Alexis Adrienne

8.4.19

3 REASONS WHY I STOPPED BUYING BACKUPS


There used to be at time when I didn’t feel at ease unless I had backups of all the skincare that I had. I would feel a tinge of anxiety if I used up a product completely, and I didn’t have at least one tube of it waiting in the wings

Face wash backup? Check. 

Serum backup? Check. 

Sheet mask backup? Check.

And so on and so on for basically everything that I deemed ABSOLUTELY necessary - which, let’s be real, was basically every step in my entire routine.

But lately, I’ve found it’s a complete and total hassle to keep up with my backups, so I’ve stopped buying them - and guess what? 

I’ve never been happier with my skincare routine. 

I’ve also switched to a mostly one out-one in method (basically, only buying replacements) and I find that my attitude to skincare is overall way better and way more positive, instead of always anxious about “having enough.” I do buy new things sometimes, but mainly out of curiosity. I won't deny that I buy new things from time to time, but they're typically things I don't already have. For example, I would literally never buy a new cleanser because I already have a really great first cleanser and second cleanser, but I would try something new like a Face Mist or a new Sleeping Pack. But even then - I'm not as drawn to new products as I used to be.

Something that I found really helped me ease into this was completely avoiding any online shopping. I stopped shopping online for a bunch of reasons, but the main one was that in a way, I was deliberately making it hard for myself to access skincare. If I decided that I fell in love with a serum that was only in stock once a month and took three weeks to get to me from Korea, I felt more compelled to buy multiples of it, just to make sure that I had enough in my personal stash. 

So why else don’t I buy backups anymore?


1. It makes skincare too expensive

It’s just too easy of a trap to fall into - you really really like a product, and decide that you absolutely MUST have it accessible to you at all times, in the form of multiple tubes of it. When I shopped like this, you would think I was doomsday prepping with all of my skincare.

I get it, you really like this product, but if you know it’s always going to be available at this certain place or store - do you really need to buy an extra two every time? It all adds up, and I realized buying doubles all the time was making my skincare routine very, very expensive. 


2. It’s practically hoarding behaviour.

When it comes to 99% of your skincare routine, you KNOW that you will always be able to get it, wherever you get it from. C’mon, don’t lie - it’s 2010, you can literally order anything you want with just a few taps on your phone. Hello, instant gratification!

These days, if something is hard to get ahold of, I literally don’t bother (I’m looking at you, su:m37 Rose Cleansing stick. Remember all the rumours about it being discontinued?) 

To this day, I have no idea if it actually is discontinued, but to be honest - I don’t care. 

Feeling like something is exclusive or scarce because it’s ‘hard’ to buy is what fed that annoying, anxious feeling whenever I actually finished anything - and the thing is, when it comes to skincare, feeling anxious about NOT having something just isn’t necessary and is honestly one of the last emotions that I want to associate with it. No more FOMO!


3. It’s wasteful.

There was a time when I had SO many backups of cleanser, that a few of them expired before I even got the chance to crack them open. Major waste of both my money AND everything that went into making them. I felt guilty for weeks! To be honest, seeing like 30+ different products in a single shelfie makes me feel awkward and slightly anxious - when you purchase a product, you're directly responsible for that packaging into recycling or landfill, if you don't reuse it. This is the feeling I get when I shop and as a result I really don't buy anything that I don't need!

I just feel like it's a really simple equation - if you can consume less, than you waste less. I also was feeling a greater appreciation for the products that I had, because I know that I chose them for how well they work for me. It's like that spark-joy thing in the KonMari method!


So, there you have it - the three reasons why I don't have backups/multiples. I get that it's a really big change and not necessarily something that a lot of people would do, but it works for me!

Did you notice any habits of yours change last year? Let me know in the comments!

A xx

14.12.18

MY IN-FLIGHT BEAUTY ESSENTIALS

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about travelling, it’s that a tiny carry-on sized cosmetic bag will go a LONG way to making you feel fresh and new after a flight, or even as an in-flight pick me up. They're my travel skincare essentials. I’ve put together a short list of my picks that I absolutely refuse to travel without, and I hope this is helpful to you too.

The In-Flight Routine

First, there’s no point trying to put moisturiser on over dirty skin. Just thinking about it squicks me out. The best way to clean your face in an airplane bathroom is with a cotton pad and some micellar water. That’s right, put away the baby wipes!

But, the 100ml limit…

My favourite travel bottles to use for bringing all of this on board are some airless pump ones that I scored at Daiso.

They come in 15ml and 30ml sizes, and I’ve never had an issue with something being too thick to come through the pump, plus anything under 30ml won’t be a problem going through airport security.

However, it’s absolutely worth sanitizing them after every use, even if you plan to refill it with the same product - my travel pump of moisturiser recently spoiled because I didn’t clean it between refills!

I usually clean them by filling them with rubbing alcohol, letting it sit for a day or so then pumping all of the alcohol out so it cleans all of the mechanisms of the pump and container, then it’s ready for my next trip!

Freshen Yo’ Face

The best travel-hack I’ve heard for micellar water is popping a few cotton pads in a ziplock bag and adding enough micellar water to saturate them - this is best done with a CLEAN ziplock bag, obvi.

Or depending on the airline you’re taking, your flight attendants might hand out some lush steamed towels just before takeoff. I’ve never asked for another one mid-flight, but if you ask nicely you might get lucky!


Sheet Mask!

A bonus step that I might do on a particularly long-haul flight is whip out a sheet mask to really add a moisture punch to my skin. I recommend doing this after the lights have gone out and when most people will be sleeping to reduce the funny looks that you might get (but if you’re ballsy then by all means, go ahead!)

Then Moisturize…

Because airplanes are such dry environments, it’s important that you add moisture to your skin and make sure to keep it there. I usually take both a hyaluronic acid lotion plus a thicker moisturiser to help lock all that moisture in my skin. If I don’t take these steps, my skin becomes both drier and oilier, and both combined is an absolutely disgusting feeling.

I’ve found that while I’m definitely genetically oily, keeping my skin at an optimum level of hydration dramatically helps with excess oiliness. I don’t bring any actives on the plane because my priority is keeping it clean and hydrated - skipping your regular treatments for one night won’t hurt, IMO.


Nourish Your Lips

I always find my lips become extremely dry, peeling messes on airplanes, so I never travel without a tube of Papaw Ointment. I know it’s basically glorified fruity Vaseline, but I much prefer the texture and smell of Papaw. I also really appreciate the fact that it comes in tubes, I really hate sticking my fingers in tubs! It’s also great for adding a light layer on top of your moisturiser to stop your skin from drying out, and I know some people like to put it in their noses to stop dry noses and nosebleeds from happening.

The Extras

These remaining ones aren’t necessarily skincare, but they will make your travels slightly more comfortable: toothbrush + toothpaste, wet wipes (absolutely not for your face!), and hand sanitizer. Just brushing your teeth goes such a long way to make you feel fresher, and honestly I would hate to be stuck with smelly breath after eating plane food with no way to get rid of it. Skin friendly anti-bacterial wet wipes are great for freshening up yourself and wiping down your tray table and arm rests.

Also… Do I really need to explain the purpose of hand sanitizer?

Another thing I’ll never travel without, but have never had to use it yet is a change of clothes in my carry-on. Let’s say you arrive at your hotel at 9am, but check-in isn’t until 3pm - you’ve got everything you need, right in your carry-on for a quick freshen up before you’re ready to head out and explore your new city. Or maybe you need it even earlier than that - an irritating seat mate accidentally spills her orange juice all over your lap…

In any case, packing a full, mini-sized set of skincare plus these handy extras are guaranteed to come in handy on the road.

Happy travelling, babes!

2.5.18

5 MISTAKES YOU MAKE WHEN YOU WASH YOUR FACE

I know what you’re thinking. “I KNOW how to wash my face! Why are you even writing about this?”

But it’s only because I want to share with you how bloody important washing your face is as the first step in your skincare routine. Having perfectly prepped and cleansed skin, in my opinion, lays down the foundation for everything else in your routine to work - serums, essence, moisturisers, etc. If you’re not washing your face properly (and with the right stuff) then you may as well not have any kind of routine at all. Check through this list of super common (I admittedly still do some of them) face-washing mistakes so you know how to avoid them.

MISTAKE 1

You’re not taking your makeup off first. 

In a certain beauty-based Facebook group, I was confronted for the first time by women who did not remove their makeup before washing their faces. I was shocked (to put it lightly), especially since they were complaining about breaking out due to makeup. One of my first makeup-related memories is my mom pressing makeup remover and a pack of cotton pads into my hands, around the time that she gave me the “okay” to start wearing makeup. I was frankly shocked that this wasn’t the norm for many women. Makeup removal is the first step to a perfectly prepped face.

Luckily, there are literally SO MANY OPTIONS to choose from for makeup removal. My personal fave is a combo of a bi-phase makeup remover (for eye/lip makeup) + micellar water. There’s also cleansing oils, cleansing balms, and makeup wipes - literally every kind of makeup remover for every kind of person. Cleansing oils and balms have the added benefit of being able to melt down into pores and sometimes pull out things called ‘grits’ in the skincare community. They’re totally YMMV (Your Mileage May Vary) - some people never get grits and some people get them every time. There are even makeup remover wipes, however, I haven’t found a wipe that I like. The fabric is always too irritating for my skin and the remover not strong enough to actually take off my makeup. However, if these work for you, keep it up - just don’t forget to cleanse or rinse after.

MISTAKE 2

You’re using the wrong cleanser for your skin type. 

The only thing more crucial than removing your makeup is what you actually wash your face WITH. As an oily-skinned gal, I always kind of figured that my skin was working pretty well with foaming face washes marketed specifically to my oily skin. I couldn’t have been more wrong. I didn’t realise how desensitised I had become to how taut my skin felt after cleansing with a foamy cleanser - it was literally SO thirsty for moisture afterwards. Now that I use something really gentle, my skin just feels clean and soft. Lemme share with you what I look for in a cleanser:


  • Not medicated. This means no additional acids, acne treatments, whatever. I only want my cleanser to do one job - clean my face.
  • Not stripping. A lot of the time this is in the same vein as ‘not foaming’ but I know there are some properly formulated cleansers out there that can foam without being stripping. 
  • Actually formulated for the face, meaning they are pH balanced to be neutral or lower in pH. Most body washes and even some cleansers are higher in pH which is very disruptive to the skin’s natural acid mantle. 

My skin is happiest with cleansers that are neutral or just below neutral. I didn’t have very much luck with a low pH cleanser (CosRx Good Morning Cleanser) but my skin is definitely not happy with high pH, alkaline cleansers either. You can usually tell when something is alkaline by its slippery, soapy feel. Your skin may also feel dry and tight after rinsing - a red flag that something isn’t right. I personally really enjoy the Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser, but there are a lot of gentle and hydrating cleansers out there to choose from.


MISTAKE 3

You’re forgetting your neck.

This is super important, especially if you wear makeup and blend it down your neck. I’m not gonna lie, this is one that I started doing recently and my neck is SIGNIFICANTLY less ‘gunky’ (ew) when I swipe over it with some micellar water on a cotton pad. When your neck is properly cleaned and prepped, it can make the most of all the goodness in your other skincare. Not forgetting your neck also applies to applying serums, treatments, and sunscreen FYI! It’s the best way to avoid having a premature turkey neck. Taking skincare all the way down my neck and sometimes to my décolletage also makes me feel like a ~real adult~ too.

MISTAKE 4

You’re being too rough on your face.

You really don’t need to be vigorously scrubbing your face with handfuls of exfoliating scrub every day, as if doing so would actually scrub away any imperfections and blemishes (Pro tip: it doesn’t). So much abrasive rubbing irritates the crap out of your skin - believe me, I’ve been there before. Put down the apricot scrub and save it for your booty, legs, and feet.

You might also be too rough on your face by overzealously rubbing a dry towel over and over your scrunched up face to make sure you’ve gotten every drop of water off it, BUT this isn't necessary. It’s overly irritating for your face too. I’ve had my face literally sting after drying because I was too keen to dry it off with my towel. What I like to do to stop myself doing this (or anything bad for my skin really ahaha) is to ask myself “How would an esthetician do this?”. All you need to do is gently pat pat pat all over your face with a towel to dry it properly - just like an esthetician would.

MISTAKE 5

You’re using water that’s too hot.

I know gals - I also prefer my showers as hot as the depths of Hell, but the reality is too hot of a shower is messing with the natural oils in your skin. When you take away too much of the natural oil produced by your skin, you’re left with irritated skin which is left vulnerable to acne and dryness. This is why I usually turn down the heat when it’s time to wash my face in the shower, and use room temperature water to wash my face in the morning - my face is a lot happier for it.

Now that we’ve gone through this clearly super exhaustive list about face washing (who knew this would be such an important topic?), go forth and cleanse for happy, glowing skin!

Have you committed any of these skincare sins before? Or do you have even more amazing tips to share? Lemme know!

A xx

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