06 February 2012

Skin Care: My Routine and Useful Information

Our body= amazing.  It was designed to do some incredible stuff like respond non-stop (and super fast) to our internal and external environment.

Our job is just to help it along the way by providing protection from overexposure of unforgiving elements (and boy are there many), or supporting it when it gets out of whack.

The important thing is to strengthen and boost our skin’s natural processes.

Over the years, I had been trying to do its job with harsh cleansers and regimens, and had forgotten its amazingness.

So here's my journey and what I have learned along the way...

(I know this post appears lengthy but I promise its filled with good stuff, and goes by really fast :)
I swear if the wind blows at me the wrong way, I will break out.  I have the most sensitive acne prone skin of all time.

Since the age of 13, I have struggled with acne. I used to get teased about it and definitely became a recluse my freshman year of high school because of it.  Acne is no fun.  I have tried every brand and product out there;  from department store (Chanel, Clinique, Origins, etc.), to drugstore and even Proactiv.  Nothing seemed to work!

It wasn't until I started understanding the science of skincare (literally- chemistry) and experimenting with more natural products that I am finally able to keep a healthy balance on my skin issues.

One thing I know for sure is that our skin doesn't care if you spent $1,000 on creams handpicked from the bootie cheeks of Zeus.  It wants what it wants.  If your breakouts are caused by hormones, vitamin deficiency, reactions to products (chemical reactions), or whatever, it will misbehave like a naughty child.  Bad skin, BAD!  Not to mention that our bodies are constantly undergoing change, so what works today may not work tomorrow.

I will go through my daily routine in hopes that somewhere in the details, you will find a helpful tidbit of information.  Please keep in mind that everyone's skin is different and what works for me may not work for you.


While you are snoozing away, your skin is actually working away regenerating itself, balancing oil production, and driving out impurities.

Why remove all the natural oils and goodness your skin produced?

I like to give my face a good rinse with luke-warm water.  There really is no need for me to use a cleanser on my skin in the morning since it was not exposed to dirt, makeup, etc. in my sleep.  I just like to rinse off the prior nights moisturizer and any excess oils.


I like to use Rosewater as a toner.  It's amazing!  It helps reduce redness, balance the oil, treat acne spots, and refresh and re-vitalize my skin.  It also has natural yummy anti-aging properties.  Another great thing about Rosewater is that it is inexpensive!

Rosewater contains antiseptic and anti-bacterial properties, which make it great for treating skin problems such as acne, wrinkles, and lines.

I buy mine at a local Indian supermarket, but there are tutorials out there that explain how to make your own at home.

Dabur Gulabari Rosewater

If my skin is behaving well, I like to use treat it with Dabur’s Gulabari Rosewater, which I also purchased at my local Indian market for $1.99!  Amazing I know.  This product has Rosewater in it, along with other natural ingredients.  

For more information on this product, check out the Dabur website.

The reason I do not use this every day is because I find that my skin can get overly excited in its production of shine and oil.  

However, I don’t exclude it from my skincare regime because it actually has some great vitamins and “goodies” for my skin.  So I like to think of it as a special treat for those days when I’m not wearing makeup, or my skin is behaving and could use an extra “hug”.

Oil of Olay Total Effects Daily Moisturizer

I LOVE this product.  I find that my skin has been more balanced; smoother, supple, and the redness from old acne scars are diminishing.

For more product information, check out the Oil of Olay website:

Age Defying Anti-Wrinkle Eye Cream

I just started using this eye cream and so far I like it.  Since it is a new product for me, I can't say whether I will love it forever, or will leave it.

Ponds Evening Soothe Towelettes with Chamomile & White Tea  

I use this to remove my makeup. This stuff is great and smells like heaven!

For more product information, check out the Pond’s website here.

Oil of Olay Total Effects Cream Cleanser + Blemish Control

This is another great Oil of Olay product.  I find that it has smoothened my skins texture, reduced the occurrences of breakouts, brought out a nice healthy glow, and reduced the size of pores.
3% Hydrogen Peroxide (when I am broken out or have been picking my face)

I swear by this stuff. Don't look at me like I'm crazy!  Try it for yourself!  Just take a cotton ball/pad and swipe that puppy on (in upwards motions to avoid wrinkles of course).

A lot of successful acne products contain this ingredient.  After all, a pimple is a small infection within our pores, and we all remember putting this on our boo boo’s as a kid (and watching it bubble!) so it didn’t get infected.

Tip: Keep away from hairline, eyebrows, and clothes as it will bleach them.


For days when my skin is behaving, I like to substitute Rosewater as a toner in the evening to give my skin a boost of yummies to work with while I’m asleep.

Check out this great site for more info on the history of Rosewater and how to make it.

Same moisturizer and eye cream as I mentioned in my morning routine 

Twice a week (or when I remember) I use this AMAZING face mask that I make at home.  I can almost bet that you will adore this mask.

Not only does this mask help with acne but it also exfoliates!  When I'm done, I can already see a big difference.  It's like a layer of gunk has been removed, leaving me with skin that would make any baby bottom jealous.

If you do not have acne, this mask will still rock your socks.

Let me break down the ingredients (which can be found at your local Indian market):

Great antiseptic.  It is not only used in India as an ingredient in dishes, but also in wedding ceremonies, for curing medical ailments, and in skin care.

Almond Oil        
 I love this stuff!  It’s loaded with vitamins and minerals that are so good for your skin AND hair.  Before I started using the Oil of Olay moisturizer, I used Almond Oil.  It doesn’t clog your pores since the molecules are too large.

I also use almond oil to remove pesky lip stains.  I just put some on a tissue and leave on for about 5 minutes, and then wipe off.  Vaseline also works very well for that.

Do I really need to explain?  It’s so good for you. Period.

Here’s the recipe:

2 Tbsp. Gram Flour (chick pea flour)
½ Tsp. Turmeric
1 Tbsp. Almond Oil
Milk (about ½ a tsp.)

You want to mix the gram flour and turmeric first (just a quick stir), then add the almond oil and lightly stir.  Then add the milk.

You want the consistency to be that of a paste.  You don’t want it to be too watery or too dry.  Think of a clay mask, you want a similar consistency.

Leave on for 20 minutes.  Try not to leave on longer as it may stain your skin.

Tips and re-cap:

·          Don’t forget to drink plenty of water and take vitamins.  If you would like more information on the vitamins I use, check out my previous post here.
·         Choose a cleanser that’s right for you.  If you have dry skin, try a creamy cleanser.  If you have oily skin, try a clear cleanser.
·         Throughout the day makeup, sunscreen, bacteria, dead skin cells, and oil build up on your face.  So cleansing at night is essential, no matter how dry your skin (opt for a gentle cleanser if this is the case).
·         There's no need to wash your face again in the morning. Simply rinse your face with water when you wake up.

I hope you have found this helpful!


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