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Spring Skincare Faves with Vicky

Posted on March 23 2020

Awoo Dixi Fam,

As the seasons start to change once again, it's that time where we start looking at our skincare routines and decide what's working, and what isn't. I struggle with uneven, oily, and sometimes acne prone skin and am forever on a quest to find my skincare holy grail. I don't think I've found it yet, but here I'm going to share the items that have come the closest and helped make my skin much more manageable. I love trying budget and high street products, so these are also super affordable and I try to use cruelty free products wherever I can. You definitely don't need to spend lots of money to build a skincare routine that works.

*Cruelty free / not tested on animals


Cerave Moisturising Lotion - £9.49 / 236ml
Pros - Contains active ingredients such as hyaluronic acid
Cons - Not cruelty free
Ingredients include ceramides and hyaluronic acid which helps restore your skins natural moisture barrier. Can be used on the whole body, absorbs super quick, and doesn't feel greasy!

*Superdrug Vitamin E Moisturising Day Cream - £3.49 / 100ml
Pros - Contains SPF, thick and creamy, affordable
Cons - If you don't like scented products you'll probably need to pass on this
This feels and smells like a more expensive moisturiser. It is thick and creamy AND includes SPF 15 so you have no excuse to forget basic sunscreen.

Caudalie Beauty Elixir - £12 / 30ml
Pros - Refreshing, lovely scent, sets make up
Cons - More expensive, only a small spray bottle
A bit more of a luxury, but this spray is so hydrating and perfect for setting your make up, and for a skin refresh in the middle of the day. Smells so crisp and natural too.



Cerave Hydrating Cleanser - £9.49 / 236ml
Pros - Great for dry / combination skin, evens skin tone, unscented
Cons - Not cruelty free
This is my skins favourite cleanser of all time, and I am still on the search for the perfect cruelty free dupe (if anyone can point me in the right direction let me know!). It is scent free and like the moisturising lotion this contains ceramides and hyaluronic acid, so you are completely cleaning your skin without stripping its natural oils. This cleanser has really helped make my problem skin more manageable.  

*Lush Ultrabland Cleanser - £9 / 45g
Pros - Suitable for many skin types, hydrating
Cons - Odd scent which may be a bit off putting for some!
A super simple formulation that makes your regular face wash feel more like a facial. This completely cleared up the dry patches I tend to get around my cheeks and chin, and a small pot of this lasts forever.

*Primark PS Naturals Biodegradable Cleansing Wipes - £1 / pack of 20
Pros - Super cheap, plastic free, vegan formulation
Cons - Needs to be used with other cleansers
When I stopped using regular cleansing wipes I started using a reusable make up removing cloth, but I'm not the biggest fan. These are the perfect compromise, completely plastic free, vegan, and cruelty free, and are so affordable. The wipes are nice and thick, and feel really moisturising. Definitely need to be used in conjunction with a proper cleanser though.



Serums / Treatments

Disclaimer with these kind of products, please bear in mind that these products should not all be used at once and may not be suitable for sensitive skin. Do your research and build a regimen that works for your skin before jumping in!

*The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% / Zinc 1% Serum - £5 / 30ml
Pros - Uses active ingredients, super cheap, and it works!
Cons - Need to do your research before using
I use this on days when I'm not using an exfoliating treatment. Niacinamide is used to help reduce blemishes, redness, and congestion, and Zinc is used to reduce oiliness and sebum. Use after cleansing and before your regular moisturiser, making sure to leave a few minutes between applications to let it sink into the skin. You only need a drop or two for your whole face, so this small bottle lasts ages.

*The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toner - £6.80 / 240ml
Pros - Simple formulation, affordable, bottle lasts for ages
Cons - Need to do your research before using
This is one of my favourite basic chemical exfoliating treatments, which I typically use every 2-3 days. These are meant to be used instead of harsher physical exfoliants that can damage the surface of your skin. Use with a cotton wool pad after cleansing and you'll feel a difference to the texture of your skin almost straight away! It also makes your skin look brighter and feel less congested. 

*Glossier Skin Solution - £19 / 130ml
Pros - Uses active ingredients, easy to use pump bottle
Cons - More expensive
I see this as like the big sister of The Ordinary Glycolic Toner. While Glycolic Acid is a single AHA (alpha-hydroxy acid), the Glossier Skin Solution contains not only an AHA, but BHA & PHA's too. You can find a really useful run down of the ingredients and their uses here. This is naturally more expensive, but if you're ready to up your chemical exfoliant game then I recommend this!

*Superdrug Deep Action Extreme Skin Brightening Solution [BHA, AHA, PHA & Lactic Acid] - £5.99 / 30ml
Pros - Really affordable, multiple ingredients for added benefits
Cons - Watery consistency can be hard to work with at first
Like the Glossier Skin Solution, this contains multiple acids for a more budget all round exfoliating treatment! I drop this straight onto my skin from the pipette, gently massage into the skin and let it sink in before applying moisturiser. It has a slightly watery consistency, so absorbs really quickly.

*Lush Prince of Darkness Face Mask - £9 / 75g
Pros - Fresh and simple ingredients, feels so good on the skin
Cons - More expensive, needs to be stored properly, expiry dates don't always last very long
Possibly my favourite Lush face mask, this will make your skin feel super clean and smooth. Apply a nice thick layer while you lie in the bath, and you'll feel it working on your skin. Contains Fuller's Earth and Kaolin that help absorb excess oils and impurities.


Body Care

*Mario Badescu Special Cleansing Lotion O - £11.95 / 236ml
Pros - Created especially for bacne
Cons - Not an all-rounder and should not be used on the face
This is specially formulated for problematic and acne prone skin on the back, chest, and shoulders. It's much stronger than facial formulations, and contains 10% Alcohol with Niacinamide. It needs to be used regularly, but it's definitely worth trying if like me you struggle with bacne! Apply using a cotton wool pad after your bath or shower and let it sink into the skin before dressing.

Cerave Skin Smoothing Moisturising Cream - £11.99 / 177ml
Pros - Active ingredients include Salicylic Acid
Cons - More expensive, might not be suitable for sensitive skin, not cruelty free
A moisturiser that contains salicylic acid, so it's ideal for exfoliating problem skin without drying it out. I struggle with acne on my shoulders, chest, and back and have definitely noticed a difference when I am diligent about using it in those areas, but it is an ongoing regimen and not a treatment.

*Superdrug Vitamin E All Over Body Cream - £3.49 / 475ml
Pros - Thick, luxurious, so cheap
Cons - Takes a few minutes to sink in
Like above, this feels so much more expensive than it is. It's a bargain at £3.49 for a huge tub, so you don't have to feel bad about slathering it on after a bath or shower. 

Coconut Oil - 99p / 100g
Pros - SO CHEAP, lasts for ages
Cons - Coconut scent isn't going to be everyone's cup of tea
You can't go wrong with coconut oil (unless you have an allergy, of course!). Cheap and cheerful and smells delicous. Perfect for the whole body, especially when you have freshly shaved legs! :)

*Lush Milky Bath Bubble Bar - £3.95 each
I've found these to be the cheapest bubble bars in Lush, and they can last you for ages because a small chunk will give you more than enough bubbles for a single bath! Soothing scent with a hint of orange and patchouli will make your bathroom smell amazing for ages as well.


Lip balm

*Glossier Balm Dot Com - £10 / 15ml
Pros - Multi-purpose, long lasting, delicious flavours / scents
Cons - More expensive
This isn't just a lip balm but an all round skin salve which for me justifies the extra cost. It's really useful to have in your bag! My favourite is the Birthday Cake scent, which has added shimmer to make your skin look extra dewy and hydrated.

*Mario Badescu Lip Balm - £6.59 / 10g
Pros - Long lasting, very lightly scented, can be used as overnight mask
Cons - More expensive
I use this as a lip hydrating treatment before bed every night, and I usually wake up with some still on my lips! If you don't like heavily scented or flavoured balms then the original lip balm is perfect. Good old coconut and almond oil do the job.

*Carmex Lip Balm - £2.59 / 10g
Pros - Affordable, thick and moisturising
Cons - Uses camphor & menthol, so not suitable for sensitive skin
Cheap and cheerful and so easy to get hold of, this will always be the classic go-to lip balm.



Facial Sunscreen

*Solait Sensitive Face Fluid SPF50 - £4.49 / 50ml
Pros - UVA & UVB protection, cruelty free, lightweight
Cons - As with most facial sunscreens, can leave a white/grey cast on the skin
This formulation boasts 8 hour hydration, water resistance and no scent! We also had this recommended to us on Instagram last summer by a wonderful Dixi family member! This is also available in an SPF50 Mattifying version if you struggle with oily skin.

Avène B-Protect Very High Protection SPF50+ Cream - £12.99 / 30ml
Pros - Hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic, silicone free, anti-pollution
Cons - Expensive for a small tube, not cruelty free
Really soft and lightweight on the skin, so you barely even feel it. Doesn't leave a greasy residue behind, so you can apply your foundation over the top. 

Ambre Solaire Sensitive Face Sun Cream Mist SPF50 - £5.99 / 75ml
Pros - Spray application, easy to top up protection during the day, great price
Cons - Not cruelty free, one can doesn't last very long
My favourite facial sunscreen. Comes in a can so it applies in a cooling, refreshing mist. You can apply it underneath make up, and can top up the protection during the day with a spritz straight on the top! For the price you can't go wrong.

One thing I'd also like to recommend, particularly with the Superdrug and Cerave brands, is wait for them to go on offer because they do very regularly! Cerave you can usually find at buy one get one half price at Superdrug and Boots, and Superdrug often do the same offer for their own brands (which includes mix and match across their different skincare), or I often see them at half price. They are already really affordable, but it's worth stocking up when you see them reduced. It makes them an absolute steal of a price.

I hope that you find something in here that you are excited to try! If you have any recommendations for me and the rest of the Dixi Family, please feel free to leave them in the comments below!

Lots of love,

Vicky x


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