2013 Favourites – Skincare

Welcome to what would possibly be the longest post of the year! Quite a few products to cover, so I am gonna give you a quick intro and get right down to it.

This is basically part of a  ‘top products of 2013’ post.  Ideally I plan to cover, makeup, skincare (face), body care and lifestyle products as a series of posts.

So for today, let’s explore skincare! And here are my favourites for 2013.

Skincare sk2 la mer shiseido clarins


Cleansing oil

My top find was the SK-II Facial Treatment Cleansing Oil.  It’s effective in taking off even the most stubborn of makeup with ease and I only need around 5 splashes of this to melt off an entire face of makeup.

Its subtle rose scent makes the ritual of cleansing enjoyable and luxurious. And I found that compared to other cleansing oils I had tried, this didn’t strip my face off all moisture. I was left with mildly hydrated soft skin which felt amazing! I know at the price it retails, not many people would be rushing off to the counters to purchase this, but for those who can afford it, this is one of those products that’s worth splurging on.


The SKII Facial Treatment Clear Lotion was something I’d been wanting to try for the longest time. It’s a clarifying lotion that promises to sweep off dead cells and prepare skin for optimal absorption of your moisturizer and serums etc and also help with clearing blemishes and reducing any pigmentation from acne scarring.  I like that this is non drying  unlike most of the regular toners out there (Something I have come to notice with most SKII products).  And Since I am currently sampling a bunch of SKII, this fits in very well with my regime and is my favourite toner to date.

Serums / Boosters / Treatments

My Holy Grail serum is without a doubt my precious Lancome Visionnaire bottle, or two rather! I have one in a travel friendly 1 oz size and also the larger 1.7 oz size which I keep permanently at home.

This is what I turn to when my face starts acting up from any lazy cleansing or unhealthy eating habits. Whenever my skin feels irritated I just dab a generous amount (as an SOS treatment) on the affected area and overnight it either clears or reduces irritation.  I also use it day to day to maintain supple and refined clear skin and with prolonged use it erases blemishes and helps maintain a brighter complexion.

Recently I added the La Mer Treatment Lotion to my skincare stash. And this one is an extra step that I include in my moisturizing routine whenever I feel my skin needs extra hydration. It’s a relatively new product by the brand and I was keen to give it a go. It is a thicker clear lotion, which instantly absorbs into the skin and prepares it to receive any further serums or creams.


When it comes to hydration, La Mer does it best! The La Mer Moisturizing Soft Cream is something I never skip when it comes to night time skincare.

If you are having trouble deciding between the original Cream, the Soft Cream and the Gel Cream I feel that even if you do have combination skin the soft cream texture works best and not the gel formula; all you have to do is adjust the quantity you apply. I say this because, although the gel texture is great for your over enthusiastic t-zone, it’s not heavy duty enough for the dryer areas such as your cheeks. Only the oiliest skin types should go for the gel cream version.

So addressing one of the most FAQ’s, Is it worth it?  I can safely state it is! Not only does it moisturize, it improves and refines your skin over time with it’s incredible regenerating properties. I have found I have far less flaky patches since I’ve started using this and it makes my skin look rested and plump.

My trusty Clarins Hydraquench Cream-Gel is my favourite for light hydration  for the day time. I wear this under makeup and it instantly refreshes my cleansed skin and preps it for a smooth surface to apply my base. It is NOT greasy at all; in fact it is one of the lightest yet most effective moisturizers I have ever come across. And I love the mild energizing scent this has, not one of those unbearable floral scented creams!

Anti ageing/ anti wrinkle creams

I discovered the SKII Wrinkle Specialist last year. Although every time I was at the counter and I asked for a sample I never received one due to ‘lack of stock’. After months of waiting I finally decided to take the plunge and made my purchase at the Duty free.

Thankfully, this works! My expression lines were visibly reducing within a weeks use. And although I keep rotating a lot of my serums and treatments, I always remember to sneak this in time to time. Very happy with my purchase!

Eye creams

By far the hardest cream to zero in on, and I have literally been hopping from counter to counter in search of a good one that’d work for my concerns, wrinkles and hydration.

And 2013 was a good year and I found a great product for hydration and basic anti ageing, enter Shiseido Bio-Performance Super Corrective eye cream. It only took me two tiny samples to decide this was gold! {Figuratively and literally (the packaging)!} My under eye area has never felt this refreshed and rested in their entire lives!

To me, hydration is key to preventing wrinkles, and this will definitely stop mine from getting worse. Although I haven’t noticed much of a wrinkle reducing action from this, I still firmly believe this is a really good investment!

Lip treatments

I haven’t really been on the look out for lip balms or treatments per say, but with a recent Neimans haul I received this little sample of Sensai Cellular Performance Total Lip Treatment.

It’s such a light texture that it’s easy to disregard it as a worthy contender, but I can vouch that it can cure any roughnes or flaking dry lips as good (if not better) than those lip balms with a thick emollient texture such as the one by La Mer.

What I need to emphasize though is that this is not just a lip balm.. It’s a treatment, like a serum for the lips if you may, which is marketed as a collagen synthesizer to maintain youthful plump lips.

It comes with instructions for a relaxing application method with an acupressure massage technique to stimulate the area around the lips to increase blood flow and ease out the onset of lines. Wish I had the patience to keep at it though….


With that I conclude my round up of favourites for the skincare category and I’d love to hear your thoughts on this post and also of any products that you have found to work for you.


And lastly, thank you for stopping by 🙂

13 thoughts on “2013 Favourites – Skincare

  1. It’s always such fun to see what skincare products other people are using because there are always some items I’ve been staring at for ages but never tried, and of course, hey my faves are there too! *mutual pats* I do prefer the gel creme over the soft creme… and even the original Le Creme with the rub & dab! But, now I see the secret to your gorgeous skin! xx

  2. I’ve been using Creme De La Mer for more than 10 years, love it! Although I’ve strayed on occasion, I’m never without this fabulous moisturizer in my cosmetic cabinet. My skin is very dry so the thickness and richness of the cream works well keeping my skin hydrated. I’ve ventured into more Dermatology skincare with glycolic acid (AHA/BHA exfoliation in general), peels, antioxidants, vitamin c, hyaluronic acid etc and La Mer helps heal even the driest of complexions and dramatically renews skin’s appearance. Really enjoyed your review and will try to get a sample of the Sensai Cellular Performance Total Lip Treatment sounds very promising, especially for my dry lips. You’re glowing:)

  3. Hey Michelle,

    Thank you for the amazing posts and the even amazing recommendations you give through your instgram. I hope you had an amazing time shopping in States.

    Just a quick question. I’m not able to make up my mind between the two serums, Lancome Visionnaire and SKII Stempower Essence serum. I’m looking for something that can help in evening out the skin texture (redness & pores). It’ll be great if you can suggest something.

    Love from Australia

    1. Hi Tahira 🙂
      Thank you so much! I did have a great time in the US. It’s always a treat in a makeup bloggers point of view 🙂 So many brands are freely available there!

      So to answer your question. I’d say from your two choices, none of them actually correct redness noticeably. Although both do improve skin texture, making it soft and smooth and somewhat working on pores. Between the two, Visionnaire is my favourite. I really have never seen any product work overnight on calming down angry blemishes and making skin look even like it does. The SK2 is great, but I think the Visionnare is a must have 🙂
      But before you get around to buying this, try a sample first to make sure your skin is compatible with this and doesn’t break out.

  4. The Sensai lip treatment sounds amazing! My heart was set on the ByTerry one, but have you tried both? You still prefer the Sensai one? I LOVE your blog by the way, absolutely beautiful! So happy you decided to start one! 🙂

    1. Thank you so much Ellie 🙂 I haven’t tried the By Terry one. But from what I hear, a lot of people like it.

      I usually rotate the Sensai or the La Mer. Both are completely different and effective, the La Mer is very thick and the Sensai is unbelievably light.. But I would usually recommend the the Sensai cos it’s not just a balm, more of a treatment!

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