We live in a world where 7-step skin care routines are the norm. 10 steps will set you apart from the crowd. The Hailey Biebers on YouTube and Vogue.com educate us that the more the better. Layer on the products. Go to bed looking like a glazed donut.

But, before you think I'm hating on the skin care gurus, let me just say that I love skin care. Hate makeup. Love skin care. I've been fortunate to be able to work with some amazing brands that are creating nourishing, beautiful products that target everything from redness to anti-aging. And because I've been sent products and gifted products my skin care cabinet is, well, overflowing.

But I've had a few interesting skin experiences in the past few months and with some serious tweaking to my routine managed to pinpoint the problem and it was definitely not what I was expecting.

My Skin Issue + Hypothesis

A few weeks ago I was deep in the trenches of a 7-8 step nightly skin care routine. My skin was glowing and breakout free, but plagued with deep dryness and flaking that I couldn't seem to get under control. A/C played a role for sure, but the humidity of early July in South Carolina was always there to combat the dry indoor air.

So, when night after night of loading on the moisturizers and hydrating serums didn't crack the code, I stripped it all back. Took it down to the basics and just washed my face to get the sunscreen off and hopped into bed.

The next morning my skin was hydrated and smooth. Excuse me, what?

My Conclusion

I think my skin was getting overloaded with too many good things and the result was patches of dry skin that never went away. An interesting conclusion that not many skinfluencers might be willing to share. The longer I went with a simple skin care routine the better and better my skin looked. After doing some research into the theory, I saw studies by dermatologists that confirmed my suspicions. Some people's skin will get overstimulated from time to time by too many products resulting in drying and breakouts. I guess my skin falls into that group of people.

I love the idea of a simplified skin care routine. Intentional steps to better skin may not always begin and end with a medicine cabinet full of serums and retinol.

Or it might because your skin needs that at the moment.

I'm just here to share my experience of overloading my skin with too many good things. Skin care is as living and breathing as your skin is and as seasons change and years tick by, you may need to put some effort into reevaluating your skin care systems and routines. Tone it back, boost it up. Care and nourish with intention.

My Perfect Simple Skin Care Routine

So instead of my beautiful 7-step skin care routine right now, I'm back to the basics with just a cleanse, tone, and moisturizer.


Elemis Cleansing Balm

I posted a whole blog post about the Elemis line recently and truly honestly I am still loving their products. When I'm back to adding more products into my routine they're the first ones I'll grab. But for now the cleansing balm is a gentle, everyday cleanser that's soothing and melts off all the makeup.

Backup: If I want to shake things up I'll grab the Glow Recipe Blueberry Bounce Cleanser for a refreshing cleanse.

30 before 30 2


Kiehls Ferulic Brew Facial Treatment

This may look a bit like an apothecary bottle on a dusty shelf, but ever since receiving it in the mail it's been part of my routine.

I do think toning is an important part of a simple skin care routine because it preps the skin to absorb and receive moisturizer. This one is filled to the brim with good skin ingredients.

30 before 30 3


Kiehls Ultra Facial Cream

My go-to simple moisturizer for the past 5 years is this one by Kiehls. It's creamy, not too thick, absorbs fast and is just a really solid product at a great price point.

Backup: if I wanted something different I'd grab the trusty CeraVe moisturizer for deep hydration.

30 before 30 4