“Healthy glow.” That’s what every woman wants, right? Skin that is supple and practically radiates beauty. But most of us feel that image is almost impossible because we don’t have a spa budget, personal aesthetician, or even the slightest knowledge where to begin. Obtaining a natural glow is even more valuable than physical attractiveness. Anyone can put on make-up, lashes, lip gloss, and bronzer, but when you “glow” you can walk with confidence regardless of what you are or are not wearing.
During both of my pregnancies, I was incredibly fortunate that my skin cleared and looked pretty amazing. It was great! Thank you pregnancy hormones! But, it hasn’t always been that way. As a teenager and young adult, I dealt with moderate acne and blemishes. I longed to have a clear, radiant complexion and hated that I always had to go through the process of makeup to look and feel confident leaving my house.
Products dermatologists prescribed never seemed to be effective and one prescription actually caused dark, bruise-looking spots on the shins of my legs! While my skin gradually improved during my 20’s, I never really knew how to effectively treat my skin type.
As I neared age 30, I began realizing that even though I was not dealing with a significant amount of acne, I still wasn’t thrilled with my complexion. To be honest, I didn’t have any type of skin care routine and I wasn’t really interested in visiting a cosmetic counter only to be pressured and persuaded to buy hundreds of dollars of skincare products that “I needed.”
Head down. Don’t make eye contact. Get in and get out. That tends to be how I shop when in those stores with “vultures” waiting to lure you in…
This year my husband blessed me with a treat I have wanted for years but never splurged on before- a set of 3 facials including microdermabrasion. Similar to a massage, it is a luxurious hour where someone is totally focused on you, your skin and giving you the ultimate treat! Not only has my Aesthetician, Courtney Waller pampered me, but she has been an excellent resource regarding an easy skincare routine.
Courtney decided to pursue aesthetics after having her own personal challenges with acne during her 20’s. She ‘operates with a passion to make you feel confident in yourself.’ Her philosophy is “less is more” which I adore- fewer products with simple ingredients. She has inspired me to actually begin a “skincare routine” that will help me continue this ‘glow’ that makes me feel great AND prevent early aging of the skin.
Regardless of your age or skin history, you can take some proactive steps to nourish and care for your skin to boost your confidence and self-esteem. In an air-brushed culture, I love the quote by Anonymous,
“I’m not beautiful like you. I’m beautiful like me.”
Own it, girl!
Today, Courtney is sharing a quick and budget-friendly skincare routine for you- the busy woman…
QUICK & EASY SKINCARE ROUTINE
Step #1: Cleanse
The all natural oil cleansing method is great for every skin type. I recommend using jojoba oil which is very similar to same oil our bodies create or a mix of 50% castor oil and 50 % extra virgin olive oil.
Directions: Pour a quarter size amount of the oil into the palm of your hand, rub your hands together to warm the oil and smooth it over your face (this should be done with dry hands on a dry face).
Begin massaging the oil onto your face, this will break up and remove dirt, makeup, and other impurities. (Take your time during this step and release some of the tension in your face, take some deep breaths and relax, give yourself a few minutes to massage your face)
Once your pores are saturated cover your face with a warm wet cloth, press the cloth gently on your face until the cloth cools, and then gently wipe away any remaining residue.
Step #2: Tone
Toning is an important step in a skincare routine. Toning ensures all dirt and debris are removed from your pores while restoring your skin’s PH balance. I recommend toning with witch hazel or rose water. Witch hazel is better for acneic and combination skin while rose water is best for mature, dry, and sensitive skin.
Directions: Saturate a cotton round with your toner of choice and apply to face (do not rinse afterward).
Step #3: Treat
Apply a serum targeted to your skin’s specific needs. I recommend using a Vitamin C serum. It is safe and effective for all skin types. Vitamin C is packed with antioxidants that even out your skin tone, shield your skin from the environment, improve hydration, promote collagen production, reduce under-eye circles, and the list could go on and on. Vitamin C is completely natural and is not packed with chemicals or questionable ingredients. It is simple but very effective. I recommend the Vitamin C serum from Rahda Beauty. It is of great quality but with an affordable price tag.
Directions: Apply a small amount of the serum onto the tips of your fingers and press into your skin. It is important to press into your skin rather than rub so it’s getting deeper into your pores and you’re getting the maximum benefits. Give your skin a few minutes to fully absorb the product before moving to the next step.
Step #4: Moisturize
All skin types need a moisturizer even those of oily skin. A lot of people who struggle with oily skin are scared of moisturizers or think they do not need one but actually, the opposite is true. When our skin lacks the oil it needs, it produces more oil which can encourage an unwanted breakout, so the goal is to keep your skin balanced by moisturizing daily.
I recommend using a base oil of argan oil which is safe for all skin types and then adding an additional “power” oil targeted for your specific skin type.
Directions: Dispense 1 to 2 drops of argan oil with 1-2 drops of your power oil into the palm of your hand and press into clean skin
What are realistic cost expectations to start this skincare routine?
This specific regimen has a start-up cost of roughly $40 and should generally last you around two months or longer, which makes this regimen approximately $20 per month. This is is a small price to pay for naturally glowing skin and a boost in confidence!
Are there any ingredients to avoid?
I would recommend avoiding parabens, fragrance, and believe it or not formaldehyde. Always take a little bit of extra time to read the ingredients list. Skin is the largest organ in the body and the products we apply to our skin go directly into our bloodstream, so it’s important to look at the ingredients in your skincare products to see what you are essentially putting into your body.
What realistic expectations should we have when beginning a new skincare routine? How long might it take before we begin “seeing” results?
It really depends on what you have done for your skin up to this point and what your skin is accustomed to. If you haven’t been dedicated to an everyday routine until now, you will see results immediately. You will feel like your skin just received a much-needed detox. After a week’s worth of letting the Vitamin C serum do its magic overnight, you will begin to see a remarkable difference in the appearance and texture of your skin.
If I am already using a skincare line or following a skincare regimen, should I stop?
If your skin care routine is giving you the results you long for and is within in your budget, by all means, keep it up! I never stir my clients away from something that works for them. As the old saying goes “if it isn’t broke, no need to fix it.”
My skin is exceptionally oily- any tips?
I highly recommend avoiding coconut oil. Coconut oil is great for the skin, but not for us oily folks. I say “us” because I myself am part of the oily skin club. I would also recommend rice paper oil blotting sheets to use throughout the day to keep the shine at bay.
My skin is always dry- recommendations?
When you have dry skin, it is best to avoid long, hot showers or baths which can strip your skin even more of its natural oils. Also, it is very important to be consistent with a moisturizer, so it can do its job of locking in the moisturize your skin longs for.
When should I consider working with an aesthetician? What goals can they help me achieve?
If you are not happy with the way your skin looks or you want to prevent future skin complications, it is time to see an aesthetician. Aestheticians are like personal trainers for your skin. We are highly trained to assess your skin and craft a program for you that will include professional in-office treatments and a home care regimen designed specifically for you.
What is the best way to find a quality aesthetician?
The best way to find a good aesthetician is by word of mouth or reputation. Ask your friends, neighbors, or coworkers if there is a therapist they would recommend in your area. Even with the rise of social media many of my clients are referral based through an existing client sharing their experience they had with me. I would also advise upon finding an aesthetician, scheduling a consultation beforehand to see if she or he is the right choice for you and to go over a treatment plan.
What are 2 things that women do that can harm their skin or accelerate aging or make it look worse?
The harmful sun rays and diet can accelerate aging at a rapid pace. Sun exposure can cause up to 90% of the visible changes attributed to aging skin, not to mention increasing your chance of developing skin cancer. I recommend using at least a 30 SPF sunscreen daily, even when the sun isn’t totally visible, it’s vital in keeping a youthful look! In addition, excessive intake of pasteurized dairy and refined sugar can take a toll on your skin as well. We are what eat and a healthy diet will reveal healthy skin!
If a woman is feeling frustrated with how her skin looks and feels, how would you encourage her?
If you are ashamed of your skin, you are not alone! Most of the time the truth is the criticism we feel is created from within us. We have to learn self-acceptance and choose to compliment ourselves rather than criticize ourselves. Look in the mirror and point out positive things about yourself, it doesn’t have to be skin related. You can look at yourself in the mirror and say “This shirt looks good on me” or “I am having a good hair day”, doing these things little by little begin to lift us up and boost our confidence.
On the other hand, if you are at the point where you need or want help with your skin, I highly recommend seeing an aesthetician. I say this from my own personal experience with my skin. When I was struggling with cystic acne, I reached out to an aesthetician for help. She gave me my confidence back through the treatments I received and her professional recommendations.
My experience with her led me to pursue getting my aesthetics license and directed to the path I am on today. I wanted to do for others what she had done for me. I longed to help others love the skin they are in and I am so immeasurably blessed to be able to help others do just that!
Confidence is the ability to feel beautiful, without needing someone to tell you. –Mandy Hale
Taking just a few minutes each morning to care for the only skin you will ever have can boost your confidence and self-esteem exponentially. YOU CAN achieve a healthy glow and it doesn’t take expensive products, endless spa treatments and a ridiculous amount of time.
As a licensed aesthetician, Courtney operates with a passion to make you feel confident in yourself. Realizing through her own struggles with her skin that the outward appearance of acne, blemishes, and other maladies seriously affects not only one’s confidence but also their self-esteem. She strives to make you look and feel your best! She once read, “You’re going to be in your own skin until you die. That’s a while. You might as well get comfortable in it” and she thrives to help others do just that! Find out more information about Courtney & Natural Glow Skincare on her website, connect with her on Facebook and email her to speak at your next event!