My heroes! Four skin care must haves

It’s a given that I love the creativity that comes from playing with makeup. But I wouldn’t have as much fun ‘painting’ without a smooth canvas. That canvas is good skin, and good skin doesn’t just happen. It takes time, effort, trial and error.

With that in mind, I wanted to share four of my skin-care heroes. One I’ve just discovered and the other three are products I simply can’t live without. Here are the details on each:

– You’ve heard me rave about this before: Sunday Riley’s Luna Night Sleeping Oil. This is one of the rare products that actually makes an overnight difference. It brightens, smooths, clears up any red spots or acne — yes, at 56 I still get the odd ‘spot’ now and then — and is just my all-around ‘holy grail’ of skin care. Here’s how Sunday Riley describes it:

“Luna Sleeping Night Oil contains high-potency, purified-grade lactic acid to instantly correct dullness, plump the look of lines, and exfoliate the skin. With continued use, the appearance of stubborn hyperpigmentation, imperfections, and the visible signs of aging are reduced for a healthy-looking complexion. Enhanced with licorice for brightening, it helps to clarify and correct the appearance of imperfections for immediate, smooth radiance.” Whatever. It works.

– Living in the deep south requires special skin-care strategies, especially in the summer months. Whoever described my beloved city of Columbia, S.C., as “the screen door to Hell” was onto something. From June into October, it’s humid and scorching — two of makeup’s deadliest foes. Makeup setting sprays such as those from Skindinavia and Urban Decay are terrific, but I recently found a spray that one-ups them. It’s Liftra by Dr. Jart and in addition to setting makeup in place, it also has skin-firming properties. Here are the details:

“Liftra™ Contour Fixer is a setting mist that forms a thin film over the face to visibly lift and improve elasticity. It shrinks over time and provides a tightening effect—immediately lifting the appearance of skin and creating a smoother, firmer-looking complexion. The light water ampoule formula gently clings to skin, is quickly absorbed, and provides a finish without stickiness. Great for use throughout the day to refresh sagging skin or as a setting mist after makeup, it replenishes volume by supporting natural collagen synthesis, while a hyaluronic acid complex instantly replenishes moisture and maintains elasticity.”

– Biologique Rechercher’s Lotion P50 Original 197o is a game-changer for me. It’s not really a lotion at all; it’s a liquid toner that not only exfoliates my skin but has helped me get rid of stubborn milia beneath my eyes and other small under-the-skin bumps that were impossible to express. A word of caution: This stuff is strong. So strong that it seriously stings. I worked my way up to “Original 1970” by starting with the less intense “Lotion P50 W 1970,” the gentlest version in the line. This product can be difficult to find. I order it from Shop Rescue Spa.

– Perricone MD Blue Plasma Orbital is a little gem that does wonders for my eye area. I combine it with Clinique’s new Pep Start eye cream and get great firming/moisturizing results. I’ve never had eye bags, but like every woman of my age I have a few fine lines. When I added Blue Plasma Orbital to my routine, they almost immediately diminished. Warning: It has a fishy smell. It doesn’t bother me and goes away quickly, but it does trouble some users.

A word to the wise

No skin-care product is a miracle worker. The right products can delay the effects of aging if you start using them early. Once wrinkles have set in, they can improve but not eradicate the problems. No matter where you are in the aging process, it’s important to start a skin-care routine immediately and stick to it religiously. That means every morning and night, day in and day out. There are no shortcuts and no second chances!

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