Skincare Update: The Ordinary, DCL, Lixir and Glow Recipe

Skincare Update: The Ordinary, DCL, Lixir and Glow Recipe

I’ve been trying to scale down my skincare purchases, mostly to make sure I only buy things I truly like but also because if I don’t, there will be no trip to Australia for me in December. I’m not on a total buying ban, however: I indicated in my last overview some things I was planning to buy. Mostly, I’ve been sticking with the programme and here are the things I’ve gotten in the last month or so.

1.The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 5% in Squalane.
I know I’ve said before that The Ordinary releases too much stuff and I still think that’s the case. Then again, I keep buying, so it’s clearly working. I was hesitant about this one, because while I love the high retinoid content, I don’t like squalane much. I do think The Ordinary absolutely slays the affordable retinoid category, though, so I decided to give it a go. What an amazing decision! Go, me! This is one of the very few products I’ve used in recent years that has given me visible results after one use. I don’t know, maybe it was just an especially good day, but my face seemed smoother, tighter and somehow clearer by the morning.

Maybe because of the squalane base (it’s like an oil, but not quite), I haven’t experienced any flaking or sensitivity – and I’ve used it several times a week. My skin IS very dehydrated and quite dry, however, which may be because of this product, because of winter and stress or, most likely, a combination of both. As always, please do keep in mind that I’m 37 and my skin is used to heavy-duty stuff.

2. DCL Skincare C Scape High Potency Night Booster. Talking about heavy-duty stuff, DCL’s vitamin C booster* is possibly the only product I own that can be uncomfortable on my skin. It’s very potent and it also has that trademark gritty L-ascorbic acid texture that doesn’t help. I don’t use it much at the moment, as I’m in love with The Ordinary retinoid and I’m afraid using both (although on different days, of course) would be too much even for my long-suffering skin. I feel tempted, however, especially after this glowing review by Sali Hughes. She is not easily impressed and Caroline Hirons is a fan as well. In hindsight, I think it has already worked, as my hyperpigmentation is reduced – although it’s of course impossible to say which products exactly is responsible.

3.The Ordinary Resveratrol 3% + Ferulic Acid 3% and EUK 134 0.1%. Vitamin C is not the only antioxidant in town and The Ordinary has come out with two new kids on the block. The first one has resveratrol and ferulic acid, two ingredients I’m familiar with from the SkinCeuticals products that I love and trust, but cost about 20-30 times more than The Ordinary ones. EUK 134 is completely new for me and not used in many formulas, according to the brand. In all honesty, it’s too early to say how well these work and as antioxidants are more preventative by nature, they will remain difficult to judge. I have been using resveratrol at night and EUK in the morning, often mixed in with my moisturisers. They are unproblematic to use and EUK is reassuringly brown and medical-smelling. In terms of texture, both are slightly oily-feeling, probably because of the propanediol base. As I said: too early to judge, but considering my current lifestyle, my skin is holding up very well.

4. Lixir Universal Emulsion. I don’t like buying moisturisers, they seem unexciting and basic to me. Plus the ones I really like and are less basic cost a lot of money. Unlike other stuff on this list, however, I really needed a moisturiser (I was literally out of moisturiser and I’m NEVER out of any skincare category) and did not want to bankrupt myself with another tub of Sisley. Enter new cult brand Lixir (not entirely sure if it’s correct to say Lixir or LixirSkin?) that has come out with a well-curated good-looking carefully-formulated line-up. I found it because I was browsing the Victoria Health web site and decided to go for the emulsion (was obviously very tempted by the cleanser, but see above re real need). It’s not the best I’ve ever used, but it’s very good, cosmetically elegant and completely inoffensive – important in a moisturiser, especially if you use very active serums. The only issue I have is that it doesn’t seem rich/hydrating enough for me at the moment, but nothing seems to be. To address that, I’m layering it with something full of hyaluronic acid and sometimes mix in a couple of drops Vintner’s Daughter or Kypris Beauty Elixir I.

5. Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask.
I have been missing a night pack since I finished my Laneige and Bio-Essence. This one has been raved about on the beautywebs, it’s pink and it says watermelon on the jar, so a no-brainer for me. And I do like it. I like the texture that is somehow like a buttery gel, I like the scent and I like the colour. I don’t think it’s quite as hydrating as my other favourites, however, so if that’s your main concern, you may want to explore alternatives. This is good for smoothness and a little glow and I imagine that if you’re 10 years younger than me, this is all you’d need to look wonderful come morning.

So this is a quick update of things I currently use, love and like. Anything you’ve been obsessed with recently?

*Not pictured, as I realised too late that I should talk about it. Ah, well, it wouldn’t have fit the colour scheme anyway.


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  1. 1

    Huh, what a coincidence! I have just bought Resveratrol and decided to go on a bit of a shopping diet too 😉 Picked up bits and pieces in US (more than I should) – and my dedicated skincare shelf overflowed (I promised it will not), so now I need to move to ”using stuff up” stage (long overdue). I will only make exception for my recent obsessions: Peter Thomas Roth Pumpkin Enzyme mask and Ceramidin cream.

    As to moisturizers, I totally feel you! I am constantly torn between not wanting to spend too much (they are so basic and I prefer to splurge on a serum anyway) and wanting to try out all of the nice ones!
    I had to buy a moisturizer ASAP two weeks ago, as Clinique Moisture Surge lost battle to the desert climate in Utah and blasting AC everywhere. I went for Belif Aqua Bomb and used it over Hydraluron – they were getting the job done (quite nicely) until the package with Ceramidin arrived (I still felt I need something heavier).
    Funnily enough, Ceramidin seems so basic and unexciting that it actually got me excited. I’d compare that feeling of being ordered to bed with an aspirin and a hot tea when you have a cold – something that I would soo not appreciate 10 years ago. However, these days, it feels good to have a good remedy and just know that things are taken care of. Sometimes that is all you need before venturing out again in search of adventure 🙂

    • 2

      An excellent comment! We really are on the same wave-length: Ceramidin has been very much on my radar, I think it was even mentioned in the last overview post. Unfortunately, it wasn’t in stock when my skincare agent visited the Montreal Sephora. What other moisturisers do you like?

      • 3

        I really like the Vitamin E range from The Body Shop. Although the cream for ‘very dry’ skin proved to be a bit too rich under normal circumstances, I really enjoy Moisture Protect Emulsion with SPF 30. For me personally, it lands perfectly between a moisturizer and SPF, which is great, because as much as I love layering, I do not really like putting an SPF on top of a cream (ah, those personal skincare quirks 😀 ). Also, the day cream from Nutriganics line is a pretty solid choice I think.

        I am a bit partial towards trying out moisturizers by smaller organic brands – I find that there is so much more room for nice discoveries there.

    • 6

      Strictly holiday! I’m leaving the country in the evening of 22 December and will not even think of work for 10 days. If you have any recommendations for Sidney/Byron Bay area, I’m all ears.

      • 7

        Oh that sounds incredible, what a brilliant prospect. I was in Melbourne mainly, because I loved it so much I had to be dragged to sightsee elsewhere, but was briefly in both Sydney and Byron Bay – I remember the feel of Byron Bay most clearly. Just wonderful, beachy, relaxing, scenic vibes. Sydney was spectacular, of course!

  2. 8

    I went to Sydney… this city is very car-centered. I should have gone straight to tropics… but then again Blue Mountains walk was nice and cuddling the kangaroos (100km out of Sydney) was lovely too. Also 10 days was too short.

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