My Morning Skincare Routine

My morning routine has been pretty simple for my entire life. As a kid, it involved rubbing a wet washcloth over my face. In middle school, my mom gave me my first face wash. After starting college, I started paying more attention to my skin and took care to actually wash my face every morning. Now, I’m here, caring more about what products I use and what steps I take.

Recently it’s been going through a lot of changes, but I’d love to share my current morning routine with you all. In contrast to my thorough (ish) nighttime routine, which I just talked about here, my mornings are usually a rush. Sleep is a commodity in college, and I tend to try and make up for going to bed later than I would like by sleeping in for as long as possible. Therefore, my morning skincare routine gets reduced to just three steps: Cleanse, Treat, and Moisturize.

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My Evening Skincare Routine

With my college student life, I try to keep things simple. I don’t have the money for 20 products, or the time, or even the sink space. To go along with my hectic, ever-changing life, I have multiple different evening routines that I use in different scenarios. To simplify things, I’ll describe a 1-minute routine and a longer mix-and-match routine.

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The “I’m exhausted and just want to sleep” routine:

  1. Wash my face.
  2. Moisturize (usually).

Most of the time, though, I’m not drop-dead tired. So, when I have more time, this is my routine. I don’t do every step every night, but this is the maximum number of steps that I do.

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CVS Haul (May)

This was my first drugstore trip after arriving in a new city for the summer, and so I needed to buy all of the necessities that I hadn’t brought with me.

Trio

The three most basic necessities for me are shampoo, conditioner, and body wash. I use VO5 shampoo because I like the way it smells and it only costs 89¢ back home (here it was on sale for 75¢). My all-important conditioner is Pantene. I haven’t noticed much difference between the different types of Pantene conditioners, so I usually just go with one labelled smoothing or anti-breakage. For body wash, I like a basic good-smelling scrub, like this St. Ives apricot scrub. This trio is something I really haven’t experimented with at all – I found something that works in each category while I was a teenager, and I’ve stuck with it for 5 years. Maybe I should experiment more in this area, but it’s something I haven’t had the courage to do yet.

Once I had my basics taken care of, I shopped around a bit, looking for some new products. It’s summer, I’m in a new place, and I have a paycheck. Why not try some new things?

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Bioré | Deep Pore Charcoal Cleanser $1.99 /1 oz.

Lumene | Pure Radiance Night Cream $4.39 / 0.5 oz.

I picked up these two products purely because they came in sample sizes. I brought a cleanser with me and so I didn’t really need another full one, and I’ve never bought a night cream before so I wasn’t really sure what I was looking for.

The Bioré cleanser is really nice. At first I wasn’t fond of the smell, but after using it a few times I started to like it. It smells very clean, with just a touch of earthy charcoal. And it definitely cleans my skin well! I like it, and I’ll consider getting some more when this one runs out (although it doesn’t seem like it’s going to anytime soon). However, in the last 2-3 days I’ve found that it causes a little bit of a burning sensation on my skin, although it’s a cleaning-feeling burning sensation. I have pretty sensitive skin, and up to this point I’d only been using it every other day or so. I think my increased usage this week is what caused it to suddenly seem too strong.

I’m more on the fence about the Lumene night cream. The smell is pretty strong, but luckily I like it – it’s reminiscent of oranges. The cream is thick, and both feels and looks a little greasy when I apply it. But by the time I go to bed the greasiness has mostly subsided, and when I wake up my skin feels good. It’s definitely pretty moisturizing. The sample is also a great size – I’ve been using it every night for 2 weeks and I still have about ¾ of the pot left.

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Freeman | Facial Clay Mask, Avocado & Oatmeal

Freeman | Facial Anti-Stress Mask, Dead Sea Minerals

This brand of masks was on sale, 2 for $7, so I decided to try some out. I’d never used a clay mask before, so I selected one of those. I chose the anti-stress mask because, given my lifestyle, it seemed like a useful product to try. I don’t know if either one of them actually works. I enjoy applying them, and they feel nice while they’re on my face, but I can’t tell if they’re making a difference to my skin.

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Neutrogena | Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen, SPF 45

Something to know about me: I don’t like sunscreen very much. I don’t really like the smell, I hate the constant feeling of being coated in a layer of thick lotion, and I dislike the feeling of it on my hands after I’ve applied it. I’ve been using this particular brand of sunscreen for a few years now, and it’s the best I’ve found (except for perhaps the Supergoop! sunscreen that I received in my May Birchbox). This sunscreen is light enough for me to forget I’m wearing it, and its lotiony texture helps it rub into the skin more easily, with less residue. I prefer the SPF 30 because it’s even lighter, but I didn’t think it would give me enough protection with the amount I’ll be outside this summer.