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Hey Christine – Definitely one of the following:
1.) NIA 24, with brightening/skin-softening nicotinic acid – amazing line, had tremendous results, got compliments all the time;
2.) Revale Skin, with the highest concentrations of the super antioxidant coffee berry of any out there I’ve seen;
3.) Skinceuticals, both CE Ferulic and retinol, though I do like other brands of retinol a bit more right now…

Hope this helps! And hope you’re well! Did you graduate yet? I’m due in 2013, but I love blogging so much…

This is a hard question! I barely noticed I have skin and should probably take care of it, haha. So I haven’t tried enough to know what works for me and what doesn’t.

i love the kate sommerville nourish moisturizer. it’s pricey but worth it. if i had to go with one i’d say k.s. or fresh. i just hate the smell of fresh moisturizer 🙁

that depends if i had to pay for it myself or not haha… if i did i would go for green people, there products are all so gentle and effective, if not then i would pick nude, everything ive tried i absolutely love, but i just couldnt afford to stick to this brand!

I would have to choose a cosmecutical line sold through professional aestheticians or med spas. The active ingerdients are a bit stronger, and can be dispensed in higher percentages. By developing a relationship with a professional skin care expert, as well as choosing this level of product, you will give yourself formidable protection for your skin, and peace of mind. Many people believe these types of products are very expensive….but check around! There are some amazing product lines out there at affordable prices.

Santa Maria Novella…from Italy, made by monks since the 16th century…smell great, natural ingredients, good price for the quality, dont have all those chemicals like the high end brands, and really works. I am no young pup. The serum and the night cream are the best….I am replacing La Mer which I love but cost so much more and had use La Mer for over 15 years.

urghh this is impossible! I’d say Lumene, except I don’t think they have a sunscreen in their range, and I sort of need that to function. I’d probably go with Kose. They make good toners, moisturizers, and sunscreens. Plus I love the packaging!

The clinique skincare line. My skin loves it. I’ve used it since I was 13 and it just works well with my skin. I love their moisturizer! Everytime I change it to something else my skin freaks out! My husband even uses it and he won’t use anything else anymore. I love it!

Bare minerals, it’s done miracles for my skin and I don’t know what I’d do without it. My facial redness is reduced by quite a lot and I don’t have nearly as much acne as I used to. I’m SO happy with it and it’s thanks to you that I bought it, your reviews convinced me to try it.

Ren would be my choice. I know they’re expensive but I look at it as an investment in my skin. Great skin gives me confidence and saves me money on heavy foundations and concealer. Their French clay mask is SO amazing. Go to Sephora and get a free sample! You can see the difference with one use and it helps to remove blackheads. I also love their milky cleanser and their night cream/serum. Plus they are super sensitive and all natural.

Skincare, like facewashes and moisturizers? Yes To Carrots, definitely. I use like six different YTC products on a regular basis.

Even though it’s not my favorite all around, I would probably choose Mario Badescu solely for the fact that they have products for my combination oily sensitive skin. I would miss my Fresh soy cleanser and Sonya Dakar moisturizer dearly though!

Liz Earle – I love her cleanser, toner and moisturiser, there’s also some good masks and face scrub; the only downside is the price!

I totally would, but I’m so absolutely in love with the enzyme cleansing gel (and I have a hard time feeling anything other than “it’s okay” or “it sucks” when it comes to cleansers)from MB that it evens the scales a bit. You’re right though, Paula’s Choice skincare tends to be more effective.

Well considering MB doesn’t even follow FDA labeling standards when it comes to ingredients and such, I find that rather dangerous. And ingredient wise, none of MB’s formulas come remotely close to the best of the best, which is not just limited to PC. As to the enzyme cleansing gel, it’s just a standard cleansing gel that does not have the most gentle detergent agents, and has nothing that keeps the skin from being overly dry. Not to mention that is contains several plant extracts that can be irritating, and irritation equals damage. However, I’d like to point out that a cleanser stays on a person’s face a maximum of 2 minutes, generally, so any conditioning agents, chemical exfoliants, antioxidants, and other ingredients, beneficial or not like those plant extracts, just get washed down the drain. My philosophy is that as long as there’s nothing harmful to the skin in a cleanser, any will suffice. So to say that that’s the only cleanser that works for you, and everything else “sucks, or okay,” is not a valid claim. Maybe you haven’t tried enough cleansers. Or maybe your skin is super unique and I’m wrong. Who knows. To each his own, right?

John,you give some really good advice and are obviously quite knowledgeable.Perhaps,though,you ought to stick to giving advice to those who request it,as you have a very opinionated voice and may scare away those who have NOT asked for it.After all,”to each his own”.

Hey Angelcat47. First of all, thanks for being the first reader to let me know this. I will definitely try to tone down my, well, my tone haha, when it comes to giving advice. Here’s why I try and give advice to people to who do not ask for it. I only started having an actual skincare routine less then a year ago, and before that, my skin was very, very bad. I had incredible cystic acne, and my parents never encouraged me to see a dermatologist or even a general practitioner. They kept telling me that my acne would disappear with age. Well it didn’t, and I”m left with severe scarring and really, it was just a horrible almost 10 years of that emotional and physical pain. I’m 21 just as a point of reference. So now, knowing that I could get all of that craziness under control with the help of eating better and taking care of my skin, I just want to spread the word. I’d rather have people be “shocked” or “scared” after reading a post, than having them do something that’s bad for their skin and realizing 5, 10 years down the road, that that bad habit and/or ingredient had done some permanent damage. Of course, my goal is not to scare them; it’s simply to educate them. Also, I’d like to help people do in this in the most effective and inexpensive way, an example of that would be how I mention above, that you don’t need cleansers with fancy ingredient as they tend to be more expensive. So at the end of the day, I guess I may come off a little scary, but my intention is to provide pure education to readers around the world. I know it’s cliche, but it’s so true (or that cliche wouldn’t exist), and if I have to I guess, upset them a little in order for them to change their routines to something good, I will do it. Period. But ultimately at the end of the day, if I truly offend someone and he or she does not believe that I’m trying to offer them advice, then this person doesn’t have to take it. But again, I will try and change up my approach on people. Thank you again for this super honest advice! I LOVE responses like this. :]

There are 3 Perricone products I also keep going with. I love his Nutrative Cleanser, and have great results from use of his High Potency Amine Complex (AM), and the sister product for PM in his High Potency Evening Emollient.

I love Murad! I tried one product then never looked back lol They have the only products I’ve ever tried that take care of my acne without irritation.

I have to go with Kate Somerville. Her products are expensive but well worth it! The Exfolikate and Oil-Free Moisturizer are both AMAZING… I will never be without those 2 products! Her 9!! Kit (for acne) has worked wonders on my skin, and has made my- very acne prone skin- look and feel great. I just absolutely love her products!

Shiseido all the way! This brand meets all my needs from cleansers to moisturizers to toners and cover a variety of skin types and skin needs.

hmm, probaby Biotherm , la Roche-Posay or Sisley

Biotherm and La Roche have just the best moisturizers and cleansers on the market an Sisley have amazing serums and anti-aging stuff

Rodial – I feel like I entered The Future when I started using their serums at the end of last year. By now, I’ve replaced most of my skincare regime with Rodial equivalents and my skin has literally shed at least 5 years’ worth of age spots, redness, unevenness and dullness in just these few months.

I used Clarins for nearly 15 years, but they’re not what they used to be and that’s A-OK. Rodial is just miles beyond anything else I’ve ever tried. Miracle products for sure.

This is a tough one! It would be a toss up between Erno Laszlo, Clarins and Clinique (the last because I use Superdefense almost every day – it’s GREAT and there are 3 formulations and they have so much other stuff in their line that if I could only have one brand, it would be available!) I haven’t tried Kate Somerville and don’t even know if it’s available here.

Dermalogica hands down.everything I use for skincare belongs to them.it has been the only skincare brand I have been loyal to.

There’s no way to choose just one for me! I’ve never used one skincare line just alone, and whenever I try to I end up breaking out.

The Korres pomegranate line has worked for me. I noticed that I had fewer zits and breakouts while using it, plus it smells really good. Their white tea cleanser is the bomb, and you only need to use a little bit at a time. I have had the same bottle for six months. The Santa Maria Novella product line, as another poster mentioned, sounds interesting. Gotta look into it.

I’ve been having more skin issues lately, though. Maybe its because I just found out I’m pregnant!!

omg – im obsessed w skincare, and i havent even heard of half of the brands you gals have mentioned! i really want to try them all now.

i go through phases and always use a mix of brands, so this is a tough, but my current fav is clarins.

Chanel! Hands down. If only my wallet could afford to only use it for the rest of my life! It’s the only brand I’ve come across that doesn’t have any products in their line that irritate my extremely sensitive skin.

Really? Most of the products I’ve tried or have gotten samples of, are so intensely fragranced that they (extremely) bother my mildly sensitive skin. Thankfully their foundations aren’t as heavily scented.

Hands-down, skinactives.com! Not only can you buy pre-made formulas, but you can make your own from the ingredients you choose to add without all the unnecessary extras. Fabulous forums on acne & rosacea. Great products & recipes for sensitive & oily skins. Very reasonably priced compared to paying for name brand products & certainly no issue with “fairy dusting” ingredients. Highly recommend giving it a go!

Based on what Genifique has done to my skin in the last 3 months or so, I would have to go with Lancome! I haven’t actually used their day or night creams, but Genifique has been so fantastic, I have to go with it.

Murad, especially in the energizing pomegranate. My skin is super oily, and it is strong enough to be effective but gentle enough to use every day. It controls my oil without overdrying. And a huge plus is that it doesn’t smell like a medical product.

Neutrogena is my trusty fall back for an SLS-free cream cleanser, sunscreen, oil-free moisturizers, and body oil. Plus it’s very affordable. Right now I’m digging Malin+Goetz, and always enjoy a good splurge on Natura Bisse. Impossible for me to choose one!

Eminence. It’s a little pricey and hard to come by, but man I love their stuff. Especially the Rosehip Tonique. It has 3 ingredients; Rosehip, lemon, and salicylic acid. Very simple yet effective.

Kiehl’s! they have so many lovely products, which all do wonders for my skin (sensitive/acne-prone) and their skincare for mature skin feels awesome as well 🙂

It’s a tie between Skyn Iceland and Boscia. They have some similar products that work well together. Christine, if you haven’t yet tried Skyn Iceland’s Glacial Face Wash with the Clarisonic you must!

I love BE but their deep cleanser has been roughening my skin lately… not like it’s rough to use (it’s creamy and delightful), but my skin texture has gotten rough without any other change to my regimen. I love Kate Somerville but $$$$ouch. I’d have to go with Origins or Yes to…

it’s a tie! i love my lush angels on bare skin cleanser, breath of fresh air toner, and the enzymion moisturizer. however, i’ve been loving benefit’s new skincare line a bit more!

Ahhh! This is impossible! I currently use ALL of the following brands: Estee Lauder, Peter Thomas Roth, Cetaphil, Aveeno, Origins and DDF. If I had to pick just one it would be DDf or Peter Thomas Roth because of their glycolic acid products.

Avene, a pharmaceutical brand. They’re hypoallergenic, scent free and non comedogenic. their moisturiser for sensitive skin is heavenly, as is their face scrub, sunscreen and cleanser. They’re not too pricey either: mid-range, I’d say.

Either JOSIE MARAN or Dr. HAUCHKA lines, hands down.

Clarification: I love many products from Kiehl’s and Origins but if I had to pick a single one, it’d be either JOSIE MARAN or Dr. HAUCHKA (expensive but extremely beneficial)

Another for Shiseido! I’ve had great experience with Murad, too. But, Shiseido products are such a pleasure to use in addition to their efficacy.

I wish I could, but I’m having really big difficulties in reconciling my prescription skin medication with a skin care brand. I currently use benzoyl peroxide and adapalene with antibiotics to try and sort my skin out but I would like some advice about how to use brands with such products…I have oily skin, huge pores, uneven skin tone, fair skin.

Haha, I think prescription drugs should be in a completely different category. You really don’t need benzoyl peroxide unless you’re struggling with breakouts, and adapalene alone can’t control it. Have you tried tretinoin? Adapalene and tretinoin are both retinoids and function similarly, however tretinoin simply has a better historical track record when it comes to reversing photoaging or post-acne marks like the uneven skin tone that you mentioned, and active acne, which I’m assuming you have considering you use benzoyl peroxide. Just to note however, that you can’t use BP with tretinoin, as tretinoin isn’t resistant to BP like adapalene. As to advice on products from various brands, I’d say just add a topical antioxidant serum rather than a moisturizer since you do have oily skin. This will help protect and to an extent, repair some of the damage your acne has done to your skin. Most people don’t think about this, but having breakouts ages your skin prematurely, just like the sun. This is because any time your hav a bump, the elastin and collagen around that bump are being stretched and pulled, and skin is only elastic for so long. But that’s a whole other discussion. Also, you can perhaps look into a BHA product that can help minimize pores. Contrary to popular belief, retinoids do not function as exfoliants. As to what brand, Estee Lauder has some unbelievably great serums, albeit expensive ones, that are comfortable under makeup and/or at bedtime. Also make sure you’re using a sunscreen because both prescription products you’re using makes you more prone to UV damage. I hope these little tips helped.

John you’re actually amazing!
I’m seeing my GP tomorrow and I will definitely ask about tretinoin. Having good skin is my dream, I’d go as far as to say it would change my life if I could just not worry about it 24/7. I will also ask about BHA because my pores really are a nightmare; a lot of people exaggerate their flaws, but mine really are extensive, right across my whole nose and whole cheeks, it’s just so depressing to look in the mirror with that staring back at you.
I have heard good things only in magazines about Estee Lauder, but now I have your opinion from usage I’m going to try some of their pore products especially.
Thank you so much, I really find every comment you make so helpful to my skin problems!

Wow. That means so much to me! Thank you! Keep in mind that BHAs can only minimize your pores if they are clogged. If they’re enlarged because of acne scarring, then the reduction will only be minimal unfortunately. That was the case for me, which is why I mentioned it. For me, BHAs keep my skin clean, but my enlarged pores still exist. Only lasers can dramatically reduce their size and appearance. Also, I wouldn’t particularly recommend a “pore” product from Estee Lauder, because their “pore” products, which would be their Idealist line do not have any particular ingredient, like exfoliants BHAs and AHAs, to deal with that problem. I would just recommend using a serum to improve the texture, skin tone, and overall health of your skin. Their Perfectionist Serum, Advance Night Repair Boost Serum are both fantastic, but again, pricey. Now remember, any skincare product, from L’Oreal to La Mer (which actually doesn’t have fantastic products, but are ultra-luxe price-wise), can never achieve what surgical procedures can in the same amount of time. It’s all about maintenance and constant vigilance I suppose with a good daily routine. Anyways, good luck at your GP tomorrow. However, one final thing I’d like to note, and I’m sure you know this, but a GP has no more knowledge on skincare than any other doctor, be it an internal surgeon, a clinical psychiatrist, or even an oncologist. If you really want the best advice, you’ll have to seek out a good dermatologist. I’m not sure how the medical system in the UK works, but here in the US, dermatologists like all doctors, have to first go to medical school, then they have a residency in dermatology. It is in this residency that they really learn all about how the skin functions, etc.. Medical school is just about obtaining broad, general, and encompassing knowledge on… well, everything. But yeah, just some advice. You don’t have to seek a dermatologist out.

I use .1% and .3% adapalene gels (Differin) and I was told by my general physician that while you can use BP with Differin, you should use it sparingly. You should use any additional acne product sparingly with a prescription product. Antibiotics should also be used sparingly and as a last resort as they can seriously disrupt your digestive system in terms of your good bacteria there.

One of my FAVORITE lines is Dermalogica. I use the UltraCalming range because I have a skin condition called hyper-sensitivity. Dermalogica has a lot of great lines (it is pricey though).

Nonetheless, that’s way too many products for your skin. Your probably stressing it out. I’d see a dermatologist, seriously. I’m lucky in that I’ve found switching between two strengths and going to a pricier range has helped my skin after my hormones switched a tiny bit which led to my skin switching a tiny bit (I still get breakouts, but they go away faster and are much smaller). Please, go see a derm; he/she will be able to do more help than any of us here!

Hey Kate/Zena, I’m not sure what you mean by “that’s too many products for your skin.” Are you referring to my posts, or to Dame Elizabeth? If you’re referring to me, all I suggested to DE is a topical antioxidant and perhaps a BHA. But like I said in my post above, the BHA will only help her pores if they are clogged, not due to scarring. So if they are due to scarring, then she won’t need the BHA. Also, all I said was that BP can be used with Differin because adapalene is immune to BP, unlike the other retinoids in the family. I didn’t say she had to. And I said to try tretinoin in place of adapalene, not to use both. Also it’s not always a bad thing to use more than one product or ingredient to treat a certain skin condition. It’s called combination therapy for a reason… Dermatologists will often prescribe BP with Adapalene or BP with clindamycin, it all just depends. But yes, I agree that if she wants the best advice, she should see a dermatologist… not depend on just my advice, for example, just like I stated above. Finally, Dermalogica is a good line, but certainly not the best, or one of in my opinion. But I’m glad you love them so much. :] Oh one more thing, the only antibiotic she’s using is BP, which isn’t absorbed through the skin so I’m not sure what you’re talking about. She’s not taking any oral antibiotics…

No, no, Dame Elizabeth. The posts here get threaded in a weird way. I meant it to go under DE’s.

Dermalogica is the highest line I’ve gone so far for my skin. I shudder to go higher. I absolutely shudder. It’s crazy what I spend as it is. When I was younger and just had oily skin, I used Neutrogena, a birth control option, and my Differin .1%; I had crystal clear skin with one or two zits around my period. When my hormones changed and my skin became combination (Sahara dry in winter, OPEC refinery in summer like now) I had to find a new system. I ended up going higher end (after LOTS of trial and error) and going to two levels of Differin to calm my finicky skin. I have a tiny flare up now….but that’s from my blasted sunscreen. My sunscreen didn’t give me zits last year, but I guess my face broke up with my sunscreen. Onto trying Clinique we go. Boy, I just love my hypersensitive skin sometimes.

Still trying to find the dream line, although I do like Renee Rouleau. I have not yet found a solution to healing the red marks that get left after zits (even though I never pick). They hang around for up to a year all over my cheeks. Christine, I am desperate for a solution! Can you make any recommendations or ask your readers??

If I could afford it, definitely Philosophy because I don’t think I could not use Purity face wash. But on the cheaper end, I really like clean and clear. I use that along with Purity

Lush, hands down. Nothing else has ever worked for my skin like Lush does, plus it’s nice that to purchase from a company who’s ethical views are very similar to mine.

Let’s make this short and sweet. I’d pick Estee Lauder or Paula’s Choice. Paula’s Choice always have fantastic ingredients with stable packaging, which are the most important aspects, and the products are very affordable. However, some of her formulations aren’t the most cosmetically elegant (i.e. they are not silky enough, they don’t work well under foundation, etc…) So, if I could afford them, Estee Lauder has some extremely comparable products (ingredient and packaging wise) that have beautiful textures.

I haven’t tried too many skincre brands, but from what I have tried I would have to say Neutrogena. I’ve had products from them that worked just as well as corresponding products from Clinique.

Do I have to pay for it or since it’s a hypothetical question is it all equal price wise?

I’d say a combination of Fresh and Chantecaille! Fresh for skincare products and Chantecaille for cosmetics. On my lips I mostly just do Fresh’s tinted lipbalms for ease of use, plus I love them! You can’t beat MAC’s lipsticks though for color selection and I like the vanilla scent.

either philosophy or nivea, although i haven’t done much experimenting with skin products since all of my cash goes into makeup!

Definitly Lush. I love their ethics and products. I switched a couple months ago an dmy skin has never looked better. I love Lush!!

I use things from so many different brands, but my absolute favorite is Darphin. Their products are so effective! It’s a bit pricey, but I have yet to try something from them that doesn’t work.

Other brands I use and love are B. Kamins, Khiel’s, Lancome and Caudalie. All are pretty fabulous, but Darphin is definitely my #1!

For now I would go for Dior Total Capture because I never found other products that could moisturize my skin enough. Even I have a combination skin, all other products I have tried, broke out my skin and made it rough and dry. But with the pricy of Total Capture, I still want to keep looking for something that can work equal or better and cheaper.

Oh gosh…this is hard. I am at a point where I have really balance skin, happy with my skin care routine, but it does not involve products all from the same line! I guess having to pick only one, it would be Peter Thomas Roth since I am having the best luck with his products for aging skin (wrinkles, firmness, re-texturing my skin). But I like some of you also, really like and use some of the Kate Sommerville products. I also have 2 cleansers I like that are non PTR. As one other responded said, if $ were no object, I too have loved everything I have used thus far in the Nude skin care line. But over all, for my $, PTR keeps coming up with products that work on my target skin issues that bother me the most, that being signs of aging.

Origins for sure. I’m so impressed with the products. I personally don’t have sensitive skin but their Dr Weil line is the best for that!

Kiehl’s! Their products are fantastic and they’ve been around for 160 years… what could be more persuasive than that?

Clinique is the only thing that works on me. I’ve tried other brands and they can’t improve or undo the magic Clinique worked on my skin.

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