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Hydrating Products

6 Products To Help Hydrate the Skin

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I can use all the heavy duty anti-aging products that I want, but if my skin is still dehydrated I will not get the results that I want. I have found that when my skin is adequately hydrated, it looks younger, plumper and more radiant. Of course there are other factors that can contribute to keeping skin hydrated such as reducing stress, getting enough sleep, drinking enough water and even taking proper supplements, but from a skincare perspective I keep a majority of my morning and evening routines focused on hydration. Here are some products that I have been testing over the winter that I really enjoyed for helping maintain the moisture levels in my skin:
1. Darphin Intral Cleansing Milk – I love a good oil or balm cleanser to remove my makeup, but for a second cleanse I often reach for a cleansing milk as a great way to nourish the skin and ensure the cleansing process isn’t stripping the skin. This Darphin cleanser is incredibly creamy yet gentle and leaves my skin feeling calm and soothed. In addition to using it as a traditional cleanser, I like to apply it generously and leave it on for a few minutes as a hydrating treatment.
2. Darphin Hydraskin Essential Emulsion – Typically hydrating or moisturizing products are seen as heavy or rich in texture, but I find that some of the most lightweight creams can enrich my skin the most. This Darphin moisturizer has a texture that combines both a cream and a gel and would be great for either winter or summer. It has the richness needed to nourish the skin in the winter, yet is still light enough to feel comfortable on the skin during the warmer months. I love this as a daytime moisturizer and find that it wears beautifully under makeup because it keeps my skin hydrated without increasing shine throughout the day.
3. First Aid Beauty Hydrating Serum – This. Serum. From just the look of it, you can already guess that it is like a shot of water for the skin. It’s deceptively thicker than it looks on camera and only one small pump is good to cover the entire face. I find that if I use too much, it can feel too heavy or tacky on the skin. That being said, my skin has been loving this serum since the first day I used it. My skin feels better (less tight, soothed) and looks better (more balanced) while using. Because of it’s tendency to be a bit tacky, I prefer to use this at night or on the weekends if I am not wearing makeup. However, the results of this serum far outweigh any texture issues – I would recommend this for anyone looking to add in a moisturizing serum to their routine.
4. Tatcha Overnight Memory Serum Concentrate – Sadly the picture above does not do this texture justice. I posted a video to my Instagram showing how unique it is – watch that here. See? It’s hard to look away from, isn’t it? LOL. Many people asked me if it was similar to The Body Shop Bouncy Sleeping Mask and in theory it is, but I found this concentrate to be much thinner in texture with a more gel-like consistency when you break it up on the skin. Additionally I felt that the Tatcha concentrate gave me a stronger boost of hydration, whereas The Body Shop mask delivered more on firmness. I have enjoyed using this alone after I have cleansed and toned. If I wanted to address any other concerns, I could layer a serum under this but this concentrate did a fantastic job of acting as both a serum and moisturizer.  
5. Sisley Express Flower Gel Mask – It’s no wonder Sisley is known worldwide for their masks – they are truly some of the best around. I have been using this one for the past few years and it’s one of my favorite masks to help nourish and calm my skin. It’s decadence in a tube. And this one is just as luxurious. There are very few products that can hydrate my skin to a visible difference nearly instantaneously (this sheet mask is another one of those instant miracle products), but this mask manages to do the impossible. I think they should rename this Sisley Express Flower Gel Infusion rather than mask because that’s exactly what it feels like it’s doing – infusing my skin with moisture. Truly splurge-worthy.
6. La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water Mist – I’m a total mist gal. I love using them in my skincare routine, I love using them throughout the day – I exercise my right to mist anywhere and everywhere. This Thermal Spring Water mist is delicate in application (no sudden heavy bursts of water from the nozzle #rude) and delicate in feel. I particularly like using this if my skin is feeling irritated or sensitive as it is calming to the skin. This may sound a bit silly but I find it to be calming to my energy as well when I spray myself with it. I close my eyes and mist away giving myself a mini 5 second break from the day. Cupcakes can also do that but there is less guilt afterwards with a mist.

*pr samples included

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Hydrating Masks For Every Price Point

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I love hydrating masks for a multitude of reasons.They are suitable for almost any skin type, work in any season and can give instant results. I have been testing out a slew of different ones that were sent to me over the past few weeks and thought I would highlight the ones I enjoyed the most. They range from moderately priced to a complete splurge, so if you are looking for a new hydrating mask, you are bound to find one in this group. Here are my thoughts on each:
1. SK-II Facial Treatment Mask – Big time splurge, but big time results. This is definitely a special occasion mask for me. I used it before going to a wedding because I wanted an extra boost of hydration and radiance – and boy did I get it. Wow! I applied it an hour or so before I put on my makeup, left it on for 15 minutes, removed and pressed the remaining essence into my face. It was like an instant facial, and my makeup applied like never before. For a true pampering experience, this is a must have in your skincare arsenal.

2. Amore Pacific Moisture Bound Sleeping Recovery Mask – After having such a great experience with the other two sleeping masks I been have using (this one and this one), I was happy to add a true hydrating one to the mix. The Amore Pacific Sleeping Recovery Mask has a cooling gel-like feeling when applied and a little goes a long way. It does take a few more minutes than my other sleeping masks to dry down, but nothing that is unreasonable. The first thing I noticed the next morning was how plump my skin appeared and it was as if I had been drinking the recommended 8 glasses of water a day for my entire life (which sadly I do not all the time). There was not a dry spot in sight and barely any sleep lines, which I always get because I sleep on my stomach or side. Great to use once a week or more if needed.
3. Arcona Wine Hydrating Mask – I always expect a thin, watery gel-like consistency when I use hydrating masks. And this Arcona hydrating mask served to break me of that misconception and stereotype. As soon as I squeezed some out of the tube, the thick rich cream texture told me that it would be different than other hydrating masks I have tried in the past. Instead of being solely for moisture renewal, I found this mask to be great at nourishing, calming and replenishing my skin. With ingredients like shea butter, hyaluronic acid and grapeseed extract, it’s no wonder the results were so substantial. 
4. Rodial Dragon’s Blood Hyaluronic Mask – The Arcona mask may have thrown me for a texture loop, but this Rodial Dragon’s Blood Hyaluronic Mask brought back the expected hydration mask texture I have come to know and love. A gel-like consistency that feels refreshing from the moment it is first applied. I don’t typically like masks in the morning because I am running around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to get ready, but I have been applying this after I wash my face and before I step into the shower. I don’t know if it’s the shower intensifying the moisturizing properties, but my skin feels glorious when I rinse the mask off. I have even skipped my usual morning serum combo (this and this), in favor of just adding some SPF and applying my makeup straight away. It feels like a new secret I just discovered and I am loving the way my makeup looks after using this. I can’t say this new addition makes me any more of a morning person (I wish I was), but at least my skin can fake it, right?

Have you tried any of these masks? What are your thoughts? Do you have a favorite hydrating mask? Leave me a comment below!
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Past Posts

Hydration Is The Name Of The Winter Skin Game

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Sound the alarm and dispatch the emergency personnel because this winter is not playing around with my skin. The main culprit for me though is dehydration.  I