I was never into makeup as a teenager, I would usually just wear lip gloss and a little mascara. Skin care was another area I ignored. In fact, the only product I used throughout my twenties was Cetaphil!
But as we all know, time marches on and eventually we need to accept the fact that we are getting older (sadly). For moms especially, caring for our children can sometimes take years off of our lives and it starts to show immediately on our face.
So in an effort to stop the hands of time and possibly turn back the clock on years of abandoned skincare, I have become addicted to beauty products. I tried out a few of the popular skin brands being endorsed by beauty bloggers and celebrities and also stuck to some of my tried and trues. I am in no way a beauty expert and I admit that my skin can always use some love!
Here are just some of the products I have tried recently and how they measured up.
Being that I was a wash and go type of girl for years, having a nightly beauty routine is brand new for me. But now, I find it impossible to go to bed with makeup on and feel my skin calling for moisture before bed. I started using Tula products earlier this year by a suggestion from about 20 bloggers I follow. I ordered the trial kit on Amazon first and immediately fell in love with their cleanser. Unlike some cleansers, the Tula purifying cleanser lathers up so you really feel like you are getting a deep clean. I love the soapy texture it produces, but I will say that the smell is not great.
Another cleanser I have tried recently and really love is Exfolikate Daily Cleanser by Kate Somerville. This was recommended to me by a salesperson at Sephora and I again started with the trial size. This product is like a cleanser and exfoliator in one and you instantly feel your skin smooth and soft right after using it. In addition to the cleanser, I use the Exfolikate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment two times a week to slough away dead skin and tighten my pores. This product will sting if you leave it on too long, so beware! But my skin glows after using it so I highly recommend these two products together.
Another new product I recently tried and really love for smoothing out my skin and making pores look smaller is the Drunk Elephant Brand. Their Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil is amazing and makes redness go away. Pair the oil with their Glycolic Night Serum and you will wake up feeling years younger! Luckily, most of these products can be purchased in sample sizes so you can try them out beforehand and see how your skin responds.
Finally, one of my tried and true skin care products has been Roc Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Moisturizer. This is great as an everyday moisturizer and it includes SPF, which is always important. It can also be purchased on Amazon or at Target, which is always a plus.
Having a good hair day is equally as important to looking and feeling your best. Sometimes I feel like, with a good blow out, I don’t even need a lot of makeup. I have thick, wavy hair and have tried many products and treatments. I have also found that after having my kids, the texture of my hair changed and I even lost some of my curls (they went to my 5-year-old!).
So as my hair has changed, I have come to accept the fact that more expensive hair care products are better for the overall health of my hair. There is one brand of shampoo and conditioner that I have been using for years and I swear by and that is Kerastase, their sulfate-free line is great for color-treated or processed hair. It is not cheap, but a little goes a long way and the smell is amazing!
I also recently bought a hair mask from Trader Joe’s that not only smells like coconuts and the beach but leaves my hair feeling silky and smooth. Another hair care company that I am obsessed with his Oribe. Everything they make smells amazing and the #1 product I use from their line is the Oribe texturizing spray, which makes waves last longer and works as a dry shampoo. Again, this hair care line is not cheap, but I promise you your hair will thank you! Also, the products last a long time so you won’t need to constantly re-purchase them.
Lashes and Self-Tanner:
If there is anything I have learned as I am getting older, it is that nothing can beat a good pair of lashes and a sun-kissed glow. These two enhancements will make anyone feel more awake and younger looking. In an attempt to make my short lashes grow, I purchased the Rodan and Fields Lash Boost from one of my friends who sells it. I was immediately hooked when people starting asking me about my lashes! There are many lash serums on the market, but R+F has been the best one I have tried and have seen the most results.
With your long lashes, you need a good mascara and I have tried many. I have a drugstore brand I love and a beauty store brand I love. I find them to both work great. It Cosmetics Superhero Mascara has just the right amount of lengthening and color, while Loreal Voluminous Lash Paradise, found in CVS, also does the trick!
A final tip for kicking that tired, washed out look is a faux tan. Sunless tanners have evolved over time and nowadays they no longer leave you looking orange and streaky. I have tried a few brands but the one I am currently loving is from a brand called Coola. They are a sun care company and their focus is on sunless tanning and anti-aging. Their Gradual Tan Face Serum can be used on its own or added to your daily moisturizer. What I like about it is that the tan is gradual. You can customize how tan you want to be and go day by day without waking up looking like an Oompa Loompa! I also love that this is a face serum too so it has anti-aging properties, making it a two for one deal.
I am a firm believer in trying out products before you purchase them. You never know how your skin will react or whether the product will work. Many beauty stores like Sephora and Ulta sell travel size samples of their most popular products, including many of the ones I have mentioned. CVS and Amazon also carry a lot of these brands. I have recently become a member of Birchbox, which is an online beauty subscription, where for $10 a month you get sent a box of beauty, hair or skin care samples. This is a great way to get introduced to new products and to see what new brands are out there.