If you know me, you know I’ve always had a hard time sticking to routines. I remember reading somewhere that it only takes 3 weeks to form/break a habit, and I call BS. As I’m getting older, though, I have been prioritizing taking care of myself. In the past few months, that’s taken the shape of skincare.
I have always been a low maintenance gal when it comes to beauty; my face wash used to be some water, my makeup routine is very minimal and not a daily thing, and I wear the same clothes a lot. As quarantine started and I did a lot more reading, though, I learned the importance of taking care of your skin as early as possible – not just from a beauty standpoint, but from a health one, too. Both my dad and my paternal grandpa have had Melanoma, a very common but also very serious form of skin cancer. They are both heliophiles; biking, working on boats or cars or other household projects, skiing, hiking, or just plain sunbathing as much as they can during daylight hours. My dad’s least favorite day of the year is the summer solstice because even though it’s the longest day of the year, it’s the beginning of short days, which means less sunlight. So as I researched “minimal skincare routines” and “how to start taking care of your skin in your 20s”, the overarching theme was SPF. Every. Single. Day. Even on the days you sit inside!
From there, I just kept adding to my routine bit by bit as I researched different companies and the ingredients they use, the sustainability efforts they implement, and their ethical actions. Now, I have a simple skincare routine and feel glowy and protected all day, everyday. It was difficult to add a 10-15 minute chunk of routine into my day, even though I’m not busy at all, but it’s been a source of consistency and calm in my daily life, and I cherish it. Yes, some mornings I forget until the afternoon. Yes, sometimes I get distracted mid-routine and forget to apply SPF. That’s why I’ve always disliked routines: the feeling of pressure to do something, every day, no matter what. So this time around I’ve been a lot more forgiving and flexible with myself, celebrating the days I spend the time and accepting the days I don’t.
Here are the products that I have been using every morning and loving.
1. Thayer’s Witch Hazel Facial Toner // I don’t use a cleanser in the morning because I have normal/sensitive skin and cleansing twice a day dries me out. I just rinse with water in the a.m. and follow up with this toner. I use reusable cotton pads to apply the toner. This is my most recent purchase, but I’m already loving it.
2. Cocokind Glow Essence // Two quick spritzes of this essence helps my skin feel hydrated and balanced. It uses sea grape caviar harvested sustainably from the Philippines to hydrate and help your skin absorb other products for better results.
3. Cocokind Vitamin C Serum // This product uses sodium ascorbyl phosphate, which is a super light and non-irritating form of vitamin C, which is great for sensitive skin like mine. It’s also made with sea grape caviar to help hydrate and improve water retention in your skin. I might try a different brand for vitamin C after I use this up just because I’m curious.
4. Bite Toothpaste // I take a quick skincare break to let those products soak in and use this toothpaste to brush my teeth. Fresh & minty clean without the plastic.
5. Cocokind Texture Smoothing Cream // I love this moisturizer. It’s lightweight, unscented, and my skin just soaks it up.
6. Biork Crystal Deodorant // One more skincare break to let that moisturizer get good and settled. I’ve been using this natural crystal deodorant for a little over a month now and I’m impressed. The most important thing you should know about this deodorant is that it doesn’t repress sweating and instead eliminates what makes your sweat stink. It is natural and healthy to sweat and products that clog up your glands just add to the problem of stinky pits (and can create other more serious problems). Biork’s crystal stick uses potassium alum to purify the bacteria that grows where you sweat and causes odor, thus you can sweat it out without getting stinky. And honestly, deodorant I used in the past always wore off, or I would sweat through it anyway. This is my favorite addition to my routine.
*sad update: crystal deodorant can not stand up to spring/summer in Lower Alabama. Keeping mine around for the cooler months, but I’m going to try a different option for now.*
7. Rosebud Perfume Co.’s Rosebud Salve // My Uma (maternal grandma) added these as stocking stuffers a couple years ago, and my sister and I adore them. I smear this on my lips and use it on my eyelashes and brows for a little something extra that makes me look a bit more put together.
8. Cocokind Daily SPF // THE MOST IMPORTANT STEP! Yeah it gets bold and italics and all caps because I’m serious. SPF is the best way to keep your skin safe and also keep your skin looking younger and healthier as you age. This product is SPF 32 and uses a reef-safe form of zinc. It also protects against both UVA and UVB rays, blue light (y’know, from all the tech we use on the daily), and pollution by creating a helpful barrier on your skin so it doesn’t absorb anything and everything.
9. Essential Oil Perfume // I finish up my routine with a quick roll of this blend made by my friend Carlie @miyadwelling on my wrists and behind my ears. Mine is a mix of patchouli, geranium, bergamot, and northern lights black spruce. It’s divine.
And there ya have it: all my morning goodies. If you learn one thing from this post, please let it be: WEAR SPF!! And if you learn two: take the plunge and try a crystal deodorant.
Leave a comment if you love any of these products too, or if you have any recommendations for a skincare newbie like me, or if you are curious about my evening routine.