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My No-fuss Nighttime Budget-Friendly Skincare Routine

Updated: Nov 12, 2023

When the sleepy dust swoops in at night after a long day, skipping your nighttime cleansing routine is tempting because you just want to melt into bed. But your face has to be cleansed of the day's activities — no matter how few times you've traveled around the sun, and even if you don't wear makeup.

So why is it so important to clean your face every night before bed? Because the environment is dirty and full of toxins. The skin on our face is 3Xs thinner than the skin on our body. And its daily exposure to pollution makes it even more vulnerable to damage. Smog, dust, extreme temperatures, and other antagonists cause damage to the skin, like blemishes that leave scars behind. Over time harmful UV rays can cause spots and discoloration.

The first line of defense to help protect your skin during the day begins at night with a routine that gets you in bed quickly but is still there in the morning giving you well-nourished, protected skin.

That said, my nighttime routine understood the assignment and continues to give me well-hydrated, glowing, gorgeous skin!


I do NOT like using my face cleanser x H2O to wash my face and then rinse at night, so I don't. It's too time-consuming when I'm sleepy, and it becomes too tempting to go to bed with makeup on. I use a Micellar Cleansing Water with cotton balls to remove my mascara, and cotton rounds to thoroughly remove dirt, oil, and makeup and cleanse my entire face. I especially love a Vitamin C formula because it brightens and evens skin by sloughing off dead surface skin cells and delivering its powerful antioxidant to help fight reverse signs of aging brought on by environmental irritants and sun exposure, promoting elasticity - giving glowing, hydrated skin. I see first-hand the efficacy of Vitamin C. I noticed the dullness and sagginess of my skin because I was neglecting to meet its "new needs" after I became a mom. Vitamin C is my holy grail. I can almost guarantee with consistency and the right delivery system, you will see results.


So next, I layer my budget-friendly but effective (that's what it's all about) Vitamin C-infused treatments. By lightly wiping my face with e.l.f. SuperBrightening Peel Pads, I accomplish 3 things:

+ Remove any small traces of makeup residue

+ Alpha-hydroxy acid and Papaya Extracts gently exfoliate my skin

+ Citrus Extracts are delivered into my open pores to help promote glowing, bright skin

* This product is not recommended for sensitive skin, but I use gentle application, and my sensitive skin approves : )

! New try alert. I recently added e.l.f. Supertone Toner, formulated with Alpha-Hydroxy Acid, Witch Hazel, Aloe, and Castor Oil. These active ingredients work in tandem to exfoliate, soothe, and revitalize skin. I use the Peel Pads in my nighttime routine and splash on the Toner in my morning routine to get a continuum of Vitamin C without over-treating, which could cause sensitive skin to be agitated.

After applying a Peel Pad, I spritz my face with rosewater. Literally...a spritz. No cotton balls or rounds necessary. I've used a few, and they all work well for me, but currently, I use Burt's Bees Calming Toner with Hazel & Rose. Rosewater is a famously light formula containing antioxidants that cleanse and help protect and recover skin's surface from environmental aggressors. Witch Hazel helps remove excess oil and works in tandem with Rose Extract to detoxify and calm skin and help it recover. Consistently detoxifying and hydrating the skin aids in preventing and reversing fine lines and wrinkles. And the scent...beautifully fragrant...naturally!

After a spritz or two of Rosewater, I apply my skin toner favs - the beautiful and talented FENTY Skin Fat Water. Oh, how do I love thee! First of all the name right? It SCREAMS "You need me". And its "fat" texture is everything. The thickness of this "water" is a silky smoother, non-sticky "pinkish" toner serum that glides on skin and gives it a big "fat" hug you will feel instantly. So how does its "fatness" benefit skin? It's a 2-in-1 toner serum that tightens pores and removes excess oil as it hydrates. It smooths and brightens skin's texture, all without stripping skin's surface. Over time this super serum helps reduce the appearance of dark spots. This innovative and highly effective toner serum is vegan, and lightly scented with notes of cherry and fig that also help clarify skin's appearance. But if you prefer your skincare fragrances free, you got it! Fat Water is formulated with:

+ NIACINAMIDE (Vitamin B3 - helps reduce the appearance of dark spots, evens out skin tone, and helps reduce excess oil)

+ BARBADOS CHERRY (Extra strength brightener)

+ AUSTRALIAN LEMON MYRTLE & WITCH HAZEL WATER ( Helps reduce oil and tighten pores)


+ CACTUS FLOWER (Hydrates)

+ GREEN TEA & FIG (Defends against environmental aggressors)


Because my skin is a bit more mature, I added an AHA skin treatment. AHA (Alpha-Hydroxy Acid) is a chemical exfoliant, extra muscle to help reverse visible signs of aging, like fine lines, wrinkles, and dark spots by gently sloughing off skin cells. I have not yet incorporated this step into my routine. So for now, I double down on moisturizing. The choice to use a CBD face oil was easy because of its skin-renewing superpowers. I apply a couple of drops of this green(ish) goddess with my palms. My fav and most cost-effective formula I've experienced is e.l.f. 100 MG Full Spectrum CBD Facial Oil (no longer available - try All the Feels CBD Face Oil). It's fast-absorbing and formulated with Marula oil to help balance the skin and Grapeseed Oil to help retain moisture - so crucial for plump, supple skin. Other key ingredients are Japanese citrus to help neutralize those damaging free radicals, and chamomile to calm and soothe skin.

For the finale, my mainstay moisturizing serum is Shea Moisture Glow Getter Pressed Serum Moisturizer. This skin resurfacing, super penetrating serum + moisturizer has worked effectively to help improve the surface of my skin. It hydrates my skin so well, leaving it more supple and glowing like a mutha! I apply a small amount on top of the CBD Facial Oil I need for my super-sensitive skin.

! Remember, moisture and hydration are kryptonite for acne. So if you suffer from acne, like I did for so many years, consider incorporating skincare formulas that deliver hydration to your pores after cleansing to help correct acne-prone skin. And lock it in with a skin-repairing moisturizer.

That's it! My simple, quick nighttime budget-friendly skincare routine. Effective for my skin and gets me to my! If you're on a quest for better skin that's budget-friendly, maybe one or more of these formulas is the answer to your pressing skin issues.

Check them out. Over time, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised by the look of your skin's appearance.


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