Fact: This photo above is completely un-retouched so you can see JUST how effective a good skincare routine is.
Today I turn 32, another year into the prime years of my thirties. There have been so many exciting changes, from career progressions to my personal style choices, and my beauty routine is right there with them! I’ve always been a skincare conscious individual, learning from my mother at an early age to take care of my skin. It’s my most complimented feature, and I want to take time on my birthday to share some of my best skincare hacks that have kept me looking ~26 for a while now. I have learned the types of products that actually work, as well as when to start adding them into your daily regimen, because…timing is everything.
So, what’s SO different about your 30’s? A ton. Over the past two years, I have noticed small changes in my skin, to include fewer blemishes, less oil production, and the beginning of tiny fine lines. I have evolved my beauty routine to mitigate these concerns (and even tried my first ever Botox treatment for my frown line!), while also continuing to keep up the most important foundations of my regimen. Today I’m revealing exactly what you need to have in your beauty cabinet to put your best face forward as you jump into your 30’s.
I’ve been using these since I turned 20, but if you’ve yet to add them in, you need to once you hit 30. They are crucial when it comes to reducing the appearance of fine lines, as well as giving you an overall more smooth and even skin tone. In my 20’s, I used them once a day, applying to clean skin in the evening after my face wash and masks. My favorites for 30-somethings are:
A Force XR Retinol Serum Concentrate, Serious Skincare
Obagi360 Retinol 1.0, Obagi
Sleeping Masks / Oils
If you’re not sleeping in a solid lineup of skincare yet, you NEED to. I don’t ever go to bed without some sort of sleeping mask on top of all my serums and creams. Our bodies do the majority of regeneration at night, so if you’re not taking advantage of it by adding in key products, your skin is missing out big time! My favorites include anti-aging effects, and moisturizing properties, like these:
Black Tea Firming Overnight Mask, Fresh
Luna Sleeping Oil, Sunday Riley
Sleeping Mask – Orchid, Sephora
Sleeping Mask – Rose, Sephora
It’s time to start getting obsessed with serums, and oils. They’re an investment and should be treated as such. Now is the time to invest in your skin, and toss your drugstore options. Over the past few years, I have noticed my skin beginning to get a bit drier in certain areas, especially my eyes. Being an oily skin type my entire life, it’s been interesting to see how some of my favorite go-to products stop being as effective, given the shift in my skin. When you hit 30, it’s important to start adding in serums and oils to your routine for all parts of your body. Some offer different benefits based on the type of skin you have, and I’ve rounded up my go-to’s for just about every type:
Oily/Blemished Skin: UFO Oil, Sunday Riley / Super Pure, Glossier
Dry: Pure Argan Milk Intensive Hydrating Treatment, Josie Maran
Anti-Aging: Retinol Firming & Lifting Serum, Algenist
Lips: Sugar Lip Serum Advanced Therapy, Fresh
Eyes: RNA Power Eye Cream, SK-II / Ferulic + Retinol Triple Correction Eye Serum, Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare
While I still use some gels, I find myself using more cream and oil based products to keep my skin’s oil production even. Especially in the winter! As you move into your 30’s, keeping your skin hydrated is super important in order to mitigate fine lines. Opt for cream moisturizers I use one every morning before applying my makeup, and right after my serums. This also goes for your body too. Make sure you are using a moisturizer after your showers to reduce the signs of aging.
Priming Moisturizer Rich, Glossier
The Moisturizing Soft Creme, La Mer (I even use this as a sleeping mask for my face and/or lips in the winter)
Intensive Care Spray Moisturizer, Vaseline
One of the most common concerns for 30-somethings is an even pigment/brighter skin. As we age, our skin can sometimes get more dull, especially if you’re working long hours, or out in the elements a lot. Brighteners and essences work to
Facial Treatment Essence, SK-II (first thing on my face EVERY DAY.)
Super Glow, Glossier
Nu-Derm Blender, Obagi
Nu-Derm Sunfader, Obagi
Camu Camu Power C, Peter Thomas Roth
Beauty Flash Balm, Clarins
If you’re not amping up your sun protection, now’s the time! I wear SPF 50 sunscreen daily (YES. Daily.) and have noticed that I have fewer wrinkles or signs of aging. My skin has looked pretty much the same since high school, and I’m convinced it’s because of this one hack. Plus, this is why bronzers and sunless tanners were invented! I simply shade my way to match the rest of my body in the summer months. I’ve linked THE best (bar none) facial self-tanner below too. I use all of these sunscreens, depending on the time of year.
Sublime Defense Ultra Lightweight Sunscreen, Algenist
UV Physical Broad Spectrum SPF41, Elta MD
Sport UV Defense SPF50, SkinCeuticals (KILLER for athletes, marathoners!)
Sun Shield Tinted Broad Spectrum SPF 50, Obagi
Self Tan Luxe Facial Oil, St. Tropez
Gone are the years of simply washing off your makeup. Your cleansers need to be working toward your common goal as well, which is why I now follow a two-step cleansing routine. I use a mild cleanser to first remove makeup, but make sure that it’s one that won’t dry my skin. Glossier KILLS the game of makeup removal. Seriously.I follow with an anti-aging cleanser that matches the goals of my serums. I use my Clarisonic on the second step wash, and it really helps get the most out of the product with deep exfoliation and penetration.
Milky Jelly Cleanser, Glossier
A Wash Vitamin A Gel To Foam Cleanser, Serious Skincare
Nu-Derm Gentle Cleanser, Obagi
Mia Skin Cleansing System, Clarisonic
These are all my top products ranked by effectiveness when it comes to your skin. However, sometimes these lists can be extremely daunting! If you’re unsure of where to (re)start when it comes to revamping your beauty cabinet, I also recommend these starter kits and tools.
PSA: This is also my BIGGEST best-kept skincare secret.
Yes, they’re on the pricey side, but they actually work and are a great way to invest in your skin to eliminate the need for injectables and surgery later. We invest in trendy shoes and bags, and now in your 30’s, you must invest in your skin, as it’s the only one we get. My mom has been using the Obagi system below for years, and she literally looks 20 years younger than her actual age.
Nu-Derm Fx System for Normal/Oily Skin, Obagi
Nu-Derm Fx System for Normal/Dry Skin, Obagi
Anti-Aging Acne Bonus Regimen, Murad
Photo by Christine of Christine Hanks Photography