Summer of 2009 is officially over (or has been over for a couple of weeks now). For your skin, this means its time to hydrate and protect itself from the bitter weather, and to repair itself from sun damage and excess buildup of melanin (pigments in the skin). This winter, I will be doing a series of entries that focus on taking better care of your skin and preventing future damage. I call this:
“Snow White” has two meanings for me personally, one is that it is very cold outside but sometimes it can get quite warm inside, which means you need to adapt your skin to being able to withstand those extreme temperatures. The other is that with the abundance of sunlight in the summer, your skin will likely become tanned, which is why in the winter, for me at least, you need to 1) repair any sun damage, and 2) go back to having milky white skin.
Skin whitening, or skin brightening is a huge part of my skincare regime. There is a lot of controversy surrounding skin brightening in general, which I am not going to talk too much about. The main reason skin whitening is so important to me is that I want to have smooth, even, milky skin that has bits of pink especially in the cheek area. A good example of this kind of skin is Cyndi Wang, who is a Taiwanese singer and actress. This is my ultimate goal. With skin like this, who needs makeup?
However, which skin whitening, the main issue is hydration and moisture. Skin whitening is basically using chemicals such as glycolic acid, or other whitening ingredients such as Arbutin, to slowly peel off the upper layers of the skin. It is like constant exfoliation but just works faster and is a little bit stronger (although there is less iritation depending on what you use). Because there is that constant peeling of the upper skin layer, your skin will easily become sensitive and dehydrated, especially in the winter months. Therefore there is a need to regularly use products such as hydrating serums or moisturizing creams.
Currently, I am not going to lie, I have crappy skin. The reason is that I am in school, which means I sleep at 4-5 AM every day and wake up around 11. Also, once every two weeks or so, I don’t sleep at all for an entire night. And then I eat on average one meal, max 2 meals a day. So… you can see why my skin is crappy.
But you should not follow my example! In the summer (April – August) when I have a pretty set work schedule (8:30-4:30), I go to bed relatively early and wake up early, I eat 3 meals a day and I get my full 8 hours of sleep (normally). In the summer, that is when I repair my skin of all of the school damage such as acne, acne scars, fine lines, discolouration, etc. But now that I am in school, I can focus only on preventing those things from sprouting, which currently is quite effective.
My current night-time skincare regime:
- Wash off day-cream with Shu Uemura oil cleanser
- Cleanse with Clinique Liquid Facial Soap every other day, and MAC Volcanic Ash Exfoliator on the days I don’t use Clinique
- Use MAC Volcanic Ash Thermal Mask once every 3-4 days which I am in the shower
- Tone with Kose Meddicated Sekkisei or Biotherm Biosource Clarifying Lotion
- Depending on how my skin feels that day, I use Biotherm Aquasource Superserum (if I need more hydration), Diorsnow White Reveal Essence (skin feels normal), Dior Capture Totale Night Time Soft Peal (skin feels normal). I usually rotate between the three in a white, Dior Capture Totale is used 1-2 a week, Biotherm Aquasource is used 1-2 times a week (at night) and Diorsnow is used the rest of the time
- Hydrate my skin with H2O+ Face Oasis
- Apply lip balm, usually Vichy Nutrilogie Lips or Burt’s Bees
My currently day-time regime is really simple:
- Wash face with water; yes just water. When you sleep your body goes through damage control and your skin will secrete its own protective oils. This is quite precious and good for repairing your skin, so I don’t want to strip it off using a harsh cleanser.
- Depending on the weather outside, I may or may not use Biotherm Aquasource Superserum. I don’t want to overhydrate my skin because that will cause congestion and breakouts as well.
- Moisturize with Biotherm Age Fitness Lotion SPF 15. This is the preventative day care part, not only does it have sunscreen in it, it prevents and repairs the first signs of aging, including big pores!
This regime has done a good job at preventing more damage, but at the same time I have really noticed that my skin a lot brighter and smoother, probably due to the Diorsnow White Reveal Essence. Funny thing is that my face is actually brighter than the rest of my body, which is why lately I have been vigorously exfoliating and applying brightening body lotion.
Overall, you should be really paying close attention to your skin. This is why I have so many depending ons in the lists above because I apply products to suit my skin’s needs. You should also not follow my bad example; get a proper night’s sleep, drink lots of fluids, and eat all of your meals, and if possible, exercise regularly. A normal lifestyle will help you trememdously with the skin that you so desperately want.
I will be doing a reviews of the products mentioned above in the upcoming weeks.