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H E L L O ! My name is Naomi Shiek (pronounced CHIC).
I've been very fortunate to have my own small independent atelier called Woodland Papercuts. This is my private blog exploring my favorite things in beauty & design.

L E T S__B E__F R I E N D S !
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Saturday, 6 May 2017

My recent skincare routine

A quick note: I have acne-prone, sensitive, combination skin. 
Often dehydrated, my face is swathed in redness, and I have Rudolph's red nose.

In the two years since I started regularly using skincare products, I tried many and found a stable of products I love to use again and again. As a result, I have a skincare routine! An honest routine I do my best never to skip out on, under threat of blemishes! And honestly, since I found these products my skin has calmed down and I only have a wayward blemish once in a blue moon - a world of difference from the suffering I experienced since childhood. I owe it all to the following products:
1. First and foremost I wash my face morning and evening. My favorite is Trilogy's Balancing Gel Cleanser, a great natural formula for combination skin, purifying without stripping. I LOVE it for winter. I read somewhere that you should alternate cleansers so your skin doesn't build resistance to them, so whenever I finish Trilogy's (usually takes 3 months) I move on to Murad's Time Release Acne Cleanser, which works great during the sweaty summer months especially. I use them both on repeat.

2. The STAR of my routine, and truly a life savior: Ole Henriksen's Invigorating Night Treatment. I've been using this for 2 years I think, ever since Stephanie Lange followed by My Pale Skin said this changed their skin. I thought if two beauty gurus from different sides of the planet can agree on this - I have to try! I bought it as part of the three little wonders set, and while I think the day serum and moisturizer it came with are nice, losing them from my routine proved the night serum made all the difference! No joke, this will transform acne-prone skin.

If you buy nothing else, 
get the Ole Henriksen Invigorating Night Treatment. 
You'll thank me. 

However, CAUTION: A handful of months ago Ole Henriksen went through a rebranding. They changed their packaging and the product's name (It's now called Invigorating Night Transformation Gel and comes in a blue, frosty-glass-looking bottle). Unfortunately they also reformulated many of their products - this one included. *Cue panic*

I can't find anywhere online that carries the new version (at least, that delivers to my country) so I can't personally compare if the reformulation is shittier/better/the same as the one I love so much. I can tell you that instead of Glycolic acid, Lactic acid, and Algae extract topping the ingredients list (which was dominated by many other acids, plant extracts and inflammation suppressors), in the new formula Glycolic acid is immediately followed by glycerin, then by the other ingredients (some familiar, some not) in a different order of concentration than the original. I don't like that there's less Lactic acid.

3. Most nights I follow the treatment serum with Peter Thomas Roth's Retinol Fusion PM Serum. I find that it clears out pores especially well, so when layered over the treatment serum I use this on my nose and cheeks only. There are nights I use this serum instead of Ole Henriksen, don't even follow it with a moisturizer, and let me tell you my skin in the morning is clean and plump! During winter it might be too harsh to use alone, but now that it's getting warmer I'm going to do this more often.  Note that when tested under the eyes it felt like the texture became worse, so don't.

4. This winter I've used the Antipodes Manuka Honey Skin-Brightening Light Day Cream as my last step hydration, night and day. I'm sold on anything with manuka honey because it's perfect for acne prone skin. It took me a while to get used to the (natural) scent, but I don't notice it anymore. The formulation is fabulous and clean. I find that I personally love oil-based moisturizers. It's a bit heavy going on, which is why I thought it worked great in winter and during the nighttime as well, but absorbs quickly and leaves skin light and smooth.

5. For under my eyes (and lately my lips) I use Trilogy's Rosehip Oil Antioxidant+. I don't like eye gels and didn't find a cream that works for me yet, but the oil is lightweight, hydrating, non-irritating, and I can use it at night and morning and under makeup! While I do have wrinkles and texture under my eyes, if I don't use the oil I find everything looks worse, so I know it works. I'm still looking for the product that will transform my undereye, but this oil is the best I found so far for that area.

I also use the oil on my whole face (night and morning) if I feel especially dry or just want to change it up a bit. While it won't inflame acne scars, I steer clear of blemishes for fear of reaction. The oil feels like a 'dry' oil, absorbs immediately into the skin and leaves a beautiful glow without any tackiness or residue. My face feels extremely smooth after using it.

I'd like to say I use the following items routinely, but frankly I mostly forget about them until a problem arises. These are my trusty sidekicks when I'm going to battle:
Antipodes Aura Manuka Honey Mask | Meant to be applied twice a week, I use this when my skin feels tight and dry for instant softening. With many heavy hydrating creams the ingrdients will most-likely cause blemishes, but due to the high manuka honey content it not only prevents blemishes but even soothes them while hydrating my skin. I also left it on for bed a few times, and my skin felt great in the morning.

La Roche Posay Effeclar Duo+ | Meant to reduce skin redness and the appearance of imperfections, I can't say this prevents blemishes 100%. On some it works and on some it doesn't. Definitely most affective when the blemish is still a shadow or a sensation under the skin (you know the ones). But I do know that after it's all said and done this ointment does help the scarring fade away faster. When I feel I have bad skin days coming, or I need the added barrier between my skin and makeup, I put this all over.

Skyn Anti-Blemish Treatment Gel | When blemishes are coming up this gel saves the day. It prevented many bad skin days for me. But be forewarned, it cannot be used under makeup.

Lancome Pure Empreinte Masque | when I do get blemishes, cystic or topical, I use this cream. Applied directly to the blemish over night, it draws out all the impurities in triple-time and helps the area heal faster. Because it's drying, I only use it on the blemish itself.

Side tip: I use stickers to note the date I started using each product. 
I used to always worry that I'll be doing more harm than good if the product is expired. Now I no longer have to guess!  

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