I'm not a scientist, but consider me your guinea pig. Also, note that though my skin tends to be on the dry side, it falls in the normal category.
But here's the deal: Looking as young as you can with clear skin is really important in my business and doing what I have had to do to make it a lifelong daily ritual has been key.
Here are the steps for two times a day (morning before makeup and before bed):
Now some of these secrets sound unconventional if not downright weird, but I've tried them all to varying degrees of success. And when I can afford to upgrade, I can usually find some reliable brands (L'Oreal and Oil of Olay anti-aging moisturizers) at Jack's 99c World. But bear with me!
- cleanse: Try a generic version of Oil of Olay Daily Facials (available for dry, normal, or oily skin). Make sure they're dry and you just add water. If you cut each cleansing cloth into 4, it's plenty of surface area and they last four times as long! I moisten and then wash, then rinse, then use it to rinse my face and there's minimal waste.
- tone: Buy a large bottle of witch hazel which is usually on the bottom shelf of First Aid products in a drug store or even a grocery store. I apply this after the cleansing with cotton balls (make sure they're real cotton). It takes off any remainder oils and closes the pores without drying.
- moisturize: Daytime moisturizer, always an SPF of at least 15. Period. I find decent products at Jack's. Or it could be in your foundation, but you can always add color to your face. I know we used to lay out with baby oil slathered all over, but now you know daily SPf will keep the wrinkles away the longest. Next, think olden days Italy. Women still use olive oil on their faces to keep their youthful beauty. I actually read in The World's Best Kept Beauty Secrets by Diane Irons that hospitals have been using Crisco for years as an enexpensive but effective moisturizer. It has a surprising amount of Vitamin E and absorbs better than anything like Vaseline. People have called me crazy (like a fox!), but I have used it on and off for years before bed and it makes my skin so soft in the mornings. I keep a separate tin in the fridge. Buy the smallest one you can find. For lips, elbows, and dry heels I swear by Bag Balm. It was created for chapped teats on cows (I know, hilarious!) but farmers noticed how soft their own hands were after applying it and it has been a skin care secret for almost a century. It contains Petrolatum, which doesn't clog pores like Petroleum (the key ingredient in Vaseline. Bad. No Vaseline.).
- exfoliate: Masks are great and you can buy one for any skin type, but they are also very fun to make. There are many listed in The World's Best Kept Beauty Secrets and it feels so good when you finally take one off! The craziest one I've tried is Kitty Litter. You have to buy the cheapest, one with absolutely no additives and when you just add water, it turns into a soft simple grey clay. I'm guessing it's the better for oilier skin types. The downside is that it's very messy in application and in removal. But why not try it in a bathtub? And while you're there, take a couple tea bags with you; real tea, not herbal, and place them moistened over your eyelids. The tannic acid reduces swelling and it feels soothing to the eyes.
It's so easy to spend too much on beauty products. Just walking into a drugstore is asking for trouble. You are bombarded with so much advertising. But stay focused!
And stay foxy!