It’s the end of the month which means it’s time for my Skincare Shake Up May ’17 edition! There are some clear winners this month, along with some clear no-no products. Ahhh the perils of being a beauty blogger with sensitive skin! As always, it’s a long one so let’s strap in and get going.
If you have a good memory, you’ll know that I fell hard for the SuperFacialist Vitamin C Skin Renew Cleansing Oil* last year. I think it featured in about three Skincare Shake Ups in a row which is rare. It’s a wonderfully light oil that breaks down make up quickly and easily, doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin, and emulsifies really nicely once you add water, leaving no greasy residue on the skin.
For my second cleanse I’ve been using the Malin + Goetz Grapefruit Face Cleanser*. I have heard the Malin + Goetz name mentioned in lots of rosacea forums as one of the founders actually has rosacea (along with seborrhea, fragrance allergies and eczema) so he created skincare that he couldn’t find elsewhere. This is a gel cleanser that lightly foams when you add water, but I didn’t find it drying or stripping to the skin. The use of grapefruit extracts means it’s great for those with blemish-prone skin as it’s anti-bacterial and very lightly exfoliating. I didn’t find it irritating near the eyes and, although it may seem quite pricey, the bottle is HUGE.
I’d had the ZENMED Support Serum* in my ‘to-try’ box for a while and I was looking forward to trying them as it’s still so rare that you find products specifically aimed at rosacea. However this wasn’t a great fit for me. The smell is very overwhelming, reminding me of the Body Shop Tea Tree range that I foolishly used on my sensitive skin as a teenager. It’s designed to reduce swelling, irritation and redness but I didn’t see much of a difference in my rosacea, and it actually felt a little bit tingly on the skin as though it was going to induce a flare up (although the flare up never arrived). I also expect serums to add a bit of hydration and my skin felt like it needed extra help after using this. Not a winner for me unfortunately!
I think a combination of the serum above not giving me quite enough hydration, and the weird weather this month (Is it winter again? Oh no, now it’s a heat wave… with intense, blustery wind for no reason!) left my skin in limbo. So I have been trying out the lovely Beauty Kitchen Night Halo Potent Sleep Mask* a few nights a week (my skin is oily so I think it would be a bit too intense to use every night, but if you have dry skin it would probably drink this up!). It’s a solid balm that melts into an oil on contact with the skin, and it smells so calming which is ideal just before you go to bed. I had the pleasure of meeting the founder of Beauty Kitchen and their ethos is wonderful: 100% natural and never animal tested. Plus, she has rosacea as well and has tested all the products on herself so perfectly understood (and allayed) all my fears about trying new things! The products are available in Holland & Barrett and I’d recommend you having a look through all of their products because there are so many exciting things there (including one that’s coming up later in this post!)
The Superfacialist ranges are really lovely and often in the skincare deals in Boots so if you’ve not tried them out, I would really recommend having a nosey. The cleansing oil above is a great place to start, as is the Superfacialist Rose Peaceful Skin Night Cream* – especially if you have sensitive skin like me. This is a lightweight cream that still feels like its giving you a good hit of hydration as well as leaving your skin feeling soothed and calm. It comes in a heavy, sturdy glass pot which is annoying for travelling and also (personally) I hate dipping my fingers in face products but I overlook those things for this lovely night cream.
Earlier this month you may have heard me mention that I had some irritation after using a skincare product. This happens fairly rarely now as I am so careful about selecting products and I also patch test things, so I tend to weed out products that would irritate my skin. Which is why I was so surprised that the Superdrug Optimum Birch Water Micellar Tonic* upset my skin so much. I tested it on my jaw and forehead as I usually would and had no problem, so I carried on using it as my morning cleanse. However after a few days use I noticed more and more than my skin felt sore and hot after using it. I was away in Scotland visiting my MIL and one morning I used it and my skin just freaked out. My eyes were streaming, my skin felt sunburned, I couldn’t bear to put make up on. I can’t believe something like a micellar water had this kind of irritation but there you go! I need to say that I have LOVED lots of products from the Superdrug own skincare ranges so this is not indicative of the products as a whole. But I needed to include it as my skin really did not like it. I replaced it with my tried and trusted Bioderma Sebium H2O Micellar Water. FYI you may have noticed that I was careful to use the word ‘irritation’ and not ‘reaction’ – I need to do a blog post about the difference as I see a lot of people misusing the latter!
You’ll be happy to hear that the Vichy Slow Âge Fluid* is just as lovely as the packaging would suggest. And I know that the way a product looks shouldn’t factor in a review but come on – it’s so pretty! Anyway, I’ve been using this as my morning ‘serum’ step: it’s so lightweight and felt very soothing on my skin. This anti-ageing moisturiser is aimed at women between 24-45 (although obviously anyone can use it!) and contains antioxidants and SPF25, as well as the obvious hydrating benefits. You can read more about the brand’s product testing HERE. The only downside is that it’s another product with pretty heavy and therefore non-portable packaging, but it looks so expensive and fancy that I would just decant some into a plastic pot and stop complaining.
My moisturiser of choice this month was the Malin + Goetz Vitamin E Moisturiser*, which is their best-selling moisturiser. As I mentioned earlier in this post, a lot of the products from the range were created with Matthew Malin’s rosacea and very sensitive skin in mind and this is one of their cornerstone products. It contains chamomile, fatty acids, hyaluronic acid, vitamin e (obviously) and no added fragrance. It does all the things I love in a moisturiser: sinks in quickly, doesn’t bobble under make up, doesn’t leave my skin feeling smothered, and soothes my skin.
My SPF of choice this month has been the glōTherapeutics Solar Shade SPF50*. Things I liked about this SPF: it felt light on the skin, it didn’t have a strong smell, it didn’t aggravate my skin, it has SPF50, it’s a physical sunscreen which is better for sensitive skin because it sits on the skin and deflects UV rays to protect you. There are a few things I didn’t like about this SPF, and they are common cons of physical sunscreens: it left a white cast on my skin and was a little hard to rub in. It also sweats/comes off more easily which means you need to reapply more often. This SPF did the job and I think it would be better for those days when I’m not wearing make up and was just popping in and out of the house, but I definitely have SPFs I prefer for every day use.
I’ve been using two masks this month and both are brilliant. The first one is the BeeGood Necta Perfecta Beautifying Mask*. I’ve mentioned BeeGood on the site before, and I love their products and the whole ethos behind the brand (which you can read about HERE). This is described as a multitasking mask: not only can it be used on the face, but also as an overnight mask on the hands and feet, and on the rough skin on elbows, cuticles, and knees. I have mostly been using it on my face but I did put it on any rough spots before doing my (first ever!) fake tan. Most face masks that use enzymes to break down dead skin and remove clogged pores feel a little bit tingly on my skin and can be tricky to use with sensitive skin. This one (that contains 5 natural fruit AHAs) feels so gentle that I was actually a little bit annoyed that I was wasting my time… until I took the mask off and my skin felt incredible! It was so smooth and plumped up, with no redness or irritation. Often I have to use a hydrating mask after I use an exfoliating one, but my skin felt really pampered and happy after I removed this. Plus it’s a pretty sizeable tub and you only use a small amount for a face mask so it’ll last for ages.
The other is the Beauty Kitchen 5 Minute Miracle Mask*. The description says it’s designed to draw out impurities, dirt and congestion while also hydrating and smoothing the skin. I didn’t notice a change in the congestion of my skin after using it (especially in comparison to the BeeGood mask) but if my face feels tight or dry or my skin feels stressed, I would apply this and within five minutes it would feel calm, soothed and balanced. I don’t think I’ve used a mask that does so much in such a short time! All these positives AND it’s also vegan.
Aaaand we’re done, that my Skincare Shake Up May ’17 edition! If you made it this far you have my eternal respect. I should probably learn how to do a thorough skincare review without rambling for 2000 words… maybe one day!
What skincare have you been loving this month? Does anything here catch your eye? Have you tried any of these brands? Let me know in the comments below!
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