Beauty Bite | My Skincare Must-Haves


bathroom counter

Ok, Sister -- If you happen to hang out with me over on FB: you already know that my comprehensive guide to skincare has been a long time coming.

This post is inspired by my obsession with seeing into the bathroom cupboards of anyone who will let me take a peek, and then combined with the fact that I get asked about my own beauty routine at LEAST once a week.

After responding to dozens of emails + tweets + insta comments individually, I figured that it makes WAY more sense to compile my favorites here*, and then you can let me know if there is anything else you're curious about! 

My Skincare Routine

*Please Note: The products listed here are a mix of gifted and purchased items. If you buy through the links shown here, I may receive a small commission of the sale (at no extra cost to you) and I am so grateful to those who support S+P with your shopping! 


- Quick Splash. Cold water and gentles circles. No soap! 

- Homemade ACV toner. (4 parts water, 1 part organic unfiltered apple cider vinegar — Bragg’s is the best.)  Swipe all over with a an organic cottonball. Then let it dry and the smell will go away once it has evaporated. Your skin will probably feel cleaner and more taught right away! 

- Eye Gel. Something with hyaluronic acid will have a strong "plumping" effect, and I love this Hydro Boost eye gel from Neutrogena. Here is how I turn it into one of my best travel beauty tricks... Bring it on the plane with you, and dab it on your wrinks before landing(even over makeup!) for a fresh and line-less effect. ;) 

- SPF. Everyday, no matter what. I have a few types that I love, and use them all depending on what I’m planning for the next several hours. This one for working out, and this one is best for under make-up and/or normal everyday use. You can hear me gush about it in my FB video here


- Oil wash. My cleansing method of choice during the winter, or when I’m in AZ (it's so dry there - ugh)... I’ve been using this new Clean Energy from Origins, but you can also do a little googling to find out how to make your own “oil face wash” if you want to save some $$. I know it sounds weird to wash with oil, but it is SO good for your skin and I notice a difference in how my face looks immediately. Important to note that this is not the same thing as removing your eye make up with coconut oil, though I highly recommend that as well! 

- Cleanse. Depending on what my skin is doing in the moment, I sometimes use a basic cleanser instead. My current bottle is this coconut scented version from Alaffia (also available at Whole Foods, but I buy it for super-cheap at Thrive Market). I honestly am not too picky about this step… my close friends like to tease me that I went YEARS (like maybe 15 yrs?) only using anti-bacterial hand soap as my face wash. LOL - Not a recommendation, but you get the idea… Not very picky about this part. 

- Disinfect. Tea Tree Oil is my secret weapon for zits and blemishes! Dab a small bit on just the very spot that you’d like to treat, and for some reason it magically disappears in less than half the time (compared to when I just leave it alone). Even works on under-grounders and black heads. The anti-bacterial properties are miraculous! 

- Serum. I’m in a little bit of a rut with this at the moment… Usually I alternate between two different options, but need to find a new “second” one that I like. (Many strong nighttime skin treatments actually direct you to only use every other night.) This retinol serum from Murad is my current go-to (currently hunting for a more natural option), and then am still on the hunt for another one that contains Vitamin A. I’ve also been using this Vitamin C serum on my forehead and frown lines… My bottle finally ran out recently, but I had it forever because you only need a few drops at a time! 

- Eye Cream. On the hunt for a good one here! Have heard great things about Tata Harper (super pricey, so I'm saving my pennies), and fingers crossed that I'll be placing an order soon... will keep you posted, and let me know if you have any other suggestions. 

- Moisturize. Just started my second bottle of this coconut milk night cream and am really loving it. Smells awesome and sinks in really quickly without any greasiness! You can get it at Whole Foods (actually pretty affordable), and I think I may try their retinol cream next. 

- Finishing oil. I’m OBSESSED with this face serum, and it’s another one that I've repurchased multiple times and rave about everywhere. Put 3-4 drops on the tips of your left-hand fingers and then smash it together with a few drops of water from the other hand. (Might have to play with the ratio that works best for you.) Gently pat/smooth it over the whole face, making sure not to rub anything else off with it. If you're not used to using oil, it might feel a bit thick at first, but just be sure to let it soak in before you snuggle into a clean pillow. Speaking of pillows… I’m not the best at this, but have heard that silk pillowcases make a huge difference in preventing wrinkles! I have this one, but usually end up rotating it in with our other regular sheet sets. 


- Mas agua. I am not kidding when I say that your water intake will make the biggest difference on clear skin and anti aging prevention. Just get a big reusable bottle that you love, and get into the habit of chugging your way through the day. (Add sliced cucumbers or strawberries if it makes it easier!) 

- Sugar bugs. I’ve been off sugar for almost 7 years and that is the ONLY THING that could ever clear up the cystic acne that I had on my chin/jawline and my back. Now, I’ll splurge (very) occasionally, but it almost always results in a big fat pimple on my chin. I also get them between my eyebrows when I’m drinking too much. Google “face mapping skincare” to find out about the connection between your face and internal organs, and it may help you learn which foods or other things to stay away from! 

- Collagen. I drink this powder in my coffee or kombucha everyday, and slather this stuff all over my face after I get out of the shower (and sometimes also after my ACV toner in the morning). You can find many different types of powder on the market these days, but please pay attention to whether or not it is made from organic and humanely-treated cows. I try to stay away from processed animal products whenever possible, so the marine collagen (made from algae!) is my fave. Definitely more expensive, but it’s so worth it to me. I have also tried/liked this kind and have many friends who use this stuff.

- Lip service. A generous swipe of egyptian magic on my lips and all around the mouth area, every night before bed. I am starting to notice those fine lines that make my bright lipstick bleed (the WORST), and I started being more diligent about this after hearing it recommended by many celebs! 

It was super fun to chat with you via real-time video last week, so we're doing it again later today with another Facebook Live hangout! The topic is: EYEBROWS and you can come hang out with me online right over here, and I'd love to hear your questions for future Beauty Bite features in the comments below! 

*In case you love that pretty beauty tray from the photo above...