My skin type: I have combination skin, oily most everywhere except my cheeks and above my eyebrows, where I tend to get dry. I have dark spots just about everywhere, signs of early aging on nasolabial lines, the edges of my eyes, between my eyebrows, and on my forehead. I also have milia on my chin and on the edges of my mouth as well. The climate for me here in West Virginia right now is getting to be a pretty steady 85 degrees throughout the day, with about half of those days being rainy, and the other half humid and sunny.
My fourth week into the summer box has been very encouraging and low key. My life has been very fast-paced this week. The ease and simplicity of the items curated for summer in this collection have been perfect for the long summery days, where we all seem to squeeze a little more time into our days while the sun shines a little longer for us. My favorite product throughout the week has been the Detox Herbal mask for it’s softening and exfoliating properties.
Changes I’ve seen
My week started off slow as far as dramatic changes go, but after a few days, I woke up with what seemed like overnight improvement (though, I’m sure this was a gradual change over the days that I felt like things had slowed). My pores have continued to decrease in appearance in my t-zone - my biggest problem area, the stubborn breakouts just below my jawline are almost gone (not quite, but I’m definitely on the winning side of the battle this time!), and my skin is generally softer and smoother even more-so than last week. I’ve also noticed an even bigger reduction in some of the small wrinkles on my forehead, nasolabial lines, and around my eyes.
AM Routine & PM routine
My morning routines are variable depending on the weather, which changes every day here
In the morning I typically wash with the Bamboo Foaming Cleanser (coming soon!), followed by the Oatmeal and Rice Cleansing Grains (coming soon!), and if I’m feeling extra grimey from overnight, then I may add in a third cleanse with the Peppermint Water -- whereas on quick and dirty days, I will just swipe with a few turnovers of the Peppermint Water as a single cleanse. After the cleanse I use the Strawberry Cocktail Exfoliating Toner (coming soon!) to prep my skin for serums. I follow the cleansing with a spray each of the Aloe & Cucumber Mist (coming soon!) and the Lotus Serum Mist, Piper’s Peat Serum on my milia and breakout areas - under my eyes, around my lips, chin, and below my jawline; Coconut Serum comes next - about four or five drops all over my face, next comes Marine Serum - which I use about three drops of on my drier areas like my cheeks and around my eyes; I finish off the serums with a drop of Magic Dragon Serum under my eyes and blended to my breakout areas where I need to heal. On the muggy and rainy days, I finish everything off with Red Wine Pressed Serum as my last step. If I think it’s going to be dry outside, then I’ll follow that with a few drops of Blush Beauty Oil and a dab of After Sun Facebalm Rescue and Sunscreen.
In the evenings, I always double cleanse. I use Vacuum Cleansing Oil followed by the Bamboo Foaming Cleanser (coming soon!). As a toner in the evenings, I use Maple Essence toner; followed by Piper’s Peat, Prickly Pear (testing), Dorian Gray’s Anti-Aging Serum (every other day), Marine, Hydra, Pearl, and Magic Dragon. I use two pressed serums: Red Wine and Glow. Night-time moisturizers are Blush Beauty Oil, Rose & Honey on drier days, and After Sun on days where I’ve gotten a little more sun than usual. I finish everything off with either the Jade Gel Cream (testing), or the Donkey Milk Gel Sleeping Pack.
Any changes I’ve made
The biggest changes I’ve made this week are to cut down the routine with the weather warming up as much as I can without drying myself out; there’s a very delicate balance in changing your routine, but the summer box definitely makes is much easier. The other big change was to start really using the grains within the Detox Herbal Mask and really taking advantage of the opportunity to exfoliating and really get it worked into my skin before letting it sit for a while, it really seems to intensify the effects of the mask and it’s brightening and softening effects when you use it.
It has really been a joy so far just to feel, smell, and see the changes that the summer box makes in my skin each week. Transitioning into summer with so few breakouts, bright skin, and no sun burns thus far has been a really nice way to say “hello” to summer. The introduction of the products, the ritual of the routine, and the reviewing process has really helped me gain a sense of responsibility for my skin and the process than I probably ever had before, and this has been extremely beneficial in effectively healing my skin over this time. I have a newfound love for masking that I never knew I could have, and I look forward to pressing Coconut Serum into my face every morning and breathing in the tropical smell of the coconut fruit. Everything in this collection is lovely, summery, light, and kind to your skin. This is the first time I have ever been so confident without makeup in my life, and I am so grateful to feel good in my own skin again.