Beauty Dish

January 29, 2014

Sally and I are on a mission to get the healthiest skin possible. Right now, my face is in a big transition phase because after publishing this post, I took the advice left by several readers who left comments and decided to try Retin-A…holy dryness and redness. I’ve been powering through the “has to get worse before it can get better” early weeks and months because I do believe that the prescription will work wonders on my face, but finding products to counder-balance the cream I use every few nights has been trial and error. If you don’t know anything…

Sally and I are on a mission to get the healthiest skin possible. Right now, my face is in a big transition phase because after publishing this post, I took the advice left by several readers who left comments and decided to try Retin-A…holy dryness and redness. I’ve been powering through the “has to get worse before it can get better” early weeks and months because I do believe that the prescription will work wonders on my face, but finding products to counder-balance the cream I use every few nights has been trial and error. If you don’t know anything about Retin-A, I suggest reading this and this because they definitely convinced me to try it. When the first and second week of using the cream murdered my face (peeling like I’ve never experienced), I read this article for tips on how to deal with the side effects and have since been moisturizing like crazy during the day. The two hydrating products that have steadily been helping to make things better are above. A bit about why I love them…

Aveda all-sensitive Moisturizer: any lotion or moisturizer I would put on my face once I started using Retin-A made my skin feel like it was on fire…except this stuff. It’s not a joke that it is called “all-sensitive.” The thin formula is hydrating but gentle (at least for me) and even though I use three pumps for my whole face, it doesn’t feel dense or heavy. It contains no added fragrances or SPF (which tends to make my skin even more red and irritated) and is the basic I really needed and now can’t survive without.

Aveda Intensive Hydrating Masque: this stuff is like giving your skin a huge drink of water. I got it and the moisturizer above after a facial when I was told that I wasn’t giving my skin enough moisture. The esthetician suggested using the hydrating masque a few times a week after washing and drying my face and told me that it was gentle enough to sleep with it on. Since it’s a clear formula and sinks into the skin (versus sitting on the surface or feeling sticky) I tried going to bed with it on and was obsessed with the results when I woke up. The added hydration doesn’t cause me to breakout but it does add visible plumpness to my dehydrated pores.

In the past I’ve always tried to brush off how drying the elements are during this time of year—but the drop in temperatures (or arctic vortex, depending on where you live) really does take a huge toll on your skin. Probably not the best time to start using Retin-A (I got my prescription right after Thanksgiving) but at least it’s making me extra diligent on keeping my face moisturized at all times!

Images taken by MBM for A Piece of Toast

(Aveda all-sensitive Moisturizer // Aveda Intensive Hydrating Masque // Peace Sign Stamp // Tory Burch Lucite Letters)

  1. Just found your adorable blog! you girls are so cute!! have you tried skin ceuticals A.G.e. interrupter (face cream). i use at night and it’s the most soothing cream. also, they have an age eye cream that is fabulous too. it’s the only thing that works on my sensitive skin. you might also try elta md sunscreen for daytime. it controls redness and acne while protecting your skin. :))

  2. I have struggled with acne since the fourth grade, now 20 years later I still struggle. So many expensive derm visits I can’t even count. I have used everything from the first Pro-Active, Retin-A, Differin, and acutane, along with countless others. Finally, I have found something that doesn’t dry out my skin, controls oiliness, and gives me all around luminosity. Try Effaclar purifying face wash and Effaclar Duo acne treatment. Found at Ulta and Amazon. Good luck and great blog!

  3. I’ve heard so many great things about the Aveda products and that masque sounds perfect for this crazy winter dryness. Thanks for sharing! xo N

  4. Have you thought of trying vegan makeup? I started selling Arbonne because it was all natural and vegan. I ran through a glass door when I was 5 and my skin is incredibly sensitive because of the scar tissue. My skin is a hot mess. I love Arbonne products, they really helped.

    http://perpetual-perfection.com

  5. We learned from our dermatologist to use the smallest amount possible (pea size) of a retinoid every third day to start out. This kept us from getting the crazy sensitivity that most people see when starting a new prescription.

    For the super dry skin – coconut oil! It’s the only thing that’s helped us during this brutal winter. RMS Beauty has the best version.

    http://tallshortblog.com/

  6. When my face gets super red and flaky (which, unfortunately, is all too often in winter…) I swear, swear, swear by this – http://www.kiehls.com/Centella-Recovery-Skin-Salve/596,default,pd.html?start=10&cgid=face-dermatologist-solutions …It’s not really for everyday, or at least I’ve found it too rich for that, but it’s the only thing that works quickly for me. I had these really stubborn/awkward chapped patches on my chin after using a product that was wayy too strong on my skin (oops) and this cleared them up in two days.

    Looks like you have a good routine going here, but just in case 🙂 I’m definitely going to try that moisturizing mask! Thanks for the rec.

    Here’s to spring coming sooner than later…can’t handle the dryness anymore!

  7. I’m SO grateful that y’all made this post. I have serious problems with dryness during the winter months and this year has been extra horrible for some reason! No matter what moisturizer I use, none seem to hydrate my skin enough! This was a huge help. I use Aveda hair products and have never considered using their skin products… but now I will definitely try these!

    Great post ladies!
    xo Jenna

  8. When I was in high school I had terrible acne, and thankfully was able to start using Retin-A. The dry, flaky period is the worst! However, if you’re diligent about moisturizing it will go away. Another HUGE bonus, it really prevents your skin from being breakout-prone in the future. I was able to wean off the cream and have only received the occasional break out since. It’s such a blessing to not have to keep up with a preventative treatment.

  9. Try Avibon (French drugstore; can purchase on Amazon). It has Vitamin A in a large dose that is similar to retinol, but does not cause irritation. I use it every night and it seems to work. Also smells awesome. Love your blog btw.

  10. My skin can just NOT handle Retin-A! I know you have to break through those dry dry dry phases, but to me it’s just not worth it. I’ve been using the Cosmedix line of skincare and am loving my results, especially using them with my Clarisonic. I do however, have to use the night cream with Retin-A in it every other….or every other other night. Too much for this sensitive face!

  11. I have been in a constant battle with my skin since I was 23 or so. Now, four years later, I think I’ve got it figured out. My skin is not super breakout prone, but I do have the normal flare-ups. I tried Retin-A for a while too, but just couldn’t handle the flakiness. It never subsided for me. Instead, I switched to the Differen lotion which has seemingly the same positive effects without the dryness and irritation. My skin is clear, smooth and wrinkle-free, but I do have to balance it out with Clinique’s overnight Moisture Surge and Murad’s Pore Minimizing lotion for day. Between these three products, I feel like a miracle!

  12. When I was on Retin-A, the only products I could use were by La Roche-Posay, especially their Hydraphase and Toleriane lines. And now I can’t use anything but these products. Everything else just smells too strong or is too sticky and harsh. LRP is seriously the best and not even that expensive.

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