Know Your Face: My Morning Routine

So, eight installments of Know Your Face, and y’all have a few ideas of what kinds of products will make you glow (without shining) – but it sure seems like a ton of product, doesn’t it? The fact is, getting used to a new skincare routine is much like getting used to wearing contact lenses: the first few days, you have to put special effort into making it happen, but after that, you can do it in your sleep.

I’m going to share my various routines with you guys. I’ve got three, really: morning, evening, and Sunday night. Today, I’ll share my morning with you.

skincare - morning

Generally, I like to wake up at minimum 45 minutes before I’m due to walk out the door. This isn’t always the case, but it’s my goal. If I give myself an hour, I can sit around for a bit before I leave; if I give myself 30 minutes, I’ll probably have to hustle more than I’d like. A firm 45-minute rule keeps me sane.

Given that it’s the morning, I’m probably washing my face in the shower. I like using Origins’ Zero Oil in the morning because you get a deep, deep clean (great way to start the day) and the mint helps wake up your senses. If more than two days have passed since the last time I shampooed my hair, I’ll consider that as well. I’m partial to Living Proof’s Perfect Hair Day line of products.

After stepping out of the shower, I wrap my hair in a microfiber towel to dry, gently, and dry my face using one of about 30 washcloths that I keep handy just for this reason. Ladies: go to Target, get the $5 pack of 10 basic, white washcloths. Run them through the washer/dryer one time before using. Never re-use a dirty hand towel for your face again.

Toner! Toner, toner, toner. As I predicted, the Pixi Glow Tonic is a huge winner. Unlike every other alcohol-free toner I’ve tried, this one doesn’t make me feel greasy. It’s packed with glycolic acid to exfoliate and has ginseng to brighten and aloe to soothe. It’s amazing. While the toner soaks in, I take a pair of Q-Tips and dry my ears thoroughly, because I’m a bit neurotic about that.

Next up, serum. Because it’s winter, I’ve been using Renee Rouleau’s Vitamin C + E Treatment to keep my skin nourished. When the weather gets warmer I may explore options for something lighter weight.

After serum comes eye cream. In the past week or so, I’ve gotten in the habit of using two in the morning. First, I run Clinique’s Even Better Eyes over my dark circles and along my orbital bone. Then, I’ll use All About Eyes (same brand, natch) on my lids, because it is literally the only eye cream I’ve ever found that is safe for use on your eyelids. Plus, it has a silicone base, which makes eye makeup go on much smoother.

After eye cream comes moisturizer; I’ve yet to find anything that tops Estee Lauder’s DayWear. I currently use the version that has SPF 15; when the days begin to lengthen I’ll probably switch to SPF 25.

With moisturizer, I’ve completed my morning skincare routine. Altogether, the longest part of the whole routine? My shower. The time between toning and moisturizing is, at most, five minutes long – and the vast majority of that time is spent waiting for various products to sink in. Always let your products sink in before applying the next one, people. That way, you get the full benefit of each product’s ingredients.

Next week, we’ll go through my evening routine – similar, but different in distinctive and important ways.

What are your morning skincare must-haves?

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