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Simpler Beauty

3 years ago by

Usually when we have a gap in the beauty content, like we do today, I leap at the opportunity to write something. There is always a new product I’ve tried, or a treatment I’ve experienced that I want to wax on about. Or I use the space to complain about my acne / grey hair combo, a classic Veronica move. But leading up today, all week I was mulling on beauty and…. nothing. Nothing thrilled me. Nothing moved me. Nothing was even that new in my routine, except…

…that I don’t really have a routine anymore.

The girl that has gone on and on about the plethora beauty products she loves (here and here if you’re still deep in your beauty obsession and want to know what’s what), is now barely using any, and loving the simplicity.

Even better, my skin is loving it.

Yep, the girl that has repeatedly screamed ACNE WOE IS ME from the rooftops is looking at her skin with wide eyed wonder. Knocking on every wooden surface and whispering about it under her breath in the hopes it will last one more day.

What do I attribute this skin 180 to? A few things…

1/ I gave up all forms of foundations, tinted moisturizers and concealers. I haven’t put a drop of that stuff on my skin in two months and it hasn’t looked this good in years.

The no make up thing started as a bet with a male friend who was convinced that was the reason I was struggling. I rolled my eyes and said, “look, you mansplainer, you don’t know what you’re talking about. You have no idea about the delicate balance of my skin. I’ll quit make up cold turkey for two weeks and you’ll see, no difference.”

Alright, so there was a big difference, at least for me.

2/ I don’t put anything on at night except eye cream.

Yep, I wash my face, put on eye cream and go to bed.

I know. A lot of people are screaming at their computers right now. BUT YOU NEED FIVE LAYERS OF THINGS TO STARVE OFF WRINKLES.

Eh. Maybe I do. But my skin was crumbling under all that pressure. Instead it breathes all night and re-sets and I wake up looking better than when I was layering on five layers of things (at least that’s how I’m explaining it to myself in my mind).

Plus, hello. It’s cheaper.

3/ I still exfoliate.

The one thing I do for my skin every other day is exfoliate it in some way. Either with my long term favorite gentle exfoliating product, Cure, or my new find, the m-61 PowerGlow Peel.

4/ I splurged on microneedling.

I got my first round of microneedling done about 4 weeks ago to remove my acne scars. The intention was to banish the pockmarks on my forehead — which I can already see an improvement in! — but an unknown side-effect was all around skin improvement. From smaller pore size to evened skin tone, and decrease of fine lines, my skin has been glowing since the treatment.

I have two more to go till the pockmarks are drastically lessened, but I’m just as excited to see what other benefits my skin will reap from it.

Yes, it is expensive. But the emotional toil of cutting bangs every year when I wanted to hide my scars was much greater. And after cleaning out my beauty cabinet down to the basics, I’ve saved enough money that I can justify it.

How has your beauty routine changed this past year?

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  • Lovely to read your post Veronica! Hope you’re well! :)
    I also battle with acne and breakouts on my chin. I have also been going simpler. For at least the last 4 – 5 months, I have completely stopped putting ANYTHING on my face. Of course it was easier with covid since I didn’t really see anyone and we were not outdoors a lot but I haven’t even been using sunscreen. I ONLY wash my face with Cetaphil once a day at the end of the day when I shower and don’t use moisturizers, make up removers, acne spot treatments at all. I have been AMAZED at how my skin has stabilized and it is healthy and I barely had any breakouts to speak of!

    I think all the stuff I had been putting on by face to balance out the other thing I was using made it worse. I simply rinse by face with water when I get up in the morning and that’s it. I find my skin produces natural oils during the day and when I sleep and I am not forcing it to come off by washing it again and putting new moisturized on again. I am also not using harsh acne treatments to dry out the breakouts, which makes the skin more susceptible to more breakouts and the vicious cycle begins again.

    After this experiment, I am convinced that we really don’t need all that stuff. It was an adjustment period by I remained patient and convinced myself to go completely natural and it worked!

    Anyway, I wanted to share since I’m sure people will be shocked I am not really moisturizing or using sunscreen, etc….but the sunscreen debate is another story for another day.

  • Veronica McCarthy August, 23 2020, 11:33

    Hi Tina!! So nice to hear from you! And WHAT amazing news! I’m so glad to hear this and YES I completely agree. I am going to continue my stripped down routine and let me skin continue to rebalance. Sending you a BIG HUG. xxV

  • Great read…you’ll be thankful in years to come that you moisturised your skin & especially your eye area …no amount of money can rectify the damage of not moisturising …just wondering what would happen if you don’t exfoliate so often

  • Veronica McCarthy August, 23 2020, 11:31

    Hi Wendy! Ha — yes, I am an exfoliating addict. eek. I’ve tried to lessen the exfoliation a bit. I find it does help my particular type of skin over all glow / complexion. And I try to use the most gentle exfoliator possible. But yes — I hear you!

  • jurgenda August, 22 2020, 1:46 / Reply

    Lady, I hear you. I was always wondering how come our male counterparts not only survive without any such routine, but actually manage to have a good complexion on it. Et, voila, I am down to P50, a cream and milk protein face and body wash. I dont own any foundation, tinted anything and I use concealer only here and there. And it has never been better.

  • Veronica McCarthy August, 23 2020, 11:31

    Love hearing this!

  • Tanya Kertsman August, 24 2020, 9:27 / Reply

    Great article! I’m in a similar situation… I had an extensive routine before but lately I’ve been keeping it simple. I did schedule a facial for some post-quarantine bliss that I am really looking forward to. :)

  • Michelle Grant September, 18 2020, 2:43 / Reply

    Hi Veronica. Great read! I am for team simple skincare routine. I battled terrible perioral dermatitis for years between 30-37. I tried so many different products to calm my skin, but nothing helped. So I went back to basics and at 37 years old i quit makeup for 6 months and only washed with water, and moisturised. It was exactly what I needed.

    These days my skin is better. I have to keep it simple otherwise my skin starts to erupt with dermatitis again. The only thing that keeps my skin clear, pimple and itch free is a minimal skincare/ makeup routine. I wash at night with a milk cleanser and using a gentle muslin cloth. I also moisturise/ eye cream.
    In the morning I wash with water and moisturise. I’ve been doing this for a few years and people often comment that I have nice skin.

    Makeup wise I only use some concealer around my eyes, nose and a little blush and lipstick. On a special occasion I’ll wear mascara and eyeliner. But as soon as I put foundation onto my face I can feel the itch. Foundation is kryptonite for many people with skin issues.

    Since going simple with my skincare routine my skin has never looked better. I’m really glad this worked for you too and your skin has improved. We have so many products marketed to us, but I personally think simple is best. xx

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