During the winter, you’ll find me slathering on a zillion different creams in hopes of defeating my mortal enemy: dry skin. But when spring rolls around, I favor a more streamlined skincare approach and rely on lightweight serums. In fact, I’ll often replace my regular moisturizers with these liquid formulas in the warmer months. There’s just something so unappealing about sleeping with a ton of heavy products on my face once it’s no longer freezing in my pre-war cave of a Brooklyn apartment.
You may have noticed lots of your favorite brands coming out with oil-based products in the last year, and for good reason. These products are a far cry from the greasy, dirty kind of oil that clogs your pores and weighs down your hair. In fact, these oils are all about working with your skin and hair type to either cleanse or hydrate. My favorite cleansing oils fit the old adage “like attracts like” by pulling out the bad oils and leaving skin with plenty of moisture, not stripped. My must-have hydrating oils sink in immediately and are much longer-lasting than moisturizers. Check out a few of my all-time faves below.
Photo: Fix Malibu
Now that it’s officially frigid, it’s time to overhaul your skincare routine. All that back and forth between the chilly outdoors and overheated rooms can take a serious toll on your complexion—leading to dry, flaky, irritated skin. But if you follow the right routine, you can keep your skin healthy and moisturized even when the weather resembles Arctic tundra conditions. Recently, I had the chance to chat with celebrity dermatologist Rebecca Giles, the founder of FIX Malibu, and get her essential winter skincare advice. Click through to learn what she said!
Who doesn’t love toast? We sure do, and as much enthusiasm as we have for the delicious complex carbohydrate, we love the blog A Piece of Toast even more. The masterminds behind the beauty amalgamation of covet-worthy products, style inspiration, and yes, yummy food, are sisters Sally Ann and Molly Bernadette. This week, the Molly is graciously bringing her flair to our blog, dishing on everything from the best hair masks to perfect holiday gifts.
Face serums and oils seem to be one of the biggest trends in skin care these days and after reading so many positive reviews about the benefits and ‘glow’ they deliver, I jumped on the bandwagon — and haven’t looked back since! If you haven’t tried incorporating oil into your daily skin routine, I hope I can convince you…
While I was hanging out at the Jurlique store and spa earlier this week, I learned plenty about plant botanicals and marine-based anti-aging ingredients. But the single best takeaway was something incredibly simple (and didn’t require breaking out a botany textbook). Store manager Sara LaBree told me that whenever you’re trying out a new skincare regimen you should start with the serum. The reason: Serums usually contain the highest quantities of active ingredients, so you’ll get the most bang for your buck and also be able to see how your skin reacts to the line. See? I knew there was a reason I am such a serum junkie.
Learn more about face serums with our cheat sheet and find the right one for your skin type.
I’m in Los Angeles this week for a mini media tour — editor dinners, blogger breakfasts, Birchbox members’ party, oh my! In between the events and the
driving traffic, I’ve also been doing my beauty research. Yesterday, I field tripped to Santa Monica to visit Jurlique at their lovely store. The small boutique carries their entire catalog, which means you could spend hours playing with different skincare products. There is also a single treatment room where you can try one of their signature facials. Sara LaBree, their phenomenal store manager and aesthetician, gave me a crash course in their different protocols (in addition to an amazing facial).
Jurlique is all about rebalancing and optimizing your skin — they don’t want to completely change anything, just fine tune anything that is out of whack. Accordingly, all of their facials are effective without being harsh — you won’t walk out looking like an angry tomato. I’m not usually one to talk during spa treatments (in fact, I’ve been known to fall asleep), but I started geeking out about the ingredients in the products. Fun fact: Jurlique’s Purely Age Defying line uses marine-based ingredients like rock samphire that work like retinols without any of the harsh side effects. In addition to being smart about ingredients, they’re also smart about application: all of their facials use the Clarisonic to ensure that skin is perfectly prepped for the masks, serums, and creams that follow. By the end of my treatment, I felt smarter and, more importantly, my skin looked fresh and awake.
Did you know Jurlique grows the majority of its ingredients on a 153-acre farm in South Australia? Yeah, we think that’s pretty cool, too.
Before I started writing about beauty, I had no idea what a serum was or why I might want to put it on my face. I quickly learned that serums, which are skincare products with a very high concentration of active ingredients, were the key to targeting specific skin issues. (For more, read our cheat sheet.) Unlike moisturizers, which primarily hydrate, serums can address things like acne, hyperpigmentation, premature wrinkles, rosacea…really anything. Suffice it to say, I’ve become a bit of a junkie, and I’m as picky about my serums as Meredith is about her SPF. I’ve learned how to read ingredient lists, and to decipher what’s worth the money and what I can skip.
For example, one of my current favorites is Sircuit Cosmeceuticals’s Weapon, which is $85 for one ounce. At first that might seem spendy, but there’s not a bit of fat in the product. It’s a lean, mean, skin-perfecting machine. First off, it has ten percent L-Ascrobic Acid, the chirally correct form of Vitamin C— this helps encourage collagen production (which fills out any premature lines or wrinkles), protect against UV damage, and prevent hyperpigmentation. While Vitamin C is the star of Weapon, there are plenty of other ingredient helpers: Witch Hazel, which soothes any irritations; Sodium Hyaluronate, which rehydrates skin; and Phytoalexin Complex, a blend of antioxidants. I apply a couple drops at night (the eyedropper makes sure I don’t waste any of the product!) after cleanser and toner, and I’ve noticed that my skin seems brighter (even on less sleep) with fewer dark spots. I’m still waiting for my pores to disappear but Rachel, our resident skin expert, swears that there’s a serum for that.
Do you use serums? What are your favorites?
Read more skincare articles in our archive.