When I say that I’m obsessed with skincare, it’s no exaggeration. I had problem skin back in high school and spent many hours in the dermatologist’s office figuring out ways to combat acne. It took a lot of work, but years into it, we found a combination of treatments that got my skin clear again. After spending so much time getting my skin back to a good place, I don’t take clear skin for granted and have since put a bit of time into maintaining it.
Now, my skin concerns are less about acne and more about keeping up a youthful glow, while preventing sunspots and wrinkles. I take a lot of time to chat with experts in the industry—from doctors to aestheticians to beauty insiders—to find out the best skincare products and tools that come with glowing recommendations and have been lucky enough to try out many for myself. Ahead, I’m sharing the ones that I can personally vouch for and I’m spilling the details on exactly why I can’t live without them.
I literally slather my skin in this vitamin C serum every morning and night. Vitamin C is one of those skincare antioxidants I really believe in to maintain youthful-looking skin and simply can't live without, and this is my favorite product stocked with the ingredient.
Yep, you've probably heard about this cult moisturizer but I'm here to tell you that it's just as good as all of the rumors. Powered by stem cell research, the cream actually activates the regeneration of your body's own stem cells. Science aside, it just makes your skin look plumper and more hydrated.
I've been using retinol since high school, but it wasn't always a smooth ride. When I first tried it, it made my skin so peely and irritated that I nearly swore off of it forever. I definitely respond to gentler formulas, which is why I'm so obsessed with this one from celebrity facialist, Shani Darden.
Another skin-perfecting product I love, U Beauty's resurfacing compound is a cocktail of skin-boosting ingredients including vitamin C and hyaluronic acid that reveals brighter, smoother skin over time. I had to use this for about a month to see results, but they were very significant. I highly recommend that you try it out. One of my fellow editors has glowing reviews if you want to learn more.
This plum-seed beauty oil was recently called "magic" by Chrissy Teigen—and it is. I've been using it for three years since it launched and I can promise that it lives up to all of the hype. While you can use it practically anywhere, I apply it on my face to instantly make my skin look brighter and dewier. Over time, I can see that my skin is plumper and clearer. It's selling out absolutely everywhere, so I'd recommend ordering this right away.
Yep, another product from Mara because I'm obsessed. I typically find most face washes to be very drying, so was excited to try out this oil-based cleanser and it did not disappoint. It now has a permanent place in my shower and so now I always step out with a super-clean, super-hydrated complexion.
I mentioned that I've been obsessed with skincare since high school and this is a product I've been using since then. This two-step chemical peel is gentle enough to use at home but delivers immediate results. I make sure to use them once a week (or more) to even out my skin tone and for the immediate glow.
The biggest lesson I've learned about sunscreen? Find one that you don't mind slathering on every morning. This version from Supergoop feels more like a moisturizer than a sunscreen, so now it's a mainstay in my morning routine.
Speaking on sunscreen, this translucent setting powder version is one that I always keep in my bag. Since you're supposed to reapply every few hours, this is a practical way to do it, since you can put it on over makeup.
I'm ultra-protective when it comes to suncare and SPF, so when I want to have a bit of a tan, I usually fake it. My favorite product for actually pulling that off without anyone knowing? This lotion from Tan-Luxe. What I love is that it's buildable, so I can achieve anything from a subtle glow to a vacation-level tan. If you're wondering, I definitely used this in the photo above.
I discovered this hand wash at my friend Carrie's house at the beginning of the year and was so obsessed that I ordered it on the spot. Little did I know how much I would be using it this year. The bergamot scent is addictive and I've since reordered it several times.
I typically avoid body lotion because I can't stand feeling greasy or feeling a film on my skin like I do with most formulas. This lotion changed all that. It sinks right in and makes me forget I ever put anything on in the first place.
I'm a huge skeptic when it comes to beauty things, but this microneedling tool has seriously changed my skin. I use it a few times a week and it has significantly reduced some fine lines and scars, as well as a few bumps that I thought were permanent. My skin texture has never looked better and I credit this tool for a lot of the improvement.
I've talked about the Ziip device before and I'll continue talking about it for a long time because it's just that good. The tool has a range of microcurrent treatments that you can follow on your phone that dramatically change your face. My personal favorites include the sculpting treatment that contours your cheekbones, as well as the clearing treatment that practically makes any acne vanish overnight. More than any topical acne treatment, this is what I always rely on for results.
The one thing I can't stand when I'm applying makeup? Bad lighting. Inevitably, it looks much different than I imagined when putting it on. That's why I love this mirror. It includes a setting that mimics natural light, so you can always find the perfect lighting.
I've already chatted about my love of sculpting tools and this is another favorite, from Madonna's skincare line MDNA. A quick swipe along my cheekbones or jawlines and I can instantly see results. This is a must-buy in my book.