop is a skincare company based in South Korea, and we all know South Korea got the juice. It contains rice water (obviously) along with vitamin B and various hydrating minerals. And it feels like a peach, if a peach was a cleansing oil.
It took me a while to get the hang of this—you have to rinse your face first, then apply a pump or two, massage thoroughly (I mean MASSAGE, sistren) and then rinse again. And your face isn’t supposed to feel ‘squeaky’ or stripped after cleaning. This is what we’ve been taught to expect from a cleanser, so at first, the lack of that freshly-stripped feeling made me worry that the product wasn’t performing properly.
But I persevered and came to realise that it IS performing properly. It gets my face totally clean. And also leaves things nice and soft and pampered.
Win, meet win. You two are friends now.
Buy this face wash. I mean, it’s under a tenner and it will make you soft as a marshmallow. Who doesn’t want to be a marshmallow, is my question. No-one, is the answer.
3. The Ordinary’s 5% Lactic Acid Exfoliator
SPEAKING of affordable goodness! I couldn’t leave out The Ordinary, now could I?
I only got into this brand recently, even though I’ve seen it around and admired it for some time. Why? Because it looks kinda sleek and fancy, so I assumed it was expensive, and I am NOT about that life.
But I was WAY off, cuz their stuff is cheap as chips. Like, it is literally the same price as a large fish and chips in the rich-ass town I call home. Cry for me.
I was in need of a new liquid exfoliator after my fave from Bravura London ran out. And since I’m lazy, when I discovered that The Ordinary’s exfoliators don’t have to be rinsed off, I was ON THAT HYPE.
And I am so glad I hopped on the lazy-train, because the 5% Lactic Acid I bought was AMAZING. I love it, it is my precious child whöm I adore. Etcetera.
This exfoliator is so simple and easy to use. An application before bed, once every two or three days, keeps my skin fresh and my pores as small as they’re ever gonna get. Which is still pretty big. But then, I am a big person. So.
10/10 would recommend.
4. Nelson’s Arnica Cream
Not gonna lie, this one is kinda weird, kinda gross, kinda TMI. But here we are. And I don’t see you leaving.
Wait, but don’t leave tho, for real. K thank you.
SO sometimes when my skin is perfect, and then I get one tiny spot, my brain is like, y’know:
WOW HOW DARE YOU WE HAD A GOOD THING GOING ON AND YOU CAME TO RUIN IT. YOU DESERVE PAIN AND SUFFERING AND VENGEANCE.
So my brain directs me to aggressively s q u e e z e the spot. And then, after I have further destroyed my poor skin and made everything a thousand times worse with my actions, I remember that this spot is attached to my face and its pain is my pain.
Do you ever have that? Does that… Does that happen to you? I really hope I’m not alone in this.
ANYWAY, because skin is so goddamn delicate I often bruise/damage my poor face by doing this. And in those instances, I bring out my SECRET WEAPON!!! Arnica cream, which my great-grandma the hedge witch told me about. Thanks, grandma.
I got my arnica cream at Holland & Barretts for like £7.29. Bargain!
It reduces bruising and swelling, helping my damaged skin to heal. It’s also helpful with those very angry, deep cystic spots that pop up for no reason and ruin everything! So. A real multi-tasker. I am a fan.
5. Vitamin C
And finally! The most unexpected superhero, in my book… Something I DON’T EVEN PUT ON MY FACE…
Vitamin C tablets!
I know it’s a wild concept, but it turns out the things you ingest actually, like, affect your body and stuff. That must be what my mum meant when she told me to stop eating so many cookies if I wanted clear skin.
Haha, whatever, Mum! What do you know? NOTHING! *eats seven cookies while crying over acne*
Anyway; Vitamin C is great for increasing the sun’s protection against UV rays, healing damaged skin, and increasing collagen production. All of these things combined just happen to help defeat my greatest enemy: post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation. AKA Those Darker Marks That Appear After Every Blemish.
The recommended daily intake of Vitamin C is 1000 micrograms. I could eat a balanced and healthy diet to meet that requirement, but I am a very busy woman and I do not have the time or money to spend on pathetic minutiae like food. I prefer to focus on makeup, manicures, and wigs. It’s a lifestyle.
So I take supplements instead! And they’re totally good for you cuz they have the little vegan flower logo on the side.
I take one Innopure Vitamin C tablet (1000mg) per day. I actually started taking them to help boost my terrible immune system; it was only after my skin got all glowy and plump and whatnot that I realised they might be causing the change.
I did a Super Google (don’t bother researching that term cuz I just made it up right this minute) and was rewarded with info that confirmed my vague suspicions. Yay!
So that’s it; my five skincare superheroes. These are the only five skincare products that I use on a regular basis right now.
I hope that this post helps someone simplify their regimen, cut costs on their skincare, or fix up their misbehaving face! Please comment below to let me know if you’d like more (or less!) skincare content.
And if you have any recs of your own, let me know!