Thursday, May 20, 2010

Favorite Basics - Skin Care & Makeup

I thought I would launch things by discussing some of my go-to skincare and makeup items - things I use every day. Given my extreme makeup obsession, I have a lot of products to try and decide whether I like, but few that get the 'thumbs-up' award of re-purchase. I am very often told that I have great skin, so maybe I'm doing something right (though heredity of good skin genes definitely plays a role).

For reference, my skin is mature, essentially combination in summer, and dry in winter. I have laugh lines around my eyes, and typical aging characteristics - some age spots, lines on my forehead, but no real lip lines and no 'jowl sagging'. All in all I'm happy with my skin. I do not visit a dermatologist regularly, and I do not get regular facials. I guess I'm one of the lucky ones who does not really (meaning I only ocassionally) suffer from undereye darkness, circles or puffiness.

Today I'll start with skin care:

Philosophy Real Purity cleanser: this has been my all-time favorite cleanser for years - I like it because I do not need a separate product to remove eye makeup, it is gentle, and doesn't leave my face feeling tight or dry. I wait for Nordstrom's women's half-yearly sale and get the 32-oz pump bottle that will last me until the next h/y sale.

Dr. Denese Resurface & Glow cleanser: this is my morning shower cleanser/daily mild exfoliator. I use various weekly exfoliators depending on my skin's condition. I don't have a 'favorite' weekly product per se, but I tend to reach for MAC's Microfine Refinisher more often than not.

Clarisonic face brush: this is a great innovation - I use it with my Real Purity for a deep-down clean that doesn't leave my face stripped (important for women of 'my age' ;) and for me, it helps my skin care products seem to absorb more quickly and deeply into my skin. I also have the 'Mia' travel version.

Olay Regenerist Microsculpting and Night Treatment creams: I have actually repurchased these creams multiple times, and always being on the hunt for the next great moisturizer (and having tried many, both inexpensive and quite expensive), I think I have finally settled on this one. I use them in combination with other products from other companies for my skin care routine. Nothing makes my skin feel more moisturized.

Neutrogena Dermatologics Retinol NX serum: This product I get from QVC, as I love the idea of a retinol without using Retin-A, and this cream has improved the texture of my skin. I have it on 'auto-delivery' as I don't want to run out of it. This I use after whatever serum I happen to be using (I'm still on the fence about my favorite serum). I use this only at night.

Shiseido Benefiance Concentrated Anti-wrinkle eye cream: this is relatively new to me, but I'm glad someone recommended it! I've been using it for about a month, and it is truly moisturizing! I can feel its effects all day. I have had a hard time finding the perfect combination of nourishment without irritation (I have allergies and my eyes water a lot in the sun) and this cream helps my eye area feel 'comforted'.

Dr. Denese Triple Strength Neck Wrinkle Smoother & Bare Minerals Neck Cream: I love these products almost equally - those of you with younger necks need to take care of them now. I really believe that my use of neck creams over the last several years has staved off the advancing 'age lines'. Though I do have some due to heredity, I feel I am taking care of this area (as well as my decolletage) by using these products (along with day-time sunscreen). I also purchase both of these products from QVC.

Neutrogena Age Shield FACE Sunblock SPF 90+ (summer) & Neutrogena visibly even daily moisturizer SPF 30: I am one of those people who think that SPF 30 is the minimum requirement for my face, and as a result, I don't even bother with anything less than that. I typically use the visibly even moisturizer during the winter when the sun is not as strong in the northeast, and I started using the Age Shield again last month now that spring is here. I have to be careful not to get these near my sensitive eyes (which one should do anyway) but you can't beat the protection for the price. These products are available at any drugstore.

Chapstick: no matter how many 'trendy' lip products come on the market, I always go back to good old Chapstick (my favorite is Cherry). Having been on Retin-A in my early 20s (and before all of the acne skin care advancements), my lips remain very dry. I keep Chapstick very handy, in the kitchen, at my desk, by my bed, in the outer pocket of my purse. Nothing has the same lasting power for me.

I have other 'current' likes - but nothing noteworthy at this point. I'll focus on my makeup basics in my next post.


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