Turning 30 was quite a shock to me, my blog chums. Although I knew, theoretically, it would follow along after 29 as sure as night follows day, it just didn’t feel quite right to me. Turning 35 was an even greater shock, and as I sit on the cusp between 37 and 38, I’m left wondering where all those years went.
Thankfully, my eternally childish view of the world and approach to most things seems to have imbued me with an air of youthfulness, but there are another couple of factors involved in my refusal to grow old(er) gracefully: firstly, my 20+ year-strong habit of dyeing my hair at the first hint of roots, and the skincare routine my Mum taught me when I was a pre-teen.
Now, my Mum always looked young for her age, and one very old friend of mine once asked if she was ageing backwards. She taught me to cleanse, tone, and moisturise twice a day whether I needed to or not. I started that little ritual before I started slathering foundation and eyeliner on daily, and nearly 25 years later I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve fallen asleep with my make-up on.
These days, of course, the products I use have switched up a little. Back in the early 1990s I was fond of The Body Shop’s Vitamin E cream, but generally made do with the budget options from Boots. Around 11 years ago when I first went vegan, I switched over to Simple skincare products and relied on them for a good long while. However, these days Simple are owned by capitalist devils Unilever and so I abandoned them eventually too. I now use a combination of old favourites and a rotation of newer products, many through the splendid Natural Beauty Box which I receive monthly. (For 10% off your first box, use this referral link. That means I get some money off too!) I tend not to purposefully seek out “anti-ageing” products – rather, I focus on quality skincare products that are appropriate for my skin-type and follow my routine religiously.
My skin is quite oily, so I’m usually on the lookout for mattifying skincare and make-up products; my go-to foundation is the e.l.f. oil-free and mattifying Flawless Finish Foundation. My skincare products can be categorised into morning and night, and more recently I’ve been doing what seems counter-intuitive and using a facial oil at night. This hasn’t increased the oiliness of my skin at all and it’s really helped to maintain a lovely soft and smooth complexion. (As it goes, I usually mattify my skin with either a tissue or a mattifying paper like the e.l.f. Shine Eraser at least once a day anyway, and I haven’t yet tried a product that entirely removed the need to do that.)
The pixi Glow Mud Mask is a perennial favourite. Although there are other excellent vegan-friendly mud masks out there, the pixi makes my skin look and feel wonderful and this tube has lasted for months so far. I tend to use a mask once or twice a month. Pixi is a higher-end brand, but I find this product is well worth the price tag.
The Botanical Lab neem leaf face wash is my bedtime cleanser, and I use it to remove most traces of my make-up before I move on to toning and moisturising. Along with a cloth soaked in warm water, it does a great job of removing most of my foundation, etc., and it lathers up tremendously well. My skin has been consistently clear since I started using this wash! The brand is available at Superdrug.
The Oilixia gummy cleanser is new to me and was included in a recent Natural Beauty Box. (It’s worth only £1 less than the whole box, which is quite the bargain!) I’ve been using this of a morning, or in the bath, and it’s a lovely product. Slapping your face until the product turns milky feels a little weird, but who am I to argue with usage instructions?
This Pumpkin & Papaya Daily Exfoliator from Botanical Lab is my new favourite bedtime toner. It removes all the final traces of my make-up and I get a wee exfoliate too. This is a clear-skin product and it’s certainly done the job for me.
The Sukin brand is another favourite of mine. Very frequently, Sukin products are available at bargain prices from TK Maxx (see my two previous TK Maxx posts here and here). This clarifying toner, from their oil balancing range, is my morning toner, so it’s used after cleansing and before my moisturiser goes on. A really lovely high-end brand that’s worth the price tag if you can’t get to TK Maxx – this bottle is lasting forever!
My morning moisturiser has to be a mattifying one, and the Lush Enzymion is a relatively new addition to my routine. It smells zesty and fresh and does a great job of keeping my skin Not Dry whilst not encouraging too much oiliness. It’s perfect under my foundation and holds make-up really well. I’ll definitely continue with this after my current tub runs out – the good news is that it’s lasting tremendously well. The price is a little high but I figure that I’d probably better start taking proper care of my face before I hit 40!
On the right you can see some of the facial oils I use nightly on rotation. The Sukin oil is another TK Maxx bargain, as is the Dr Botanicals Organic and Botanic serum. The Pinks Boutique serum was another Natural Beauty Box product and was super indulgent and lovely.
How about you, friends? Do you have any skincare favourites, or old faithfuls? Let me know!
This post isn’t sponsored in any way! I bought this stuff and I like it.
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