Let’s skip over the part of the blog post where I list the many reasons I’ve been MIA and just act as though I never left. Great, thanks.
As many of you may know, I’m obsessed with skincare. It’s the one and only thing (besides my daughter) that I can spend a boat load of money on without even blinking. When I was pregnant, I raved about Belli Skincare which I still firmly stand by. Their incredible products gave me a much-needed confidence boost during a time in my life where I felt particularly unattractive. I thought the products were a little pricey but absolutely worth every cent for the amazing results. Little did I know I’d be forking over a whole lot more for good skincare once my pregnancy was over.
After Sophie was born, the Belli Skincare system became less effective for me. It could be for a variety of reasons, but I mostly attribute it to the fact that it was designed specifically for pregnant women and I was no longer pregnant. These days, I’ve been favoring a brand called True Botanicals which was recommended to me (and by recommended I mean practically shoved down my throat) by multiple coworkers. One of these lovely ladies gave me a couple of samples to try before I pulled the trigger because, as I’m sure you’ve gathered by this point, the products are fairly expensive—not La Mer prices, but still pretty steep. It only took 2-3 days of continued use for me to become a huge fan. Now I have no money in my wallet (kidding—sort of), a counter littered with those lovely little brown glass bottles, and skin that has never looked better.
Before I get into each product, I’d like to point out something really important in my experience with True Botanicals. I’ve been using their CLEAR line for a little over a year now and anytime I’ve attempted to stray, my skin immediately paid for it. I would run out of product and use whatever I had lying around my skincare junkyard and within a day or two, my face was breaking out, dry, and/or just plain dull looking. Whenever I would go back and re-up my True Botanicals stash, it only took a couple of uses for my skin to settle back down into a good groove. I promise this isn’t an ad or paid sponsorship. I purchase all of these (not cheap) products with my own money because THEY WORK and have become staples in my skincare routine. The difference that they make is both stark and immediate, my kinda results!
Step 1: CLEAR Hydrating Cleanser
morning and night
Acne-prone skin still needs hydration. Every other breakout-targeted cleanser I’ve used tends to not only dry out my acne but also the surrounding skin. Aside from pimples, there’s nothing I hate more than gross flaky patches of skin—especially underneath foundation! :: shudders :: This cleanser does not give me that problem. It’s a lightweight cream formula that doesn’t really create suds, but still leaves my skin feeling soft and super clean.
Step 2: CLEAR Nutrient Toner
morning and night (in an ideal world)
I hate toners. I always have and always will. I bought this in the hopes that I would add it into my routine and continue to use it religiously because I know toners are wonderful for your skin. I’m not here to lie to you; I haven’t been strict about it. What I will tell you though is that this solution came through in a jam. When all of my other True Botanicals products ran out and I was waiting for my next shipment (on pre-order 😫), this toner seriously came in handy. My back-up soap was running my skin through the ringer, but I needed something to clean my face in the interim. My acne thankfully remained at bay, but the flakiness/redness came rearing its ugly head again. I randomly threw this toner back into my rotation (since I had so much left from NOT using it religiously 😉) and I started to see all the yuckiness subside with just a few uses. It doesn’t burn or sting whatsoever. I truly believe it’s an excellent way to balance your skin, regardless of what other products you are using…that is, if you’re not like me and actually REMEMBER to use it.
Step 3: CLEAR Pure Radiance Oil (or) RENEW Pure Radiance Oil
morning and night
This is where things get a little bougie. While the majority of products I use are from the CLEAR line, I do swap out products from the RENEW line every now and then—especially if my skin is bump-free and looking great. CLEAR helps me treat while RENEW helps me maintain if that makes sense. I was so skeptical about using any kind of oil on my face, but honestly, forget all of your preconceptions about oils. These absorb quickly, leaving behind nothing but soft, balanced skin. Out of all of the products I’m listing, these oils and the hydrating cleanser are my absolute holy grails. Everything else is (mostly) a luxury, but these I absolutely cannot do without.
Step 4: CLEAR Cellular Repair Serum
Is it just me or is hyaluronic acid all the rage these days? Just me? Cool. Well here’s your skin-strengthening hyaluronic acid-containing formula. I feel like this serum is good for overall skin health. If I were younger, I might omit this from my routine, but sadly, I’m getting older. As I start to see subtle signs of aging, I feel like this is my best defense. It’s very lightweight and smooth and feels great on the skin. Bonus? If you don’t struggle with acne and opt for the RENEW version, it has a beautiful botanical scent that I personally am obsessed with.
Step 5: Vitamin C Booster
Whew! We made it through to the final step. I add 2-3 drops of this powder into my serum and mix in my hands before applying. I have a decent amount of stubborn scarring/hyperpigmentation from previous acne medications/products and this mixture has helped to lighten some of it. This doesn’t work overnight of course—find me the product that does and take all of my money—but I HAVE noticed significant fading with consistent use. Even if you don’t have any of the same issues I do (lucky you), this product helps to brighten skin overall, especially when paired with the serum.
So that’s it! Three steps in the morning, five at night. I know it seems like a lot and it is, especially on days where I’m removing my makeup before doing any of these steps. Still, I’m committed to this routine because I see the difference that it makes in my skin. I’m the type of person who rarely, if ever, leaves the house without makeup. Lately, I’ve been favoring the natural look because I’m so shocked by how much better my skin looks and feels WITHOUT foundation. I don’t think I’ve ever said that in my entire life, and I think that True Botanicals (and #momlife) has a lot to do with that.