Hope you guys liked my previous post on ‘How I tackle my Dry Skin’. That post was more of a general overview without clouding anyone’s opinion of which products to use. But this post will be all about which products I use to keep my dry skin well… normal.
Another thing to note is my age is 33 years old. My skin has needed a lot more care after 30, so it is important to use products that are designed for your age. I can’t use some great products that I’d love to meant for women in their 20s like Laneige Water Bank series for example (ladies in your 20s – go for this series its really awesome!) Also, note that I tend to gravitate towards Korean cosmetics the most. I will try a Japanese product now and then in between but mostly Korean skincare has won for me. Some notable Japanese skincare brands (that I can’t afford but wish I could!) are Komenuka Bijin, Tatcha and SK-II.
So here it goes with a breakdown of products that I currently use (it changes now and then).
For cleansing I do a two step cleansing. Make up removal then actual cleansing.
Step 1: Oil cleanser.
A must to remove make up before using your foam cleanser. I currently use Face Shop’s Rice Water Cleansing Oil approx. $9-$15 depending on where you purchase it.
Other cleansing oils I have used in the past are
Hadalabo Gokujun Cleansing Oil (approx. $15)
Shu Uemera Cleansing Oil (approx. $50- $80, depending on which kind you get)
DHC Cleansing Oil (approx. $24)
How to use: Apply to dry face and rub with your fingers in circular motion for 2 minutes. Wet your hands and apply it to the face and the oil should slightly foam up cleansing off all the make up and oil.
Out of the above mentioned products I think the DHC Cleansing oil or Hadalabo is probably best choice if you use a lot of make up, also the price is pretty okay. They are both popular Japanese drugstore brands. Shu Uemera is one of the top international Japanese brands. It is the best selling and one of the best oil cleansers so if your bank can take it – go for it.
I don’t use too much make up to begin with so I am okay with the Face Shop one. I love the smell and it gets rid of my make up pretty good, but I have heard before that its on the lighter side. I also like that it is ‘rice water’. Rice water has a lot of skin benefits (another post for another day!). I have also tried the Rice Water Cream Cleanser since they ran out of the oil when I went to buy it. I prefer using cleansing oils but this does the job of removing make up as well.
Step 2: Foam Cleanser.
Very important step always! I currently use IOPE Ideal Cleansing Foam Whipping Brightener. I purchased it from the Amore Pacific counter. It cost me $22. It lasts about 6 months atleast. It has little colorful beads in it that you can feel gently exfoliate when you wash your face. Once I am out of this I might switch to IOPE Ideal Cleansing Foam Creamy Moisturizer. My skin feels drier lately and I tried the sample for the creamy moisturizer foam and it was more agreeable to my skin.
I have been through tons of cleansers in the past so I won’t go through all of them right now, but one worth mentioning is the Laneige Multi Cleanser (approx. $22). This cleanser was really good as well. It has papaya extract in it and was brightening and cleansed the sebum out well.
How to use: Use a dime sized amount in your hand or face wash net and create lather. Using your fingers draw little circles on your forehead going inwards to outwards with the foam. Nose – move up to down and Chin and Cheeks also inwards to outwards using the same circular motion. Rinse well by splashing water on your face atleast 8-10 times after all foam is removed.
2. First Treatment Essence
This has become a more recent advancement in skincare, and is the step before toner. There are tons of fermented essence products out there now.
I started out with Iope Bio Essence Intensive Conditioning. And I love it! I saw results right away and it is an amazing product. It comes with a box of cotton pads and they recommend using 3 ml everyday and there are markings on the bottle. This means the bottle at $63 is only for one month which didn’t quite agree with my budget. You could just use less than required, I still liked it when I just splashed a little in my hands and pressed it into my face.
Since I felt like it was out of budget, I did some research and reached for the Innisfree Soybean Energy Essence ($40) on the innisfree world website. Along with their Green Tea Seed Serum which is not fermented but an amazing find! So currently after I wash my face I use two pumps of Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum ($26). Then I use the Innisfree Soybean Energy Essence. I find these two to be great products and recommend them.
I think I have to mention SK II Facial Treatment Essence ($105) in this case since it started all these string of essences. I have not used it so I can’t give an opinion on it, but I’ve read ‘glowing’ reviews on the product. It is however on the expensive side.
I might repurchase the Green Tea Seed Serum but I am interested in trying the Laneige Clear C Advanced Effector ($38) after I run out of the Innisfree Soybean Energy Essence. I tried it at the Amore Pacific counter and I absolutely loved it. Where I tried it on my hand, it made it so smooth and bright instantly. It has 92.5% superberry extract. So it makes your skin radiant, brighter and smoother from within.
How to use: Depending on the product, it may come with a set of cotton pads. You can also use your hands to tap this into your skin. I prefer using my hands so you don’t waste product.
Toner comes after the fermented essences. I use IOPE Plant Stem Cell Softener Skin Perfection. My skin is dry as I mentioned before and I can’t handle products that don’t absorb well so this one seemed to do really well. It’s a gel type toner that absorbs very well in your skin and helps towards one of the first steps in hydrating.
I also use the Emulsion in the same line – IOPE Plant Stem Cell Emulsion Skin Perfection. These two products go very well together. Non greasy, it gets absorbed in my skin and does a great job towards moisturizing.
How to use: Dispense two pumps of each and massage onto face in to out in upward motion.
IOPE Bio Activator Plant Stem Cell Active ($80) is the serum I swear by, my holy grail serum. It helps keep my skin moisturized. It works well as a trio with the above two toner and emulsion. When I run out of this serum my skin just does not feel the same. If you have dry skin, this is highly recommended. This is recommended to be used after the emulsion as IOPE serums are thicker than the emulsion.
Other than that I really love the Laneige White Plus Renew and IOPE Urban Aging Corrector. I haven’t purchased full bottles of these but always noticed good results from using samples along with the Bio Activator serum.
How to use: Apply to face gently and pat in after using emulsion. This serum is very thick so one or two pumps is enough.
5. Eye Cream
This is not one of my favorite things as I am still searching for the perfect one that works really well and is affordable as well. Currently I am using the Sulwhasoo Essential Rejuvenating eye cream. I purchased it at the Amore Pacific counter for $103. I like it very much but probably will not repurchase. It ran out pretty fast. Didn’t even last two full months, so I might have to find something else.
How to use: Apply in patting motion to eye area after using toner. One pump is enough for both eyes. Sometimes on a dry day I use a pump each for both eyes.
Depending on how my skin feels, I apply cream. There are days I need to reapply during the day, and days where I won’t need to use it at all. At night I use something stronger to help repair my skin when I sleep. My two favorite creams are IOPE Super Vital Cream Bio Intensive ($80-$100) and Missha Super Aqua Snail Cream ($37-$45)
How to use: I use the super vital cream very sparingly and on days I feel like my skin is more damaged. This is a very strong cream and only recommend for very dry skin that needs repairing – at night. I use this cream more on my ‘wrinkle zones’ like the mouth lines, cheeks etc. I have not purchased a full size of this cream. A little goes a long way and the little sample jar has lasted me a while. It gives me a good repair that my skin needs for redness etc.
The Missha Snail Cream is one of my holygrail items. It is a gel type cream that contains 70% snail mucus. I use it as the last step in my skincare. At times I use it to reapply during the day for extra hydration. I put a generous layer at night before sleeping. What this does is wonderful. It helps heal any acne scars or cuts on your face. This cream is rejuvenating, calming, hydrating and repairing. Believe in the snail god when it comes to your skin! No matter your skin type – I recommend this jar of wonder. I have yet to try the Mizon one which has more than 90% snail mucus. I will do a snail post when I do get a chance! :)
And this concludes my skin care routine. This is excluding the supplemental products like masks and mists and such.
So a brief overview
1. Face Shop Rice Water Cleansing Oil (pm)
2. IOPE Ideal Cleansing Foam (am+pm)
3. Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum (am+pm)
4. Innisfree Soybean Energy Essence (am+pm)
5. IOPE Plant Stem Cell Softner (am+pm)
6. Sulwhasoo Essential Rejuvenating Eye Cream (am+pm)
7. IOPE Plant Stem Cell Emulsion (am+pm)
8. Laneige White Plus Renew (optional) (am+pm)
9. IOPE Urban Aging Corrector (optional) (am+pm)
10. IOPE Bio Activator (am+pm)
11. MISSHA Super Aqua Cell Renew Snail Cream (am+afternoon+pm) OR IOPE Super Vital Bio Intensive Cream (pm)
12. Sleeping Mask (pm) (refer to my ‘mask’ post)
What products do you like to use that you would swear by?
*All photographs are taken from product websites