Organising skincare into Product Categories

I decided to manage my skin care routine and finances more efficiently when I went through my product stash and realised I didn’t have a sensible selection of products for my actual needs. I had like four different moisturisers in various states of use, one cleanser I didn’t like very much and a toner I was ignoring because I thought salicylic acid was a bad thing. I cringe every time I think about it. 

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Not only did I not know what I was doing, but I was buying things with absolutely no forethought to my budget or needs. I made all kinds of terrible skincare mistakes, and I have to admit, I’ve been pretty guilty of almost everything in SnowWhiteandtheAsianPear’s post on newbie mistakes.

Determined to end the cycle of dashed hopes and no results I decided that before I started spending again, I would make a mental list of what I was trying to tackle (oily skin, acne, hyperpigmentation) and research the kind of products or ingredients that could help. 

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Instead of pinning all my hopes on one product to save my skin, I started looking at products as categorisable each tackling a different skincare need. Now, over a year later, I can confidently say, every skincare product I own belongs to one of four categories that I’ve identified as important for my personal skincare. CleansePrepTreat and Moisture

This is not a product review topic, just a general how I organise my routine topic.

Cleanse

To me cleansing is the foundation upon which I build my skincare routine. In the past, a lot of my skincare problems came from using the wrong kind of cleanser, or not cleansing properly which meant no matter what I layered on top, I was fighting an uphill battle to clear skin. Time, trial and error has left me with a pretty good idea of what I want in each cleansing step.

Everything that I use to cleanse my skin falls into this category.

1st Cleanser

For removing makeup and sunscreen.

2nd Cleanser

For cleaning general dirt of the day.

Point Makeup Remover

For removing eye and lip makeup. Also for quick base makeup removal without using water.

 

Prep

I tend to take my time with my night time routine, and as a result I find that in between steps my skin can dry out, so I started misting and adding my thinner lotions between steps to the absolute delight of my skin!

Prep2

This category is for products that boost hydration between steps.

First Essence

For the glow.

Hydrating Lotion

Mostly Japanese lotions (but not always!) rich in Hyaluronic Acid.

Facial Mist

For cooling my skin, adding moisture and aiding in makeup application.

 

Treat

All my acne and hyperpigmentation busting products all sit here making nice with my pampering sheet masks. Treatment, special treats, you get it? Eh? I’m here all week ❤

Treat2

Basically, anything that specifically helps with my current skin issues goes in here!

Chemical Exfoliation

For use in preventing and reducing acne.

Spot Treatment

Anything that speeds up the healing of specific acne/spots. 

Serums & Essences

Targeted skin issues.

Sheet Masks

Primarily moisturising and as pampering.

 

Moisturise

I like all kinds of moisturizers. From gel, to gel creams, barrier forming and simple hydrators.

moisturise

If it’s job is to moisturise and protect my skin, then it goes in this category.

Emulsion

Light-weight moisturiser for AM use.

Gel-Creams

Heavier creams for PM use.

Sunscreen

Protection against UVA & UVB.

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With those building blocks, my General Routine currently looks like this:

Morning

Evening

2nd Cleanser

Chemical Exfoliation

First Essence

Hydrating Lotion

Spot Treatment

Emulsion

Sunscreen

1st Cleanser

2nd Cleanser

Chemical Exfoliation

First Essence

Hydrating Lotion

Spot Treatment

Serums & Essences

Hydrating Lotion

Gel-Creams

 

Although that’s a typical routine, I add and remove things as my skin demands, some days I might skip serums and just use a sheet mask, other days, I may forgo spot treatments all together. I might add more than two hydrating lotions because I feel my skin is dry, or I might double up on the gel-creams. 

The absolute beauty of thinking in product categories is that I can be flexible, plus it’s fun to look at my skin, know what it needs and be able to select products to sort that out!

prephydratinglotion

 

I cannot stress this enough. You absolutely do not need a 10, 12 or 20 step routine to have great skin, a lot of the multi step routine is marketing fluff designed to get you to part with your money. Like my good friend Fifty Shades of Snail says, it “isn’t the length of the routine, it’s the depth and breadth of the individual options.” You could just use three and that could be enough. Rather than hitting some arbitrary product limit, I focused on figuring out what was best for my skin.

I don’t have a set routine, I have products that sit nicely in categories that help me achieve, blemish free, even toned and healthy glowy skin!

24 Comments Add yours

  1. Anthonia says:

    What you said about not needing everything all at once is so true. I found out from Get It Beauty that one of the reason my face was so puffy was that my cream was too rich for me. I switched and the puffiness caused by the cream varnished. I’m afraid I do not have the physical or mental strength to organise so I have tubs and jars all over tha place…underwear drawer, my bed (for easy access)…:)

    I did virtual cartwheels when I spotted dustcut cream in your picture:) I love dustcut for sealing in all the goodness:) Hope all the organisation has helped with finding things, I’m so used to reaching for things in a particular place. I think I’ll be confused for days if I had to organise everything.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. adoredee says:

      Hahahaha! I’m really really into organisation, so I have a designated area for everything in my room. My beauty products fit into a wheelie drawer set and two wicker baskets that I have on a side table. The only things I keep in the bathroom are my main 1st & 2nd Cleansers. I should really do another post on how I organise my products, spreadsheet and physically.

      While I’d love to have a shelf system where I pick and chose, but I have them in a box, so really it’s all down to memory and visually scanning.

      Oh my gosh, dust cut is such an unsung hero! More people need to talk about how amazing it is! Get It Beauty is so amazing! I wish they were still subbing the episodes 😦

      Like

      1. Anthonia says:

        Please be my best friend, pretty please:) I loathe organising! Don’t get me wrong, I love the theory of it, it’s just putting it into practice that wears me out. There are sooooo many wonderful things I could do in that time:)…or not do in my case. I bought some cute desktop organising box but when you’ve got skin issues, cute box isn’t going to hold your summer and winter regime. I gave up after that…I couldn’t afford anymore cute storage boxes. I mean, that’s valueable haul money being spent on organisation.

        IKR! I can’t believe how anyone could live without dustcut. I find in summer it keeps my skin so soft and hydrated it’s so untrue. I miss Get It Beauty too:( I keep checking youtube hoping one day I’ll find the subbed new episodes. So sad.

        If you feel like spending your holiday outside of London…. ha ha ha

        Liked by 1 person

      2. adoredee says:

        Bwahaha, if I could I would! I know what you mean! It’s actually pretty terrible, I have so much storage and still I want more. I buy mine piecemeal, if I find a good sale on cute storage I tend to go for it. But really, it’s about making the space work for you and setting things up the way you need them.

        Ugh, I’m so jealous. It’s still unseasonably warm, the products I bought for my winter routine are still in storage!

        Like

  2. V. Rex says:

    I love this post. Making a list (mental or otherwise) of my skincare goals is something I’ve never thought to do even though it seems so obvious now. I need to do this categorization thing tonight. I definitely have a lot of redundant product and products that are not appropriate for my needs and just way too many products in general.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. adoredee says:

      Making a list is really really helpful. Once you know what you’re trying to achieve, choosing what to purchase becomes a little easier! When I started all of this, I was mostly trying to alleviate my guilt each time I bought something. Knowing why I was buying a product and what gap it would fill in my routine really helped make sense of it all.

      Good luck with your categorisation, let me know how it goes!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Jenny says:

    I love how you broke down the products into different categories! It’s really hard to fight the urge to NOT buy the latest and greatest product out there (and reading all these great reviews don’t help either!), but knowing what categories of products you need in your routine and what you already have definitely makes it easier. Thank you for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. adoredee says:

      You’re so welcome and yes, that’s exactly my reasoning!

      There’s just SO MUCH out there, that if you don’t know what you’re looking for it’s easy to acquire all the things and lose sight of what you actually want from your skincare!

      Not everything I buy is super functional, I like to buy for fun things too. But the difference is now, I know why I’m buying them, I know what I intend to do with them and I don’t let myself get so swept up in the need for all the things all at once!

      Like

  4. Fernanda says:

    Very nice post! My skin is currently freaking out due to moving half around the globe, being stressed almost 24/7 and a different climate and it almost feels like I have to start learning how to take care of my skin all from zero again. Although my experience and being in a country with good skincareoptions does help. Skincare does seem to be almost a neverending story to me

    Like

    1. Don’t worry, I move across the world twice a year every year, I live 9 months in one country and 3 in the other.

      Like

      1. adoredee says:

        Not going to lie, you’re basically living my dream, LOL!

        Like

  5. Charlotte says:

    Is that the superdrug serum i see in the second photo? How did you find it? Ive just purchased but trying to work my way through the millions of other products first 🙂 so good to see a fellow uk ab enthusiast! Im from the south coast…nice to meet you (virtually anyway)!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. adoredee says:

      Yes! It is! I found it to be absolutely WONDERFUL, however it takes forever to get through one tube, holy wow. Seriously, months to get through it. Unfortunately, it’s a little on the thick side for me, and even though it made my skin wonderful and soft it did nothing to help my oily skin so I dropped it from my routine.

      But I recommend and gift it to everyone I can. It’s a great little product!

      Always happy to meet with other ABUK people! Hallo! -waves- Nice to meet you!

      Like

  6. Oh my goodness, I live in a very small room with another person….and I am a very organized person with lots of skin care products who has to travel across the world 2-4 times a year…I have to organize my life into 2 suitcases. So I have charts spreadsheets an notebooks with how much of each type of product I use in one year and when each product should be opened. I write the date I open each product and the day I buy it on the bottle. I have a box of my morning products, a box of my night products and a box full of season appropriate sheet masks, wash off masks and sleeping masks under my bed. Along with a stock pile from my last haul (some products are exclusive to china) in my suitcase under my bed. It is embarrassing.

    Like

    1. adoredee says:

      Your dedication to organisation made my heart grow three sizes! It’s not embarrassing at all!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. wantastic90 says:

    Great post! Im in the process of organising my stash and figuring out what I need in my routine vs what I want and impulsively buying. Its hard cos theres soo many things I want haha. Im slowly learning self control.

    Like

    1. adoredee says:

      Yes! It’s hard because every week there’s a new shiny, but keep at it!

      Like

  8. A R C says:

    This blog post was just what I was looking for. I am an intermediate, just past beginner, “student” to K-Beauty and this really helps put the next steps in line for me. Coupled with the “How to Haul Responsibly”, it’s perfect.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. adoredee says:

      I’m so glad it helped you!

      Like

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