Skincare must haves for a busy mom

You can spend 100’s of Rands on make up and still be frustrated with the end result if your canvass (your skin) isn’t in a good condition. Some lucky individuals are blessed with a genetically beautiful flawless skin, but most of us need to put in some work – and a couple of good quality products.

Below are my steps to the essential skin care – focussing on ANTI-AGEING.

Your products can look a little different if you are working towards targeting a more specific skin care concern like adult acne or hyperpigmentation for example. Check out my blogs about acne and pigmentation.

I am also just looking at the ESSENTIALS today – there are quite a bit more that you can do at home like exfoliators and masks – but more about that in another blog 😉

So here are my top skincare must haves for a busy mom!

Essential Morning routine:


Gentle Foaming Cleanser from Theravine

Make sure you cleanse your skin every morning and every evening with a MILD cleanser suitable to your PREFERENCE (gel/foam/cream/oil/liquid water based cleanser etc) and SKIN TYPE (oily/dry/combination). I currently use the Gentle Foaming Cleanser from Theravine (Available at salons or get in touch with me) retails for R298.  I also quite like the Loreal cleanser: Pure Clay detox face wash. R88

What do I look for in a cleanser? Not expensive (it really doesn’t have to be); gentle yet effective and I prefer a foamy gel in comparison to a cream.

Step 2: USE AN ANTIOXIDANT as your serum for the day.  Antioxidants have antiageing benefits as well as being super important to fight harmful free radicals during the day.  I am currently using the brilliant Phloretin CF from Skinceuticals. Thanks to my friend who was generous to give this as my 40th birthday present!

Step 3: USE A GOOD MOISTURISER on your face and neck.  I currently enjoy the Nourishing and Firming Day cream from Theravine for the DAY and the amazing moisturizer from Lamelle, Dermaheal Cellular Repair Cream.

Optional extra: Use an eye cream – check out my blog about eye creams here.

Step 4: USE A GOOD QUALITY sunblock every single day – check out my blog about sunscreen here and here.  My personal favourite is Heliocare. – either the SPF50 Gel or the SPF Tinted (this replaces my foundation on most days now because it is so quick and easy!)  Check out my blog on make-up tips for a busy mom HERE.


Essential Evening routine:


I start by cleansing off my eye make up. I love this water based cleanser from Garnier – retails for R80. Bioderma also has one, but is more expensive – retails for R230. Then I cleanse as in the morning routine.

Optional extra: Tone if necessary (not essential), sometimes necessary if you wear a lot of make up to ensure your skin is squaky.clean! You want it to be clean for your evening serum/cream to penetrate.


So this might look different than your morning serum.  At night it is a good idea to introduce anti-ageing ingredients like Vitamin A (MY FIRM FAVOURITE – it is one of the most well researched and proven anti-ageing ingredients!) or anti-ageing PEPTIDES or GROWTH FACTORS or even exfoliating ingredients like alpha and beta hydroxy acids.  I currently use Retacnyl (on doctor prescription) but only one evening per week (Retinol is very active and the skin will initially peel upon starting usage).  On other nights I enjoy the Collagen M/P Serum from Matriskin for its amazing anti-ageing benefits due to anti-ageing peptides.

Option extra: Use an eye cream – check out my blog about eye creams here.

Step 3: USE A GOOD MOISTURISER – Same as morning routing.

Please feel free to email me your questions about your skin care routine!

Love Helene xxx

How to – look after your skin during winter

On a recent shopping outing – I spotted this The Body Shop product which I just couldn’t resist. The name Warming Mineral Mask (R155) begged me to get into a warm bath and slather this baby onto my face. The description tempted me even more: “Self-warming, deep cleansing kaolin clay treatment.” How can you NOT want to try this mask especially as the days have turned into lovely chilly autumn?

This is the type of mask that I envision applying while lounging around in my gown and slippers sipping a cup of hot tea, hot chocolate or coffee… and maybe a rusk too? You get the idea 😉

2015-04-11 07.27.55

Here are a couple of Winter Skincare Tips (followed by my personal review of The Body Shop’s Warming Mineral Mask):

HOW TO look after your skin during winter:

1.  Now is the perfect time to try out those skincare treatments e.g. chemical peels/laser that you have been wanting to try out.  Some of these treatments are more ablative than your normal facial treatments, which means that it removes more of the upper skin layers – therefore exposing your skin to more harmful UV radiation.  It is advised to rather do these types of treatments during the colder months when the sun is not so harsh.  BUT remember that you still need to be careful of sun exposure and apply your sunblock even during autumn and winter!

2.  Due to the colder air, your skin might become more dehydrated leaving it feeling dry, tight and flaky.  It might even feel more sensitized.  To minimize this – be careful of exposing your skin to drastic temperature changes all the time e.g. coming from a cold environment outside to blasting hot air onto your face in your car or home.  Even something like a sauna or steam room – both super nice during colder months – could dehydrate your skin.  Make sure that you always drink plenty of water and protect your skin with a good moisturizer (to both prevent moisture loss and provide moisturizing ingredients to your skin).

3.  Pamper your skin with regular at-home mini facials.  This could include a facial scrub and a mask depending on your skin type.  You can’t go wrong with a hydrating mask as most of us are dehydrated especially during winter.  For your more oil-dry skin types – I would recommend a nourishing mask (these masks usually contain an oil component as well as other active ingredients to nourish the dry skin type).  My skin type is oily (even though I am 37 years old) – and I struggle with dehydration at the same time.  The Body Shop Warming Mineral Mask therefore sounded perfect for my oily, yet dehydrated winter skin needing some TLC.

The Beautiful Truth PRODUCT REVIEW: The Body Shop Warming Mineral Mask

I noticed on the instructions at the back that they recommend application onto a clean wet skin.  I soon realized why the recommended wet skin.  The consistency being quite thick and sticky made it a lot easier to apply onto a wet skin.  As soon as I squeezed out a reasonable amount (about a teaspoon) onto my hands, it immediately and magically turned warm!

The amazing warmth of the mask on my skin lasted a little while longer and it felt invigorating – not too tingly at all but rather a warm and refreshing sensation at the same time.  The Kaolin also gives it that warm, earthy and cleansing sensation which I love!  I left it on for about 5 – 10 minutes, dampened my finger tips to slightly emulsify the mask before rinsing it off with warm water.  I finished my at-home mini facial with toning and applying a serum (hydrating) and moisturizer to work during my beauty sleep. I recommend doing your at-home facial before going to bed.  Your serum can optimally penetrate after you have done an exfoliation and mask and your skin is designed to absorb products and regenerate itself while sleeping. That’s why it’s called the “beauty sleep”!

The warm feeling of the mask reminded me of a product which I have used in the past: the Dermalogica Multivitamin Thermafoliant which has the same warming effect upon application.

They recommend to use the mask once to twice a week which is fine, unless you feel that your skin is a bit sensitive.  I do not really keep track of how often I use products like these – so I normally just grab it when I feel like it, but try to do it at least once a week to get the full benefit of using the product regularly.

Main benefits:  The warming effect and cleansing ingredients like the Kaolin help to open the pores for a deep cleansing effect.  Essential oils of ginger and cinnamon make it an invigorating mask which is good to “wake up” a dull skin by stimulating micro-circulation.

The Beautiful Truth Star rating: 4 out of 5.

The bottom line:  I like this product and can recommend it to anyone (including the guys!) who struggles with an oily skin type and is not too sensitive.  The warming effect of the mask adds to its appeal for winter skincare.  Enjoy!!

Look out for more winter skincare tips in the weeks to come!  I will be writing about popular treatments such as micro-needling, peels and yummy winter warming facials…

Ingredient Deep Dive:

PEG-8 (Humectant), Zeolite (Warming Agent), Glycerin (Humectant), Kaolin (Absorbent), Methyl Gluceth-20 (Viscosity Modifier), Zinc Oxide (Sunscreen), PEG-220 (Binder/Humectant/Solvent), Algae (Seaweed Extract) (Natural Additive), Methylparaben (Preservative), Propylparaben (Preservative), Tocopheryl Acetate (Antioxidant), Curcuma zedoaria (Zedoary Oil) (Skin Conditioning Agent), Zingiber officinale (Zingiber Officinale (Ginger) Root Oil) (Natural Additive), Cinnamal (Fragrance Ingredient), Cinnamomum zeylanicum (Cinnamon Oil) (Fragrance), Linalool (Fragrance Ingredient), Eugenol (Fragrance Ingredient), Limonene (Fragrance Ingredient), Benzyl Benzoate (Solvent), Citral (Fragrance Ingredient), Coumarin (Fragrance Ingredient), Cinnamyl Alcohol (Fragrance Ingredient).