June 21, 2019 was the day my skin and I officially became bicoastal.
Two things came to mind the moment I, an LA golden girl slathered in SPF, found out I was going to move to New York. Number one, “holy sh*t” and number two, “gonna need 3 Home Depot boxes for my skincare. HEAVY DUTY BABY.”
Of course, the thought of how unwell my combo skin was going to hold up in not one but four seasons was completely polarizing. A skincare routine is highly personal. It is scientific. It is a delicious, juicy recipe that serves 1. And, as most skinthusiasts have come to learn, it can take lightyears to get right. Off I went into the pits of the concrete jungle in search of where (hopefully!!!) good skin is made of.
After months and months of dealing with regular California visits, with NY humidity, with both sets of pollution, and with a squall (do not urban dictionary this word, just don’t!) I feel ready to share what my skin and I have learned about tackling a bicoastal love affair. Read on to find out how to care for your face when your skin just doesn’t care where tf you are.
SUNSCREEN IS QUEEN
If you get to this part and do not read the rest (tl;dr – i get it!!) please, at least, heed this piece of advice: WEAR SPF! I’ve told everyone from women, men, and children alike, even squawked at strangers, “YOU’RE NOT STRONGER THAN THE SUN!” over a cacophony of honks, loud tourists, and street chickie coos. That’s just how important this step in any skincare routine means to me. West Coast to East Coast, the sun still shines even when we don’t see her.
My stalwart sunscreen go-to is Supergoop PLAY Everyday Lotion SPF 30. What I love about this product in particular is that it plays well with my face and body and doesn’t break me out. Made with sunflower extract (yas – protector!) and rosemary extract (yas – calmer!) and is now reef-safe (yas – ocean lover!), you’ll definitely feel super good using it.
CA + NY: Supergoop! PLAY Everyday Lotion SPF 30 – hydrating, water- and sweat-resistant
“YOU’RE NOT STRONGER THAN THE SUN!”
MOISTURIZE THE DRY
Listen, I consider myself #blessed having the best and worst coastal weather in my life right now. California is warm, mostly. New York is not warm, mostly. Both have a level of dryness that could crack your face in half (trust me, you could sharpen a dull knife with certain patches of my cheeks – it gets that bad). So, it was key to carry two different types of moisturizers that appeased each side.
CA: Tatcha The Dewy Skin Cream – Lightweight, smooth, a glowy pay-off
NY: Indie Lee Squalane Facial Cream – Thicc-er, deeply hydrating, natural
I SEE YOU SERUM
When I started upping my skincare game, serum was something every brand had in their line-up but I never knew why it was such a key player. You need a serum if you want to combat the deeper issues your skin goes through such as acne, fine lines, wrinkles, and aging, essentially. Going from sea to shining sea, I had to have one that worked universally for my skin type. I’ve used everything from super luxe (27-botanicals-of-a-mythical-god) serum to really cheap (am-I-going-to-grow-cultures-on-my-face) serum and the one true winner comes from The Ordinary. A super blend of good skin technology makes this serum an MVP.
CA + NY: The Ordinary “Buffet” Serum – Anti-aging, super affordable, has a ton of ingredients I cannot pronounce but that’s OK
FACIALS AND CHILL
There are a few skincare techniques that I leave to the professionals: extractions being one of them (one of the most uncomf but satisfying journeys for your poor pores!!). As part of my “me dates” and usually in between my trips, I treat myself to monthly maintenance facials in New York. Speaking of dates, I’d imagine finding a facialist in New York is just as tough, awkward, and full of disappointment as dating in New York. Luckily, after going on “first dates” with way too many facialists – I finally found the one. Carmen on the Upper East Side is Facial Bae. I always leave my sessions feeling glowy, gorgeous and with a heart full of gold; plus a pocket full of free samples. True love at its finest.
For my California Facial Side-Bae, I make sure to pass through FACILE for an ‘In The Clear’ facial. Their facility stays Instagram-ready! On my wish list, I have my eyes on their Get Your Fill treatment which is essentially injectable fillers to pump volume back into the skin. Just like extractions, injectables are made to be left in the hands of professionals!
Bi-Monthly, affordable, effective (when you find your facialist)
MASKS, SNACKS AND A STEAMY HUNCHBACK
And lastly, this is how I would describe my ideal Sunday. To break it down, I love a good resurfacing mask, I love a good tasty snack, and I love using my face steamer lookin’ like a hunchback. I recently incorporated a facial steamer into my weekly routine and it has not disappointed. The minute I feel my pores open like a new day, I apply a soft layer of a resurfacing mask or exfoliating mask once a week to buff away dry skin cells. And while I wait? Slurping on a plate full of some sort of pasta!
CA: Trader Joe’s Blueberry & Açaí Facial Scrub – Delicious-smelling, smoother skin, affordable
NY: Tata Harper Resurfacing BHA Glow Mask – Brightening, clean beauty, glowy pay-off
If my body wants to thrive on two coasts, so should my skin. My fellow bi-coastal/nomads/jetsetters, what are some key essentials do you swear by? Have any other questions on how to get your best skin from east to west? Reach out, or follow my journey @_jane and catch me on The 405 NQRW Train… wait where am I?