Happy Saturday, guys! It is a verrrry exciting weekend around the Allen home– Rico has the weekend off because they played Thursday Night Football AND it snowed in Georgia. I am one happy lady. If you follow along on my IG stories, you saw that yesterday during the kid’s nap time I indulged myself in a little at home facial. The truth is, I love a good facial and I love a spa day– but the reality is that during this season of life, neither of the two happen very often (and honestly, it’s so fine). I have learned over the years a few tips and tricks and i’ve realized that a lot of what we pay so much moola for can be done in our own home– IF we have the right tools and products!
The change of the seasons can really do a number on my skin. I have realized a trend: every time the seasons change, my skin goes through a week of major freakout, and then it’s back to normal. Although I can’t avoid the weather changing, there are a few things that I have found doing at home helps. I have realized that when my skin gets too dry, it overproduces oil, which then causes me to breakout. To fix this, I over-moisturize during the dry months and I try to keep the heat in our house around 70-71 degrees. When I notice that it is getting REALLY dry (or my lips are cracking) I will run a dehumidifier in our bedroom overnight, and it does wonders.
Skincare is expensive, there is no doubt about it, but what I have realized is that a good facial can cost anywhere from $150-$250.. and as great as I feel when I leave the spa, within 4-6 days I feel like my skin is back to being “my skin.” So, personally I would rather spend that $150-$250 on things that I can use repeatedly at home (and products that will last much longer than 4-6 days). Below are my steps for creating your own at home facial! I have linked all the products used at the bottom in case you want to invest for yourself!
Step 1: Cleanse: It is important to cleanse your skin prior to beginning this routine because once you steam your face your pores will open and whatever is on the surface will penetrate in (read: bacteria, makeup, etc). I have found that cleanser is where I am willing to save money. The reality is that cleanser in on your face for such a short time that I would prefer to spend my money on the products that “sit” on my face longer. I use Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser which can be found at any drugstore, or Target!
Step 2: Steam: I am going to be honest here: for a long time the closest my skin got to a good steaming was when I drained my pasta into the sink, not even kidding– I used to stand over the sink and soak it all the steam thinking “wow, this is kind of like a mini facial”… and then my life changed when I shared this on IG stories and my girlfriend messaged me “girl, get yourself a steamer” and then she sent me the link to one off of Amazon and that was the beginning of my at home spa days. Thank you, Bri. The truth is, you don’t have to invest in a “real steamer” if you don’t want to. You can use the steam from the shower, or even get a few washcloths super hot and lay them across your face for about 5 minutes. To be honest, having a real facial steamer is a lot easier, but any of the above will do the job!
Step 3: Exfoliate: It is AMAZING what a good exfoliation can do for the skin. My favorite way to exfoliate is through Microdermabrasion, but again, if you don’t want to invest in your own at home microderm tool, a similar result can be achieved with an exfoliator out of a bottle! You just want to be sure that the exfoliation beads aren’t too thick or coarse because this can cause trauma to the skin and then you’re set back even further than where you began. I linked my PMD Microdermabrasion Tool as well as an exfoliator in a bottle! If you choose to go the PMD route, be sure that you aren’t overusing the tool. I try to stick to once a week– typically being Saturday. The great news is that the PMD is on sale today on Nordstrom– it’s marked down to $99 from $179– helllooooo, Christmas gift to yourself. This tool has drastically helped me even out my skin tone. Years of acne breakouts, days in the sun and two pregnancies with melasma later I was in rough shape. Microdermabrasion literally removes the top surface layer of skin (it’s painless) and over time and consistent usage you will notice that your skin is evening out and that the overall tone is so much better. Exfoliating out of a bottle will have similar results, it will just take a whole lot longer.
Step 4: Hydrate: As I mentioned above, I have found that there is no such thing as over-hydrating the skin. It may seem counterproductive to put moisture/oil on top of already oily skin..but, skin produces more oil (which causes more breakouts/clogged pores) when it feels like it is lacking moisture. So, do your body and skin the favor of being sure to moisturize (so that the body doesn’t have to work harder to ramp up oil production itself). One of my favorite ways to really quench my skin is through the use of sheet masks. You guys know I love a good face mask and you also know that I use the Peter Thomas Roth masks often (currently the Maskaholic Kit is out for the holidays and it contains his top 5 FULL SIZED masks for $75 (normally $244), but I save my Dr. Jart sheet masks for when I feel that my skin really needs a special treat. If you choose to use a sheet mask, it is important to allow enough time to really let it penetrate your skin (read: how often does a mother of two have 25 uninterrupted minutes? hardly ever, which is why they’re a special treat:)). Yesterday I used the Water Replenishment sheet mask because I felt that my skin needed a good drink.. but, all of the Dr. Jart masks are phenomenal and I love that there is one for every single skin issue that you could potentially have. Side note: when using a sheet mask, you don’t want to rinse your face once removing the mask. Another side note: I have found that there is usually quite a bit of serum left over in the bottom of the package, so DON’T throw it away. I tend to save it and apply over the following days to give my skin a real boost– you guys know i’m cheap and unashamed.
Step 5: Replenish/Repair/Prevent: This is where I tend to spend the most money on skincare– oils, serums, those word are music to my ears. Replenishment is where I have found I can make the biggest difference in my skin. I love to experiment with new serums and oils and honestly, I probably have more than any sane human being needs– but, the truth is that I use them all. There is a broad range in prices out there when it comes to this step, so I have made sure to link all of the ones that I own and from there you can pick what works best for you! Lately, I have been using The Truth Serum (for daytime) and Invigorating Night Transformation Gel (you guessed it, for nighttime) made by OleHenriksen and they are phenomenal! For daytime I will apply The Truth Serum (allow it to soak into skin for at least 5 min), followed by either Beauty Counter Vitamin C Oil or Josie Maran Oil. As you guys know, I don’t typically wear a lot of makeup, or any makeup at all, but when I do, I still use these two products prior to applying foundation, but I allow about 15 min to pass before beginning my makeup.
That’s all, friends! I hope that you get a chance to pamper yourself from the comfort of your own home.
Dim the lights, throw on a spa robe, play some calming tunes, brew some tea or infuse some water and enjoy! xo, Grace