Tuesday, March 9, 2010

I Haven't Completely Abandoned The List (Just Mostly)

9. Find a skincare routine that works.

Reno is DRY, folks. And my skin was actually really happy in the 99% humidity that was life in Oregon. So my skin was miserable when I moved here. Oily, dry, breakouts, redness, you name it. I was so self-conscious that I decided to suck it up and do something about it. Between luck, crossed fingers, an allergist and a dermatologist, I have actually (after going on 5 years here) found a skincare routine that works (knock on wood) without making me super-oily or ridiculously dry. To the point that I sucked it up and ordered the good stuff (although frugal me had to at least wait until I could get free shipping and an extra sample, those sample tubes are BIG).

Morning routine:

Finally something with SPF that doesn't feel greasy. Every morning post-shower.

This stuff is called Duac, and I only use 3-4 days a week, max. It is a combo benzoyl peroxide/clindamycin gel so it dries the crud out of my skin. But it really does cut back on general spottiness (except on my towels, if I'm not careful). I'm still coasting on the samples with this one, but this is a prescription I plan to fill.

Bedtime routine:

Yes it is mild and all the dermatologists say to use it, blah blah blah. Once I got used to not feeling like clean = skin completely stripped of all moisture I realized, my skin is really much happier with this stuff.

This one is the investment (at least in my book). My skin was having a particularly dry period and it came as a XL-sized sample so I figured I'd give it a shot. This is good stuff, folks. I actually sucked it up and bought some and it is so mild yet rich but not oily and seriously my new favorite thing ever. And so far it has taken me more than a month to put a dent in the sample bottle - you only need a tiny bit!

And a very mild retinol, because they really do work.

It seems funny to me that even though I like to go all natural for my soap and shampoo and as much food and cleaning products as possible, literally no natural skincare products have done anything other than make my skin worse. I guess this makes me a bad hippie. But seriously, folks. I wear less makeup if my skin is healthy, I stress out less if my skin is healthy, I pick at my skin less if it is healthy. I guess that would make it a reverse vicious cycle. But I'll take it! All of these products seem to last forever and so far they are worth it.

What skincare products do you swear by?


scb said...

I read this with great interest, because I really need to do something more for my skin than washing it with Ivory soap, but I don't know what to do that won't make things worse instead of better. Most things I've bought have ended up doing the "worse" thing.

I shall look more closely at this post...

Mella DP said...

I had a similar experience when I first moved to the east bay - only semi-arid there, but the skin, hair and mucus membranes didn't like it. I now use:

-Also Cetaphil cleanser, though usually the Target store brand version. Also the Cetaphil cream for general hand/body stuff.

-SPF 15 moisturizer from a J&J line called Purpose - I wish it were higher, but knowing sunscreens, I'm almost scared to experiment. How does yours smell?

-At night, a salicylic acid product that I think you actually pointed me to a couple of years ago.

That's the key stuff. I've used Differin before and really liked it, but I haven't had insurance coverage for it in ages.

"Natural" is kind of a joke in cosmetics claims. For one thing, there's lots of naturally occurring stuff you wouldn't want to put on your skin; for another, if it were really preservative-free and made from nuts and berries, you'd have to keep it in the refrigerator.

Anne (in Reno) said...

scb, I got a bunch of free samples from the dermatologist and gave each one six weeks or so to see if it made things better or worse. You could do the same with drugstore items, I'm sure.

Mella, I used to love that Purpose face lotion but they seem to have stopped carrying it around here. The Neutrogena stuff has a very faint sunscreen-y smell but it doesn't have the nasty oily sunscreen feel so I can deal with the smell. And yes, it seems like most of the "natural" things are the ones I'm allergic to.

Anonymous said...

I use the Cetaphil and Differin (when necessary). Origins Have a Nice Day SPF 15 in the morning (I'd also like higher, but am no way planning to mess with the gods on that one). A Neutragena night cream that is weightless and lovely and discontinued--boo. That's it. I have an eye cream, too, but only use it sporadically.

Anne (in Reno) said...

lauralynne, I hear ya. I had a great spf 15 lotion that I used until they stopped selling it, that was my only catalyst for finding a new one - the spf 45 is just a bonus!