Get Your Glow On For Winter
Dry Skin Savers For $20 & Under
By The Savvy Suavinista
Skincare: With the holidays upon us, it’s a better time than any to take a break and pamper yourself and your loved ones. Taking 20 minutes out of the weekend to put on a face mask is an effortless way to feel like you’re taking care of yourself. Skincare is one of the most important parts of a beauty regimen because while makeup and nail polish can be removed, our skin is in it with us for the long haul. That doesn’t mean skincare should be taken too seriously and can’t be fun. There is a bevy of quality products that you can grab for a luxurious spa night without the luxury prices. Keep in mind that skin care is not a one-size-fits-all game and only you will know what works best for yourself. To avoid any harsh reactions, patch test any product before using it on your face. Skincare is a science, so there’s a lot to cover here, but keep reading for my Simple Sugar Lip Scrub DIY.
Dry Skin: This brings me to the topic at hand: dry, flaky winter skin. The thirst is real. No matter what skin type (dry, oily, combination) your face will most definitely get at least somewhat drier than usual. The air outside is cold and windy and the ventilation inside gets stuffy and arid. Not to mention cracked lips and chapped skin on your nose or hands. I think everyone should have a decent facial moisturizer (guys too!) but I decided to cover some moisturizing products that might be a new addition to your routine. These would also make a great last minute gift for the ladies in your life. Spread the cheer- and glowing goddess goodness!
Pixi by Petra Nourishing Cleansing Balm, 3.04 oz ($20)
Where: Target and Pixibeauty.com
What: A cleansing balm is a semi-solid salve that melts into a rich, velvety texture. If you’re familiar with oil cleansing, balm cleansing is kind of like its less messy and more convenient sister. It has dual-cleansing properties because it can be used to remove impurities or make-up. Touted by skincare gurus and models alike, cleansing balms are a luscious way to wash that often deliver natural ingredients and fragrant oils.
Why: When we think of face wash, what usually comes to mind is a liquid that suds up and leaves us feeling squeaky clean. This is also known as a foaming cleanser. Foams are great for clearing sebum (that oily gunk in our pores). The downside is that those suds almost always come from detergents that strip our skin of beneficial natural oils that keep it looking healthy and soft. Stripping your skin can actually cause it to overproduce oil in an attempt to compensate. Non-comedogenic oils (meaning it won’t clog pores or cause breakouts on your face) can dissolve the oily sebum and make your skin look less congested. Fight fire with fire, right?
There are also special formulations out there for sensitive or oily skin. Other types of cleansers include gels like Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser, milks like Caudalie Gentle Cleansing Milk, and oils like DHC Deep Cleansing Oil. If possible, it can be helpful to have a few different cleansers on hand for whatever your skin needs at that moment. If I’m feeling parched, a cleansing milk or balm gives me a healthy beam. Sometimes I just need my good old fashioned foaming wash to feel completely purified. If you’re simply looking for something that will completely melt away every trace of makeup, a cleansing balm is all you need.
How: The catch with this cleanser is that you will need a clean washcloth specifically for your face. Dampen your cloth with warm-hot water. Swipe a small amount of the balm because a little goes a long way. Rub together between your fingers to melt and massage into your face. Remove product or makeup with the damp washcloth and rinse your skin. It’s possible to still feel a little bit of “slip” or trace amount of residue, but that’s normal and the point isn’t to feel stripped or squeaky.
You may find that you don’t need to moisturize after using if you just want to hit the hay after taking off your makeup. You can even follow with another cleanser if you want, which is called double cleansing. So basically, whatever you want. I like to follow by toning to feel balanced and I recommend using it at night if it’s too heavy for you during the day. Nighttime is when you want to double up on moisture which aids in keeping skin appearing more youthful.
All-Star Ingredients: Sweet Almond Oil, Shea Butter, Cocoa Seed Butter and Vitamin E.
Famous fan of Pixi: Ellie Goulding.
Tip: Massage your skin in small circles in an upward motion. Don’t use water that’s too hot to avoid stripping skin of natural oils. Make sure to rinse skin after using makeup remover or wipe.
Nip + Fab Dragon’s Blood Fix Pads, 60 pads ($12.99)
Where: Ulta, CVS, and Nipandfab.com/us
What: These face pads contain hyaluronic acid. Acids are a game changer to introduce to any skin routine. If the name sounds intimidating, fear not because acids used in skin care are natural compounds that promote cell turnover and help you put your freshest face forward.
Why: Hyaluronic acid is probably the most soothing and easiest acid to use of the bunch. The MVP of hydrating ingredients that can be used for any skin type, this moisture-binding carbohydrate can hold up to 6 liters of water per gram. That means it’s good news for dull, lifeless skin. It also has anti-aging properties that plump skin and blur fine lines. When we’re born we have a lot of natural hyaluronic acid but we need to replenish it as we get older. Another added benefit is it’s antioxidants that protect from environmental pollution and impurities.
How: These Nip + Fab pads contain hyaluronic acid but are also a toner/exfoliant. Exfoliation is an important part of skincare. However, there are different ways to slough off flakes than your average apricot scrub. Scrubs can be harsh and damaging to skin, especially ones with large and sharp particles like St. Ives. Sometimes you still need a good polish, so if you decide to scrub, try to find a gentle one with small particles and limit use to a couple of times a week.
These rounds contain another acid, salicylic acid, which is a chemical exfoliant as opposed to a physical one like a scrub. Chances are you’ve used this ingredient before if you’ve ever struggled with breakouts. Salicylic acid can actually clean inside of the pore so it’s great for clogged pores and blemishes. The product also contains witch hazel which is a toner that minimizes pores, catches any last trace of dirt/makeup and balances your skin’s pH. One side is smooth and the other is textured for extra exfoliation. You can use this the same way you would a Stridex pad. Swipe pad over your face focusing on areas with larger pores or blemishes and avoid eye area.
All-Star Ingredients: Hyaluronic Acid, Salicylic Acid, Dragon’s Blood, Witch Hazel, and Castor Oil
Famous Fan of Nip + Fab: Kylie Jenner.
Tip: Whenever you have excess face product, show some attention to the rest of your body. Don’t forget your neck and chest when using serums or moisturizers to keep the area appearing youthful. Use products with salicylic acid on any blemishes, razor bumps or ingrown hairs.
Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs, and Rosewater, 4 oz. ($7)
Where: Ulta, Anthropologie, Nordstrom and Mariobadescu.com
What: Face mists are a clever way to get an extra boost of moisture. Many facial sprays contain rosewater. Rosewater soothes skin and tones by balancing skin’s pH and controlling oil. Rose provides a naturally subtle scent and is gentle enough for different skin types. It also provides antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.
Why: Do you really need a face mist? Not necessarily, but they can be a lot of fun. There are plenty of inexpensive options and they are a terrific tool to have in your beauty arsenal. Facial sprays are for those who are on the go and are all about multitasking.
How: The first way to use a spray is after cleansing and before a serum or cream. This way the product prepares your skin to absorb the nutrients or moisture. It also can be used to prep skin for makeup application. My favorite way to use it is as a pick-me-up during the day after I’ve already completed my routine. The bottle is super portable and perfect for traveling or keeping in the office. It’s such a convenient way to give dull and tired skin a refreshment without the sink and soap.
The best part is that you can use it over your makeup for hydration or as a finishing spray. While it doesn’t really help makeup last longer, it can merge makeup layers to create a natural look. A cakey powder can be solved with a couple of spritzes to create a dewy, radiant finish. You can even spray it on your makeup brushes. Use it to dampen a beauty blender or brush to blend for a flawless foundation. Wet your eyeshadow brush to intensify color pigmentation or shimmer. Finally, you can use it in your hair for a silky shine and soft fragrance.
All-Star Ingredients: Aloe Vera, Rose, Gardenia, Thyme and Seaweed
Famous Fan of Mario Badescu: Kerry Washington
Tip: When layering skin care, apply from thinnest to thickest. Whatever products are being used should generally follow this order: cleanser, exfoliator/toner/mask, serum/essence/oil, eye cream, and moisturizer. Face mist can be used at any step.
Simple Sugar Lip Scrub DIY:
- What you’ll need: honey, brown sugar, and coconut oil
Raw honey nourishes, coconut oil moisturizes and sugar exfoliates. This is a great lip rescue when you have dry flakes and preps wonderfully for lip color. You can use whatever you have in supply, even if it’s just olive oil and white sugar. This is also good for hands or body, but you should probably skip it for the face because facial skin can be too sensitive for sugar scrubbing and oils like coconut, olive, etc. can be comedogenic.
- Combine 1 tablespoon honey + 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- Add 1 tablespoon coconut oil and mix.
- Scoop small amount with fingers. Apply to lips or skin and rub gently.
At a value of $21, this set includes their Ultra Repair Cream (2 oz) and Ultra Repair Instant Oatmeal Mask (0.75 oz). Gift it or keep it for yourself!
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What are your favorite ways to treat yourself during the holidays? Is there anything you want me to cover next?
XO, The Savvy Suavinista