I’ve spent the last six years testing out products and at 33 years old, I can confidently say I know what works for my skin and what doesn’t. A lot of it is also just personal preference on texture, formula, scent, ingredients, etc. so keep in mind these are products that I prefer and have worked for me.
My skin type is normal/combo. I tend to have dehydrated skin, dark spots, hyperpigmentation, large pores, and due to pregnancy, now I’m dealing with a lot of hormonal acne.
If my reviews/recommendations helped you at all, I hope you’ll support me and use my links to shop just had to throw that out there lol!
Keep in mind there are ton of other products I like but I’m keeping this to a few of my favorites / key products.
- Kate Somerville – dealing with acne so I started using this one. I wash my face, leave on for 30 seconds and then wash it off.
- Dermalogica– Used it for years. Helped clear my pores and dead skin cells on the surface level. Also helped a lot with Mila on my cheekbones.
- Tatcha rice powder- More gentle version of the Dermalogica one.
- Tatcha Oil Cleanser- First step to my cleansing routine. Oil removes oil. Best way to remove make up IMO.
- Glow Recipe Cleanser– Good everyday cleanser. Skin felt v clean after, a little stripping though but still loved it!
- Indlie Lee Brightening– Another favorite of mine. Def. worth trying. V gentle and mind.
- Summer Fridays Cleanser– Newest one to my routine but I love how this cleanser feels and cleans. Also v gentle.
Essence / Serums / Treatments
Gonna be honest I’m not HUGE on toners/essence unless my skin is like SUPER dehydrated and thirsty AF. I would rather invest in a better serum than a toner/essence but that’s just me.
- SK II Essence– Listen, if you got the means and you’re dying to try it out then do it now during the sale. It’s a beautiful essence and my skin loved it but…
- Caudalie Essence – This did the same thing for my skin as the SK -II and it’s like wayyyy cheaper but that’s just me…
- Indie Lee Toner: I like spraying this all over my wash during the day when I need a refresh. It’s nice to have on my desk.
Just to point out that my absolute fave is Skinceuticals CE ferulic and it’s not available at Sephora FYI but this one is pricy so I always rotate with the ones below:
- Drunk Elephant Vit C: A little more heavier/hydrating than what I normally like for my vit c but it does exactly what it needs to do.
- Summer Fridays CC me serum: It’s not my first choice for vit c serum, but i think it a good serum to have if you’re new to vit c, sensitive to vit c, or if you’re looking for an easy light overall serum since it has other beneficial ingredients as well i’d recommend.
- Biossance Vit C oil: I personally like a more thin watery type of consistency when it comes to my vit c but from time to time I use this oil. I like having the option esp when my skin is dehydrated. It brightens up dark spots and does everything a traditional Vit c does.
- Peter Thomas Roth Spot Brightener: This really worked for me. Works on fresh acne dark spots not old spots. I committed to it so I used it 2x every day.
- Kora Vitaminc C: A very clean option. Lightweight & effective. Not as potent as DE or Skinceuticals but good enough and lower in price point.
Overall Serums / Treatments
- Biossance Phyto-Retinol: What I’ve been using the most. Found that it does do what my traditional retinol does. It just take more time to see the results.
- Dr Jart Radiance Serum: Used this religiously. Overall a great serum, good price point, replenishes dehydrated skin without feeling heavy.
- Sulwhasoo Serum: Something about this serum was really nice. I loved using it and finished the entire bottle. Great for hydration.
- Caudalie Serum: Another good overall serum. Something to target all things like anti-aging, dark spots, hydration. Very lightweight.
- Drunk Elephant AHA: This is my go-to AHA. Always gets the job done. Chemically exfoliates my skin and keeps it clean and tight.
Keep in mind I prefer lightweight moisturizers. Preferably gel-like texture, fast-absorbing. One tip is to splurge on your serums/treatments and opt for a moisturizer that simply does its job which is to protect and hydrate (unless you have v dry skin). Moisturizer molecules are larger so it doesn’t penetrate deep like a serum does if you’re contemplating or on a budget invest in your serums not moisturizers.
There’s a lot that I use and they all serve a very similar purpose so I’m not gonna note them individually. They’re all pretty similar in texture (again I like lightweight) so go through these and see which one is in your price point and what suits your skin the best. Just know these are the moisturizers I use/used. They can be worn for day & night.
- Tatcha Silken SPF: I gravitated towards this SPF for awhile it was also featured in my favorites on IGTV. It’s almost empty now but I really liked how it felt on my skin.
- Drunk Elephant Umbra Tint: I love that this was a physical SPF and it had tint so no white cast.
- Coola Sun drops: Easy to use. Lightweight. It feels a little more oilier than creamy but not oily where it’s heavy or greasy.
- Supergood Mist: I don’t use this for a daily SPF but when I ‘m outside for a long period of time, travel or I’m at the pool I ALWAYS bring this with me. So easy to reapply sunscreen. It’s a must for me.
- Peter Thomas Roth SPF Powder: Okay, hear me out. This is my FAVE powder ever. I still use a regular SPF along with this powder. I use this after my makeup is set. Not cakey or heavy but keeps my makeup in tact. It’s so natural and doesn’t look like you’re wearing powder but helps when you’re face is a little to dewy. The packaging sucks though. So I just use my own powder brush and rub against the brush it comes with. Makes no sense but I LOVE this powder w/ a passion. I wish they sold just this powder cus it’s perfect for makeup setting AND additional SPF coverage.
Makeup / Brushes
Here’s the make up I love using. I’ve featured almost all of these on my “make up” highlights on IG or on my IGTV so I’ll save you the time and will just list out the ones you guys have seen me use millions of times. Always refer to my IGTV or IG highlights as I’ve saved a ton of videos in there including what shade I use.