Touch All of This Skin


I damn near burned my face off with a mask the other evening and realized I never got to that skin care post I alluded to way back whenever.

Burned off is a bit dramatic, but my skin has become incredibly sensitive and my face can’t handle the things it used to. Bentonite clay and ACV masks are no longer for your girl.

“What does work?” you may be wondering.

Well, I will tell you. After a lot of trial and error, this is where things have landed and I’m pleased to share the following info with the group. Most of it is fairly inexpensive or free.

It me. Brows filled in + Boy Brow, Balm dotcom on my lips and some Rosebud salve on my eyelids.

I wash my face with water. Yes, just water. I’ll use a bamboo face flannel¹ if I feel like I need to exfoliate. If I need additional hydration or am looking a little blah, I’ll wash my face with a cotton pad and rice water.² If I have on makeup, I’ll take it off with Glossier‘s Milky Jelly. I rarely wear makeup and thank goodness because Milky Jelly can sting a bit. It’s probably as gentle as baby coos for 99.9% of the population (and Bidi loves it!), but not moi. I’m special.

After cleansing, I spray my face with water in a can. I’ve used Evian in the past but am now using La Roche Posay. It’s probably unnecessary but the French facialist in this video swears by it and I believe her. It’s lovely to use and brings me joy so it stays in my life and therefore this post. Besides, I figure I can spend $7-$13 on a can of water since I don’t spend a ton of money on skincare in general.

I thought toners were bullshit but I kept using them because the internet always said they were great. I realized that they are great but it only matters if you’re using the right one. Lately, I’ve been using rice water (the same I use to wash my face) mixed with a bit of rose water.³ I LOVE my Lagom toner, but this one isn’t $24 a bottle because I make it with rice from the pantry and rose petals from outside. Living in Portland has its benefits.

Next, I use Mad Hippie’s vitamin C serum. It works well and I haven’t tried another brand for fear of my skin revolting.

I moisturize with Chicken Coop Botanicals rose oil. If I don’t use this, I will break out. Not badly, but I notice the difference when I deviate. It has three ingredients and if I could buy this in bulk, I would. When it’s cold, I layer it under Belle Butters mango butter for face. It’s super moisturizing and great for winter but there is minor skin protestation to the almond oil in it. I’m willing to suffer through this to avoid cracks in my face.

I do a mini facial massage when I apply moisturizer. Either this one from the aforementioned French facialist or another loosely based on the Tanaka facial massage (read: I do the steps I remember in the order that they come to mind). The idea is to get the lymph moving so I’m not overly methodical about it.

For my dark marks, I swipe on cocoa butter stick from the drug store. After that, Glossier Balm dotcom on my lips because dry lips are not in my ministry. It’s the best one out there and I can’t understand for the life of me why people call this hyped up Vaseline. I have to reapply Vaseline (or a different lip balm) every hour and a half to two hours. Balm dotcom lasts me almost an entire day.

That’s it.



1 – I made this using a free pattern Google found. This one looks cute. Bamboo yarn makes more of a difference than pattern though. If you aren’t the crocheting kind, you can buy bamboo face flannels most anywhere.

2 – To make rice water, cover a handful of rice with distilled water and let it sit for at least 20 minutes. Pour off the water and store it in the fridge. You can dip a cotton pad in this and swipe it across your face, pour it into your hands, or put it in a spray bottle. I wouldn’t make a ton…it gets weird after 10-14 days or so.

3 – gather rose petals (clean ones!) and toss them in a sauce pan with enough distilled water to just cover them. Bring to a simmer, turn the heat to low, and cover for about 20 minutes or until the petals lose their color. Strain the petals and store the rose water in the fridge. To make the toner, use 1 part rose water to 4 parts rice water. Or regular water. Whatever makes you happy.

  • pretaporterp

    you’re missing step 4) sell to sephora with a 6000% markup.
    Your skin looks good.

    I discovered Dr.Dray’s youtube channel (a clinical dermatologist) who debunks a lot of high end and diy skincare…and she cautions against the acv for the same reason that happened to you…chemical burns. I found the aztec secret to be ineffective for me, I was glad to be done with that tub.

    • Thank you!! And thank you again for the recommendation; I’ll check it out. I think a lot of high-end skincare is a ruse but more of that has to do with my never trying any. LOL.

      I don’t really like the bentonite clay masks either! I do much better with honey and turmeric or kaolin clay.

  • This was right on time for me because I have been simplifying my skin care routine (Sorry 10-step Korean skin care routines), thank you for the info!

    • Nice! I can’t understand a 10 step routine. Too long. Am I supposed to go through all that after a night out??? HOW?!

      Good luck simplifying!

  • SA

    I am glad that I visited this post. 2018 is going to be the year that I darn well use up all the skin care products I accumulated and find a simple routine. I have been very curious about chemical peels, especially being brown skinned, I am not sure how i will fare. Now, after hearing a few similar stories as yours, I think I will give that idea a rest.