Monday Question – Which Skincare Product Is Indispensible For You?

A bit (okay, quite) off topic today, I’d like to discuss skincare.
Many of us are on a search for “Holy Grail” products, meaning the best of the best in its category something we want to keep using forever.

So tell me:
What is the one cream, lotion or potion you cannot live without?

Which skincare product gives you what you want?

What product is the one you’ll never want to be without?

My Answer:

I discovered Paula Begoun and her books when I was twenty. Almost twenty years on I am still a fan of her no nonsense, scientific approach to skincare. When she came out with her own line, I was on board and have been using it for over ten years now.

I can’t live without my Skin Recovery Gentle Cleanser and a seasonally varying assortment of her treatments and moisturizers. I am thoroughly Paularized. 😉

What about you?

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89 Responses to Monday Question – Which Skincare Product Is Indispensible For You?

  1. Undina says:

    “caregory” is a nice typo. Or is it? : -)

    Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer SPF 20 is a product I use for years. I tried multiple other products from this and other brands but nothing feels as natural as this one.

  2. Michael says:

    Nivea Soft is about all I use. I don’t use it often but it’s great when dry skin pops up or when I need to cover up a “scubber” fragrance.

  3. Marjo says:

    Creme reparatrice de Sisley. It’s the only cream my rosacea prone skin tolerates. Paula Begoun is not available in Belgium, as far as I know, but you made me curious:)

  4. Lady Jane Grey says:

    I’m a cleansing nerd, permanently on the look for HGs… The newest favorites are from Amore Pacific (oil) and SKII (a gentle foaming one).

  5. annemariec says:

    Clinique’s Comforting Cream Cleanser, followed by Clinique’s Mild Clarifying Lotion. I’ve been using them for years and swear by the cleanser for my dry skin.

    I tend to believe that if you can get the cleansing bit right, moisturising is easy, and I change products according to price and my mood. But recently I’ve settled on a lovely one, very inexpensive, by the Australian brand Sukin (a cruelty-free brand). Sukin has a great body lotion too. I won’t let go of my Clinique products but I try if I can to buy from small brands, rather than the gigantic cosmetic behemoths. I can see why you would be loyal to Paula. She’s just a touch pricey where I live, and shipping adds a fair whack on to the price as well. But if I thought she had a gentle cream (ie not foaming) cleanser, I might – MIGHT 🙂 – be tempted.

    • annemariec says:

      Okay, I know that comment made my ethics look a bit dodgy, so I went ahead and ordered some samples of PCs Skin Recovery cleanser and toner. Three samples of each, so I can give them a good try. Free shipping, total $5. Can’t complain about that. 🙂

    • Olfactoria says:

      She has a gentle cream cleanser, it’s the one I use ( I can’t take foaming cleansers either), the Skin Recovery Softening Cream cleanser.
      I find her products extremely reasonably priced, but then in Australia everything is more expensive… 😦

  6. anatu13 says:

    Blueskywaters’ Best Face Forward Natural Serum Oil has been phenomenal for my skin (it is a favorite of Gaia’s). I also love Paula’s Choice resist serum, Mad Hippie Face Cream with Anti Wrinkle Peptide Complex (morning) and CeRave PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion for normal to dry skin (eve)–together they’ve got a good combination of vitamin C, Coenzyme Q10, ceramides, peptides, niacinamide, and a bunch of other good stuff.

    Most importantly, I just started using Hada Labo UV Creamy Gel SPF50PA++++ sunscreen, and it is fantastic. I’d been using a mineral sunscreen, but the texture and the white cast had started making me forgo using it–this one is highly recommended, not too expensive, feels great, and leaves no white cast. It isn’t mineral, but I’ve decided to give up on that.

    • Olfactoria says:

      What an interesting combination of brands. I will spend a very pleasurable hour googling all that. Thanks for sharing!

      • anatu13 says:

        The Best Face Forward natural serum oil is my HG out of all those, and I think the Hada Labo sunscreen will be too, but I haven’t used it long enough to be absolutely sure.

  7. I can’t live without RMS Raw Coconut Cream. I sometimes use it as a moisturiser, make up remover, cleanser, as an overnight leave-in conditioner to prevent split ends. It just has so many uses.

  8. Ali says:

    I’m another believer in Get The Cleansing Right, The Rest Will Follow. Caudalie’s cleansing water and Clinique’s Take The Day Off Cleansing balm for day to day cleansing. Clinique 7 Day Scrub cream and Time Bomb Take Off Time cleansing cream for deeper cleansing or when I want to do a double cleanse. I think a good serum is a must once you hit your 40s. I can recommend two from Caudalie; the Vinosource SOS serum and the Vinoperfect Radiance serum. So cleanser and serum is where I tend to spend my money. Steamcream is an amazing brand for a top to toe moisturiser and of course it’s organic. If you want a multi tasking oil (face/body/hair) you really want to try Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse. I think more than what your doing on the outside, its important to be aware of what your putting in your body. No amount of product or pricey services is going to make up for an unhealthy lifestyle.

    Interesting reading what other women like to use. Its like a virtual peek into someone else’s bathroom cabinet. Love it.

  9. Missionista says:

    For cleanser and moisturizer, I just use drugstore brands–Cetaphil is good, but Lubriderm is also fine. Whatever. However, I really love Dermalogica’s Daily Microfoliant for exfoliation after cleansing. I do not use it daily (even though they claim it is gentle enough to do so), because I don’t think that much exfoliating is good for anyone.

    Lately, I’ve been really enjoying Dr. Jart’s BB cream (in the greenish tube) as an everyday moisturizer/base/etc.

    I use Neutrogena’s dual phase makeup remover.

  10. Vanessa says:

    A subject close to my current preoccupations, as have just been researching skincare products as deeply as bathrooms. The product that is a godsend for my breakouts is La-Roche Posay Effaclar Duo, and I recently made my first Paula’s Choice purchase thanks to you, which I would also not wish to be without, namely Resist Skin Transforming Multi Correction Treatment with Azaleic Acid

    • Olfactoria says:

      Excellent! I was hoping you would be happy with a Paula treatment. I truly don’t think there are better options out there apart from prescription stuff.

    • Olfactoria says:

      And I forgot to add, I wrote a lengthy comment on your skincare post that got deleted by lovely blogger and I was too lazy/short on time to type it again, sorry!

      • Undina says:

        Just for future: every time when blogger thinks that you need to log in to comment (you can tell it by the fact that you have to select in the drop-down how you’ll want to be authenticated), it means that after you go through the logging in your comment will be lost. It shouldn’t happen this way but it does – it’s a bug. So whenever you comment there just copy the text into your clipboard… Actually, it’s a good modus operandi for any comments: Internet isn’t too reliable.

        • Olfactoria says:

          I know, and I should really think about it when commenting, but often I don’t… 🙂

        • Vanessa says:

          Thanks, Undina – I didn’t know that about the drop-down box, but Blogger routinely used to eat my first attempt at comments on my own blog even when signed in, so I faithfully copy each one first now, also my longer ones on other people’s WordPress sites, just to be sure.

    • Wait– I don’t think I’m familiar with Resist Skin Transforming Multi Correction Treatment with Azaleic Acid, is this just on the EU site?

      • anatu13 says:

        I think so–I couldn’t find it on the US site.

        • Oh no, now I have something else to obsess over! I had no idea that Paula had products exclusive to certain markets.

          • anatu13 says:

            “something to obsess over”–story of my life! I seem to have a two-year obsession cycle, generally 😀 I didn’t know either until I tried googling that product, which of course makes me extra curious about it.

          • anatu13: The Paula’s Choice staff is SO good to me- they answer every little question I have, even the really tough ones. I’ll add this to the queue of things I need to address! Haha. Not kidding though. It’s funny, but I do put them through a lot. 🙂

      • Olfactoria says:

        Yes, unfortunately some products are not FDA approved while others are prohibited in the EU. I hate that!

  11. Tomate Farcie says:

    Biologique Recherche P50 is my desert island skincare product, exfoliates and balances skin, never without it.

  12. Facial waters/mists/tonners… Can’t live without them since I’m not using tap water to wash my face anymore! 😉
    Have a lovely week! xx

  13. Sabine says:

    Like Undina, I am a fan of Laura Mercier’s tinted moisturiser. Another staple is the Blue Orchid oil by Clarins and the LRP Retinol serum. I am still looking for the perfect cleanser, though. I might try British organic brand Pai next for that.

  14. Asali says:

    Didn’t know that Paula B had a EU site, will check that out. Also curious about the Laura M tinted moisturiser, but unfortunately it isn’t sold in DK.
    I wouldn’t want to be without MD Formulations, continuous renewal cream and moisture defence, are my two go to products together with Embryolisse creme concentre, even if the good Paula slams it, it’s the only moisturiser I can get to work on my very dry skin.

  15. Marie says:

    I only use organic scincare and my favourite HG product is probably the Pai Rosehip Oil but I will join the others here and say that it is not the facial oil or cream but the right cleansing that is key for good skin. 🙂

  16. anitathepianist says:

    Nutraderm is the best moisturizer that I know of..It was recommended to me by the skin doc at Emory Hospital. It is inexpensive and does no harm to skin with Rosacea. For body lotion another doctor recommended Eucerin Calming lotion. I use both of these daily..

  17. I haven’t been a Paula devotee quite as long as you, Birgit, but probably about 8 years or so. She changed my relationship with my skin, too– and no other products are able to make giant strides towards my skin care goals. I tend to tackle one problem at a time and knock them out, one by one. I just wish I’d used more of her products when I was younger, like you!

    Anyway, I will have to choose three from Paula’s Choice: Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid, Resist Retinol Serum and Clinical Advanced Redness Relief. These are the things I can’t do without and they work in tandem– there are no replacements for me. Similar products from other brands have met with disastrous results. I can rely on these to always perform well without irritation. It’s irritation, sensitivity and inflammation that got me wrapped up in a vicious cycle in the first place, and these three products have happily taken me out of it! I still love my natural face oils and hydrosols though, never giving those up. 🙂

  18. Oh, Birgit- I meant to mention this earlier– are you familiar with Dr. Leslie Baumann? She’s on par with Paula in my mind– I value their advice equally. Dr. Baumann’s book The Skin Type Solution kinda changed my life. Those two respect each other’s opinions in the real world, which is somehow very comforting to me. 🙂 Dr. Baumann doesn’t have her own skin care line- she’s a practicing dermatologist with her own research institute, so they do very different things. Anyway, I thought you would really appreciate Dr. Baumann’s book! If you can, get the newest printing of it. Just like Cosmetics Cop, I like to get a new edition every few years and give the old one to a friend.

  19. cookie queen says:

    I prefer not to be without MAC Makeup wipes, and a Clarins toner and moisturiser. But soap and water followed by a cold water splash and a Nivea moisturiser would be OK too.
    xxx

  20. Clinique products is what I have used for about 12 years now

  21. Olivia says:

    I too am a long time Paula fan and can remember picking up her hefty books from Barnes and noble. I love her skincare and tell anyone who will listen that they could save some serious cash if they would just try the stuff! Besides less on skincare means more for perfume shopping! 🙂

  22. pollytechnic says:

    Rosehip oil is a magical thing that I discovered by accident recently when I was using a moisturiser that wasn’t doing the job. I had some Rosehip Red (a specific variety – apparently more intense and better than the regular stuff) lying around, and I added 6 drops or so to my moisturiser to combat dryness. Within 4-5 days of doing this twice a day, my hormonal acne and scars had all but cleared up, freckles faded and skintone looked glowing and more even. My skin has looked the best it has in a couple of years. It’s incredible stuff and I can get 100ml of it locally for $20AUD. It’s also great on any kind of rash, and will clear it up quickly.

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