Please note the order of products under each category are listed from $—$$$$.

Cleansing the skin is the most important part of your routine, aside from SPF. Morning cleanses can be based on the type and condition of your skin, however, nightly cleanses are absolutely essential. I personally like starting my day with a gentle cleanser to remove oil, sweat, and other microbes on the skin that have accumulated overnight. I go in with a double cleanse every single night.

Eye Makeup Remover

If I’m wearing makeup, I start with removing my eye makeup with a separate makeup remover as I wear budge-proof eyeliner and want to be as gentle as possible.

Night — Daily

ILLIYOON Fresh Moisture Lip & Eye Remover
100 ml / $16

LANCOME Bi-Facil Double-Action Eye Makeup Remover
125 ml / $32

CLE DE PEAU BEAUTE Eye & Makeup Remover Towelettes
50 Sheets / $45

Micellar Water

Sometimes you may find a sweep over the skin with micellar water and a cotton round is a nice way to refresh in the morning instead of a cleanse. If I leave the apartment, I like to remove my makeup with micellar water immediately after I get home from work before my full nighttime routine several hours later.

Night — Daily

BIODERMA Sensibio H20
500 ml / $15

FURTUNA Skin Acqua Serena Micellar Cleansing Essence
100 ml / $78

Oil Cleanser (Balm)

Even if I am not wearing makeup, I end my night with an oil-based cleanser to help remove sunscreen and grime from the day. I gravitate towards balm types as I love how it feels when it emulsifies with water.

Night — Daily

PAULA’S CHOICE Omega+ Complex Cleansing Balm
104 ml / $28

FARMACY Green Clean Makeup Removing Cleansing Balm
100 ml / $34

THEN I MET YOU Living Cleansing Balm
90 ml / $38

SISLEY-PARIS Triple-Oil Balm Make-up Remover and Cleanser
150 ml / $122

Water Cleanser (Foam)

A non-stripping water cleanser that removes all impurities is essential to maintaining a healthy skin moisture barrier. Foam cleansers are recommended for normal and combination to oily (acne-prone) skin. I developed Superegg’s cleanser to be a foam/cream hybrid with nourishing ingredients so it’s gentle on all skin types; it does not dry out the skin yet effectively removes all impurities from the day with a rich, low-foamy lather.

Morning & Night — Daily

SUPEREGG Gentle Elements Cleanser
100 ml / $34

SK-II Facial Treatment Cleanser
106 ml / $75

LA MER The Cleansing Foam
125 ml / $95

SISLEY-PARIS Phyto-Blanc Brightening Cleansing Foam-In-Cream
125 ml / $155

Water Cleanser (Gel)

Gel cleansers are refreshing and are usually contain milder ingredients. They are recommended for normal, combination, oily skin types. Great for sensitive skin.

Morning & Night — Daily

NATURIUM Niacinamide Cleansing Gelée 3%
210 ml / $18

HERBIVORE Pink Cloud Rosewater + Squalane Makeup Removing Face Wash
100 ml / $24

YOUTH TO THE PEOPLE Superfood Antioxidant Cleanser
237 ml / $36

Cleansing Milk

Milky cleansers are great for softening as they contain extra moisturizing properties. They are recommended for dry skin types. Great for sensitive skin.

Morning & Night — Daily

KATE SOMERVILLE Goat Milk Moisturizing Cleanser
120 ml / $38

NUORI Protect+ Cleansing Milk
150 ml / $45

SISLEY-PARIS Lyslait Cleansing Milk with White Lily
250 ml / $128

EXFOLIATING CLEANSER (Enzyme)

Gentle enzyme cleansers usually come in powder form and are a great way to incorporate gentle exfoliation into your routine.

Night — 2x/week

AMOREPACIFIC Treatment Enzyme Peel Cleansing Powder
50 g / $60

TATCHA The Rice Polish Foaming Enzyme Powder
60 g / $65

EXFOLIATING CLEANSER (Mechanical)

Mechanical exfoliants slough away dead skin cells from the skin’s surface through the physical act of exfoliation.

Night — 1x/week

AVEDA botanical kinetics™ radiant skin refiner
100 ml / $42

LANCER SKINCARE The Method: Polish Normal-Combination Skin
125 ml / $75

SISLEY-PARIS Phyto-Blanc Buff and Wash Facial Gel
100 ml / $123

Toners help the following products in your skincare routine to penetrate deeper. They hydrate, remove cleanser residue, rebalance the skin’s pH, and work effectively as a primer for your skincare. They may also aid in exfoliation and controlling excess sebum production. Essences are similar to toners, however, they may feel a bit more viscous in nature and be a more concentrated formula that targets fine lines, wrinkles, dullness, and uneven skin tones.

HYDRATING TONER

Hydrating toners replenish and soften the skin.

day/night — Daily

CAUDALIE Vinoclean Moisturizing Toner with Rose Water
200 ml / $28

NEOGEN Real Ferment Micro Essence
150 ml / $38

SULWHASOO Essential Balancing Water
125 ml / $58

FRESH Kombucha Antioxidant Facial Treatment Essence
150 ml / $58

TATCHA The Essence Plumping Skin Softener
150 ml / $95

LA MER The Treatment Lotion
150 ml / $155

AMOREPACIFIC Vintage Single Extract Essence
150 ml / $175

HYDRATING Mist

Similar to the above, but usually with more moisturizing properties. They are convenient to spritz on during the day to refresh the skin.

day/night — Daily

NUORI Vital Unifier
100 ml / $49

CAUDALIE Beauty Elixir
100 ml $49

CHANTECAILLE Pure Rosewater
100 ml / $74

EXFOLIATING TONER

Exfoliating toners are effective in sloughing off dead skin, brightening hyperpigmentation, and minimizing the look of pores. Depending on the strength of the chemical acids, they should be used with caution. Even if it says for daily use on the label, most of these potent toners should be used 1-3x a week, especially when used in conjunction with an exfoliating serum or mask.

Night — 1-3x week

SOME BY MI AHA-BHA-PHA 30Days Miracle Toner
150 ml / $16

FARMACY Deep Sweep 2% BHA Pore Cleaning Toner with Moringa + Papaya
120 ml / $28

PAULA’S CHOICE Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant
118 ml / $29

THEN I MET YOU Birch Milk Refining Toner
100 ml / $32

PEACH & LILY The Good Acids Pore Toner
100 ml / $39

BIOLOGIQUE RECHERCHE Lotion P50 PIGM 400 Exfoliating Toner
150 ml / $70

CLE DE PEAU BEAUTE Essential Refining Essence
168 ml / $105

Serums (which can come in different forms, such as an ampoule) are the treatment portion of your skincare routine. They are applied after toner and before moisturizer. Serums penetrate deeply into the skin and provide additional layers of nutrients and hydration. You can apply one or several depending on your needs, but be cautious of ingredients that may not work well together or may possibly be too harsh on the skin.

VITAMIN C

Vitamin C is the BLT of skincare – it brightens, lightens, tightens. It helps promote the skin’s natural collagen production. It smoothes the appearance of fine lines and leaves skin looking brighter and more radiant. Vitamin C is recommended for your morning routine as its antioxidant properties act as a shield from free radicals and environmental aggressors. Studies have shown that using sunscreen with Vitamin C protects the skin from further photodamage caused by ultra-violet rays,

Day — Daily

NATURIUM Vitamin C Complex Serum
30 ml / $20

NEOGEN Dermalogy Real Vita C Serum 22%
30 ml / $38

FEMMUE Lumière Vital C Serum
30 ml / $88

ALLIES OF SKIN 35% Vitamin C+ Perfecting Serum
30 ml / $118

SKINCEUTICALS C E Ferulic
30 ml / $166

Multi-Function

Treatments with a variety of powerhouse ingredients to brighten, hydrate, and exfoliate.

Night — Daily

NATURIUM Niacinamide Serum 12% Plus Zinc 2%
30 ml / $16

NATURIUM Azelaic Acid Acid Emulsion 10%
30 ml / $22

PETER THOMAS ROTH Water Drench® Hyaluronic Glow Serum
30 ml / $68

FEMMUE Ideal Intense Serum
30 ml / $88

U BEAUTY Resurfacing Compound
30 ml / $148
(Use ‘Erica’ for 15% off)

CHANTECAILLE Radiance Elixir
30 ml / $210

LA PRAIRIE Skin Caviar Liquid Lift
50 ml / $715

AHA/BHA/PHA

Exfoliation is the removal of dead skin and stimulates new cell growth. Exfoliants leave the skin smooth, soft, and more receptive to the beneficial products applied directly afterward. It enhances nerve stimulation and skin respiration. I usually leave acids to my nighttime routine as it is essentially sensitizing the skin and leaves it vulnerable to UV rays.

AHA is water-soluble, improves skin tone, and resurfaces the skin. Glycolic is the most common type of AHA. Made from sugar cane, it provides significant exfoliation for the skin. It is molecularly smallest and the simplest structure, which means it penetrates the skin easily. Lactic acid is the most gentle AHA. Mandelic acid made from almonds is also gentle. Tartaric acid is made from grape extracts and helps alleviate signs of sun damage. Citric acid is made from citrus fruit extracts and helps even out rough patches of skin, however, it can be a bit stingy. Malic is both AHA and BHA, made from apple acids.

BHA is oil soluble. It penetrates pore dissolving blackheads, helping to unglue sebum and dirt. It helps to reduce redness, pore build-up and stimulates collagen production. Salicylic Acid, a common BHA, is derived from wintergreen and willow bark.

PHA is the newest type and most gentle due to its large molecular size. With hydrating properties, it is great for sensitive skin that is prone to irritation and redness. Gluconolactone is most widely used in skincare.

Night — 1-3x/Week

NATURIUM Mandelic Topical Acid 12%
30 ml / $20

FARMACY HONEYMOON GLOW AHA Resurfacing Night Serum with Hydrating Honey + Gentle Flower Acids
30 ml / $58

MALIN+GOETZ Resurfacing Face Serum
30 ml / $70

SUNDAY RILEY Good Genes All-In-One Lactic Acid Treatment
30 ml / $85

DRUNK ELEPHANT T.L.C. Framboos™ Glycolic Resurfacing Night Serum
30 ml / $90

RETINOL

Retinol (aka Vitamin A) is the only scientifically proven ingredient to reduce acne, fine lines, and wrinkles due to its ability to stimulate epidermal turnover and reveal fresh, healthy skin. It is recommended for overnight use as it is more receptive to when the skin is in repair mode already. It is the magic ingredient for many people, however, it may cause redness or the skin to peel. Personally, I use it very sparingly and am very careful to apply a very very thin layer over my moisturizer so it does not irritate my skin. You can start by applying once a week and build yourself up to applying every night.

Night — 1-7x/week

NATURIUM Retinol Complex Serum
30 ml / $20

Drunk Elephant A-Passioni™ Retinol Cream
30 ml / $74

SUNDAY RILEY A+ High-Dose Retinol Serum
30 ml / $85

SUNDAY RILEY Luna Retinol Sleeping Night Oil
35 ml / $105

ACNE TREATMENT

I reach for an acne treatment solution when trouble arises. I apply a pimple patch on cleansed skin during the day and a spot treatment before bed to let it do its work overnight.

Day/Night — Daily

THE KLOG Soft Shield Pimple Patch
42-pieces / $6

COSRX Acne Pimple Master Patch
24-pieces / $6

MALIN + GOETZ Acne Treatment Nighttime
14 ml / $22

KATE SOMERVILLE EradiKate™ Acne Treatment
30 ml / $26

ZITSTICKA KILLA™ KIT
8-pieces / $29

PAULA’S CHOICE BHA 9 Treatment
9 ml / $43

Eye cream is recommended starting in your mid-20’s. It prevents fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes. It prevents irritation that your face treatment and moisturizer can potentially give you. The eye area is so delicate and thin (it is different skin) so it needs a dedicated cream. Eye gels or serums are a nice, lighter alternative for the daytime.

Day/Night — Daily

ACWELL Licorice pH Balancing Intensive Eye Cream
30 ml / $30

CAUDALIE Resveratrol Lift Firming Eye Gel-Cream
15 ml / $59

SKINMEDICA TNS Eye Repair
15 ml / $102

CHANEL Le Lift Creme Yeux
15 ml / $105

SISLEY-PARIS Black Rose Eye Contour Fluid
15 ml / $150

CHANTECAILLE Stress Repair Concentrate+
15 ml / $198

CLE DE PEAU BEAUTE Enhancing Eye Contour Cream Supreme
15 ml / $270

Moisturizers are essential in protecting your skin. It locks in all the steps that came before this. Moisturizing and hydrating are commonly used interchangeably, however, there is a difference. Moisturizing affects oil in the skin, and hydrating affects water in the skin. If you have dry skin, you need more oil. If your skin is oily, you need more water. However, dehydration is a condition of the skin, not a type. If your skin is dehydrated whether or not your skin is oily or dry, you need more hydration. Dehydrated skin looks like it is parched, like saran wrap. You should choose a moisturizer suitable for your skin type, that absorbs quickly, and leaves your skin well-nourished.

DAILY CREAM

After several layers of skincare, I tend to opt for a lightweight moisturizer that also sits well with SPF and makeup. I’ve developed Sound Renewal to be my dream moisturizer, leaving the skin with the silkiest, most supple finish while blanketing the skin with vital nutrients and anti-oxidants to best protect the skin barrier.

Day/Night — Daily

SUPEREGG Sound Renewal Moisturizer
50 ml / $60

CIRCUMFERENCE Active Restorative Moisturizing Cream
60 ml / $120

AMOREPACIFIC Moisture Plumping Nectar Cream
50 ml / $160

SISLEY-PARIS Black Rose Skin Infusion Cream
50 ml / $200

ROYAL FERN Phytoactive Anti-Aging Cream
50 ml / $250

AUGUSTINUS BADER The Cream
50 ml / $265

SISLEY-PARIS All Day All Year
50 ml / $440

NIGHT CREAM / BALM

When my skin is feeling particularly parched, I reach for a heavier cream, sleeping mask, or balm. I only apply it in super dry areas to avoid congestion. It helps to lock all the moisture in during the harsh winter months.

Night — 2-3x/week

FARMACY Honey Halo Ultra-Hydrating Ceramide Moisturizer
50 ml / $45

REN Clean Skincare Evercalm™ Overnight Recovery Balm
30 ml / $48

COLEKT Reload Face Balm
50 ml / $185

CLE DE PEAU BEAUTE La Créme
30 ml / $550

I love topping off my nighttime routine in the winter with facial oil. A sophisticated formula allows it to sink in immediately and does not suffocate the skin barrier or make the face look overly shiny.

Day/Night — 1-2x/week

CIRCUMFERENCE Pure Balancing Botanical Face Oil
30 ml / $100

VINTNER’S DAUGHTER Active Botanical Serum
30 ml / $185

FURTUNA SKIN Biphase Moisturizing Oil
30 ml / $225

AUGUSTINUS BADER The Face Oil
30 ml / $230

SISLEY-PARIS Black Rose Precious Face Oil
25 ml / $240

COLEKT Reject Face Oil
30 ml / $275

90% of aging is due to sun exposure. It is vital to wear sunscreen whether it is sunny or cloudy, whether you are indoors or outdoors, to protect your skin. It should always be the last step of your skincare routine. There are two types—chemical and physical (also known as mineral). Chemical sunscreens are organic and absorb all of the UV it protects you from and turns it into heat. It has better UVA protection than physical and is great for dry skin. Physical is inorganic and absorbs 95% and reflects 5% of the UV it protects you from. There is usually more of a white cast and is recommended for sensitive skin. In the States, we use a term called “Broad Spectrum” to indicate that UVA protection is provided. The PA system is used globally and is the same as Broad Spectrum.

Day — Daily

NEOGEN Day-Light Protection Sun Screen SPF 50/PA+++
50 ml / $30
(Hybrid Sunscreen)

SUPERGOOP! Unseen Sunscreen SPF 40
50 ml / $34
(Chemical Sunscreen)

AHC Safe On Light Sun Serum
40 ml / $35
(Chemical Sunscreen)

ELTAMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46
48 g / $37
(Hybrid Sunscreen)

AHC Safe On Soothing Sun Cushion
25 g / $39
(Chemical Sunscreen)

Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare All-Physical Sunscreen SPF 30
50 ml / $42
(Mineral Sunscreen)

TATCHA Silken Pore Perfecting Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 35 PA+++
60 ml / $65
(Hybrid Sunscreen)

Masks are effective as weekly treatments to address a variety of concerns.

FACE SHEET MASK

I reach for a sheet mask when my skin needs an extra dose of hydration, soothing, or brightening, It fits in seamlessly with my skincare routine as it often replaces my serum/treatment step after cleansing and toning. Due to the ability of the skin to soak up the nutrients in 10-15 minutes, the skin looks replenished after even just one usage.

day/Night — 1-5x/week

ABIB Gummy Heartleaf Sheet Mask
$17 for 5

DR. JART+ Ceramidin™ Facial Barrier Mask
$6 for 1

ZITSTICKA Press Refresh™
$36 for 5

TATCHA Luminous Dewy Skin Sheet Mask
$12 for 1 / $45 for 4

TATCHA Luminous Deep Hydration Lifting Mask
$25 for 1 / $95 for 5

LA MER Treatment Lotion Hydrating Mask
$30 for 1 / $155 for 6

CLE DE PEAU BEAUTE Intensive Brightening Mask
$30 for 1 / $160 for 6

SK-II Pitera Facial Treatment Mask
$95 for 6 / $139 for 10

EYE SHEET MASK

Eye mask nutrients are super concentrated and help to reduce fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes, as well as cool and soothe this delicate area.

day/Night — 1-7x/week

SUPEREGG Calm Movements Eye & Cheek Mask
$50 for 5 pairs

SHISEIDO Benefiance WrinkleResist24 Pure Retinol Express Smoothing Eye Mask
$70 for 12 pairs

CLE DE PEAU BEAUTE Vitality Enhancing Eye Mask Supreme
$150 for 6 pairs

CLAY MASK

Clay masks clarify and purify the skin. My skin needs a good detox at least once a week.

Day/Night — 1x/week

KIEHL’S SINCE 1851 Rare Earth Deep Pore Cleansing Masque
125 ml / $36

FEMMUE Gypsy Rose Calming Mask
50 g / $40

MALIN & GOETZ Clarifying Clay Mask
100 ml / $48

FRESH Umbrian Clay Pore Purifying Face Mask
100 ml / $58

LANCER SKINCARE Clarifying Detox Mask with Green Tea + 3% Sulfur
50 ml / $75

MOISTURIZING MASK

Rinse-off moisturizing masks for days your skin needs extra love.

Day/Night — 1-2x/week

SUSANNE KAUFMANN Moisturizing Mask
50 ml / $65

SISLEY PARIS Black Rose Cream Mask
60 ml / $166

FIRMING MASK

Firming masks help with fine lines and wrinkles, most with powerful hydrating properties as well.

Day/Night — 1-2x/week

CHANTECAILLE Bio Lifting Mask
50 ml / $160

EXFOLIATING MASK

Refining masks exfoliate the skin for additional brightness.

Day/Night — 1x/week

CAUDALIE Glycolic Peel
75 ml / $39

FEMMUE Flower Infused Fine Mask
50 g / $42

DRUNK ELEPHANT T.L.C. Sukari Babyfacial™ 25% AHA + 2% BHA Mask
50 ml / $80

I apply lip care throughout the day and just before I go to bed. Lip oil is amazing for the daytime.

Day/Night — Daily

THE LORD JONES Whole Plant Formula CBD Lip Balm
$19

LANEIGE Lip Sleeping Mask
$22

ILIA Lip Wrap Clean Hydrating Lip Mask
$26

AUGUSTINUS BADER The Lip Balm
$34

CLE DE PEAU BEAUTE Lip Glorifier
$45

HERMÈS Rouge Hermès Lip Care Balm
$67

Lash serums help lashes stay healthy and strong. They help with length as well.

Day/Night — Daily

GRANDE COSMETICS GrandeLASH™ – MD Lash Enhancing Serum
2 ml / $65

VEGAMOUR vegaLASH Volumizing Serum
$80

REVITALASH Advanced Eyelash Conditioner
3.5 ml / $150

Skincare tools have increasingly become an obsession. Micro-current firms and lifts the skin. Heat allows skincare to penetrate more deeply. Cold tightens the skin. Keep it up because results are noticeable with continued use.

Day/Night — Daily

SOLARIS Laboratories It’s Lit LED Gua Sha ™ Facial Massager
$85

STACKED SKINCARE High Frequency Acne Device
$130

ZIIP BEAUTY Ziip GX Device
(Use ERICA20 for 20% off a device kit!)
$495


Full blog post on skincare tools
here.

Thanks so much for getting through my hefty list. Have you tried any of these? Have you tried SUPEREGG? Did I miss any of your favorites? As you can see, I’ve tried and tested my fair share of skincare products but I love discovering new brands and would love to know what works for you as well. Leave them in the comments below!