Skin Deep : My Updated Skincare Routine
It’s been a year and 43 days since I last wrote about my skincare routine. And after discovering new skincare products last July, I’ve come to realize that not only is effectiveness important, but also the ingredients that go into my skin.
I’m not going to lie, the White Result skincare line was effective for me for awhile. But, once I (sort of/it’s not so bad) broke out, I have this tendency to switch back to what I know. And what do I know? I knew that my kojic acid + rejuvinating toner + Nivea sunblock combo worked for me best. Did I mention that this skincare routine was shockingly wallet friendly? I. was. sold.
And although it seems like I’ve found my holy grail (effective + affordable = what up), along came my friend Joses who recommended products from The Skincare Curator. Since I felt like my skin has already won the battle against pimples (I hope I’m not jinxing anything), I told them that I wanted products that could help me lessen my ongoing bout with blackheads – most especially on my nose. Last July, I started using this new trio and I haven’t touched my kojic acid soap since then.
From left – right: COSRX BHA Blackhead Power Liquid, COSRX Mela14 White Ampule, and Leejiham’s Tea Tree 30 Cleansing Foam all from The Skin Care Curator
Even if I felt like I was just trying this new routine out, just for the sake of trying out (and not really sticking to it in the long run), I was still quite excited because it involved more steps than my usual cleanse, tone, and put on sunblock during the day routine. Also, the packaging looked real good and that glass dropper had me feeling like a skincare professional. LOL!
While my original regimen was effective and affordable, I never took into account the ingredients that went into my skin by using them. My old routine made my skin look great on the outside, but I’m not too sure if the ingredients were as good to my skin on the inside. Upon research and usage of these new products, I realized that there are MORE things that I should consider like: PH balance, letting your skin absorb the product, sealing your skin with protectants, using the right products to target problem areas, etc. It was a bit overwhelming at first – there’s so much more to know about skin and skincare! BUT, if you want great skin, you got to go skin deep.
Taking a cue from Glossier: “Skin first. Makeup second.”
Aside from the great packaging, let’s learn a little bit more about these products – it pays to know who makes and manufactures what you put on your face!
- COSRX is a Korean skincare brand, which stands for COSmetics + RX (prescription), that focuses on cooking up products that are the “cure” for your specific skin “illness”. When I first read about it on this blog, I found the idea super cool! It’s like a drugstore that caters to all your skincare needs – or at least that’s the peg of the brand.
- Leejiham is also a Korean brand aka Korea’s first cosmeceutical skincare line powered by natural ingredients. It’s created by Korea’s first dermatology clinic in Korea.
And without further ado, let’s get into my brief review of these new products!
Step 1: CLEANSE
Of course, I start off my skincare routine with cleaning out the day’s grime and dirt. Old Gela would always use her kojic acid soap bar, while new Gela would use LJH’s Tea Tree 30 Cleansing Foam. I didn’t think twice about using this one, since Tea Tree Oil has always been familiar to me and my skin – pimple killer, what up. Here’s a perfect description of the product that I found online:
As the label states, the cleansing foam is made up of 30% natural tea tree extract which helps it fight acne problems while keeping your face clean and refreshed. Its pH 5.5 acidity level is perfect for maintaining healthy skin. Besides tea tree extract, the cleansing foam also contains witch hazel, a natural astringent which can help with acne control by reducing inflammation and decreasing oil, as well as Hippophae rhamnoides extract that offers 800 times more vitamins than an apple.
Another pro about this cleansing foam? It does not contain parabens, mineral Oil, artificial coloring, benzophenone, fragrance, animal material and triethanolamine. I also really like how my skin feels so fresh after using this. It’s the perfect base for your skincare routine! I tried their Tea Tree Facial Mask as well – more about this later!
The verdict so far? I’d like to believe that whenever a new pimple would want to rise from my skin, this cleansing foam helps to prevent it. I’d wake up in a day or two with a peeling area where the pimple used to/wanted to be! It’s been working really well as my new facial wash that I’ve got my boyfriend loving (and using) it too!
Step 3 & 4: EXFOLIATE AND NOURISH
Step 2 should obviously follow, but I have yet to purchase a toner to go with my whole routine. For now, I skip this step and go straight to step 3 and 4.
Aside from the occasional Argan Oil scrub or St. Ives Apricot scrub day, I didn’t really take into consideration exfoliating like my skin depended on it. Ever since my nose turned into a strawberry though, I turned my attention to using COSRX’s BHA Blackhead Power Liquid. According to the box that it came in, this product is “clinically proven to reduce the formation of blackheads and excess sebum is removed and hydrate the skin.” You can read about the goodness of this cult classic product in this in-depth review here. In a nutshell though, it’s a chemical exfoliant that clears dead skin cells from deep within your pores to minimize their appearance and prevent breakouts. Aka, let’s do this BHA! Let’s get rid of my strawberry nose!
My friend recommended that I just use this every other day since my skin is new to this product (and it is indeed a chemical exfoliant). So what I usually do is apply this just on my nose (my problem area) and let my skin absorb it for at least 15 minutes before adding any other skincare products like the COSRX Mela14 White Amuple and my NIVEA Sunblock after.
The verdict so far? Although it hasn’t completely erased the pores on my nose and removed all the blackheads, after two months of using it, the pores on my nose have definitely minimized in size. I also let my boyfriend Paolo use this all over his face once a week and so far, we believe its doing a good job of cleaning out his pores. And because of that, I’ve started to put this all over my face as well!
While the BHA Blackhead Power Liquid was easy to google, I did not find much results/reviews for this product. But what they hey, there’s no harm in trying! Again, according to the box, this product “helps visibly reduce dark sports and discolorations while preventing them from reappearing. A powerful concentrate designed to naturally even skin tone and deliver healthy looking radiance.”
After, cleansing and adding the BHA Blackhead Power Liquid to my nose, I use the dropper to drop one drop of this on each cheek and use my hands to rub it all over my face. And after letting it seep into my skin, I top it all off with my favorite NIVEA Sunblock (during the day) to seal all the skincare goodness in.
The verdict so far? I believe that it does what it says! I fell in love with my previous routine because it made my skin look so bright. Well, this product delivers the same results and you’re more sure of the ingredients too! Did I mention that it contains apple water?
Let’s get UP CLOSE and personal! – Leejiham’s Tea Tree Facial Mask Sheet from The Skin Care Curator
I also got to try these LJH Tea Tree Facial Mask Sheets and what can I say? I can’t wait to purchase more of these! For only Php 80.00 (about $2.00), this made my skin feel smooth, bright, and rejuvenated. But more than that, I really love the cold and refreshing feeling that it gives – while wearing it and even right after! If you live in a hot, humid country like me, this mask is a perfect skin pick me upper.
Aside from eating right, keeping a healthy lifestyle, and drinking lots (LOTS) of water, I suggest you invest in a good skincare routine, it doesn’t have to be too fancy or too expensive – just make sure the ingredients are skin friendly and work well for you. I swear, it will all be worth it in the long run! Also, if you are planning to try a new product/s, ALWAYS CONSULT WITH YOUR DOCTOR FIRST! Most especially if you have sensitive skin or are allergic to certain ingredients.
I’m really glad that these products got me to think about and consider what my skin really needs – it’s not always just about what’s on the surface. Allow me to share this verse with you:
But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” – 1 Samuel 16:7
While it isn’t wrong to want to look good on the outside, we should also remember to beautify ourselves on the inside too. Next time you’ve perfected that on fleek look of the day, ask yourself, “Is my character and heart on fleek today as well?” Let good, positive, and soul nourishing things seep into you, just like good skincare, and I’m pretty sure it will show on the outside too – it’s inevitable! 🙂
I’m currently browsing through theskincarecurator.com for a new toner – if you have any nice suggestions, don’t hesitate to let me know!
‘Til the next blog/vlog post,
P.S. I hope you’re having a great day!