"People might presume that since I'm a model, I have perfect skin, but I've always had skin issues," says Lindsay Ellingson.
Working as a runway model in her 20s, the former Victoria's Secret Angel was constantly battling breakouts, thanks to a non-stop travel schedule and all the makeup being applied to her face. She also told The Cut and Erno Laszlo that she developed melasma, dark circles and hyperpigmentation.
Those struggles inspired her to start researching the ingredients in her skincare products, and now, at 34, she's finally figured out what keeps her skin "glowing and balanced."
Although Lindsay's skin type is combination ("my T-zone gets a little bit oily"), she takes a decidedly gentle approach with her routine.
"The best advice that [dermatologists and estheticians] have given me is to stop stripping my skin," she told Spotlyte. "Just because your skin is broken out or oily doesn't mean you need to go at it with harsh cleansers and treatments."
Her favourites include an array of lightweight serums and hydrating masks, along with products from her own line, Wander Beauty, which she launched in 2015. (They're "infused with skin-loving ingredients... and free of parabens, phthalates, synthetic fragrances and mineral oils.")
Here's how Lindsay takes care of her skin, inside and out.
Lindsay’s Morning Skincare Routine
1. Micellar Water:
Bioderma Sensibio H2O: "Bioderma micellar water is a staple in makeup artists' kits backstage. It's extremely gentle and feels like water, without any of the harsh effects of tap water."
SK-II Facial Treatment Essence: "Then I press a few drops of SK-II Facial Treatment Essence in my skin, which always gives me a nice glow."
Dr. Barbara Sturm Anti-Pollution Drops: "I'm obsessed with layering serums right now. I often skip moisturizer because serums are more active and just as hydrating for me. I start with Dr. Sturm's Anti-Pollution Drops which have a water-like texture that melts into my skin. It's packed with active ingredients like purslane to protect skin from oxidative damage and inflammation."
Ildi Pekar Tissue Repair Serum: "Next, I use Ildi Pekar Tissue Repair Serum—it's enriched with CBD oil, which helps to calm any redness or inflammation. It's become an essential in my beauty routine. My skin just drinks it up and it leaves me with a post-yoga glow."
4. Face Oil:
Wander Beauty Glow Ahead Face Oil: "I hydrate with Wander Beauty Glow Ahead Face Oil. The raspberry seed oil acts as a natural sunscreen and evening primrose oil instantly absorbs, leaving my skin more bouncy and ready for makeup."
5. Eye Mask:
Wander Beauty Baggage Claim Gold Eye Masks: "I wear [them] for about 10 minutes. The warmth of the gold foil helps the serum to absorb deeper into my skin for an instant refreshed look. It's like a spa treatment for your under-eye area."
Josh Rosebrook Nutrient Day Cream SPF 30: "I never leave home without wearing SPF. Right now, I'm loving Josh Rosebrook's Nutrient Day Cream SPF 30. It's packed with skincare ingredients, so if I'm in a rush, this product alone will work as my skincare and SPF. The formula starts off white and then blends beautifully into the skin without leaving a chalky finish."
Wander Beauty Nude Illusion Liquid Foundation: "To perfect my skin with undetectable coverage I mix two drops of Wander Beauty's Glow Ahead Face Oil with our Nude Illusion foundation (I wear Light) to create a lightweight tinted oil. Then I blend onto problem areas of my face with our Wander Cushion which gives me perfectly diffused coverage. We named this foundation Nude Illusion because it truly looks like your skin, but totally, undetectably perfected."
Wander Beauty Dualist Matte and Illuminating Concealer: "To conceal imperfections, I apply Dualist Matte and Illuminating Concealer. When we created Dualist, I was inspired by my years spent backstage in the makeup chair. These two formulas are all I need for that no-makeup makeup look."
Wander Beauty On-the-Glow Blush and Illuminator: "I add a pop of colour and glow to my cheeks, eyes and lips with On-the-Glow Blush and Illuminator. The dual-ended stick is my go-to multitasker that works like a pretty filter for my face."
10. Lip Balm:
Wander Beauty Beach Balm: "[It] is my absolute favourite. The shade is called Sangria, and it has a gorgeous berry tint, and your lips are just drenched in hydration."
11. Face Mist:
Wander Beauty Glow Getter Mist: "I set my makeup and refresh throughout the day with Glow Getter Mist. The Icelandic glacier water in Glow Getter's formula calms my skin."
Lindsay’s Nighttime Skincare Routine
Erno Laszlo Sensitive Cleansing Oil: "I cleanse in the shower with Erno Laszlo sensitive oil cleanser."
2. Cleansing Brush:
Foreo Luna Mini 2 Facial Cleansing Brush: "My nighttime beauty routine includes cleansing my skin with Foreo's Luna Mini, which works to deeply cleanse and exfoliate."
Lancer The Method: Polish: "And then exfoliate with Dr. Lancer skin polish, my go-to for an at home microdermabrasion effect."
Dr. Devgan Platinum Hyaluronic Serum: "As soon as I step out of the shower, I apply Dr. Devgan Platinum Hyaluronic Serum to retain moisture."
Resurface by Shani Darden Retinol Reform: "A few times a week I use Resurface by Shani Darden, she's an expert esthetician whom I learned about in a Byrdie article focusing on her amazing skincare products. This retinol and lactic acid serum has reduced my hyperpigmentation, and it is now one of my secrets to flawless skin."
5. Overnight Mask:
Wander Beauty Extended Stay Hydrating Overnight Mask: "I finish off with Wander Beauty Extended Stay Hydrating Overnight Mask. It's lightweight, so it doesn't make a mess of my pillow. Plus, the mix of watermelon and rose flower oil leaves my skin luminous in the morning."
6. Face Massage:
Gua Sha tool: "The last beauty product I use at night is my gua sha face tool, which I use to give myself a lymphatic massage to define my features."
7. Silk Pillowcase:
Slip Silk Pillowcase: "I always sleep on my Slip silk pillowcase to prevent bed head and sleep crease."
Lindsay’s Skincare Treatments
Ildi Pekar: "Once a month, I see my facialist Ildi Pekar. She's originally from Budapest, and has very unique treatments.... She has really transformed my skin. I rarely get breakouts and my skin tone is much more even now. [She] does the best microcurrent treatment, which is like a workout for the face."
The Cryosphere: "[My favourite beauty treatment indulgence is] Cryo Facials at The Cryosphere."
Dermaflash Luxe Facial Exfoliating Device: "I shave my face using a tool called the Dermaflash. If I have an event or party to go to, I'll shave my face in the morning after exfoliating with Lancer's Polish. It just makes your makeup look so much better and you have baby-soft skin."
NuFace Trinity Facial Toning Device: "I've also enjoyed using the NuFace devices. I wish I used it more!"
Facial cupping tool: "I cup my face! [It's] so satisfying. It's like an instant face lift."
111Skin Meso Infusion Overnight Micro Mask: "One of my favourite new beauty finds is 111Skin Meso Infusion Micro Masks, which I sleep in before any modelling shoot. They contain just two ingredients: hyaluronic acid, which helps to plump fine lines, and vitamin C, which helps to brighten skin and even the complexion. What makes these masks unique are the 150 micro structures that gently press the skincare ingredients deep into the skin. It's a little like dermarolling, but much more gentle. You can use these masks to target specific areas that need extra help like under the eyes, crow's feet, forehead, or frown lines."
Nuori Supreme Moisture Mask: "Nuori is known for creating the freshest, all-natural formulas. What makes this mask unique is that you can wear it almost anywhere—it's lightweight and practically invisible on the skin. I apply it during flights or while at the office for an instant boost of hydration."
Wander Beauty Lift Off Peel Off Mask: "The mix of superfruits and kaolin clay help to gently lift impurities and bring back the radiance to my complexion."
Lindsay’s Diet, Exercise and Lifestyle
"I'm a healthy eater. I stay away from processed foods as much as I can and avoid anything with white flour. I notice a huge difference in my energy level and overall well-being."
Sakara: "To stay healthy, I signed up for Sakara's meal delivery service. I bring their lunches to the office which is great for me because then I’m not tempted to order takeout, and I know I'm getting a perfectly balanced plant-based meal that gives me energy for the whole day."
Dr. Barbara Sturm Repair Food: "I take vitamins every day including Dr. Barbara Sturm's Repair Food which helps to renew your skin from the inside out with powerful actives like purslane and quercetin. My skin has a noticeable glow after one week of use."
Modo Yoga: "The hot classes always help me unwind after a stressful day and I love to get in a good sweat while I work out—it feels extra cleansing. Also... inversions are said to be a 'natural face lift.' They increase blood flow and oxygen to the face, which gives you a healthy glow."
Le Petit Studio NYC: "It's a great workout for anyone with injuries because it's so low impact. I had spinal fusion surgery for scoliosis when I was 13 and have limited mobility in my spine. I'm so much stronger, especially my core, but still lean."
"Sleep is the best medicine if you're feeling burned out or your skin is having a meltdown... get a good eight or nine hours' sleep. There's nothing better. Weeknights I'm in bed at 10 p.m. and asleep by 10:30 p.m. because I feel like my best self with eight hours of sleep. On the weekends, I love a night out with my husband and friends, so I just sleep in!"
"[In the evening, you can find me] in the sauna. My husband and I relax inside for about 15 minutes. It's a great phone-free moment for us to talk about our days."
Shop Lindsay’s Skincare Routine
What do you think of Lindsay's routine?
Have you tried anything she uses?