Essentials of a Good Skin Care Routine



Where do I begin? The topic of skin care was buzzing around my mind the past few days and even more so yesterday because I got a facial at Spa One Med Spa. This morning a friend of mine sent me the sweetest message complimenting my skin and asking what my skincare routine was. That was enough to make me stop what I was doing and start writing. First off, many do not know this but I do suffer from something called Cystic Acne. It has taken me years to figure out how to manage it and learn what the causes are. Thankfully I’ve gained control for the most part. I get bad flare ups when I am stressed, if I consume a lot of dairy, or it’s hormonal. Cystic acne isn’t just your typical white or black head that goes away overnight, these are deep and painful lumps that appear under the skin and take days if not weeks to heal. It’s horrible and somedays I do get really sad over it. The frustrating part of it all is I have a VERY strict morning and night routine which includes high grade products handpicked for my skin type by a professional and also chemical peel facials once every 3 months or so.  So for the people who are reading this and are still wearing their makeup from the night before and don’t have a blemish in sight… I hope you are grateful for that every. single. day.

Dealing with Acne for a few years has taught me a lot about skincare and about what works and what doesn’t (for me). By all means I am no professional, but I am bringing you this information based on my own experience. I have been going to Spa One Med Spa at The Plastic Surgery Group in Albany for the past two years and with the help of my esthetician Brittney, we have come up with a routine that works for my skin type. One of my favorite things to do is go to Spa One and get facials. It’s a beautiful place and very relaxing. Brittney is incredibly knowledgeable with different techniques and picking out the correct service for the client’s skin concern. I ask so many questions during my facial from “what does this do?” to “should I be getting botox?” and she always answers my crazy questions and explains very thoroughly.

Like many, I have combination and acne prone skin.

My morning skincare routine as of right now (12/6) consists of:

  1. I wash my face with lukewarm water and a gentle cleanser. I have been using the Susan Obagi MD Foaming Cleanser (from SpaOne). This cleanser comes in a clear bottle with a pump. It comes out as foam and lathers. Gently pat dry with clean towel.
  2. I apply my moisturizer, I’m really liking Belif’s “The True Cream -Moisturizing Bomb” lately as I have been experiencing dryness in this cold weather in NY.
  3. I then move on to other morning to-do’s such as hair, and getting dressed before applying makeup so the moisturizer has time to absorb.

Super easy in the morning. The night time routine is much more intense.


  1. I remove my make up with a Neutrogena make up removing wipe.
  2. I get in the shower and wash my hair and body first, THEN face last. This is important because you need to make sure your shampoo and conditioner aren’t getting left on your face causing irritation. I will cool the water down and then proceed with washing my face. I use Obagi’s Clenziderm Daily Foaming Cleanser (From Spa One). This cleanser is a little bit stronger and contains 2% Salicylic Acid which is helpful for treating and preventing acne. If my skin is feeling dry I’ll use my morning cleanser instead because it is more gentle.
  3. I pat my face dry and apply Obagi’s Pore Therapy (From Spa One) toner to any problem areas, again if my skin is feeling dry I may not utilize this.
  4. Then I apply an eye cream. I just recently added this to my routine and I am so glad I did. This eye cream was recommended by Casey Holmes (Beauty YouTuber) on one of her product videos and she spoke highly of it so I tried the travel size and fell in love with it! It’s called the Moisturizing Eye Bomb by Belif. The skin around your eyes is so delicate and needs love too! Love this product!
  5. Next, avoiding my eye area, I apply Skin Medica’s Retinol (from Spa One) roughly 3 times per week. A retinol is important for me to use because it speeds up cell turnover, meaning it helps my pores from becoming clogged causing breakouts and helps with texture. Again, if my skin is feeling dry I will limit use.
  6. Last, after the retinol is dry I apply my moisturizer. I use the same one as I do in the morning, Belif’s “The True Cream -Moisturizing Bomb.

That concludes my actual skincare routine, but there are several other important and sometimes overlooked things I do to keep my skin clean.

-I wash my makeup brushes!!! This is so important! I literally just use Dawn dish soap to wash them, nothing fancy!

-Change pillowcases frequently. This is important because pillowcases absorb oils, sweat and hair products….yuck.

-I don’t touch my face during the day.

– Drink lots of water!

By doing all of these things I feel like I have control of my skin and I don’t breakout as much as I have in the past. I’ve found that stress was the biggest trigger for me and it’s an awful cycle. When I was at a really low point a few years ago I’d get massive breakouts and then feel worse about myself because of them. My advice would be to eliminate stressful situations from your life when you can and manage the ones you cannot eliminate in a healthy way. Working out helped my mind a lot and helped manage any stress I had. I have tried different medications for my skin in the past and because I am hypersensitive to most medications I found that they did not help my skin and also fogged my mental clarity. I also have tried going the natural route using handmade products and such, but they seemed to always make it worse.

If you are having trouble with your skin, or just looking to take care of your skin and prevent aging effects I highly suggest you go see Brittney at Spa One Med Spa in Albany. You will receive $50 off your first service if you mention my name. Enjoy!


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