Everything I put on my face during a 3-day winter getaway

Everything I put on my face during a 3-day winter getaway

Winter Skin

I know that spring may be peeking its sunny self out occasionally, but the harsh reality is this–winter is still very much here, and our fully skinned selves are still suffering the consequences. I went upstate New York this weekend (to a lovely mountain range called the Adirondacks) and had many a conversation about skincare with my companions. Heated dinner discussions, let me tell you. I shared my beauty routine with them, and thought, “Hey! why not on Steeped in Style too?”

If I had a personal skincare mantra, which who am I kidding–I do–it would most definitely be “Do the Dew”.Basically I want my skin to be plump, moisturized, and dewy at all times. A full face of skincare over makeup is my mecca. If I look like a fresh-faced 18 year old girl with maybe a touch of light makeup then I’m doing my job right. A skincare routine in summer versus winter are certainly different in terms of focus, and problem “areas” but this winter I’ve really gotten it down pat with some new products in my arsenal.

Here’s what I’ve been doing recently. Let me know if you’ve tried any of these products or want to see more of my daily skincare explorations. Believe me, I’m a big on new products, so I’m always up to try something new.


Cleanse with DHC Deep Cleansing Oil. I’m usually about a two part cleanse which starts with an oil, since I err on the oily combo side of skin types, and this oil is soothing enough to use year round. In the am, it’s gentle enough to prep the skin for more moisture, as well as remove any of the evening products I applied 9 hours before.

Tone with Thayer’s Witch Hazel Rosewater and Aloe Vera. To simultaneously cleanse, and calm the skin, I usually tone AM and PM. The goal is to remove any left over makeup or product, and to prep the skin for any serums/active ingredients I add next. I’ve gone through countless bottles of this stuff plus it smells divine, and is all natural!

Apply a blend of the Ordinary’s Hyaluronic Acid + B5 and SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic. This is where the magic happens. Hyaluronic acid is a all-star moisturizer, that penetrates both surface and deep layers of the dermis. Vitamin C, and Ferulic Acid are key to fight free radicals, prevent aging, and even out skin tone. Seriously, this acid has changed the overall tone, and texture of my skin since I’ve started using it. Note, you need to wear sunscreen (always) but especially after using any Vitamin C containing products as your skin can be more sensitive to UV rays. I dot a bit of these Mario Badescu Cellufirm drops around my eye areas to add a bit more of targeted moisture.

Give a few moments to let the products soak in, and then palm mix Avene Tolerance Extreme Creme and Elta MD UV Clear Broad Spectrum Sunscreen. I LOVE this combo of dreamy products. The Avene creme is non-scented, and is loaded with mineral spring thermal water so it is extremely calming. I’m prone to redness and irritation in the wintertime so this has saved me from unevenness and any seasonal flakiness. This sunscreen is free from chemical ingredients, and also helps to fight acne, redness, and irritation. These products blend beautifully, and help to plump up the skin.


Conceal with Nars Creamy Concealer. I spot cover any blemishes, under my eyes, and around my nose, but otherwise like to let my skin tone shine through. I add a bit to my natural flush with RMS Lip2Cheek in Demure. OBSESSED with this product. It blends so beautifully on both the apples of cheeks, eyelids (if you’re into that too), and the lips. I also topped off the lips with some LipStick Queen Frog Prince which adapts to the pH of your lips and settles into a lovely custom pinky hue.

Fill out brows with NYX Micro Brow Pencil and brow gel. I previously was a loyal Anastasia brow pencil user but that stuff is pricey (32 ish bucks) and I ran through it almost every two months. The NYX version is 1/3 less and works just as well. After I line, and spot fill, I like to brush up ‘dem brows. Right now I’m using the dregs of Glossier BoyBrow, and Maybelline Brow Precise Fiber (kinda eh about this product, so no link).  Lastly I throw on some mascara, again not loyal to one product, but right now am finishing up a Benefit They’re Real tube. For touch ups through out the day, or after a winter activity outside, I like a spritz of Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe Cucumber and Green Tea. 

An interruption for photographic evidence of said skin care and beauty routine in real time

winter skin

Lots of snowshoeing, and ice skating ensued!


Wash and tone again with the above mentioned products. Blend the Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid mentioned above with Paula’s Choice 2% BHA Gel. Acids are very hot right now in the beauty community and rightfully so! They gently slough off dead skin cells, clear congested pores, and reveal new, even skin. This product is gentle enough to use every day but for me I typically  use a few times a week to not overdo it. You can use a chemical exfoliant like a BHA instead of a physical exfoliant, like a sugar scrub or anything physically removing skin cells from the surface.

To really seal in the applied products, I like to top things off with a facial oil. The Ordinary 100% Rose Hip Seed Oil is newer to my routine but working well- Rose Hip seed is especially known for it’s anti-aging properties, as well as reducing fine lines, scars, and inflammatory conditions like acne, or eczema.

Finally, I top off my routine with a glorious lip treatment mask that I adore. This Laneige Sleeping Lip Mask sounds ridiculous but really makes a difference for seasonally dry lips (we’re all suffering). Put on a thin layer nightly and I swear you won’t have any irritation all winter long. I offer this to any guests sleeping over and everyone has loved it.

Phew! I’m ready for a nap after that rundown. If you made it this far down, congrats you must be a skin-care junkie just like me, please please let me know if you want any more information on any of the products mentioned above, or have been trying out something that’s worth sharing! All products should be linked, but let me know if you’re having trouble tracking anything down. Thanks for reading!

Year-round glow

Year-round glow

It’s winter which could mean two things for your skin: either you’re still trying to keep up with your spring/summer routine, and noticing a landslide of facial issues, or you’ve come to terms that you need to modify your routine with the change of each season.

Readers, lets get real. No matter how “good” your skin is, you need to recognize that as the largest organ of our humble human shells, we need to continually pay the love back to ourselves. As the proud owner of sensitive, combination skin, I’m focused on balancing between giving myself plenty of moisture, while also preventing the risk of breakouts from overly dried skin buildup. Additionally, I’m also becoming more attuned to any anti-aging steps I should be taking now (Retinol is the best thing ever! But that’s a different blog post!). Here are two glycolic acid products that have been super helpful to keeping my fresh, and prepped for the heavy duty moisturizing that is key in hibernation-worthy months.

 Loreal Revitalift Brightening Peel Pads. These pads have been receiving quite a bit of buzz on the beauty blog circuit. Coming in at a bargain under $20, these nightly peel pads will both physically remove dirt and dull skin, while also preventing against wrinkles and age spots, and chemically brighten the skin with 10% glycolic acid. I’ve been using these most nights and then following up with a oil, or night cream. Skin feels fresh and more receptive to any following product.

Ren Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal MaskIf you’re looking for a more occasional product to add, the Ren Glycol Lactic Renewal Mask can be used up to 3x a week–note: I saw a difference after just one use. This mask is a combination of 4 natural acids that gently resurface the skin, remove any dead skin, and fade age/acne scars. After applying mask for 10 minutes, my face felt similar to dreamy post-facial smoothness and clarity (without the extractions). Again, I would follow up with any anti-aging or botanical oils afterwards, as the skin is primed and more receptive to absorbing product. This one comes in around $50, but it’s an integral part of my routine that I will definitely repurchase.

I’d love to hear any feedback on the above products, or any other skin care topics you’d want to read about. I’m a skincare nerd so this stuff makes me so happy. Thank you for reading!

Saving Face//Skin Care

Saving Face//Skin Care

Saving Face//Skin Care

 Saving Face//Skin Care by grace-milbourne


Despite the El Nino weather situation happening outdoors, I’ve still transitioned my skin care to a ‘weather buffering’ routine. That means being more careful with touching my face with towels, using less hot water, and always patting (versus scrubbing) dry!


 But, product junkie me, leans heavily on a few old, and newer tools to really amp up the skincare arsenal. I can’t wait to share these!


1. Caudalie Vinoperfect Serum This product is fairly new to my routine. Serums help bind moisture to your skin (morning and night) after you cleanse, and improve the effectiveness of any other products you put on afterwards.  This serums also improves appearance of dark spots, promotes even skin tone, and boosts radiance. I’m sold.


2. Embryolisee Lait Creme Concentre is a French pharmacy classic. Worthy of a check-your-bag vs. carry on, if you catch my drift. This moisturizer smells super fresh, and I’ve been using as a night cream, that can layer on top of any other serums, or topicals I’m using.


3. Laneige Water Sleeping Mask has been a skin savior since this summer. If I’m ever out way too late, or my skin is flaky/weird, this is a great K-town find that you can slip on before bed, and wake up with hydrated and soothed skin.


4. Fresh Sugar Lip Polish This one is goodie. This gentle sugar scrub buffs off that pesky dead skin from your lips. I also wouldn’t blame you if you wanted to taste it …. it smells that heavenly. That red lipstick won’t cake over that pout now!


5. Ending with the classic Vaseline. The product really does it all; I love waking up feeling how moisturized my lips are from one swipe, 8+ hours later. Some other ways to use Vaseline are on dry skin patches, or eyelids for a ethereal and fresh glow.


What winter beauty tricks do you have up you (turtleneck) sleeves? Let me know if you’ve tried any of my favorites too.