Now, I don't claim to have flawless skin, I am prone to break outs, but I've discovered that this routine really does prevent them, and if I do break out it's minimal and it clears up pretty quickly.
Each morning when I shower I gently scrub my face with a washcloth (without soap) and then use Aveeno Clear Complexion Foaming Cleanser to wash my face. (You can find Aveeno at places like Target.)
If I am breaking out, I like to use Neutrogena Acne Stress Control 3-in-1 Hydrating Acne Treatment. (You can find it at drugstores, it can be hard to find at Target.) It has the consistency of a thin gel and I'll rub it on where I'm breaking out. It goes on clear and has a clean, cucumbery-smell. It doesn't dry my skin out, but I do like to put lotion over my whole face after the gel has dried.
My big splurge is my face lotion: Origins VitaZing SPF 15. (You can find it at places like Macy's and Sephora. I like Sephora because you can return anything you try and don't like.) It comes in a 1.7 oz tube, but it lasts a very long time. I'd say it lasts me 5-6 months, using about the size of two peas each morning. The lotion comes out cream-colored, but it has a bit of a tint when applied. It's just enough to make me look fresh and bright in the morning. So, if I'm running late and don't have time for foundation there's no problem.
For foundation I use either MAC Studio Fix Powder Foundation or a liquid foundation like Make Up Forever Mat Velvet + or MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation SPF 15. (You can find MAC at department stores and MAC stores.) My forehead tends to get really oily looking throughout the day, but using the powder keeps it at a minimum.
Before I go to bed I use Neutrogena Make-up Remover Cleansing Towlettes. (You can find these towlettes at places like Target, and if you love them stock up at Costco.) Even if I didn't use foundation that day, I would still use the towlette at night because there's something special in the formulation (generic brands don't have it and don't work as well for me). Once I started using the towlettes I really noticed a dramatic difference in my skin.
The towlettes do a good job of getting the bulk of my makeup off, but I find it leaves behind a slippery residue. So, I use my Aveeno foaming cleanser again to clean up the the residue and any last bits of makeup. I've found that it leaves my skin soft and moisturized so I really don't need to apply an additional moisturizer at night, which is nice. (If I'm breaking out, I'll use my Neutrogena acne treatment gel on those areas and call it good.)
So, there you have it, my daily skin care routine. I've had great success when I've been consistent about the routine, and since I've been doing the same routine for over a year I feel confident in the results enough to recommend it to anyone else who's interested in trying it.
I realize everyone's skin is unique, so I'm not going to claim this routine will work for everyone else - especially since I don't know anyone else who has tried this routine. So, please comment below if you've tried any of these products and what you think of them. If you try the routine, did it work for you?
Oh, and for the men out there, I know one who really likes the acne gel.