Beauty reviews

I recently posted about changing my beauty routine. I’ve changed even more since I wrote that post. In an effort to help someone who might be thinking of trying one of these products I thought I’d write down my thoughts on each one. With my weird rosacea, and late blooming problematic skin, I’ve been reading and trying lots of late to try to find something that I can live with (i.e. be willing to go out in public with my face issues). I’ve been using the following products for two weeks (unless noted otherwise).


Make-up removing balm – No7 Cleansing Balm ($10) – it works great for taking off my makeup but I do find I sometimes need to use an additional eye makeup remover (I’m using Up&Up from Target). I use Almay regular mascara for sensitive eyes, I don’t even think it’s waterproof, and I use very little but it can be difficult to remove. (For reference I read an average mascara user ‘eyelash swipes’ 20 times. I do 4 times, so…) I remove the balm with a wet washcloth and it leaves my skin feeling nice and clean. You can buy it at Ulta but I believe it’s put out by Boots which is also available at Target.


I do a second cleanse because I use foundation/moisturizer with spf (go to Caroline Hirons to find out why you should too). I am In Love with this next cleanser. Tata Harper Clarifying Cleanser. Expensive? Yes, very at $58, and that was hard to swallow from someone who was used to spending $6 at the local drugstore. But I’ve noticed a difference, and it’s made my skin smoother and feel better. It has a wonderful citrus like scent that really wakes me up in the morning. It’s all natural and I really like that too. Most importantly it hasn’t irritated my rosacea like a lot of all natural/organic skincare products do. I linked to the Tata Harper website up above because it is one product I’m really really happy with. It comes in a glass bottle which makes it look nice sitting on the counter too. In case pretty bottles are your kind of thing. I rinse with water to remove.


I’ve been using REN Clarifying toner/lotion after cleansing ($24), mixing it up with the Botanics below.

BotanicsRosewater FacialRadiancePads

I’m not 100% sold on toners – I also have Botanics rosewater spray toner ($8) and I am expecting Beauty Aid Radiance Exfoliating Toner Pads ($30 for 60 pads) in the next day or so. I definitely need exfoliation, especially in winter, and I wanted to move away from the Dermologica daily micro exfoliating powder ($52), that I’ve been using. Plus if it works, it’s a 2-in-1 pad, so we’ll pretend I’m saving money there…


I also use Eysilix eye cream (Indeed Laboratories, $25 at Ulta). I’m not sure I’ve seen any difference, so I’m sort of doing this ‘if I feel like it’ in the mornings and at night.


Next up is Hydraluron ($25) which I use in the morning only. I think this has made a huge difference in hydrating my skin. It’s meant to go under moisturizer, since it’s for hydrating under the top layer of skin.


A new product I’m trying is Karin Herzog Vita-Kombi 1 Mousturizing Cream ($53). I put some on my neck just to test it out when it arrived, and it feels very silky and soft. The problem I have is the scent. It’s very perfume laden, so I don’t know how I’ll do since I dislike scented products. But for the price I might just have to suck it up (an advantage if you want to try this one is to buy it at a makeup store with a good return policy (Ulta and Sephora have exceptional policies for this). I bought it off Amazon, which has a great policy for most things, but I’m not sure about opened, used skincare products.) Everything I’ve read reviewing this cream has been glowing (pun intended) so hopefully it’ll calm my redness from the rosacea.


I’ve also been using REN Clay Cleanser ($34). But I did notice some irritation after using it every night, so I’m switching to only a couple nights a week, and only at night. It leaves my skin silky soft.


I was using Simple Mousturizing SPF for under my makeup but it’s causing redness and irritation in my rosacea so I’ve backed off using it. I also used Aveeno Intensiv Night Cream for quite awhile but it feels like it sits on my skin, is greasy, and even hours after applying if I rub my face it’s like the product ‘peels’ off my skin and I get grey blobs, a bit like rubbing your skin a minute after you shower and the dead skin comes off (which is really gross). So I’m just going to stick with SPF in my foundation and go to town with regular sunscreen if I am actually spending time at the beach or extended hours in the sun. Which considering I live in Seattle and am about to move to London, is equal to about 1 hour per month. If I’m lucky.


For fun I’m tossing in what I use for shampoo and conditioner, Living Proof Perfect Hair Day (which I have a cult love for though not for the $24 price tag) and Not Your Mothers Beach Babe Moisturizing Conditioner ($8). I don’t like the coconut smell of the Beach Babe but it leaves my hair feeling silky, so I’ll suck it up, and my daughter likes to sniff my head after I use it.

So it sticks around for those reasons.

Those are all the products currently in rotation. Past products include Cetaphil face wash, Eucerin Dry Skin Formula (great in winter, though heavy as it’s meant for hands, etc, not face), Acure spray toner and argan oil which I talked about in my other beauty post (both have since gone to the trash because of horrible reactions to the organic products), Simple Foaming Face Wash, Clinique 7 Day Scrub, and Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizer (which all you have to do to cross off that one is look at the red and yellow dye in the ingredients list. Sadly, I used this for a long time before I realized how bad it is.) There are others as well that I have tried and tossed, but I could list them all day. The quest continues.

What are you using that you like or dislike? Have you tried anything on my list?

*prices are based on a combination of different websites. I paid less based on where I bought the products or by using coupons/sales.