Skin care routine

A few years ago (2009) I wrote an article about my skincare routine. I was reading some of my old articles and I came across this one. I thought it was fun (and informative of course) to make an updated post, since a lot has changed, plus the old article was in Dutch!

My skin
My skin is currently fairly calm. I have combination skin: oily t-zone and ‘normal’ cheeks. Previously, I was struggling a lot with excessive oil production, pimples and inflamed skin. I have a very fair skin tone. In this post I’ll tell you what I did to solve most of the problems.

Makeup removal
First and foremost: makeup needs to be removed, every single night. No excuses whatsoever. If you’re too lazy to perform a full-on cleanse, than please at least grab a makeup wipe and get that gunk of your face! For makeup removal, I always use MAC Cleanse Off Oil. I wrote a review about this product and I can’t rave enough about it. It’s amazing in removing all your makeup. Even waterproof products! I apply it (with clean hands!) on my whole face and massage it in for a minute or two. I also use it on my eye area, but I make sure to be very gentle. One key in my skincare routine is to be gentle to your skin. Try to avoid excess rubbing/scrubbing/pressure. After the quick facial massage, I put a few drops lukewarm water on my hands and apply it on my face. The makeup remover will emulsify this way. I end with a final rinse with lukewarm water. I tried a micellar cleanser this week, but it couldn’t really compete with the Cleanse Off Oil. For a fast makeup removal, I use HEMA (a Dutch warehouse) cleansing wipes. They’re very cheap and don’t contain any harsh ingredients. These are the only wipes that my skin will tolerate and believe me, I’ve tried a lot!

After the makeup removal, I chose to cleanse my skin again with Garnier Skin Naturals Essentials Foaming Face Wash or Biodermal Cleansing Mousse for sensitive skin. The makeup remover doesn’t leave any residue, but I just like to cleanse again. Maybe it’s not even necessary. I just apply the cleanser on my hands and massage it in, on damp skin. As you might know, I purchased a Clarisonic in 2009. I’m a huge fan and this product might made the huge difference in the appearance of my skin. I’ll write a full review soon, I promise 😉 I use the Clarisonic with my face wash. I use the delicate brush head by the way. I used it every night for almost three years, but since last month I decided to go cold turkey and I only use it a few (2-3) times a week. I wanted to see if it made any difference and I notice that my skin has calmed down a little. I use it for one minute on my face and then another minute on my neck and chest area.

I used to spray my face with pure witch hazel as a toner, but since I ran out and it’s hard to find in the Netherlands, I decided to go without a toner for a while. If you really want to use a toner I suggest you to look into a DIY apple cider vinegar toner. If you want to purchase one from the store, make sure to avoid harsh/bad ingredients such as: alcohol, perfume, paraffinum liquidum and coloring agents.

To moisturize, I use a very basic and cheap cream: Garnier Skin Naturals Essentials Day. I don’t know why, but this just works! I also use Nivea Q10 Plus Visage Eye Cream, a basic eye cream with SPF12.

Besides my Clarisonic, I’ll make myself an aspirin scrub/mask (look it up on YouTube once a week, it’s the best mask/scrub ever! :D). I also use Queen Helene’s Mint Julep Masque every once in a while, it’s perfect for removing/minimizing blackheads and large pores. As a chemical exfoliant, I use’s AHA+. It’s a lotion with 10% alpha hydroxy acids, which will exfoliate your skin. I also use a pore strip once a week, to clear my pores on my nose. For spot treatment, I use’s 2.5% Benzoyl Peroxide. It works like a charm.

Be sure to use clean hands and/or brushes, also please wash your brushes frequently. I clean my foundation brush every day with MAC’s Brush Cleanser and I give all my brushes a wash with a dishwashing detergent and olive oil mix once a week. I make sure to work sanitary when doing my makeup. Don’t contaminate your concealer with double dipping your brush/hands in it. The bacterias of your pimple will transfer onto the concealer and that’s not what you want! 😉 I’ll make another post about how to make your (problem) skin look its best in makeup.

Other pinpoints

  • Even though everyone has mixed opinions about bad food being linked to skin problems… Please eat clean & healthy. I don’t expect you to never eat a hamburger again, but please eat those things in moderation. Since I’m busy losing weight, I noticed my skin getting clearer, my complexion getting more even and best of all: my skin glows! Fruits and vegetables really do wonders to your skin. I also take vitamin C supplements and a multi vitamin with fish oil each day. In addition to eating healthy: drink lots of water, it’s always a good thing. Green tea is also very good for your skin, plus I think it’s very tasty! 😉
  • Make sure you get enough sleep, your skin will look so much better when you rest enough. Also, change your pillow sheets every once in a while, because lots of sebum and bacterias will get caught in them.
  • If you’re out in the sun, use enough SPF! The sun can damage your skin really bad. When you’re exfoliating with AHA’s, these will make your skin even more reactive to the sun, so protect yourself!

And that’s it! I hope you found this post somewhat helpful. As a bonus, I’ll add a before-after comparison picture for you, enjoy 😉

December 2008 – July 2012

What’s your skin care routine? Do you have any HG products that I should try?

Natasja ❤

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