In My Medicine Cabinet: AM & PM Cleansing + Treatments

skin care routine

JENN’S ROOM : The Bathroom Medicine Cabinet #reallife

A hard to find luxury cleansing milk, an amazing drugstore find, a charcoal bar of soap…take a peek into my unedited bathroom medicine cabinet and see what I’m currently using to remove makeup, cleanse, plus the extra steps I’m willing to take to keep it clean.

skin care reviews

– A Cosmetic Monster Must-Have

TAKE IT OFF (MAKEUP REMOVAL)

Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water All-in-1 Cleanser+Waterproof Makeup Remover ($8.99, drugstore.com or most drugstores) – This giant bottle of makeup remover quickly removes even waterproof and long lasting eye makeup in a few sweeps. I use gauze pads (2’x2′ unwoven pads) that don’t absorb the liquid as quickly as cotton pads. Considering the size and effectiveness – this is one of the best drugstore deals ever.

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil ($31 – $90, shuuemura.com) – This OG cleansing oil is still the best, even after obvious reformulations and price hikes. The Porefinist (aka Fresh) version still removes heavy makeup the BEST.

Sunday Riley Blue Moon ($50, sephora.com) – I purchased this to replace my Eve Lom, but it doesn’t quite live up to it. It doesn’t take off eye makeup as effectively and I feel like the Eve Lom does a better job of decongesting pores and really giving skin a deep cleanse. Still, Blue Moon has a tranquil scent and works well as a face makeup remover and quick balm mask.

Fresh Soy Conditioning Eye Makeup Remover ($26, sephora.com) – Not remarkable on it’s own, but I’ve come to be reliant on this fluid balm to remove leftover mascara and liner that isn’t taken care of during cleansing (particularly when I do a heavy liner/mascara look – which I do favor).

WAKING UP (AM CLEANSING)

Joelle Ciocco Lait Onctueux/Sensitive Cleansing Milk ($78, theline.com) – There is something poetic about facial cleansing, maybe it’s starting  fresh or stripping away the remnants of the day. This luxury cleansing milk feels like silk and smells like how I imagine a proverbial heaven would be scented – like sweet orange blossoms (which smell nothing like actual oranges if you’re wondering). Skin is left dewy, clear and happy. Since it’s expensive for a mere 80 ml., I only use it when I need a bit of a pick-me-up or if my skin is very dry.

La Mer The Cleansing Gel ($90, lamer.com) – I obviously adore luxury cleansers and this is no exception. The sensory benefits of the green, clean scent are paramount in assessing the value of this otherwise ordinary gel cleanser. Yes, it’s gentle and leaves skin nicely cleansed without stripping – but the act of using it is what makes it a great start to an otherwise typical day.

Tatcha Indigo Cleanser review

Tatcha Indigo Soothing Rice Enzyme Powder for Sensitive Skin ($65, tatcha.com) – Sometimes I require a bit of exfoliation in the AM and reserve the more “active” peels and scrubs for PM when skin has more time to recover. This divine pale blue powder turns into a slightly foamy cream that gently removes dead skin, leaving skin remarkably smooth without a trace of redness or irritation. I also use the Deep version of this cleanser at night to smooth bumps on my arms and to keep pores from taking over.

Herbivore Botanicals Bamboo Charcoal Deep Cleanse Detoxifying Soap Bar ($12, dermstore.com) – This is one of the bars that I use on a regular basis. My favorite is Drunk Elephant Juju Bar (available here) but I change it up on occasion and the utter simplicity of this black bar made it irresistible. It cleanses well, keeps oils at bay and doesn’t leave my combination skin feeling tight.

Fig & Yarrow Facial Scrub ($22, figandyarrow.com) – With an ingredient list that sounds more like a bowl of artisan oatmeal, this slightly spongy scrub does just enough to remove dead skin, leave skin soft (and no irritation) and quell my occasional need for natural products. It’s earned its position by not only having recognizable ingredients, but performing just as well as it’s more commercial counterparts.

PUT IT TO BED (PM CLEANSING)

Fresh Soy Face Cleanser ($38, fresh.com) – not shown. While I’ll use a cleansing oil fairly religiously, sometimes I just don’t have the stuff to deal with it. That’s when I use this jelly-like cleanser to remove makeup (including light eye makeup) before using my regular face cleanser. It’s my favorite beauty cheat for sure.

DERMAdoctor Kakadu C Brightening Daily Cleanser ($36, dermadoctor.com) – not shown. A beefed up gel cleanser with a pleasing fresh scent and the power of Vitamin C, A and AHAs to perfect skin – but is gentle enough for the eye area. After using this almost nightly for 2 months, I swear it makes a difference in my skin’s overall appearance.

Conju Princess Soap – read full review here.

MASK IT

Fresh Vitamin Nectar Vibrancy-Boosting Face Mask ($62, fresh.com) – Looks, smells and feels like orange marmalade, but there is nothing frivolous about this potent mask! A quick massage and 10 minutes basking in it’s citrus deliciousness yields literally glowing skin that is moist to the touch (not greasy) and stays that way all day.

fresh vitamin nectar mask review

Fresh Creme Ancienne Ultimate Nourishing Honey Mask ($140, fresh.com) – If you’re looking for a mask that harnesses the benefits and characteristics of  real honey, here it is. It has a bit more weight than any of the other masks and works best when skin is in need of moisture. I’m not sure I’d buy it again based on the price, but I do enjoy using it and appreciate the benefits.

Fresh Rose Face Mask ($62, fresh.com) – One of my first Fresh purchases (and have been using it for over a decade), this refreshing gel-mask has rose petals that melt on contact, smells like roses (in a good way) and leaves skin plump and happy. Fastest pick-me-up ever.

Fresh Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask ($92, fresh.com) – This souffle-like mask (not shown) has a fluffy texture that forms a soft cocoon on the skin and acts like an instant primer once it’s rinsed off. Nice to use before a special night out.

Fresh Black Tea Firming Overnight Mask ($92, fresh.com) – I didn’t like how this felt on my face/neck during the night, but as a treatment for squishy arms? A great alternative use for this dense cream.

Fresh Umbrian Clay Purifying Mask ($62, fresh.com) – I have the tube of this creamy clay that draws out gunk from pores super fast. I don’t use this as often (I prefer the Perricone Chloro Plasma) but turn to it when skin is looking clogged or is acting oily.

Fresh Sugar Face Polish ($62, fresh.com) – Smells like lemon drops and leaves skin exfoliated and drenched in oils – what’s not to love? Like the Rose Face Mask, this is one of those “must-have” products that I’ve been using for over a decade. It was the product that swayed my opinion about oils for oily skin, particularly since it leaves my face with a unprecedented glow every time.

renee rouleau triple berry peel review

SECRET WEAPON: Renee Rouleau Triple Berry Smoothing Peel ($86,50, reneerouleau.com) – It costs about the same as a facial and has similar results. I SWEAR by this raspberry jam smelling peel to completely reset my skin each week. I leave it on for 10-15 minutes (5 is fine for less tolerant skin types) and use gauze pads to remove. Followed with a clay-based mask (Perricone Chloro Plasma or DERMAdoctor Kakadu C Mask) and for the rest of the week, skin is ultra smooth, zero breakouts, more ready and willing to accept skin care products. I see a marked difference when I don’t use this. Totally worth every penny.

**This products shown (except for the Tatcha Rice Enzyme Wash) were purchased by Cosmetic Monster for personal use. The Tatcha product was received for review consideration. This is not an advertisement for these product. All reviews and information is gathered independently by Cosmetic Monster or from press releases – and no compensation is received based on the outcome or sales generated from this review. Cosmetic Monster pays WordPress to be AD FREE and does not participate in affiliate programs – all links are provided to promote products, but without compensation. Only REFERRAL links for sites like Hautelook or Birchbox yield compensation (usually points or credit).

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