Skincare Routine for Dry/Sensitive Skin: Hydrate and Plump

If there is one thing that I’m massively happy about from 2018, it’s having finally figured out the perfect skincare routine for my dry/sensitive skin. The products that I’m going to chat about with you today are what I believe to be the best at hydrating and plumping without causing irritation or breakouts.

You can read more about my journey through acne here, but to cut to the chase, my skin has become dry, sensitive and prone to breakouts when using the wrong things on my face. 2018 was the year that I truly started to learn about my skin type/condition, and discover more about particular ingredients that it could cope with, but also love.

I hope that this post may open up some ideas to you, those who have similar skin, or those who have also battled with acne/breakouts. If you read my Winter Skin Savers post or any of my previous reviews, some of these products will be very familiar…

Lets start with what I like to wash my face with, there’s a few options for this part of my daily routine.

Natura Siberica - Black Cleansing Butter

This is a beautiful, creamy cleansing butter that is such a pleasure to use, but also gives great results. Activated Charcoal has been a huge hit with many brands and their products when targeting oily, spotty, teenage skins. Although it is one of the best and most effective ways to deep clean those pores and remove excess oil, it can also be quite drying. But what if you have dry skin?

Here is how you can reap the benefits of charcoal skincare without making your already dry skin even more so. The Natura Siberica Black Cleansing Butter contains ingredients that work hand in hand - the charcoal gets to work on those pores, removing dirt and excess oil - but then the Organic Linen Oil, Siberian Pine, Altai Sea Buckthorn and Wild Rhodiola Rosea work to nourish, soften and leave you with supple, radiant, glowing skin.

I love to use this on an evening, I just use a small 2p sized amount and massage it all over the face. All you have to do then is remove with a warm cloth and rinse. I have never experienced a tightening feeling after use, no discomfort, instead my skin is left feeling wonderfully clean and soft. There’s no mess either, I did at first worry about there being a black residue left in the basin, but as you add water to the butter it emulsifies into a silky milky consistency that just drains away with the water leaving no trace at all.

The price of this is incredible too, for 120ml of product it costs £17.99 and it can be found at most Marks and Spencer Beauty Departments. I’ve currently just broken into my second tub, meaning that my first tub lasted approx 3 months - having being used once daily.

If you want to find out more about the brand and this product, please come and check out my initial review.

Pixi Beauty - Rose Cream Cleanser

For those days where my skin feels fussy, maybe I have no spots but my skin feels extra dry with the cold air or central heating, or maybe I’m noticing a bit more redness around the scarring left over from Acne, I switch out my Butter Cleanser for this one.

The Pixi Rose Cream cleanser is used in exactly the same way as the one above, just massage a 2p sized amount over the face and remove with a warm cloth and a rinse. Again I only tend to use this on an evening, you’ll find out why shortly!

It has some fab ingredients within that really work to nourish, calm, and soothe the skin as well as cleanse. Included is Rose, Chamomile, Avocado and Aloe Vera. I love that this has Kaolin in the ingredients too, it has fast become something I look for in products as it is widely known for deep cleansing and keeping those spots at bay. Even though I’m including this product in a post dedicated to dry/sensitive skin, it is actually suitable for everyone.

As I am unable to enjoy the Glow Tonic, I am so happy that there is this Rose range of skincare by Pixi, as I absolutely adore the brand and it’s products. You can find this cleanser at Marks and Spencer, you get 135ml for £18.

I enjoy both of these cleansers, they are quick and easy to use with no faffing about, they both smell incredible though not over powering, and they both produce great results. I also think that the price points are very reasonable, especially considering the exceptional ingredients used in both.

Now that we have taken a look at my two favourite cleansers for an evening, let’s take a look at what I use on a morning.

Rodial - Dragon’s Blood Cleansing Water

This is probably - no scratch that! This is definitely the most expensive micellar water I’ve ever owned, and to be fair it was given to me at the Beauty Conference I attended for work last September. But I have to say that I will indeed be re-purchasing this product when I run out, which won’t be long as it’s nearing the bottom of the bottle!

Rodial is a pretty pricey brand, but the ingredients, technology and care that has gone into it is worth it, not to mention inspiring - if you ever get the chance to read ‘How to become an Overnight Success’, I highly recommend it.

Before I tell you about how I like to use this water, let me tell you more about what it does. The products within the Dragon’s Blood range by Rodial all include an ingredient called ‘Croton Lechleri Resin Extract’, and this is a red resin exhumed from a tree found in the Amazon with the same name. It is known to be antibacterial, a strong anti-inflammatory, rejuvenating, and also to be very good at healing. It can also be used as an antioxidant - protecting our skin from dryness, breakouts, sensitivity and premature ageing (Free Radical Damage caused by natural and environmental skin threats including pollution, stress, smoking etc…)

Although this happens to be the least used ingredient within the formula, we mustn’t overlook the others. This micellar water has a lovely and short ingredients list including:

  • PEG-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides - Replenishes and locks in moisture

  • Niacinamide - Vitamin B3 that works with the natural substances in your skin to improve appearance of pores, uneven skin tone, fine lines and wrinkles, and dullness.

  • Glycerin - something to look out for when suffering with dry skin as this works to increase and lock in moisture.

  • Rosa Damascena Flower Oil - a type of rose used to produce rose essential oil, this is great for mature and/or sensitive skin and also for natural fragrance.

  • Sodium Hyaluronate - another wording for Hyaluronic Acid which we know is great for putting hydration back into the skin and keeping it there!

If you are as interested in the formula used as I am, have a look around google, I’ve picked out what I believe to be the most impressive and relevant points for this post, but there is so much more to learn about.

From what I have very quickly pulled together in these bullet points, you can see how this Micellar Water is not only a wonderful, quick cleanser, but also another way to introduce further hydration to the skin.

So let’s get into how I like to use this, and when…

I tend to bring this bottle out on a morning. Obviously I’m not needing to do a super deep cleanse at this time of day as I don’t need to remove any make up, so a good cleansing water is enough for me. It’s quick, it’s easy, and that’s what I need on a morning before work or chores.

I do also like to sometimes use this on an evening as my second cleanse, I’ll use my black charcoal butter or Pixi rose cleanser, rinse off, then follow with this.

It comes in a pump component, so all you have to do is press down with your cotton round, and swipe all over your face. It leaves the skin feeling nicely cleansed and refreshed, the water smells lovely though not too intense.

As I mentioned earlier, this product is quite pricey, retailing at £33. But remember - it’s not just any old micellar water, this is something a little more special that is going to benefit your skin in so many ways other than a quick cleanse.

Now that we have taken a look at three awesome cleansers, its time to move onto Serums and Oils…

The Inkey List - Hyaluronic Acid Serum

I have chatted about this particular item in great detail in a previous post, please come and check it out HERE. In the interest of not making this post any longer than it is already becoming - I’m sorry! - I will pull the best bits about this serum into a few more bullet points, but I have such love for it so please do visit my previous and more detailed review …

  • 2% pure Hyaluronic Acid, multiple molecular weights to target both the outer most layers of skin as well as penetrating to the under layers too

  • hydrating and plumping

  • helps products applied afterwards penetrate further into the skin layers and make them work even harder

This serum comes in a 30ml bottle and costs a mere £4.99. Only a small, pea-sized amount is needed, a little really does go a long way.

I use this twice a day, morning and night, and I can’t even begin to tell you what a difference it has made to my skin over the past few months since starting using it. My skin is much more hydrated and feels plumped - I think I described it as juicy in the other post haha!

I’ve even recommended this to friends and colleagues who have also gone on to buy it and love it, and I know you will too…

The Ordinary - 100% Organic Cold - Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil

I’m adding this product into the post for those who have had acne and have been left with scarring, though it is wonderful for other skin concerns too which we will take a look at. I discovered this oil whilst watching one of my favourite YouTuber’s videos - Thataylaa who has suffered with cystic acne previously, and who also gives incredible, honest beauty related reviews.

She spoke very highly of this particular oil, apparently it had been working wonders on the scarring she had left over. Although the scarring left on my skin isn’t quite as bad, it still stands out to me, and so I thought I would give this oil a go for myself. It only costs £9 for 30ml too which is a brilliant price point in my opinion.

Rose Hip Oil is rich in vitamins A and C, meaning that it is going to encourage the skins cellular turnover resulting in brighter, more radiant skin. It also means that it will help to boost your skin’s natural collagen formation giving a more plump, fuller appearance.

This oil is also rich in antioxidants and fatty acids, these will work to hydrate and lock in moisture, help reduce any inflammation and calm irritation caused by some skin conditions, help reduce hyperpigmentation and finally reduce the appearance of scarring and fine lines.

So literally one of the best oils out there for anyone with dry, sensitive, and post-acne skin. Also, because this particular Rose Hip Oil by The Ordinary is Cold Pressed, it will retain those amazing antioxidants much better than an oil that has been treated with heat, which in turn means a much better result for the person using it!

I have been using this oil for such a while now that I couldn’t even tell you exactly how long. I will be honest and say that I don’t use this religiously, I will apply it maybe 3-4 times a week in the evening. A couple of drops is enough for the whole face, this bottle isn’t even halfway empty yet, it does last a good long time!

Even though I don’t use it everyday or twice a day, I have still noticed a difference in the scarring on my cheeks. The redness has turned pink in some areas, and completely gone in others.

It doesn’t smell particularly pleasant, not to me anyway, but I can get past that as I know that it’s been working well for me.

Right, time to move on to moisturisers…

Filorga Hydra-Filler

Here is another product that I have spoken about, and quite recently too…

Filorga is a Science lead French brand that has a wealth of knowledge surrounding skincare, and who also specialise in some of the best anti-ageing ingredients/technologies available.

The Hydra-Filler has the power of pure Hyaluronic Acid to intensely replenish the skin. It is suitable for all skin types, but especially great for those who feel like they are experiencing a bout of dehydration and/or lack of radiance.

It hydrates multiple layers of the skin, not just the outer most, using a bio active extract to restore the skins role as a barrier, limiting the amount of dehydration throughout the day. For those looking for anti-ageing properties in their skincare too, this even has collagen boosting ingredients to help reduce those wrinkles and micro cracks.

I adore this moisturiser so much, it really does everything it says on the tin! I find the Hydra-Filler to be light in texture, a gel-balm consistency that is non-greasy. I love the scent of it too, in fact all of their products smell amazing.

I tend to use this product every morning, again a small amount goes a long way.

For a 50ml tub it costs £47.

Nuxe - Creme Prodigieuse Boost Night Recovery Oil Balm

The last time I raved about this night cream I don’t believe it was actually available to buy in the UK - but it is now… you can grab a 50ml tub of this from your Marks and Spencer beauty department for just £32.50.

The name of it gives this away, but I do indeed use this cream on a night - so Filorga on a morning, Nuxe on a night. This is another product that I gratefully received at the Beauty Conference I attended in September, I’ve been using it every night since and only just have had to start scraping the remains from the bottom of the tub.

I won’t go into too great a detail as you can find more in my other post, but some notable features of this product are:

  • Macadamia oil - lightweight, absorbs well into the skin, high in fatty acids including Omega 9 which are very moisturising, regenerating and softening for the skin

  • Jasmine Flower - antioxidant, youthful appearance, helps even out skin tone, can reduce the appearance of age spots. Wont clog pores

  • Nopal Flower Extract (flower of the prickly pear) - hydrating, high levels of Vitamin E to keep skin nourished, boosts the fatty acid Linoliec which encourages new cell growth for brighter looking skin.

  • This night cream is also cruelty free, suitable for vegans, dermatologically tested, and paraben free.

It is so lovely to use, smells yummy, feels silky and lightweight…but please click here to find out more about some of my personal experiences of using this beauty.

So those are the seven products, from cleansing all the way through to moisturising, that I have been loving for my dry and sensitive skin. I could go on and talk about face masks too, but I might do a dedicated post for those another time and give you a well earned break for getting this far!

I will go on to repurchase the majority of the items in this post, though I do have more to try that I’ve accrued through work.

I would love to know if you have tried any of these products and if so how you got on with them? Are you tempted to try any, which one(s)? Let me know, I love to chat about beauty!

Thank you so much for reading,

Love, Leanne Xx