Fine Wine Face Routine
It’s a beautiful day here in San Diego! The weather is a calm 75 degrees, the sun peeking out through the clouds. Southern California in the spring time is a gorgeous place, not too hot, not too cold….wait, what am I talking about? Southern California is a gorgeous place regardless of the time of year. The thing about San Diego is the sun shines what seems to be 700 days a year, and that can take it’s toll on the skin. As I approach 40 I notice my skin changing as my body changes and I decided to implement a skin routine I call my “Fine Wine Skin Routine”. Some people will call this an “Anti-Aging” routine…and I’m really aligning myself with the movement to rid our societal vernacular of something so abrasive like “ANTI” aging. Face it Myrtle, we’re all aging, stop being so ANTI.
My early 30’s were an extension of my late 20’s, lots of alcohol, lots of harsh Texas sun, zero water, zero sunscreen…I lived really fast. If it weren’t for the melanin in my skin, I would have wrinkly, saggy skin due to a 15 year bottle of wine and pack of cigarettes a day habit. At 36, diagnosed with fibroids and really struggling to walk a block without stopping for air, I changed my habits. Slowly but surely I quit smoking and started drinking water…so many people underestimate the power of 8 glasses of water. Seriously, if you hear someone being a little brat and saying how they “don’t like the taste of water” please slap the back of their heads like Uncle Phil did Will each time he said something stupid. Water is literally the essence of beauty like the famous guru Derek Zoolander said in his groundbreaking AVEDA water commercial “Moisture is the essence of wetness, and wetness is the essence of beauty”. Water keeps us hydrated and keeps our skin moist and supple. I hate that word supple, but that’s what my skin looks like with this hydrating and moisturizing Fine Wine Skin Routine I cooked up.
I do this routine on Sundays, usually while going through old mail, meal prepping for the week or painting my toenails. It takes 45 min tops, but you can do so many things in between the steps. It’s a great addition to any self-care Sunday routine! A daily routine however is just 4 steps, cleanse, tone, serum, moisturize.
Step one – Cleanse
This is a no-brainer, but you would be surprised at how many people just skip this step and go directly to the clay mask….like, way to seal all that dirt in your pores. Using a clean, light, airy cleanser to wipe away your makeup and sweat is the absolute first step in mine…and anyone’s skincare routine. I found PURITY about 2 years ago and I LOVE THIS CLEANSER, it’s so fresh light and really cleans deep to get away even the most stubborn traces of makeup.
Step two – Steam
I only recently started steaming my face, but this too should be a no-brainer, the steam from the hot water opens your pores and readies them for a deep scrub (next step). Steaming also loosens any deep dirt stuck in your pores so that when you do come through and exfoliate, it’s easier to remove the buildup. I’ve steamed 2 different ways, with a face steamer (like this awesome 2-in-1 one)(or this super inexpensive one here) and with just an old fashioned bowl and towel set up. I don’t prefer either over the other, but what I DO advise is that you add a botanical mix of herbs to the water so that you can benefit from the medicinal qualities of the herbs! Hibiscus, Rose, Chamomile and Rosemary are all great herbs for hydrating and toning skin. The way I steam my face is, I’ll put some distilled water in a teapot and bring to a boil, I then take about a tbsp. of each chamomile, rose, hibiscus and rosemary and add them to a glass bowl. I pour the hot water over the botanical mix and while draping a towel over my head I bring my face close to the steam and create a nice little sauna for my face. I’ll stay in this little camp for about 5-7 min, or longer if I’m vibing to an awesome playlist or something. When I’m done, I strain the water (reserving some to mix the clay mask with) and compost the rest.
Step three – Exfoliate
Scrubbing your face shouldn’t be a HIIT workout, but you do want to use a bit of finger strength to slough out any dirt deep down in those pores. Luckily you just steamed, so all that buildup has been loosened up enough to remove without too much work. Exfoliation scrubs away dead skin cells and increases circulation. When you increase circulation, blood flows and brings oxygen with it, so you definitely don’t want to skip this step! I like to use different exfoliators depending on what my skin needs, I LOVE SW. Basics exfoliant because of it's basic ingredients, however most times I use your basic apricot scrub and it does the trick for my combo skin.
Step four – Clay Mask
Here’s is another step where you can personalize for your skin depending on what it needs. There are quite a few different clay masks out there, all have their own properties, and all help peoples skin in different ways. I go further into depth on clays in this blog post here. Some of the more popular clays you’ll find in mask ingredients are Bentonite, Kaolin, or Rose clay. Bentonite Clay is from volcanic ash and is good for most skin types, except sensitive, Kaolin Clay is the best for sensitive skin. Rose Clay is good for maturing skin. Remember that liquid you reserved from the face steam? A great way to add more bang to your clay mask is to mix it with something other than water. Some good ideas for clay mask mixers are tea, aloe vera water, coconut water, don’t let the mask dry all the way unless you have extremely oily skin as the clay is really drying and can dry out normal to sensitive skin.
Step five – Toner
Toner is a water-based ingredient that can be infused with soothing herbs like chamomile, peppermint, and witch-hazel. Toner removes any last traces of dirt and grime from your face and pores after you wash your face. Toner was actually originally invented to remove soap scum from the skin when lye-based soaps were all the rage. It acts as a gentle refresher while prepping your skin for the moisturizer. Be careful to read the ingredients and labels of your toner, sometimes people think that astringents are toners, and that’s a common mistake, but astringents have a large amount of alcohol in them, and unless you have oily skin, or combination skin, you’re really going to be drying your skin out with it. I actually tone my skin as part of my daily routine as well as my Sunday routine. When added to your daily routine toning can impact the appearance of your pores and tighten them! It’s wild the extra dirt that comes out of your pores, even after the previous 4 steps! Just take a cotton ball or cotton pad and dab a few drops of toner and wipe face, I personally use this one because of the ingredients (or lack thereof)
Step six – Sheet Mask
I like this step, it’s a great way to add TONS of moisture to your skin! Sheet masks come in a variety of different flavors and uses! You can get a variety pack and have the benefit of using what you need when you need! This is the variety set I use, and it really comes in handy as my skin changes it’s moods just like the rest of me does! Some time I use the carrot, sometimes the cranberry. Pro tip, the liquid that the face mask is packed in is serum, that’s all the good stuff! So don’t wash your face after you remove the mask, just pat it dry cause you’ll be washing away the very reason why you put the mask on in the first place (and don’t let the sheet dry all the way, you should honestly only wear it for about 15 min)
Step seven – Moisturizer
Hydration. That’s why we moisturize. We want our skin to stay hydrated and happy because when our skin is dry and dull it sometimes can have a panic attack and that’s when you get acne, dry patches and tightness which then can lead to wrinkles. When you hydrate your skin it boosts the skins ability to repair itself also. I have gone through different moisturizers in my lifetime, some better than others, but my top 3 favorite ones are for different reasons. I recently started using Glow Recipe's Watermelon Glow Moisturizer and my skin loves it. Make sure you find out your skin type so that you know how to shop for the correct ingredients in products you’re buying for your face. I also add a serum at this step (doing double duty with Glow Recipe's Plum Pump Hyaluronic Serum), and maybe a dollop of vegan collagen or an oil to create a nice little mixture for my skin to sop up. I'll put the serum on first if using, and let it dry before combining the moisturizer and oil to add to my face.
Step eight – Face Roller
Using a face roller (and/or a gua sha) is a great secret, the benefits of face rolling range from healthy blood circulation and lymphatic drainage to reducing puffiness and soothing the skin. Extra hint, storing yours in the freezer will tighten pores on contact, which is great after all of that scrubbing and steaming! Close those pores up so they can keep in all that goodness you just pampered them with!
So that's it! That's my Sunday skin care routine. I hope you guys find this beneficial! Shoot me a comment if you want more tips!