Sunday, June 17, 2012

Blog: My Skincare Routine for Sensitive Combination/Acne-Prone Skin

My skincare routine: Steps 1-8

This is almost like a sequel to the previous blog post about my Youtube Video. I am trying to figure out if I should do a separate blog post for my skin care routine. After all, I am sure there are viewers out there that prefer to read a blog entry than watch a Youtube video. However, I am afraid of making my blog entries long and tedious to read. I can literally hear my best friend's R's voice in the background telling me "Woman, you write too much!".

I will use this blog entry as a test sample and see how it works out. Writing makes it easier to include all the necessary information without much hassle. Also, you (readers) can skim read if you find that the part of the blog entry is not relevant whereas you can not skim watch for videos. As least I can not skim watch when it comes to videos. :(

I decided to do a blog entry/Youtube video on my skin care routine because my family and friends have been curious about the skin care products that I use. My skin type is combination. I have an oily T-zone and dry patches on my cheeks. My face tends to get oily in the warmer months and dry in the cooler months.

WHY is everyone so curious? Well, this is pretty embarrassing but hey, it is all part of my personal experience. A little skeleton in my closet is my skin. I started having acne when I was very young- at the age of 8 or 9 years old. I was one of the first among my peers to have acne. Since acne was not common at that age, I was teased a lot about my acne-prone skin. Even as I got older, my hormones did not make my skin any better. In fact, it got worse.

It was not until I was 16 or 17 years old when my mum and my aunt took me out shopping that we stopped by a Biotherm counter and I met the skin care products that were going to save my skin from acne. I was using a lot of drugstore brand skin care products (cleansers, scrubs, exfoliating creams etc.) back then but I was not using the correct products I guess. As the Biotherm lady explained to me what my skin required and what skin care products were suitable for me, it was that 'TA-DA!" moment for me. That moment of revelation is so profound that I can still remember till this day.

Unfortunately, the products that I used back then have been discontinued and they were replaced by the Biotherm Biopur S.O.S Normalizer Skincare series. If skin care was a religion, I am definitely a faithful follower. I have been using the Biotherm Biopur S.O.S Normalizer Skincare series ever since it was released. I checked the Biotherm website and it appears that not every country has this skincare series. However, Australia and Singapore Biotherm Counters definitely carry this series.

The Biotherm Biopur SOS Normalizer Skin Care products target problematic skin. It aims to reduce pores and it is anti-acne. It contains willow and liquorice to clear and soothe skin with anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory actions. It also contains lipo amino acids to minimise future breakouts by regulating excess sebum production caused by hormonal changes. Pure Thermal Plankton minimises irritation and neutralises the skin.

Step 1: Biotherm Biopur S.O.S Normalizer Normalizing Cleansing Mousse (Facial Cleanser)

I use the cleanser to wash my face (day and night) and after I remove my makeup. This cleanser is a mild and does not have a noticeable scent. Despite regulating the oil production in my skin, it does not dry out my skin and it does not leave an uncomfortable feeling on my skin as some other facial cleansers do. It is good for those who have sensitive skin like me.

Step 2: Biotherm Biopur S.O.S Normalizer Normalizing Exfoliating Lotion

I shake the bottle gently before dabbing a few drops onto a cotton pad then apply it onto my cleansed skin. This is a very gentle toner. Though the toner does contain alcohol, the alcohol content is not noticeable and it does not leave my face with a stingy or tingly sensation as some other toners that I have used in the past do. I will leave such products for another video i.e. Products that I dislike or products that I regret buying. Leave a comment below if you would like to see such videos. Anyway, this toner is suitable for people with sensitive skin as it is a very gentle toner. However, you might want to give this a miss if you are allergic to alcohol.
The next few products (minus the Biother Biopur S.O.S series' moisturizer) are products that I have added to my skin care routine a few months ago. I like these products and they work well with my skin.
Step 3: Lancome Genifique Youth Activator/Youth Activating Concentrate (YAC) (Serum)

This is one of the most hyped up skin care product when it was first launched to the public. It is marketed as a serum that boosts the activity of genes and stimulates the production of youth proteins. I got to know about the YAC through watching RAEview's Youtube review of Lancome Genefique products. However, the person that got me interested in trying out the YAC is my grandmother. The story goes like this: I went back to Singapore for a short holiday and one day, I noticed my grandmother using this product. For those who have not met her, she has amazing skin for her age. She looks incredibly young that people often mistake her for my mum. Either she looks young or I look old but I like to think that both of us look young. :) She is also incredibly picky about the skin care products that she uses because she has very very sensitive skin. She has tried many high end skin care products to her dissatisfaction. Lancome's skin care products seem to work for her as she swears by Lancome's skin care products. With such a picky skincare matriach, I had to ask her about her thoughts on the YAC especially since it is not a product that is cheap... She said that it is a good product that improved the elasticity and texture of her skin. So I purchased a mini bottle of the YAC on and trialled it. It came with a dropper and I use about two to three drops for my entire face and décolletage (excluding the areas around my eyes). True enough, the YAC made my skin feel very supple that, sometimes, I have to resist the urge to go "Boing-Boing!" on my face. Naturally, once I ran out of the mini bottle, I went out and got the full sized product.

For those who are concerned that Genefique is more suited for people with more mature skin, I beg to differ. Lancome’s website says that Genefique is the foundation of every woman’s skincare at any age or for any skin concern. Also, Genefique targets to restore the youthful quality of our skin to make our skin, quote “cushiony soft and velvety to the touch”. I dare say that not many woman in the real world has cushiony soft and velvety to the touch kind of skin even when they are in their early twenties i.e. Me. If you do, you are blessed and I must tell you how jealous I am of people with good skin (Yes you- you know who you are). J  
Step 4: Lancome Visionnaire Advanced Skin Corrector

After using Genefique, I use Lancome’s Visionnaire. It has a pump and I use about two pumps for my entire face. Once again, I do not use it on areas around my eyes. Lancome’s Visionnaire is marketed as an advanced skin corrector that aims to visibly correct wrinkles and pores, imperfections like signs of UV damage and acne marks. I don’t know much about how the Visionnaire works to correct wrinkles and signs of UV damage or acne marks, but I can definitely tell that the redness around my nose area has visibly lessened in terms of the redness and my pores definitely appear to be smaller than before. It has pleasant scent to it though the scent is not overwhelming and it does not linger after you put it on. A little makeup tip I have is to use the Visionnaire before applying your makeup. It makes your foundation application so much easier and it helps to make my skin look amazing afterwards!
Step 5: Clinique All About Eyes (Eye Cream)
I use Clinique All About Eyes for areas around my eyes. It has a cream-gel like consistency and it is very moisturizing. Since the skin around eye areas is thinner, it requires more hydration and moisture. I use my ring finger to dab some of the eye cream and lightly dot it around the areas around my eyes before using a light dabbing motion to work the product into my skin. It is marketed to reduce puffs and circles but since I do not have problems with puffs and circles, I cannot say it works to reduce puffs and circles. However, it will definitely not treat wrinkles and fine lines FOR SURE!
Step 6: Biotherm Biopur S.O.S Normalizer Normalizing Moisturizing Care (Moisturizer)

For moisturizer, I use the Biotherm Biopur S.O.S Normalizing Moisturizing Care and Clinique’s Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel. The Biopur S.O.S moisturizer is very lightweight and it gets absorbed into my skin very easily. It leaves my face feeling hydrated and moisturized but it does not make my skin feel like I have moisturizer on it at all. It is very suitable for the warmer months or for those who live in a tropical climate. It comes in a squeeze tube which is great for sanitary reasons. However, it is not moisturizing enough for the colder months when my skin gets very dry. Hence, I use it in conjunction with the next step: Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel.
Step 7: Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel
This Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel is Step 3 of Clinique’s 3-step skin care and the one I use isfor combination oily to oily skin. I got the Clinque’s 3 step skin care when I was in the US for a month. I did not have my Biotherm skincare products with me and I could not find a Biotherm Counter at the stores in Milwaukee which was where I was at in the beginning. Frankly speaking, I was actually quite surprised that I liked this moisturizer since I did not like the cleanser and toner. Though it looks like a cream based moisturizer, the effect on my skin is more like a gel. It is very moisturizing but it does not make my face look or feel greasy. It comes with a pump which is great for sanitary reasons. I use it together with the Biotherm’s moisturizer in the winter. What I do is to use a pea sized amount of Biotherm’s moisturizer to go over my acne-prone areas like my T-zone and cheeks, then I go over with one or two pumps of Clinique’s moisturizer especially on my cheeks and my neck area.

One thing to note about Biotherm’s Biopur S.O.S Normalizing Skin Care series is that these products contain salicylic acid. The salicylic acid in these products is extracted from the bark of the willow plant. Since ancient times, from the days of Hippocrates, salicylic acid has been used to treat fever, ease aches and pains. It is a compound that is found in our modern day aspirin. Salicylic acid also has skin care benefits. It is key ingredient in anti-acne treatments. Note that the salicylic acid content in the Biotherm Biopur S.O.S Normalizing Skin Care series is not very high as compared to anti-acne treatment products so it may not be suitable for those with severe acne. You should definitely consult a dermatologist before using products that have high salicylic acid content.

People who are allergic to aspirin may want to avoid products containing salicylic acid. Also, the use of products that contain salicylic acid will make you more vulnerable to the effects of exposure to the sun (i.e. hyper pigmentation like sun spots, sun burns etc) and it will cause the drying out of the skin. Though the Biopur SOS Normalizing toner does contain liquorice extract that treats hyper pigmentation, I recommend those who use the Biopur SOS Normalizing Skin Care series, and/or any products that contain salicylic acid to MOISTURIZE and use SUN SCREEN!
Step 8: Eau Thermale Avene SPF50+ Very Water Resistant Sunscreen

The Eau Thermale Avene SPF50+ Very Water Resistant Sunscreen is marketed to have broad UVB and UVA protection. It is  also marketed to be hypoallergenic and the one I use is for normal to combination sensitive skin. It comes with a pump, which I like for sanitary reasons. You can tell I like product designs that help to keep things sanitary! Anyway, I digress. Though it appears to be white, it does not leave a white overcast on my face once I blend it out thoroughly. It is lightweight and not greasy. It does not affect the application of my makeup or the overall appearance of my made-up face. Overall, it is a great product though I would not recommend using it if you are going to be under flash photography.
So there you go: Steps 1-8 of my skin care routine! Do note that what works for my skin may not work for yours and vice versa. This is my two cents worth on the products that work for me. I hope you have found this blog entry useful!
Stay tuned for more Youtube videos and blog entries!
annsleyw :)

1 comment:

  1. WOW it is an attractive idea. and my da traditional way to overcome your Fever


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