My Medicine Cabinet: Winter Skincare Routine (Face)

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Winter is here. 

For me, here in the Montreal tundra, that means dry, cracked skin. Not attractive. I have dry, sensitive skin and eczema to begin with, and coupled with the harsh winter winds, the moisture-sucking heaters... well now, that's just a terrible combination. Luckily, after much trial and error, I've found the almost-perfect winter skincare routine, and here it is!


Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cleanser: I start off my mornings with this cleanser. It cleans but isn't so harsh that it strips your skin of its natural oils. Many cleansers have left my skin feeling tight and dry after use, but this never does!

Kiehl's Hydro-Plumping Re-Texturing Serum Concentrate: Ok the name of this product is a whole lotta mumbo-jumbo, and I'm not quite sure how I got roped into buying this, but this is my second bottle. I don't notice a huge difference when I am using it, but I notice that I have duller skin when I don't use it. Wouldn't give it full marks, so I am in the market for a new serum.

Clarins HydraQuench Rich Cream for Very Dry Skin: The words "for very dry skin" always leaves me dubious since I've tried so many disappointing products, but this wasn't the case this time. Doesn't leave your face greasy, super rich and creamy, revives dry, dull skin...but if you don't like thick products, this isn't for you. Otherwise, it's a winter must-have.

Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cream: I use this moisturizer year round as it is lightweight, but also gets the job done. The texture is kind of creamy, kind of gel-like, and I find that it acts as the perfect primer for my makeup as well.


I use the products listed above (minus the serum) in conjunction with:

Lush Eau Roma Toner Water: This helped clear up my skin during the sweaty summer months, and I've just been using it ever since. Confession, I'm not sure what toner really does (if anything), but hey, I feel refreshed after using it, and it's just a really calming product overall. Looking to try out this next though: Rosewater and Glycerin Toner.

Frank Creamy Face Scrub: This is the best face scrub for dry, problematic skin. I don't use this every night, as with most scrubs, but I do use it on a weekly to bi-weekly basis. Because of the oils they use (rosehip, coconut, almond, grapeseed), this scrub leaves my skin feeling SO soft and not irritated at all, no lie. 

Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate: This is some heavy-duty stuff. My skin drinks this serum up and I'm left with revitalized skin the next morning...BUT, it does leave my face looking very oily and it can transfer onto my pillow. I think it's worth it for the results I see though.

Clarins HydraQuench Cream-Mask: Ah! The piece de resistance! I've only used this for about 2 weeks, but I already love it! Clarins instructs you to wipe the mask off with a wet cotton-pad once it's been on your face for a bit, but I leave it on and just go along with the rest of my skincare routine. It works more as a super-hydrating moisturizer for me and smearing too much on your face just to make it a mask is a bit of a waste if you ask me. It surprised me how nicely this went on my skin, as it didn't sit on my face like a serum/oil or a moisturizer -- it just kind of melts into my skin.

So that is the arsenal of products I use to protect my skin during the winter months! I realize that some of these products carry a pretty hefty price-tag, so I'm still on the lookout for other products that work just as well at a lower price point, as well as some natural alternatives.

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