Mid-life Beauty on a Budget: Facial Skincare
By reader request! Taking care of our skin as we age can be tricky when we live in an ageist society that profits from self-hate. It can feel like we have to drop hundreds of dollars on products, maybe even Botox and other fillers (not for me!) to not look like ourselves. I am totally OK with "looking my age." I just want to look and be healthy and hydrated! I have found some excellent products with "dime store" pricing (comparatively speaking) that do that for me at age 48.
First thing I do, and this is very very important: I STAY OUT OF EXTENDED DIRECT SUNLIGHT!! I plan my outdoor activities so that I am either outside in the early morning, later afternoon or in a shaded area. I would rather do this than wear sunscreen, because shade is the best organic, non-chemical, inexpensive SPF out there. I know that even indirect sunlight ages our skin but I dislike the idea of slathering sunscreen on myself every single day. It's not perfect, but it's what I've been doing.
Through my late 20s and into my mid 40s I was using Clinique's "Mild" soap on my face. It worked great! Until it didn't. My skin began to feel noticeably dry after I had used it. On a whim I decided to try a vintage, never opened bar of SweetHeart soap I had picked up somewhere along my picking adventures.
That was about three years ago and I have not used anything else on my face since then! It is the most wonderful, gentle, subtly scented soap ever! The bars I have are from the late 60s and there is nothing "bad" or rancid about them. Once I realized how magical it was I went on ebay and found a seller who said in their auction description that they were selling bars from an entire case. I messaged them, made an offer on the remaining case and now have a healthy supply for many years to come. You can usually find vintage SweetHeart soap still in the original packaging on ebay. One bar lasts me many months so it's economical.
An environmental and humane selling point for using vintage soap (I have other vintage brands in my stash to try) is that unlike the majority of soaps today it usually did not contain palm oil or its derivatives. PLEASE click here to read about palm production and its devastating effect on orangutans and the rain forest.
A second Clinique product I used for years up until last week is their Skin Type 2 "Clarifying Lotion." I'm not sure why they call it a lotion since it's liquid with the alcohol being the main ingredient! (I admit that I hadn't checked the ingredients list in ages). It was really drying out my skin and costs $24 a bottle. In place of it I have begun to use inexpensive, effective yet gentler Witch Hazel. You can buy it at your grocery for about $2. It's working for me so far. As for as the ugly bottle in which it came I'm going to pour some into an antique bottle I picked up at a rummage sale this weekend (in the top pic) for display. Pretty packaging is how some of the pricier brands convince you to buy their product. Repurposed old bottles filled with what works will always win me over!
I've been using and loving fragrance-free Olay Regenerist Serum for almost ten years and presently have the top rated review on Amazon. I wish it was all natural without synthetic or questionable ingredients, but it really does wonders for my skin! The biggest thing it does it soften and firms. It's not enough of a moisturizer, however.
Night cream isn't just for bedtime which is why I use Neutrogena Light Night Cream day and night every day after I wash my face. I've been using it for about fifteen years.
I've recently started to rub a few drops of 100% Argan oil on my face and love it. It hasn't caused me to break out. The bottle I bought is a "sample" size by Josie Maran at Sephora.
I've been using Olay Total Effects Eye Brightening Cream under my eyes for about a year. It's OK, nothing amazing, but gentle and lightweight without any noticeable fragrance. I'm still trying to find something without the added color because I don't need it.
Finally, your diet plays a big role in your skin's health and appearance. I learned that when I started to eat retro. I had a terrible complexion until I cut out all the junk and yo-yo dieting in 2010.
None of the above mentions are sponsored.
None of the above mentions are sponsored.
I'd love to hear from you, ladies! What do YOU use that works? What doesn't?