Cruelty-Free Skincare Routine

So within 2017, I got my health going toward the right path

I officially quit smoking (I feel like I needed at least a year before I could have announced that I quit, too many slip-ups) upped my water intake, you know, the whole nine yards.

Even though I increased my water intake, my skin was suffering.

Unfortunately, I don’t have many pictures properly displaying my skin, as you can imagine I was self-conscious about my acne, hyperpigmentation, and scars. I didn’t wear makeup every day because of my occupation, however, it seemed to be getting worse and worse.

I really wish I had some photos of my skin at its worst, but hey, in the moment who the hell wants to document that?!


My skin 2016

I started off using some drugstore basics, to make sure I could stay in the routine of it all.

What really helped me is my boyfriend gifting me a clarisonic mia 2. I didn’t seem to have a purging period with my skin, it took quite well!

It took a few solid weeks to figure out what products were agreeing with my skin, and which ones didn’t seem to be doing anything at all.

After about 6 solid months, I finally have a whole morning and night routine that seems to be working on my problem areas: blemishes, hyperpigmentation, cystic acne (during menstruation), and pore size.

Alright, so I usually use my clarisonic every other day (well I try, I am human after all.) Which I feel really helps with overall softness from the exfoliation. I also make it a point to use it before mask application because, in my mind, it really helps your skin soak it all in.

I used to have oily skin, which then progressed into combination after getting off hormonal birth control mid-2017. That was my main reason to really start a routine, I heard all the horror skin stories of coming off ‘the pill’. None of those horror stories happened to me thankfully, however, my skin did change.

I start every day with a clean face.

Right now since I’ve been traveling, I haven’t really been sticking to one product. I’ve been kind of gravitating toward Drunk Elephant’s Pekee Bar, which I find perfectly balanced and doesn’t leave me with that dreaded “squeaky clean” feeling (I find that sensation to be too drying and uncomfortable.) I also use Avalon’s vitamin C liquid face wash too! I like them equally, it’s just a pain to travel with any sort of liquid.

I always [try to] follow cleansing my face with a toner, for me, this step always somehow gets missed! As of recently, I’ve been doing okay (thanks to bullet journaling), so I’ll take it! Again, if you’re looking for a toner to give you that squeaky clean feeling, this probably isn’t for you. This is the only part of my routine that has a scent and its so beautiful & light, I love it!


Pacifica kale waterAs far as mornings go, that’s when I use my vitamin C serum. I used to use Drunk Elephants’ C-firma however, with the price point it’s just not a practical option for me (it kills me though ’cause it was my fav.) I looked around for some comparable serums, as I feel this step is necessary for the lightning I’m looking for.

I found The Ordinary’s brand, and while I can confidently say I don’t like the formulation, I do like the percentage of active ingredients. They do have other formulas, but silicone and my skin just don’t get along, so I’m stuck with this one. I’ll live, I’ll live. The Ordinary Vitamin C suspension (and honestly the whole line) comes at an unbeatable price, however, like I said, the formula is a little bit odd. I find this pills on me quite easily.

I wait for everything to soak in so I have a nice dry application onto the face, and I’ve tried using small amounts and working it area by area into my face, I’ve tried everything and it still pills. On me, there is a slight tingling, which the packaging warns you of, I take that as the product working.

Also, do not forget that you NEED sunscreen with this product. But seriously, put your sunscreen on everyday y’all.


Drunk Elephant [left] & The Ordinary [right]After that, I moisturize if I’m wearing no makeup.

The days I do wear makeup, I’m sure to use a moisturizing primer to keep everything balanced. Assuming I’m not wearing makeup for this entire post, I usually use Pacifica’s cactus & kale moisturizer. If you have dry skin, this will not be enough hydration for you. It’s just light enough for all-day wear without being too slick looking and it holds up all day. This is my go-to, of course, some days I need to adjust, but I can safely say even though this is a fairly new purchase for me, it’s staying in my arsenal.


Pacifica cactus & kale moisturizerMy night time routine is the same, up until the serums! After I wash & tone, I’ll go between Drunk Elephant’s TLC serum & The Ordinary’s retinoid. I don’t feel any skin sensitivity with either, as I alternate which one I use and really pay attention to my skin in the morning to anticipate it’s needs. My skin is super soft after using both, I personally prefer the TLC serum, but this puppy is pricey, so I try to stretch it out best I can. Also, you might notice tiny sizes of the Drunk Elephant, that’s because I bought “The Littles” bundle which I really recommend if you’re new to their line, and I travel a lot so I had them handy already.

My last step for night time is my all time favorite marula face oil by Drunk Elephant, seriously, this stuff is holy grail material. My skin just soaks it up flawlessly. I believe this product is the sole reason I haven’t had any sensitivity or dryness when using harsher serums. I have tried a handful of different face oils and they always break me out (with cystic acne, gasp), especially on my chin. Not only does this stuff apply seamlessly, but my skin also looks flawless in the morning too.

To say I’m obsessed is an understatement. I’ll put it on my face, hands, anywhere needing a super boost of moisture.


Drunk Elephant Marula OilThat’s it! This is my everyday skin routine, and I honestly believe in these products. I think my skin speaks for itself!

Do you use similar products? Do you have a cruelty free skin care line that you’ve been curious about, but haven’t tried? Email me! I’d love to hear about it!