Thanks to Influenster for providing the Drunk Elephant products complimentary for testing purposes.
Ready to discover your new winter skincare routine? College-aged me who never remembered to take her makeup off before going to bed will be amazed at this next statement: I’ve become something of a skincare enthusiast over the last few years.
I always knew the importance of taking care of your skin (It’s the largest organ in your body! You only get one face! Sun damage is real!), but in more of a That’s nice, I’ll worry about it in a few years kind of way. Lately, though, I’ve noticed that little things can make a big difference to the appearance of my skin and how it feels. If I don’t drink enough water throughout the day or eat too much sugar, you better believe my skin is going to show it.
But you know the thing that has the biggest effect? The winter weather in Ohio. I don’t know if it wasn’t cold and dry enough in Georgia or if my young skin just wasn’t bothered by it, but my skin is a whole new beast out in the winter wonderland that is Cincinnati. A better winter skincare routine was a must!
As such, I’ve had to up my game and be truly diligent about taking care of my epidermis. I’ve perfected a quick and easy winter skincare routine that keeps my face hydrated and break-out free all day long.
Winter Skincare Routine: Morning
Here’s everything I use for 10 minutes to healthy, dewy skin that’s also protected from the sun.
TULA Purifying Face Cleanser
I first received this cleanser in an Instagram giveaway from Erica Ligenza, and I have been absolutely hooked ever since. A tiny amount goes a long way to remove all the dirt and makeup from my face, and it leaves my skin feeling so dang soft. Most cleansers that work this well can make your face feel stripped and sensitive, but I’ve never experienced that with TULA’s “cult classic” cleanser. Oh, and I’ve already reordered for myself and given it as a gift.
Burt’s Bees Clarifying Toner
This toner is my all-year favorite because it’s made of natural ingredients, from a brand I trust, and doesn’t sting. It penetrates pores to remove excess dirt and products and helps prevent against breakouts. Plus it’s a great price.
Drunk Elephant C-Firma™ Day Serum
Especially during the winter, I feel like my skin needs a little extra brightening, and vitamin C is the very best way to do so. This serum from Drunk Elephant is so effective at brightening and firming my skin. It sinks in quickly and remains active within your skin for 72 hours. Talk about lasting effects!
Budget-Friendly Option: Andalou Naturals Tumeric + C Enlighten Serum
Because I recognize that Drunk Elephant products—while absolutely amazing!—are pricey, I thought I’d add a more budget-friendly alternative. I received this vitamin C and turmeric serum in my very first Kinder Beauty Box, and I used every last drop throughout last winter! This one smells amazing and does a great job of brightening and hydrating skin.
Drunk Elephant B-Hydra™ Intensive Hydration Serum
I mix this serum in with the C-Firma serum to create a serum “smoothie” that I press into my skin. The B-Hydra serum makes all the difference to the visible hydration of my skin. Not only does it feel smooth and hydrated, but you can physically see a difference just a few minutes after letting it sink in.
Budget-Friendly Option: The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5
Once again, the Drunk Elephant B-Hydra serum is good shit, but if it’s not within your price range right now, you might want to give this hyaluronic acid + B5 serum from The Ordinary a try.
Drunk Elephant Shaba Complex™ Eye Serum
One thing I really love about this eye treatment is that it encourages you to use it under your eye, around your orbital bone, and actually on your eyelid. I was incredibly skeptical because everything makes my eyes water, but this stuff didn’t bother me at all. Not one bit. I was amazed! (Must be the edelweiss stem cells because I love me some Sound of Music.)
Budget-Friendly Option: 100% Pure Coffee Bean Caffeine Eye Cream
This eye cream was also a Kinder Beauty Box find, and it’s a good option for making your eyes look awake and replenished after a long night. Plus, it smells like coffee!
Drunk Elephant Umbra Sheer™ Physical Daily Defense SPF 30
I used to think I could get away with using tinted moisturizer with SPF, but I now recognize the error of my ways. Even on cloudy, snowy days, your skin is soaking in all the sunlight it can, and you must incorporate sunscreen as the final step of your winter skincare routine. This one leaves me feeling pretty pale, so I’ll probably try the tinted version once I’ve used this one up.
Winter Skincare Routine: Evening
I consider my nightly skincare as a part of my self care routine, and I use these products for a 10-minute love fest for my face.
TULA Purifying Face Cleanser
If it’s not broke, don’t fix it. I use the same cleanser morning and night because it’s so effective and doesn’t strip my skin. Cannot recommend it more!
Burt’s Bees Clarifying Toner
And this one’s also a nightly staple. Ditto everything above.
L’Oreal Paris Revitalift 1.5% Pure Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid is one of those things that sounds scary but is actually so good for your skin. In fact, it’s found naturally in your body’s tissues. I use this serum every evening to lock in that moisture all night long.
CeraVe Eye Repair Cream
Since I don’t need something to make me look awake right before I sleep, I use my nighttime eye cream to help smooth and plump up the delicate skin around your eyes. Surprise! This cream has hyaluronic acid, too, and helps retain your skin’s natural moisture.
Neutrogena Deep Moisture Night Cream
It’s a little ridiculous how difficult it is to find a night cream that is non-comedogenic (aka won’t clog your pores)! But I finally found one. This stuff is a lush, creamy texture that makes my skin feel amazing, and it also won’t break the bank. That’s called a win-win.
Blistex Medicated Lip Balm
That’s right. My lips are always chapped and gross during the winter, so this year, I’ve made a point to include them in my winter skincare routine. My grandmother used to use this lip balm, and it’s been a staple in my life for as long as I can remember. Swipe some on right before bed, and you’ll notice a difference!
Winter Skincare Routine: Weekly Treatments
Most days of the week, I’ll tack one of these treatments on to the end of my evening routine. It’s my favorite self care moment of the day!
The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution
Once upon a time, I was a huge fan of manual exfoliating. And then I read about microtears and all the other nasty things those walnut shells can do to your skin overtime, and I said nope. Instead, I’ve slowly found some chemical exfoliators that I love, including this peel.
Once a week, I put this blood red serum all over my face, leave it on for exactly 10 minutes, then wash it off to reveal radiant skin. The ingredients in this stuff are no joke, so be sure to test it if you have sensitive skin and never leave it on for longer than is comfortable. (It’s supposedly a great dupe for the Drunk Elephant Babyfacial, but I haven’t had the real thing, so can’t say for sure.)
L’Oreal Paris Revitalift 10% Pure Glycolic Acid and Triple Power Anti-Aging Moisturizer
And here’s the second way I chemically exfoliate. Once a week, I use this glycolic acid serum exfoliates to reveal new skin and a smooth, bright complexion. These ingredients are also no joke, and you must wear sunscreen the next morning to protect that new baby skin that you reveal.
I always follow this serum up with the accompanying moisturizer, which has a powerful combination of pro-retinol, vitamin C, and hyaluronic acid. It helps moisturize that newly exfoliated skin and keeps it bright and wrinkle free.
Dr. Botanicals Pomegranate Superfood Regenerating Sleeping Mask
Twice a week, I’ll finish my evening routine with a thin layer of this sleeping mask. You can watch it sink into your skin, and it smells heavenly. Plus I wake up the next morning with impossibly soft skin!
TONYMOLY I’m Real Sheet Masks
I am obsessed with these sheet masks. Slap one on, wait for 10-15 minutes, and give yourself a little facial massage to help your skin absorb any leftover product. My favorites are the Red Wine, Lavender, and Cactus ones, but there’s something for every skin need.
Yes To Mud Masks
True story: I cannot make it out of Target without buying one of these things. They’re cheap and aren’t full of crappy ingredients and are easy to use. I love the Yes to Carrots Kale Mud Mask, Yes to Grapefruit Vitamin C Glow-boosting Mud Mask, and the Yes to Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal Mud Mask.
There you have it! How I keep my skin hydrated and healthy with a winter skincare routine.
Now that it’s all listed out for you, it seems like a lot of products and steps (and so much scrolling!), but it honestly doesn’t feel that way in the moment.
Last year, I started prioritizing my own self care, and this skincare routine is a big piece of that. Masks, treatments, and just freeing my face of makeup and pollution feel so luxurious, and I know I’m making a big difference in how my skin will look 10, 20, or even 50 years from now!
Do you use any of these products? Have questions about Drunk Elephant you’d like me to clear up? Let me know below!
P.S. I first learned of so many of these products because they were featured in a Kinder Beauty Box. Read more about my favorite subscription box!