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How to Do My Spring-Summer Skincare Routine to Treat and Prevent Dark Spots and Sun Damage

Including SkinCeuticals, Allies of Skin and more.
Skincare routine spring-summer 2021

It's been a few months since I shared a skincare routine, but I'm finally back with an update on everything I've been using (and loving) lately during this warmer weather. I've got so much to tell you about, including both new discoveries and old favourites!

This time around, I've combined spring and summer because I recently moved—and when you've amassed a skincare inventory like mine, that's no easy feat! For a while there, I was only doing the basics until I could unpack and get back on track with all the products I'm mentioning here. 

They include a new vitamin C serum, niacinamide mist (I'm obsessed with this concept!), gel cleansers, skin-friendly makeup and more. So here's the lowdown on my latest routine, along with my rationale for choosing each product.

My Spring-Summer 2021 Skincare Routine

Skincare routine spring-summer 2021

My spring-summer 2021 skincare routine includes products from SkinCeuticals and Allies of Skin.

Right now, I don't have any major skin concerns other than a few post-acne marks from old breakouts. So before we get into the nitty-gritty of this routine, these are the most important changes I've made since the winter:

  • Vitamin C serum: If you recall, I was previously using iS Clinical Pro-Heal Serum Advance+ as my first foray into L-ascorbic acid. (Well, I did try C E Ferulic many years ago, but not recently!) I'm still on the LAA train, and now I've moved on to another serum that I like even better. 
  • Niacinamide mist: For the past year, I've been talking about how I quit moisturizer, and instead rely on serums as my main source of hydration. That used to mean layering at least a couple of them—but now I've discovered a niacinamide-based face mist that both treats and hydrates in one quick step!
  • Ultra-protective sunscreen: Since there's no point in treating dark marks if you're going to turn around and get sun exposure on them, I'm using the most protective sunscreen I've found.
  • Triple cleansing: I just made up this term to describe how I've been cleansing at night lately—with an oil, a gel cleanser and then a toner. I feel like I'm not breaking out as much this summer because of this!
  • Powder skin makeup: Last year, I wore less makeup than ever before. No foundation, just a little cream concealer here and there. Now, I've replaced that with a tinted powder, and I'm even happier with my results. I suspect that creamy makeup may negatively affect your skin the same way as moisturizer, and it also attracts dirt and bacteria.
  • Retinoid: After test-driving retinaldehyde (Osmosis MD Renew) all winter, I've returned to my Holy Grail retinoid, which I've concluded is the strongest. Quelle surprise. 

Here's a sneak peek at what I'm about to show you....

Skincare routine spring-summer 2021

Products in my spring-summer 2021 skincare routine.

And now I'll take you through each step!

My Morning Skincare Routine

1. Micellar Water

Simple Micellar Cleansing Water

Simple Micellar Cleansing Water

If I'm doing some exercise in the morning, I'll just do a quick cleanse with micellar water, and then apply sunscreen and go. So I have no idea how well this Simple Micellar Cleansing Water works as a makeup remover, but as a gentle one-step cleanser, I've got no complaints! I swipe it on with a Shiseido Facial Cotton, and it makes my skin feel clean and soft without causing dryness or irritation (mind you, I also rinse with water after). 

2. Cleanser

Fresh Soy Face Cleanser

Fresh Soy Face Cleanser

In the shower, I've been using Fresh Soy Face Cleanser. I don't know why I never got around to trying this cult classic before, but I rediscovered it when unpacking and I'm so glad I did! It reminds me of First Aid Beauty Face Cleanser (which I love and reviewed here), but is a little more gel-like. Once you massage it over damp skin, it becomes super creamy, and it doesn't strip at all.

3. Vitamin C

SkinCeuticals Silymarin CF

SkinCeuticals Silymarin CF

Then on clean, dry skin, I apply about four drops of SkinCeuticals Silymarin CF. This is the newest vitamin C serum from the brand, and for my skin at least, it's the best one yet! Just like C E Ferulic, it contains 15% L-ascorbic acid and 0.5% ferulic acid. But instead of 1% vitamin E, it has 0.5% silymarin (milk thistle extract) and 0.5% salicylic acid. 

The silymarin is not only an antioxidant, it also prevents oil from oxidizing, while the salicylic acid gently exfoliates and reduces oil and breakouts. Together, they make this one of the best treatments I've found for pigmentation, excess oil and acne-prone skin. I'll be doing a more in-depth review soon, but so far I've noticed that my skin has been more matte this summer, and the dark spots that were bothering me are fading fast! 

4. Eye Cream

iS Clinical Youth Eye Complex

iS Clinical Youth Eye Complex