Updated Skin Care Routine & Differin Update

*Some products mentioned were sent for review, opinions are my own* My skincare routine has changed a million times over the years and ...

*Some products mentioned were sent for review, opinions are my own*

My skincare routine has changed a million times over the years and because of my ever-changing skin, I've had to adapt. Over the past year, my skin has become a nightmare, thanks to the hell that Nexplanon has wreaked. If you want to read about that whole situation, I'll leave that here.
Anyway, since my hormones are betraying me, my acne is insane. My skin is otherwise dry, with the exception of around my nose where it now gets oily on occasion. It's flaky and my pores are big enough to swallow a small animal. I have redness and discoloration as well as acne scarring.
I didn't include most of the newest things I've tried unless I've been using them religiously and just stuck with the things I've been using the longest, but I will mention some of the things I've been using recently at the end of the post.
Cruelty Free Skin Care
  • It Cosmetics Bye Bye Lines Serum: I've talked about this in the past and I've already been through a full bottle of this. I don't use this every single day, some days I forget but I do love it. I find that it really does make my skin look healthier and brighter. This is also meant to improve the look of tone, texture, firmness, suppleness, and elasticity. It's packed with vitamins to restore moisture and aid skin barrier repair.
  • It Cosmetics Confidence in an Eye Cream: I quickly fell in love with this eye cream and I use it daily. It brightens, hydrates, and smooths. It also has a peachy-pink tint. I do alternate it with my other It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Cream that I forgot to picture. Both are super hydrating and great for morning or night. 
  • It Cosmetics Confidence in a Cream: By now, you probably know this is my HG moisturizer. It's made with awesome ingredients, including Collagen and Hyaluronic Acid to plump your skin, smooth texture, enhance firmness, and reduce the look of pores and discoloration. I've already totally emptied one container and I'm partially through another. I adore this moisturizer for night time or day time. It goes well under makeup, too.
  • DermOrganic Calming Facial Toner: This is the only toner I use because most of them are way too harsh on my skin. I don't use this everyday, because I alternate it with the Pixi Glow Tonic. Using them both would be too much for my skin. This toner isn't drying at all.
  • DermOrganic Soapless Cleanser: I really love this cleanser, and it's my daily cleanser. I'll talk about another one at the end of the post that I use sometimes, but I use this one most of the time. I love how gentle it is, but it leaves my skin super clean. It doesn't leave it dry or with that tight feeling.
  • Pixi Glow Tonic To Go: I use these Glycolic Acid pads every other day, in alternation with the DermOrganic Toner. These have honestly made a huge difference in my skin. Glycolic acid is a chemical exfoliant that removes the outer layer of your skin. It lightens discoloration and brightens your complexion and really helps those of us, like me, with acne prone skin.
  • It Cosmetics Bye Bye Makeup: This makeup removing balm is so good. It's actually a Makeup Remover, Anti Aging Serum and cleanser in one. I reviewed the Pixi one recently and I'll talk about it at the end because I use it too, but this is the one I use the most often. I love how fast this removes my makeup and how soft it leaves my skin. 
  • Radha Rosehip Oil: I apply this every night before bed, after all of my other skin care products have had plenty of time to sink in and do their job. This does a great job with fading acne scars because it speeds up cell turnover, as well as hydrating your skin. It also helps to prevent acne. It's a deep yellow/orange shade, so it's best to apply it at night and wash your face in the morning because it will give your skin a yellow tint. This is packed full of vitamins and antioxidants and is a great anti-aging oil.
  • Pixi Overnight Glow Serum: This Glycolic Acid serum is also doing a great job with my skin. I apply it every other day as well and I think it's helping with my acne and acne scarring. 
  • Differin Gel: I left the Differin Gel until the end so I could give a proper update. It's been almost 6 months that I've been using it, and I can tell that it's really making a difference. I know that some of the progress I'm seeing is from the products I've added into my skincare routine, but I can tell the Differin is helping as well. This is a Retinoid, so be aware of that when you're purchasing. The side effects finally went away about a month after my last update. My skin finally stopped flaking, the pain stopped and the redness faded. My acne slowed down slowly, but I still break out. I know it's hormonal acne and there isn't a ton I can do about it or that products can do about it but it is making a difference. The acne heals faster and the scarring is fading faster. The glycolic acid from the Pixi products and the Rosehip Oil is speeding up the process but Differin was helping before I added those products in. Overall, I really like Differin. I'm not sure if I'm going to repurchase it right now because it's not in my budget. I may end up regretting that but honestly, there's not a lot I can do at the moment. It definitely made a difference and if you're struggling with acne, it's something to look into.
Okay, a few products I've been alternating in and out of my routine recently but haven't been using religiously for a long period of time:
  • Urban Decay Rehab Makeup Prep Hot Springs Hydrating Gel: I like to use this before makeup, but I don't always use it and I haven't been using it for a really long time. It does a great job of hydrating my skin and I love how it makes my skin feel. It's definitely a great moisturizer and when I first got it I used it for a few days exclusively and my skin didn't end up getting dry or flaky, so I give it a HUGE stamp of approval. 
  • Urban Decay Rehab Makeup Prep Pretty Gritty Skin Polish: I don't use this often because with all of the chemical exfoliants, I rarely need to exfoliate. This does a great job for when I do need to exfoliate without drying out my skin, which I find to be rare.
  • Pixi Beauty Double Cleanse: I recently reviewed this and I really like it. I tend to forget it's there. When I remember, I use it. It removes my makeup as well as the It Cosmetics Remover and the cleanser works well. I honestly just forget it's there, so it doesn't get used as often. I'm trying to make it a point to use it more often, just so I can finish it up because I'm a little over halfway through it now.
  • Tarte Maracuja Oil: If my skin is feeling especially dry, I'll put some Maracuja oil on it. I rarely need to do this anymore, but this is one of the few oils that doesn't make me break out or irritate my skin as it's become so overly sensitive.
So, I think that's it. I didn't include any masks because I'm lazy with masks and I rarely do them. When I say rarely, I mean less often than once a month. Yeah. I need to do them more often. 

I just got my order from Deciem today with the Serum foundation, Primer, and 2% Retinoid so I'll be reviewing those in the future. I'll also have individual reviews up on the Pixi Beauty products mentioned since I now realize I haven't reviewed those on my blog yet.

Here's my original Differin update if you're interested in the initial side effects that I had.

Thanks for reading!

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19 comments

  1. Since I use quite a few of the products you use I really love seeing what other ones you are using. I really love IT's new serum and I've finished one, am using one and have one in reserve. I also use some of The Ordinary products but not the same as you so I'll be interested in those reviews.

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    1. I definitely want to grab a few more products from The Ordinary but everything is always out of stock.

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  2. I come to your blog to take notes. :) The Bye Bye Lines Serum is on my list already! Need to add a few more products! :)

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    1. Haha! I'm glad it's helpful!

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  3. I really want to try the Bye Bye Lines Serum!

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  4. Differin gel made a huge difference for my skin when I was younger and more acne prone! Luckily I have outgrown that phase, but I loved how clear it kept my skin.

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    1. I hope that once I switch my BC my hormonal acne will go away.

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  5. I used to get such bad breakouts. Now, I put minimal items on my skin. Lush Herbalism has changed my skin's life. I cannot believe how the acne just disappeared and it's been almost two years just using Herbalism. I only use moisturizer and call it a day.

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  6. So many products that seem so great! A little overwhelming.

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    1. Oh, definitely. Before I had so many issues with hormonal acne, my routine was so much simpler. I'm hoping once I get through the acne, I can go back to a simple routine.

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  7. You're making me want to try the IT cosmetics line!

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  8. I'm interested to hear how you like the Deciem stuff. I've read great things but haven't made an order yet.

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    1. It's very hyped up! I want to get a few more things, but everything was sold out.

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  9. I tried the Tarte Maracuja oil when it first came out but it just did not work for me. I felt like it went rancid way too fast and didn't really do anything for my skin except make it more oily.

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  10. SUch a great post, the bye bye serum sounds lovely will have to look into that one x

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  11. Hi I just wanted to ask if you use Pixi Glow Tonic Pads at the same time as using Differin Gel? Thanks!!

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    1. Yes! They seem to work well together.

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