When it comes to skin care, I am always ready to try something new. Serums, face oils, BB creams, masks, peels — I consider myself to be an open-minded beauty tester and a veteran makeup junkie. Thus I happily accepted an invitation from Sephora to visit their Skincare Basics class considering it as an opportunity to diversify my routine and try some new products. I was also excited to take a class in a store located just a couple of blocks away from my office in Times Square.
I’ve found out about the class almost accidentally while passing by Sephora over my lunch break (yes, sometimes I just pass it by without buying anything — it is hard though). The announcement stated that the two hours class will help to figure out which products would work best for my skin. Even though I am pretty happy with my current beauty routine, I decided to give it a shot.
Step 1: Consultation
The class started with an individual consultation intended to find products that will fit the best my skin’s needs. I was working with Ashley that helped me to navigate through an electronic Skin Care IQ system and select moisturizer, eye cream, and face oil for me. I was suggested to try: Seaberry Moisturizing Face Oil by Fresh, Advanced Eye Area Therapy by Perricone MD, and IBUKI Protective Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 18 by Shiseido. I didn’t know about it before, but Skin Care IQ system is available not only is a store but also online. Basically, it is an electronic guide that recommends products according to your skin concerns, including pores, fine lines/wrinkles, dark spots, dryness, oiliness, dullness/uneven texture, loss of firmness/elasticity, acne/blemishes, and redness.
Step 2: Cleansing
When we finished with picking individual skin care products, the class has started. We’ve got equipped with disposable headbands and various makeup removing products and got seated around the table. There were a couple of makeup removers presented in the table that I already used, that is why I decided to try products by REN Clean Skincare. First, I applied #1 Purity Cleansing Balm by REN that was very thick but pleasant. It actually reminded me petroleum jelly — but its softer version that didn’t have an artificial flavor. I kept the balm on my skin for a couple of minutes and then tried to remove it with a dry cotton round; its pieces got all over my face. The instructor corrected me saying that the best way is to use warm water — and the magic has happened: my skin felt super soft and hydrated. I used Rosa Centifolia 3-in-1 Cleansing Water by REN to remove my eye makeup and liked it a lot. However, it was not as good as my favorite micellar water Sensibio H2O Micelle Solution by Bioderma.
Step 3: Washing
For our next step — washing — I used Rose Cleansing Foam by Fresh. The product has a very pleasant aroma, but I was not too excited that it was a foam. Personally, I prefer thicker products for washing my face. My favorite cleanser that I’ve been using for a year or so is Gentle Rejuvenating Cleanser by Algenist. Is is not only great on its own and simply amazing if used together with Clarisonic. Basically, I decided to stick to my Algenist product and just keep the cleansing foam by Fresh in mind.
Step 4: Facial Mask
The next step — facial mask — was pretty interesting because I tried a brand that I have never heard about before, Glamglow Thirstymud Hydrating Treatment by Glamglow. The product has a consistency of a moisturizer and makes miracles with the skin. According to our consultants, Glamglow Thirstymud mask could be used at night as a leave-in mask as well as a daily moisturizer; in both ways it helps to hydrate your skin and make it look radiant. We used the product in a conservative way — as a face mask that we kept on the face for 5-8 minutes. I felt a little menthol tingling while using it, but it was a pleasant feeling: after the treatment I felt that my skin started to breath.
Step 5: Toning
We used Rose Floral Toner by Fresh for hydrating and toning. I was already familiar with the product and enjoyed using it again. I really recommend to try it in summer; for cold seasons, I prefer to use Toning Lotion with Camomile by Clarins which gives your skin a hydration that it needs so badly in the winter.
Step 6: Hydrating
After toning the skin that we applied face serum. The one selected for my skin type looked nothing like a face serum though. The bottle of Ceramidin Liquidby Dr. Jart+ reminded me hair conditioner bottles so just it case I confirmed with a consultant that I was using serum and not something else. I use face serums regularly and I actually really liked that one: it was very gentle and seemed to work well for my skin type. I decided to purchase this product after I am done with my inexpensive but amazing Carrot + C Vitamin Serum by 40 Carrots.
For the under eye area I was proposed to try Advanced Eye Area Therapy by Perricone MD. The consistency of this product was more like an eye serum, not cream or gel, and I liked it a lot! Personally, I cannot stand gel products for the under eye area and thus finding a correct eye product is always a challenge for me. After using Advanced Eye Area Therapy I finally felt that I found a perfect match; thus I purchased it right away.
I rarely use face oil during the day and I was surprised to hear from our skin care experts that facial oils are recommended to to use after serum andbefore moisturizer. I was equipped with Seaberry Moisturizing Face Oil by Fresh and I was not satisfied with its scent. The consistency of the oil seemed to work for my skin, but knowing myself, I decided not to include this product in my collection. I know that if I do not like the flavor of the product at the beginning, I will end up not using it.
Finally, after all these layers of serums and oils I applied a moisturizer, IBUKI Protective Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 18 by Shiseido, that was spectacular. I prefer to use at least SPF 30 no matter what time of the year it is, but this moisturizer is a good option for days when I am not planning to walk around on the sun.
After we finished with our skincare basics, our consultants proposed us to try two additional products: Sugar Lip Serum Advanced Therapy by Fresh and Color Correcting Cream (aka CC-cream) by Stila. The first product smelled and tasted delicious and it was nice to try something new but I felt to use my Mango Lip Balm by Burt’s Bees right after applying this serum. The second one was pretty amazing, but perhaps not for me. I know that many people are obsessed with BB and CC creams, but I do not like the “radiant glow” of these products: I prefer a classic matte finishing.
To put it simple, I really enjoyed the class at Sephora. It was an interesting experience that helped me to explore some new brands and products presented on a market. I also learned something new: face oils are good for you and I am planning to include one into my beauty routine. I haven’t decided which product to use, though, so I am open for your suggestions. I will definitely make sure to attend beauty events by Sephora again. Perhaps, those that are related to new make-up techniques and face sculpturing.