Illustrated by Lauren Alexa.
Charisse Chikwiri, Editorial Intern
After a long day of running the streets, and maybe serving a cute makeup look, the first stage of my nighttime beauty routine is always cleansing. Usually after fighting the urge to just collapse straight into bed, but I’d much rather avoid a war with my pores.
I have normal/dry skin, and so I’ve had to find a solution to makeup removal (and cleansing in general) that doesn’t leave my skin feeling tight and stripped. Coconut oil
has been my saving grace! I use my fingertips to massage cold-pressed virgin coconut oil into my face and over my eyelids. While I do look like Danny Zuko’s hair in the process, it literally lifts all makeup from the surface of my skin. I then dampen a few cotton pads with warm water and wipe the coconut oil away. I use a separate cotton pad for my eyes, making sure to gently swipe through my lashes.
l learned about the double cleansing method from a book on Korean beauty secrets
, so after the coconut oil I follow with my Dr Organic Tea Tree Facial Wash
or Manuka Honey Face Scrub
. Both products are gentle but effective cleansers which keep my skin feeling supple, even before moisturizing.
My toner is my own blend of rose water, glycerin and 2/3 drops of essential tea tree oil. I spritz this over my face and let it settle. The rose water is calming and anti-inflammatory (it also smells amazing), glycerin works to help my skin retain/absorb moisture and the tea tree oil is antibacterial. Mario Badescu
both do great rose water toners if you’d rather not make your own. Lastly, I moisturize with my own blend of pure argan oil
and raw African shea butter
. Even separately, they are the best non-comedogenic and nourishing moisturizers for my dry skin.
If I notice any raised or inflamed spots, I’ll use a cotton swab to dab tea tree oil
directly onto them. Generally, they’re reduced or pretty much gone by the morning. I steer far away from harsh chemicals and enjoy having control over what I’m applying to my skin, especially since it’s the body’s largest organ and absorbs everything!
My nighttime beauty is mostly focused on my skin and with half-closed eyes, I twist my afro up so it’s not tangled by the morning. This all takes about 30/40 minutes before bed, but with music playing, a baggy T-shirt and my comfy sliders on, it’s a lovely ritual of self-love to wind down with.