Welcome to blog #6! You know how people sometimes associate physical things or colors with numbers? Psychologically, this is called synesthesia. For some reason, whenever I think of my skin or skincare, the number six always pops up in my head. Maybe this is because my morning/night routine contains six steps. Maybe it’s because when I was still in high school I’d wake up at six in the morning to start my day, and I’d typically end it around 6 PM. Who knows when it comes to psychology (says the psych major).
So basically, what I’m getting at here, is the number 6 is pretty lucky when it comes to skincare; ergo that’s what blog #6 will be about. Similar to the makeup blog I published a few weeks back, I’ll share my personal recommendations, some favorite products, and my routine. Maybe I’ll even follow it with another reel that you’ll be able to check out at the Mantra and Co. Instagram account.
To me, skincare is the most important thing when it comes to the whole “clean girl aesthetic”. Yeah, you can get the simple makeup and the fashion down-pat (check my earlier blogs), but if you don’t have a good base, then none of that will matter.
A skincare routine is never set-in-stone, either. As we grow older, our skin accumulates different needs. As the seasons change, the same thing occurs. And this is going to sound knit-picky, but daytime and nighttime routines can sometimes differ as well. The usual process remains the same, but as the times change, the actual products you use will be what switches up. It goes as follows; cleanser, toner, moisturizer. If this is your morning routine, then add your favorite sunscreen. If this is your nighttime routine, then scratch the sunscreen and begin the process off with removing your makeup with your favorite micellar water. But please stay away from makeup removing wipes. The chemicals contained in those are absolutely ghastly.
I’m in my late teens and it’s getting into summer time. Right now, my cleanser of choice is by dermalogica and it’s called the daily glycolic cleanser. I follow that with the fantastic niacinamide serum by The Ordinary to take place as my toner. My moisturizer switches depending on time of day. In the morning, I use the simple CeraVe moisturizing cream. At night, I’ll use the iNNBEAUTY Project 10+10 MORE-STURIZER so my skin can soak up as much of those healthy vitamins as possible and heal from the day. Using different moisturizers in the morning vs. the day isn’t mandatory, but switching to a heavier cream in the winter-time is. When that time comes, I switch, and stick to, my CeraVe.
My favorite sunscreen of all time is by Supergoop! and it’s called the Glow Screen. I raved about it in my makeup blog. However, if you’re going for more of a simple look or just don’t want a tinted sunscreen, then the Supergoop! Play sunscreen is also fantastic. My micellar water of choice is by Garnier, and I have a mini-version of it everywhere in case my makeup suddenly decides to bother me; my car, my backpack, my tote bag. It’s my favorite of all time, affordable, and I don’t plan on changing it any time soon.
When it comes to skincare, yes, you want to make sure the product you’re using is tailored to you, but that doesn’t mean that the product needs to be top-of-the-line and cost an arm and a leg.
I used the Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser for years and it resembles very well to the Dermologica one I’m currently using.
Cetaphil, CeraVe, Neutrogena, The Ordinary; these are all fantastic brands that will have products tailored to your needs at a great price. The truth is, as long as you have a cleanser that actually cleans your skin, a toner fit to your skin type (which I’ll tell you how to find) and a moisturizer that will do as it's said to do while not peeling on your skin (I’ve never had this problem with my CeraVe), then you’re absolutely set with skincare. The key is consistency. Washing your face in the morning. Always washing your face at night (to get the gross accumulating sweat and dirt from the day off). Removing your makeup properly. And, of course, the weekly face mask. I’ll share my favorite one down below. And guess what? It’s homemade.
There’s a really easy trick to finding out your skin type. It’s so easy, you’ll think I’m kidding. There are so many quizzes online to help you determine which category you fall under, but don’t waste your time. All you have to do is wash your face under water and let it dry naturally. Do not towel-dry. When it’s fully dry, then consider how your skin feels. If it looks shiny and feels a little heavy, then you have oily skin (join the club). If it feels tight and if you have a history with flaky skin, then you have dry skin. If your t-zone feels oily, but everywhere else feels tight, then you have combination skin. If your skin feels normal, then you have normal skin.
All skincare brands will cater to these four skin-type categories. It’s important that you keep track of what you’re using and ensure it’s actually for you. Ensuring this will also guarantee a flawless base for your makeup. You don’t want to over moisturize or over-dry out your skin. That will open up the doors to a whole new set of problems.
Let’s talk about getting rid of blemishes. This is the most finicky aspect of skincare because there are so many products out there that claim they’re the best. I have one product for you, though, that I promise will work. It’s the Clearasil Rapid Rescue Deep Treatment Pads. Using this product is all you need to do, assuming you follow your skin care routines and don’t pick at your blemishes. I know everyone says it, but it’s so important and you really shouldn’t. Doing so will worsen your blemish and leave behind acne scars.
Something that I like to do to jazz up my routine is the weekly face mask. Face masks are hugely important, and there are many fantastic ones out there. Honestly, the simpler the better. And what better way to use a simple facemask, than to make it yourself.
If you’re South Asian then it is highly likely that you’ve heard of turmeric before (maybe you know it as haldi). The bright orange powder that’s put in many curries, and, oddly enough, can be put on your face.
Turmeric face masks are miracle-workers when it comes to evening out skin tones. It contains anti-inflammatory properties, and will clean away the harmful bacterias stuck on our face that typical cleansers can’t reach. I’m launching a tutorial video on Friday that will contain my version of the turmeric mask recipe, as well as how to apply etc.
I’ll always remember when my dadi (paternal grandmother) would keep a bowl of yogurt on her bedside table. I used to think she did this as a late-night snack, but then I learned of the moisturizing properties of yogurt and realized that my dadi’s baby-soft skin didn’t come naturally. I actually learned my lesson when the yogurt turned orange one night and it wasn’t magically mango-flavored… PS, turmeric + yogurt is not a yummy snack.
I’ve tried numerous face masks and spent more money than I care to admit searching for the perfect one. But I always come back to this mask. Its ingredients can be found at your local grocery store (if they’re not already in your mom’s spice drawer) and it’s so simple to make. I urge you to try it out at some point because it really does do wonders (even though, to me, it doesn’t smell the greatest).
Routines can be hard to get the hang of, but it’s definitely worth the try.
To me, a good skin care routine is the ultimate self-care activity. Always take your time with these routines, as this is time for yourself. There’s something so utterly peaceful about cleansing your skin and getting it back to its beautiful, natural glory. Cleaning away the dirt and bad vibes the day may have brought forth and allowing yourself to relax. I like to follow my nighttime routine with a good movie or book, just to upkeep the relaxation I force upon myself.
At the end of the day, the nights are for you. Take that time for yourself. Reset. Heal. Do what you love. And don't forget to drink lots of water.
Oh, and in case you were wondering, that grape dress I mentioned in my previous blog… guess who’s wearing it?
Wish me luck.
All my love,