Adventure in Normal Life / Beauty / beauty reviews

My beauty routine {face}

I thought it would be fun to share what I use for cleansing and moisturizing my face and for adding an element of s l o w i n g     d o w n to my routine. I have tried a lot of products throughout the years and as weather and age and diet all play a role in how skin feels, skin changes and how I treat my skin must also.

Is it dry inside/outside? Is sun protection really important in this season? Is my skin irritated? Am I extra stressed? How well am I eating now? Pay attention to what might be changing around you and adjust accordingly.

In the summer, I’ve worn minimal to no makeup – no foundation. It’s not necessary for me and although my skin isn’t a perfect canvas, I’m embracing the imperfections and so long as my skin feels good, I’m good. I’ve noticed if I’m eating better my skin also looks better so your skin – your largest organ – just like your digestive system, is also metabolizing nutrients and processing them to use to make healthy tissues. Plus, for any of you artists out there, haven’t you noticed that there are bumps and imperfections on canvases too?

I’m lucky to have a local boutique that is also online, called Follain. Their motto is “healthy wholesome sound” and they  curate healthy products for skincare, hair, and makeup so that I don’t have to do all the headachy research myself. Depending on where you live, there may be a similar boutique, or else you can look around and order online. The Environmental Working Group is a resource where you can learn about the ingredients (being an educated consumer, armed with resources you can understand helps a lot) and I’ve written this post with some guidance  before, so check that out too if you’re searching.

I’ve gotten there products from a number of different places but let me know if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to answer them!

I linked ALL the products so you can have a look 🙂

From left to right, top to bottom:

Cleanse. Tone. Serum. Sun protection and moisturize. Other favorites

Step 1:


1. Ursa Major  – Fantastic Face Wash

From Vermont, they believe in their products so much that if you don’t see a benefit in 30 days, they’ll refund you. I love the scent of the face wash – it is minty, woodsy, and citrusy which incorporates some of my favorite uplifting scents overall. It is a gel cleanser so it gets rid of oil and grime and leftover sunscreen. It is also a natural exfoliator, without messing with your skin’s pH balance. Fun fact: there is a constellation named “ursa major – a big bear”, and I saw it the other week when we were watching the meteor shower!

Shop here: Follain + Ursa Major

2. Fresh – soy face cleanser

I have been using this cleanser for a couple of years and it is actually a great partner with my new foreo cleansing tool. It froths and makes my skin smooth after usage. It is gentle and doesn’t irritate my skin. They also have a travel size, which I take with me on every trip.

Shop here: Sephora + Fresh

3. Foreo facial cleansing tool 

I jumped on this at the Nordstrom sale this summer. I’d heard about clarisonic and had been seeing foreo around and decided I would give it a try. So far, I’ve liked the sonic vibrations in my skincare routine and I’ve been impressed with how smooth my skin had become with this in combination with the fresh soy face cleanser. It is cute and comes in different colors, and different sizes (for different skin types) and also has a man-version in less pink colors :). You charge it by USB once every 5-6 months and it is good. Also, it is supposed to be gentler than clarisonic with these little nubs of silicone, and easy to clean which is important for a tool that should be hypo-allergenic.

Shop here: Nordstrom + sephora (similar)

Tip: Use warm water – not hot, not cold. Dab dry with a wash cloth – don’t wipe.

Step 2:


4. Ursa Major – 4-in-1 Essential Face Tonic

This is a soothing and hydrating spray and it is refreshing. I had to get used to the idea of spraying something at my face (kind of like the newness of putting a contact lens in) but once I got used to it, it feels so refreshing and good, in a gentle wake up mist.

Shop here: Follain + Ursa Major

5. Evan Healy Rose Geranium Facial Tonic HydroSoul 

This is to balance oil/dry combination skin and is pretty good in dryer months. I got it in whole foods’ hello beauty bag where they threw in some awesome travel sized samples. I spray this a couple of times and the spray is a even nice mist. The scent is an earthy floral scent and refreshing as well.

Whole Foods – in store only – read about their whole body standards

6. Fresh Rose floral toner 

With soothing rosewater, I’ve put some of this in a travel sized bottle to refresh my face and give it a dewy look from time to time while I’m out, hot, or tired. It is like the evian spray bottles people like to bring when they travel in a dry airplane, but better for your skin because of the other rose benefits. It is moisturizing and opens the pores to receive moisture and has a pleasant light rose scent.

Shop here: fresh + sephora

Step 3:


7. Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum

OK. So this is a showstopper, aka “liquid gold” as the gals at Follain say. My putting this in this roundup for my facial beauty routine highlights a common misconception I had about serums and oils. If my face is combination and is oily sometimes and gets breakouts, shouldn’t I try to dry out my skin and NOT use oils??? Wrong! Blemishes and irritation are often caused by buildup of old, dead skin cells from not exfoliating and cleansing properly, and also from over-drying – the body likes to be in homeostasis – which means in a steady state. So, if your skin is dry, your body tries to produce more oil – too much sometimes – to compensate and then you end up with unhappy oily skin.

This isn’t a cheap buy, but a drop or two for your whole face, twice a day (morning and night) is basically my minimum for those nights when I’m too tired to wash my face or brush my teeth (I still do both, but you know those nights…….).

I was at a national museum in D.C. recently and they had Vintner’s Reserve wines – the creator of Vintner’s Daughter grew up on this family winery and used her knowledge of the process of making a fine wine to come up with this product.

Face oils that are created with active botanicals are the way to go. Revelation!

Shop here: Follain +  Vintner’s Daughter

Step 4: 

Sun protect and moisturize

8. Ursa Major Force Field Daily Defense Lotion

I have started to pay greater attention to the effects of the sun. I enjoy being in the warm sun, but worries of cancer from radiation exposure + concerns about skincare ingredients had me doing research into what could I safely use on my face that would also be effective at protecting delicate skin. This unscented facial lotion is light and is SPF 18. It is UVA and UVB blocking, and contains zinc oxide. A mineral -based sunscreen is the best because these are macro  and non-nano – meaning, the size of the molecules isn’t too small and doesn’t seep into your skin, go into your bloodstream and wreak havoc. So, be sure to get a mineral based sunscreen.

Shop here: (gift with purchase) Follain + Ursa Major

9. La Mer reparative face sun lotion broad spectrum spf 30 – soleil de la mer

This is a product I’ve had around and my skin likes it and has a nice glow. It is SPF 30 and has a lovely scent. It goes on smoothly. This product isn’t the absolute best in terms of the sunscreen components (it isn’t a mineral one), but I like it.

Shop here: la mer + blue mercury  + nordstrom (similar)

10. Suntegrity 5 in 1 Natural Moisturizing Face Sunscreen – tinted

I like the citrusy scent, the fact that it is tinted (I also like the non-tinted version) and it works well. It is a mineral sunscreen as well.

Shop here: + Suntegrity

Other favorite face products

11. Fresh black tea age-delay eye  concentrate 

As you can tell, scent matters a lot to me. This one smells delightful and uplifting, and doesn’t cake or clump, moisturizes my under-eye area and I use it sometimes after the Vintner’s daughter serum. I use it either morning or night, but it isn’t a daily part of my routine. I reviewed it here in this post before.

Shop here: sephora + fresh

12. Fresh sugar lip polish

While you can make your own with brown sugar, honey this one has just the right size grains and tastes good as well.

Shop here: sephora + fresh

13. Burt’s Bees natural acne solutions targeted spot treatment

This has been my best bud this year. I dab some on a cotton ball and treat the spot and it reduces redness and dries the spot immediately. Sometimes it takes a few days, but it has been the best I’ve found.

Whole Foods – in store only + Target

That’s a wrap. What do you think of this post? Would you like to see more like it? Clean, healthy practices are a part of my wellness journey, so I hope it helps get you thinking about what works for you and ways to simplify and clean up your skincare routine. Please let me know in the comments.

Looking for more resources on organic, clean, green beauty? 

Check out these past posts:

What YOU need to know about Clean Beauty

RMS Beauty @Follain 

10 Ways how I’m making the switch to Organic, Clean Beauty

Meet the Maker: Rahua haircare (pronounced, Ra-wa)

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Thanks for stopping by, and have a tremendous day!



3 thoughts on “My beauty routine {face}

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