Makeup would be pointless if I didn't also focus on the skin underneath it. Makeup has always been about enhancing my complexion, not masking it (unless it's Halloween). Taking care of my skin makes my makeup look better, but it improves its quality and texture as well.
I have combination skin, meaning I have generally dry or normal skin with an occasionally oily t-zone. I lean towards products that offer long-term hydration, especially in my nighttime skincare routine. My skin can be a little sensitive, so I also choose gentle products that are effective but non-offensive.
Super Facialist by Una Brennan Vitamin C+ Light Skin Renew Cleansing Oil - for having the longest name ever, this cleanser is as simple as can be. Its scent is fresh and citrusy and its texture is smooth. Many people may be hesitant to use an oil to cleanse, but it actually has the properties to break down makeup and rid the skin of any dirt buildup. I use this product in the morning and evening, but it's perfect for a gentle, invigorating cleanse right after you wake up. Unfortunately this product isn't readily available in the States, but those in the UK can scoop it up from Boots. I picked my bottle up at TJ Maxx, so keep your eyes peeled at your local store if you want to give this beauty a try.
Andalou Naturals Clementine + C Illuminating Toner - I mentioned this amazing product in my April Favorites and it's still a staple in my skincare regimen. This is another double-duty product I use both morning and night, but because of its citrusy scent it's perfect for a morning pick me up. Andalou products are cruelty free and made with fruit stem cells to replenish the skin. This particular product contains superfruit antioxidants and vitamin C to invigorate and hydrate the skin at a cellular level. I also picked this product up at TJ Maxx, but it's available online and at many health food stores.
La Roche-Posay Anthelios 40 Sunscreen Cream - it's always a battle to find a sunscreen that both protects my skin and sits well under makeup. I found my solution in the La Roche-Posay Anthelios 40 Sunscreen Cream. This is another TJ Maxx find, but it's now available at various drugstores across the globe. It doesn't feel heavy or greasy, which makes it a unicorn in the sunscreen world. As a fair-skinned Irish gal, I need as much skin protection as I can get, so I'm happy to have something that doesn't mess up my makeup in the process.
Origins Original Skin Renewal Serum with Willowherb - I will use this product for as long as it's available to me. Not only does it smell amazing, but it also sinks into the skin quickly and leaves it feeling plump and hydrated, which makes it a great follow-up to the La Roche-Posay Anthelios 40 Sunscreen Cream.
Jurlique Rosewater Balancing Mist - if I'm feeling especially dehydrated in the morning I'll finish off my skincare routine with the Jurlique Rosewater Balancing Mist. Again, this is a refreshing product that helps to refresh and tone the skin.
The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing Butter - my two favorite ways to cleanse my skin are with oils and balms. This Body Shop number is great for gently taking off a day's worth of makeup and grime. On a dry face I'll apply a generous amount of the butter to my face and neck, avoiding my eyes. Once I've covered all of those areas, I'll take a smaller amount of the butter and run it over my eyes and brows. I'll wet a washcloth with warm water and melt off the balm and my makeup until my face is completely clean. I'll usually follow that up with a micellar cleansing water like the one from Simple to remove any dirt I missed.
Aesop Parsley Seed Cleansing Masque - if my skin is in need of an overhaul, I'll apply the Parsley Seed Masque from Aesop. This masque extracts the skin's impurities and unclogs any pores. I'll apply a thin layer all over the face until it dries, then use a warm, wet cloth to remove it. I'll then follow up with the Andalou toner.
Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate - whether my skin is in good condition or calling an SOS, I use the Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate every night. This product should be renamed the Miracle Recovery Concentrate, as it can fix just about any issue my skin might be having. It also sinks in quickly and doesn't leave my skin feeling greasy or uncomfortable.
Origins High-Potency Night-A-Mins - as a final step on those nights when my skin feels particularly dehydrated, I might use the Origins High-Potency Night-A-Mins. This product boosts and renews my skin and helps to combat any dullness. It smells amazing, to boot.