Today I’m just going to give you guys a quick rundown of which products I use in the evening. I generally shower in the evenings and do my skincare right after, so the products stay on my face for at least 1-2 hours before I go to bed. I don’t use every product mentioned below every day, and I’ve used some for longer than others. I’ll provide a list first and then include some commentary on each product for those who are interested.
1st cleanse (remove makeup): Kirkland Daily Facial Towelettes
2nd cleanse: CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser
Acid toner: Biologique Recherche P50W (empty; no longer using)
Serum: The Ordinary 2% Alpha Arbutin + HA (read my review)
Treatment: The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion (3x a week currently)
Oil: Premium Naturals High Linoleic Safflower Oil or Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Oil
Moisturizer: Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream (review coming soon)
Misc: Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask; Organic Castor Oil
Kirkland Daily Facial Towelettes
I use these on days where I’m wearing a full face of makeup (foundation, concealer, powder, etc.) or heavy/waterproof eye makeup. I always follow up with a second cleanse because I don’t think the wipes get my face clean enough. I’ve purchased these multiple times over the course of the past few years because they’re super affordable (about $12 at Costco for 6 packs of wipes). They do dry out if I keep a pack open for longer than a couple months. Once I finish the box I currently have, I probably won’t repurchase because I’m trying to reduce how much waste I produce and I feel bad throwing away so many individual wipes. However, they are really good at removing makeup and they don’t irritate my eyes.
CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser
I use this cleanser in the cooler months when my skin is drier. It’s ultra gentle and doesn’t sting my eyes like most cleansers do. It doesn’t foam, which I don’t mind, but that does make it hard to use with cleansing devices like the Clarisonic if that’s what you prefer to use. I switch to the CeraVe Foaming Cleanser in the summer for my nighttime cleanse but I prefer this one year-round for morning cleansing.
Biologique Recherche P50W
This is a version of the cult favorite P50 formulated for gentle skin. It has a mix of AHAs and BHAs and is meant to be used as a daily toner. It smells very strongly of vinegar and I only used it every other day in the PM because it’s still quite a strong acid. I liked it in the summer when my skin was less sensitive, but it was too harsh for my skin in the winter. I’m currently trying out retinoids so I won’t be repurchasing acids anytime soon, but I would definitely consider this toner if you’re used to chemical exfoliation and want something pretty strong.
The Ordinary 2% Alpha Arbutin + HA
I already reviewed this so I won’t repeat myself here, but the TL;DR is I really like this serum for preventing dark spots and I use it both AM and PM.
The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion
This is an emulsion with 2% solubilized Hydroxypinacolone Retinoate (HPR) (whatever that means – full review with research to come). Deciem claims that it’s more effective than retinol without the irritation. I’ve only been using it for about a week and a half so far so I can’t make any conclusions yet. It’s kind of a thin, slippery texture that dries down in 3-5 minutes. I apply it after my water-based serums, as TO instructs. I use it 3x a week (Sun, Tues, Thurs) at night. So far I’ve noticed more whiteheads than I usually have, but I’m unsure whether this product is breaking me out or if it’s just purging (https://labmuffin.com/purging-vs-breakouts-ditch-skincare/). The skin around my nose and on my cheeks has also been drier since I started using this product, which I expected. I’ll keep using it for another 4-5 weeks and if I keep breaking out, I’ll probably stop using it then.
High Linoleic Safflower Oil
Safflower oil comes in 2 forms – high linoleic and high oleic. Linoleic acid is an omega-6 fatty acid that is deficient in the sebum of some people with acne. Oleic acid is an omega-9 fatty acid that is moisturizing (it is the main component of olive oil) but not what I wanted in my oil. Since I started using this, my skin has become more balanced – my drier patches are less dry, and my oily area (T-zone) is less oily. I purchased this particular oil from a vendor on Etsy to try out and it definitely hasn’t made me break out (I tested it for 3 weeks before adding any other new products). However, it’s not as fast-absorbing or cosmetically elegant as the Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Oil. I used to use the Marula oil because it made my skin very soft and glowy and hydrated, but it didn’t have as high concentration of omega-6 as I wanted. I still use it mixed in with my moisturizer in the AM which I’ll talk about more in my AM routine.
Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream
This is an ultra-thick, ultra-hydrating, kind of expensive moisturizer. It doesn’t have good spreadability on its own so I use it on top of an oil layer (PM) or with 2-3 drops of Marula oil mixed in (AM). It’s fragrance- free and dye-free. It’s also surprisingly non-greasy for how thick it is; it has a pretty matte finish once it sinks in. I absolutely love this product. My breakouts heal so much faster when I keep my skin moisturized with this product versus the 30 other moisturizers I’ve tried in the past. It is a bit heavy for AM use under my sunscreen though so I’ve recently ordered the Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Cream to test out for AM.
Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask
This is a super thick lip balm that I only use before bed. It’s very sticky and I think it would be uncomfortable to wear during the day. However, I have chronically dry lips and this makes my lips so soft and supple all day. I wear a lot of lipstick and liquid lipsticks and if I don’t use this mask the night before, my lips look like a wrinkled butthole a few hours in. I have repurchased this several times over the years and will continue to buy it.
Organic Castor Oil
I started using this a few days ago on my eyebrows and eyelashes to encourage their growth. I haven’t noticed any differences yet. It’s kind of a pain to apply castor oil. I was surprised how thick and sticky this oil is. I swear it gets all over my countertops every night. I apply it to my lashes first with a spoolie, focusing on the base of my lashes, and then run whatever’s leftover on the spoolie through my brows. I make sure to wash the applicator every night because the oil is SO sticky.
So there it is, my full nighttime lineup! I would love to hear what your routines sound like or if there are any products you want me to try out, especially new makeup removers (or cleansing oils), retinoids, and hydrating serums!
Til next time,