I Always Get Compliments on My Skin Texture—12 Products I Swear By

I'll be the first to admit that my skin is nowhere near perfect, but recently I found myself looking at photos from a year ago and was pretty shocked to find how much had changed since then. It's hardly a coincidence—in the last year, I've doubled down on my skincare routine in order to target a few concerns like acne and hyperpigmentation. The photos don't lie and neither do the slew of compliments I receive from friends, family, and co-workers. Comments about my skin texture and how smooth it looks (on a good day) have become the norm. I wish I could say that I just woke up like this, but truly, none of this would be a reality without a few transformative products I've added to my arsenal. I'd like to thank my fans, my family, and the following 12 creams, oils, and treatments. *Steps off podium.*

I initially set out to target my hyperpigmentation, and an improved skin texture happened to be the amazing side effect I never saw coming. It turns out that in order to lift stubborn dark spots, I needed an arsenal of exfoliators (physical and chemical), a cocktail of glycolic and lactic acids, and about as much vitamin C as I could get. Exfoliators target and remove dead skin, acids keep new blemishes from forming (and thus leading to even more acne scars), and vitamin C to brightens overall. 

Well, my skin is still nowhere near perfect, but all of the above definitely worked its magic. (I'll spare you the before-and-after photos, just trust me on this one.) My darkest spots are now far lighter,m and since the below products did their job of removing dead skin so well, my skin's texture is also smoother than it's ever been. A win-win, if you ask me.

Without further adieu, I'm sharing the best products for skin texture, based on what has worked the best for me and my skin. From cleansers and toners, serums and face masks, and moisturizers and face oils, the below products have worked their magic on my skin, so I can only hope they do the same for yours.

Cleansers

I've waxed poetic about Rodan + Fields before, but one more time couldn't hurt. Once I began using its four-step Reverse regimen (including this game-changing exfoliating cleanser), I started seeing clearer skin, unclogged pores, and an overall smooth texture just a few weeks later. I use it every other day as part of my nighttime routine, following up with the toner (more on that soon) and my skin has never looked healthier.

Toners

I initially bought Glossier's buzzy Solution when it first launched with the hope of clearing my annoying breakouts. It did marginally help keep them at bay, but I quickly realized that it was much more effective at lifting my acne scars and improving my overall skin texture thanks to the AHAs and BHAs, which are, quite literally, chemical exfoliators.

Like I mentioned above, this toner has become an integral part of my skincare routine because it's just so damn good at lightening my dark spots and hyperpigmentation. I use it nightly after cleansing and have gotten into the habit of rotating between the above toner every few weeks so my skin doesn't get too used to one solution over the other.

Serums

Do you know how I knew that Versed's brightening serum was legit? I rolled out of bed one morning to find that my skin was dull and dried out from drinking one too many glasses of wine the night before and decided this was the moment I'd put the serum to the test. It brought my skin back to life in a matter of moments (I'm all for products that give me immediate results), and I even earned a few compliments from co-workers on how my skin looked that day. If that's not a success story, I don't know what is. Glowy and plump are how I'd describe my skin after applying this bad boy.

I know, I know, it's hard to compare a $150 serum with the $20 one I just told you was super effective. But hear me out. I'd still splurge on this beautiful bottle because unlike the other guy, this using this serum daily contributed to brighter-looking skin for me over time as well as immediately after applying it. So in that sense, it's more of a treatment and a serum rolled into one.

Masks

In just 10 minutes, Caudalie's glycolic peel works its magic and transforms my skin texture into that of a baby's bottom (I wish that was an exaggeration). It's a strong formula, so I use it just once or twice a week.

This is one of Versed's most popular products, and I can personally attest that it lives up to the hype. Formulated with glycolic and lactic acids, it's one you can leave it on overnight and see how it's worked its magic the next morning—the magic being reduced redness and evened-out tone and texture.

I slather this one on at night when my skin is feeling a little dehydrated, and by the time I wake up the morning, it's smooth and silky as can be. Plus, it just smells really good.

Moisturizers

Using this daily has left my skin more firm, plump, and alive-looking than any other moisturizer I've tried.

This one's on the thicker side, so I tend to use reserve it for the evening. I love how it subtly works to exfoliate my skin and leave it glowy and smooth. As if my other exfoliators weren't enough…

Oils

Confession: I keep buying the $5 sample of this face oil because, well, the tiny bottle actually lasts and is the perfect travel size. (Okay fine, it's because I'm cheap sometimes.) That said, it's chock-full of potent ingredients like squalene for hydration, vitamin C for brightening, and rose oil for even texture, so a drop or two is all you need.

Apart from being utterly beautiful to keep in my medicine cabinet, this oil leaves me looking glowy AF all day and I love that about it.