The entire Paula's Choice Skin Recovery range for very dry and sensitive sin
Beauty, Review

My Skincare Routine for dry and sensitive skin

I recently realized that I have never done a post about my skincare routine before. This is not really all that strange considering I have never been much into skincare in the past: I had a few products that did the trick – eye makeup remover, cleanser and moisturizer – and never really saw any point in advancing my routine any further. However, around this time last year I started using a brand new (for me) skin care range, and I also discovered a few other products that worked really well for me. I have noticed a massive difference skin, and now that I have used the same products regularly for nearly 12 months I thought it would be time to share!

A small disclaimer at first: What works for me might not necessarily work for you. My skin is very dry and sensitive, so someone with oily or combination skin will probably have different needs than mine.

The Paula’s Choice Skin Recovery range

You might remember my review of the Paula’s Choice Skin Recovery range that I posted back in January, so I won’t repeat everything in this post. In summary the range consists of a cleanser, a toner, an 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant, a serum, an SPF 30 daytime moisturizer, a non-spf nighttime moisturizer, and a moisturizing mask. That’s five products in the morning and five products in the evening, which might seem excessive, but once you get into the routine it really isn’t that bad and the results have truly made it all worth it for me. My skin tone is much more even, the skin feels much less dry and irritated than it did before, the black spots on my nose have been reduced drastically in size, and after about 6-9 months even the big red broken blood vessel on my nose was completely vanished. Also, I hardly ever get those annoying hormonal breakouts around my chin and jaw anymore. I used to get them all the time, and they left scars that would last for months. All in all, I can’t praise the Paula’s Choice Skin Recovery line enough. They also have similar lines for other skin types, so shoot them an e-mail if you are curious and I’m sure they will help you find the right one for your needs.

Reader discount: get 10% off your first Paula’s Choice order by using this link

Edit: Since January 2017 you can no longer order to Norway from the US Site. Paula’s Choice recommends ordering from Beauty Wonderland or Skin City. You can also buy from Look Fantastic.

Other skincare staples

I don’t use Paula’s Choice exclusively though. For example I don’t like to use cleansing milks on my eyes (although the one from Paula is supposed to be gentle enough for it), so I use Bioderma’s Crèaline H2O micellar water to remove my eye makeup. I think I first came in contact with this product when a makeup artist used it on me years and years ago, and I forgot all about it until Lisa Eldridge started mentioning it in a lot of her videos. It was a pain to get hold of for a while, but you can now get it from a good handful of places online.

My next product is La Roche-Posay’s Cicaplast. This one was a recommendation that I got from Maria of Lost in a Spotless Mind one winter when I was suffering from extremely dry skin around my nose. You know how it is – you get a cold, you blow your nose a hundred times a day, and you completely ruin the skin around your nostrils. It is supposed to accelerate reconstruction of the skin barrier, and is great on irritated and chapped skin. The formula is also quite light, so it is appropriate for daytime use.


However, if you need something even more heavy duty then I suggest you give the Decubal Lips & Dry Spots Balm a go. This stuff is so thick you have to use physical force to get it out of the tube, and it sinks into the skin so slowly that I would only recommend using it at night if it is going on your face. It really is great stuff though. I have used it a lot on the aforementioned dry nose, and I also use it religiously on dry winter elbows.

The last product I want to recommend to you is La Roche-Posay’s Effaclar H. I don’t use this very often, but when I do it is a godsend. It is originally formulated to help people with chemically dehydrated skin (for example from using Accutane for acne), but I have found that it is excellent for when I see emerging spots, or for when my skin is affected by allergies in one way or another. It doesn’t replace my antihistamines (nothing could ever replace my antihistamines), but when I wear this as my nighttime moisturizer I almost always see a drastic improvement in the look and feel of my skin. It doesn’t do much for me when my skin is its usual well-behaved self, but it is great for when I need to soothe some kind of reaction.

And that’s it. You can probably tell that the skincare shelf in my bathroom is pretty full, but I can honestly say that every one of these products is well worth both the money and the bathroom shelf real-estate. When it comes to body care I am a simpleton – body butters all the way. These day’s I’m loving The Body Shop’s shea body butter, but that changes all the time.


13 thoughts on “My Skincare Routine for dry and sensitive skin

  1. elina says:

    A very interesting post, thank you! I’m a “full on” kind of a girl with super dry and sensitive skin. Winters are hell, because there’s no sunlight, it’s super cold and the air is dry.

    At the moment these work for me: a foaming cleanser, toner and eyemakeup remover from Vichy (all for sensitive skin), Lancome Genifique serum, No7 Day moisturiser for super dry/dry skin, Sensai Silk Emulsion Supermoist, Lancome Genifique and Vichy Aqualia Thermal eyecreams. In wintertime I change the Sensai night moisturiser to Vichy Nutrilogie 2. Unfortunately No7 is no longer available here, so I will have to find another one for daytime use. I’ll probably go back to Lancome, but we’ll see. I tried Avene’s products earlier this year as I’ve heard they’re great for sensitive/dry skin, but they didn’t work for me at all.

    Dermalogica’s Daily Microfoliant is my holy grail exfoliator, but I only use it 2-3 times per week, because I don’t think my skin could take it any more often. But it’s SO GOOD and makes my skin look amazing! I use Clinique’s Moisture Surge Overnight Mask always after exfoliating. Another product I’ll definitely keep repurchasing. I also have a mask from Natura Siberica that I use every now and then.

    For bodycare I’m all about body butters and oils. Body Shop always delivers, but I like others as well! I used to love Lush, but I have become too sensitive for the strong smells. Boo.

    • I swear to you, I used Nutrilogie 2 for probably a DECADE, I loved it so so much! I would probably still use it if I didn’t buy a full set from Paula’s Choice :) I have heard so many great things about moisture surge, I think I might have to get a tester next time I have the chance. I adore Lush, but like you I’m sensitive to scent and stick to their «It’s raining men» shower gel and the avocado bath bomb :)

      Thank you so much for the detailed comment, I love hearing about other people’s skin care routines!

  2. I like your make up / skin care posts a lot, but most of the time I have absolutely no clue what you’re talking about. It goes right over my head. But I do love the body butters from The Body Shop though – coconut is my favourite!

  3. i do love me some skincare! i also have dry and sensitive skin. i suffer from exema though luckily not on my face but it effects the overall texture of the skin. (when i first went to my dermatologist he came into the room, glanced at me and said “you are here for your exema.”)

    i love oils (i use jojoba and rosehhip oil) and the brand pai skincare. i am sure you’ve heard off them in youtube and blogs, expensive but gooood stuff. maybe you want to try their cleaner when the Paula choice one runs out because i bet its easier to get hold off. i love that stuff.
    i ttrry to use face cloth reagularly because it improves my skintexture if i do. and i use melvita rosewater in the spraybottle as an toner if i don’t use the magical clarins gentle exfoliationg toner. that stuff tho… love it. i dont use cottonpads with it because it is so expensive and i dont want any of it getting lost, instead i apply it directy with my hands and that works just fine.
    oh and my holy grail skinsaver is the la Roche posay cicaplast Baume b5. i use it mainly on my hands where i get aktive exema breakouts but i also use it on my face if my skin reacts to anything.
    oh oh and the origins mask.. the black one for clearing pores. leaves my skin super red for a few hours but i have never seen anything cleaning those pores so well.
    and i am very interested in trying some Serums.. caudalie sos, melvita extraordrdinare waters…

    damn that comment is a mess xD sorry, i guess i should do a structured skincare routine on my blog. looks like you get me back into that shit, still working on that closet confidential tag. bit strange to switch to blogging in english though^^

    • Jesus, sorry for the bad spelling. this tablet thing i am using has some funky ideas for autocorrect and i am not used to the touchsceen keybord (totally different from my cellphone i swear :’D).

      • Eczema, party of two! I’ve struggled with that stuff since childhood. Thankfully it isn’t as bad as it used to be, but my hands have it rough during winter – a lot of the time they are so dry and flaky that I no longer have fingerprints. I wish I was joking but I’m not. I don’t use cotton pads with my toner either, it works just as well when I just pat it on with my hands. No way am I sacrificing half my expensive product to the cotton pad gods!

        Hahahaha I love that I’m getting you blogging again, you go! I’m trying to stick to at least once a week now, it seems to be going well so far :)

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