When it came to looking through my skincare stash and thinking about the products I discovered and loved using in 2013, there was quite a lot. A few years ago, the only thing my skin saw was face wipes and a cheap moisturiser but over the past couple of years, my love for skincare products has somewhat spiralled out of control. I now have a whole drawer dedicated to skincare and I could quite happily browse the skincare isles of Boots for hours without getting bored. Long gone are the days of face wipes and these days I like to treat my skin to a proper routine that involves a thorough cleanse, tone (okay, I don't do this all the time), moisturise. I even like to throw in serums, face masks and even oils from time to time. Check me out with my fancy pants routine! Here's a selection of said products that I've been loving throughout the year 2013 and products I'll no doubt continue to love throughout 2014 ...
Favourite Micellar Cleansing Water: Caudalie Cleansing Water
I didn't have a bottle of this at hand to photograph but it definitely deserves a mention as my favourite cleansing water of 2013. I must have repurchased it at least five times. Its so gentle on the skin, smells amazing and removes my makeup nicely. I like to use this as a 'pre-cleanse' before one of the other cleansers I'll talk about next. The reason I like to do this is because it ensures that every single scrap of my makeup has been removed and that my skin has had a thoroughly good cleanse. I also love it for lazy days when I haven't been wearing any makeup but want to refresh my skin. Its so soothing and smells delicious! Read my full review here.
Cleansing oils are my favourite skincare discovery of 2013 and I can't imagine not using them to clean my face anymore. Once upon a time, the words oil and skincare in the same sentence would have made me screw my face up in horror. As someone with combination skin and a t-zone prone to oil, the thought of adding more oil to my face was always a no-no. However, I've actually discovered that cleansing oils aren't greasy at all and instead calm, soothe and balance my skin. My two favourites that I always reach for are the NUDE Cleansing Oil (full review here) and the Melvita Milky Cleansing Oil as I find them both very gentle on my skin, very soothing and very effective. They both remove makeup excellently (even stubborn mascara) and leave my skin feeling nourished and plump. I also love how I can smooth these cleansers onto my dry skin and massage it around until all of my makeup has melted - in a weird way, its very satisfying!
Favourite Cleansing Balm: Balance Me Cleanse & Smooth Face Balm*
As I said above, along with oils, using a balm is another method of cleaning that I've fallen in love with and the Balance Me Cleanse & Smooth face balm is an absolute beauty. Its a natural oil-based balm that contains anti-oxidant Arctic cloudberry and gently polishing oatmeal and I can't rave about it enough. I love the fact this is a dual-purpose product as it not only cleanses my skin but as the name would suggest, it also smooths it thanks to the oatmeal particles. I could write a whole post on this stuff so I might stop here and do a full review instead as there's sooo much I could say! Keep posted for that.
Favourite Moisturisers: Loreal Skin Perfection, Vichy Idealia* & Garnier Moisture Match Illuminating Light Lotion
Moisturiser is one part of my skincare routine that I never miss. I have to admit, if I'm having a lazy day, doing a double cleanse or adding serum isn't high on my priorities. However, with moisturiser, I don't feel right doing my makeup or going to bed without popping one on first. Over the past twelve months, I've built up quite the collection of moisturisers and the three above are the ones I've found myself reaching for the most. The Loreal Skin Perfection moisturiser is great to apply in the mornings before makeup as I find it really smooths my skin out and almost blurs blemishes and pores. I'm not sure if that's the aim of the product but its definitely a plus point.
The Vichy Idealia moisturiser is one I can't get enough of and I like to use this morning or night as it feels so luxurious on my skin. The pale pink cream smells utterly divine, hydrates my skin well and gives me a lovely glow. As soon as I've applied this moisturiser, I feel like my whole complexion looks more awake, smooth and radiant. I love it!
Finally, the Garnier Moisture Match moisturiser deserves a mention as this is an amazing one to try if you're on a budget. This cute yellow tube is like a bottle of sunshine for the skin and much like the Vichy Idealia, it instantly awakens my face and gives me a healthy glow. Its another one that smells incredible too. I wouldn't say this is the most hydrating of the bunch but if you're after a lightweight moisturiser that works well underneath makeup and adds a healthy dewy look to your skin, this is the one to go for!
Favourite Face Masks: Origins Clear Improvement & Drink Up 10 Minute Mask
I tried a lot of face masks in 2013 and although there was many I enjoyed using, these two masks from Origins have been my most reached for. Whenever my skin is feeling clogged and congested, I'll reach for Clear Improvement and if my skin is feeling dry, Drink Up comes to the rescue. I'm not going to bore you with a full description of these as I've done a full post on three of Origins face masks, including these two, here. All I will say is that these are highly effective masks and do exactly what they say on the tubes - clear the skin of impurities and quench skins thirst. I can't recommend them enough!
These next few products are some extra skincare treats that I like to incorporate into my routine from time to time depending on my skins needs ...
Favourite Serum: Vichy Idealia Life Serum*
The Vichy Idealia Life Serum is the perfect partner for the Idealia moisturiser and I love using them together to give my skin a healthy glow. I don't use the serum every day (even though I do need to start doing this) but on the days I do use it, I can definitely notice the difference in the appearance of my skin. It generally looks a lot smoother, more plump and more radiant. Read my full review here.
Favourite Facial Tanner: Clarins Liquid Bronze Self-Tanning*
I wasn't sure whether this product would be classed as skincare (probably not) but it deserves a mention anyway as this is the product I always reach for if my face is looking a bit pasty and I want to bronze things up a touch. Before using this product, I would use regular fake tan on my face and it would always end up looking disastrous. It would cling to any dry patches like nothing else and it would always break me out! However, since using this product, facial tanning is a doddle. Its a gradual tanner so I have to apply it for a few nights before I see any difference in colour but after its developed over a few days, it leaves my skin looking naturally sunkissed, like I've been away for a week in the sun. It also makes my skin look so much better when I'm not wearing makeup. A bit of colour makes me look so much healthier! Read my full review here.
Favourite Toner: Nourish Cooling Toning Mist
This product was an absolute life saver for me in the Summer months as its so refreshing and cooling on my skin. When I was on holiday last Summer, this was my go-to product for cooling down and soothing any sunburn on my face, neck and chest. I'm not sure whether it actually tones my skin as I've never been a big believer in the benefits of toner but in terms of refreshing my skin, this product is a dream. I find myself spritzing this over my face before moisturising as I feel like it prepares my skin nicely for moisturiser and I even use it after applying my makeup to give my skin a fresh and dewy finish!
Favourite Face Oil: Balance Me Radiance Face Oil*
Much like cleansing oils, face oil is a product I never thought I'd use as I imagined it would make my oily t-zone even oilier but I was completely wrong and since receiving this Balance Me Radiance face oil in 2013, my opinion has totally changed. I don't use this every night (mainly due to laziness) but on the nights I do use it, my skin feels so hydrated, plump and soft the following morning. I've also found this product fabulous for reducing the appearance of blemishes and I love that its full of natural ingredients. I'm hoping to start using this on a more regular basis as I imagine it would totally transform my skin after regular and consistent use.
Favourite Lip Balm: Apivita Blackcurrant Lip Care*
I was introduced to the skincare brand Apivita in 2013 and I was highly impressed with their products, particuarly this amazing lip balm. From the first day I slicked this onto my lips, I've been in love with it and I use it every day, morning and night. It has a delicious Blackcurrant scent which I absolutely love and the formula is so hydrating. It contains olive oil, beeswax, cocoa butter, shea butter, avocado oil, castor oil, jojoba esters and blackcurrant oil which all work together amazingly at softening and hydrating my lips. As soon as I apply this product, my lips love it and they instantly feel smooth. I also like that it leaves a light wash of colour on my lips too and I often find myself wearing this for work instead of a lipstick or gloss. For only £5, I can't recommend this little beauty enough!
Phew, well done if you got to the end of this mammoth post! That's a lot of skincare to discuss. I told you there was lots of products I've been loving!
What were your favourite skincare products of 2013?
Lots of Love,