Saturday, January 14, 2012

Skin deep #2

When you try out several new things or make various changes all at the same time, it's hard to say which one makes a difference. For instance, last year I incorporated several positive changes into my diet within a few weeks, or days even. Maybe they all help, but only eliminating one thing after the other would tell me which are vital for me, and somehow I cannot be bothered to do that. I just choose to think that all the changes I have made help, and as long as my diet works for me, I am happy.

Similarly with skin care I cannot pinpoint what single thing has made the most difference. And of course there are so many other contributing factors. Skin responds to what you eat, and to exercise. Deep breathing helps. My skin is much better when I go to the sauna or steam room regularly (whenever I spend time in Germany where I don't go, it gets worse). Stress makes me break out more. Swimming in the sea is great for your skin. And so on. But I have found some products that seem to help, too, and work better than others I have used.

I have the annoying type of combination skin that means you have to deal with oily skin and break-outs as well as dry patches and peeling skin. I switched to Dr. Hauschka facial oil a few months ago, and unlike before then, it was the only moisturiser I have used since. However, I also use a separate SPF sometimes, and I do facials with other oils, such as jojoba (with essential oils added, and I vary these, too).
All this to say that, even though I cannot vouch that this product has made all the difference, I like it a lot. Oily skin actually needs external oil to regulate itself, and while it may seem counterintuitive at first and feel greasy, after a while you do notice that your skin absorbs it better and your skin becomes soft to the touch, without the grease. Sometimes I still am oily-faced at the end of the day, when I've been anxious or stressed or nervous (and forgot to breathe deeply), but overall it is more rare. The only downside is that the dispenser bottle is prone to leaking from where the top is attached to the bottle, no matter how I adjust it. I'd prefer if it just came in a normal bottle with a screw top. Before I bought this one, I had a sample -a tiny glass bottle- and I use it for travelling and for the gym; it doesn't leak at all.

I also have the Translucent Bronze Concentrate. I don't like using foundation (it often looks cakey and clogs my pores), and this is completely different. It doesn't cover your skin like foundation does, but it gives it a healthy glow and unifies it. You can mix it with the oil or any moisturiser. So all in all a more subtle approach. It is very dark but adjusts to your skin tone. You have to be careful how much you use, though - I would recommend applying it in daylight. It is also great for contouring the space between your brow and eyelid and your cheekbones. And of course it is all natural, too. I don't use it every day, especially because nowadays I do have more of a natural glow, compared to my former pale sickly appearance, so I don't need it as much.

Dr. Hauschka products are not cheap, but I find they last forever and are well worth the money (they are also an ethical company).

Argan oil and Maria Sibylla Merian prints

I have also started using Argan oil. I had a sample of the much-hyped Moroccan Oil and loved it, but I prefer using pure Argan oil. So far I have only used this on my hair and elbows, knees and scars, but it's supposed to be great for your face as well. You can put it into your hair half an hour before washing it or rub it into the ends afterwards. It makes my hair stronger and easier to manage and adds shine.
 I also use coconut oil and jojoba oil for my body, instead of body lotion and for shaving. I find using oils feels more natural and nourishing than lotions and conditioner.

See also Skin deep #1

[Update - I forgot to say: I did not get paid to endorse these products]


  1. That's such a useful post. I have the exact same problem with my skin and I never thought of using oils for my face as it is so prone to break outs.

    I also did the thing of taking lots of sample products for skin care for problem skin and I was using them all while I was back home. My skin was at its best and I don't know which of all did the trick or whether it was just the fact that I was stress-free and close to my family and friends.

    Anyway, I think it's time for me to try on some oils :)

  2. Do try oils; they really make a difference. And yes, stress is definitely a contributing factor! x