Two years ago, beauty expert Michelle Phan committed to no longer wearing foundation, so it's no surprise that finding a beauty routine that works for her skin and lifestyle took precedence. "It was a very very hard move to make because, when you're so used to seeing your face made up and your skin looks perfect, you start getting face dysmorphia. You're so used to seeing your face one way, when you go home and wash your face, you see your real face, and foundation starts to become your security blanket," she says. "I've noticed as I got older, my skin needed more coverage. And then I realized, by the time I'm in my mid-30s, late-30s, I'm going to need a full face of makeup every day. I don't have time for that and I don't think it's healthy for my skin or mentally."
In this episode of Go To Bed With Me, the pioneering YouTube beauty expert, Ipsy founder, and EM Cosmetics creator walks us through exactly how she keeps her skin glowing without a drop of foundation.
Shop Michelle's Beauty Routine
Phan is a fan of using the double cleansing method to help remove makeup and impurities from her face, without stripping away essential oils that will otherwise leave her with over-dried skin. She starts by melting Then I Met You's Living Cleansing Balm in her hand and rubbing it into her face. "Just go in and smear it all over my face. It's the most satisfying part," she says as she massages her under-eye area.
Once her makeup melts away, she washes her face with water to achieve "the Neutrogena moment," she jokes. Phan follows up with Then I Met You's Tea Cleansing Gel, a "jelly-like" face wash that does not sting her skin. "I'm really going in here, getting any bits of product off," she says.
Next up, she dabs a clean cotton towel to her face to remove any excess water before she moves onto her essence, which "helps prep your skin to absorb moisture better." Her favorite way to use the Neogen Real Ferment Micro Essence is by soaking a round cotton pad and gently pressing the liquid into her skin. "Try not to forget your neck," she cautions. "I know it's an afterthought for most people, but it's true. The first signs of aging actually does appear on your neck."
Although Phan has "always been a skincare junkie at a young age," her mother has a more laidback approach to skincare. However, one cardinal beauty rule her mom taught her is the importance of sunscreen. “It actually paid off in the long run because I’m noticing that even though I’m in my thirties I don’t have a lot of sunspots. I’ve been really lucky about that and really believe it’s sunscreen that helped slow down aging for me,” she says.
For toner, Phan dilutes Biologique's Lotion P50 with water and applies the mixture to a circular cotton pad then gently sweeps the pad over her face. "What you'll feel is this tingly sensation–some people say it burns or it feels like peppermint on their skin–but for me, it feels very nice. I definitely feel like this product is a good preventive product to help with any signs of large pores, sun spots, or age spots. It helps refine the skin," she says.
Phan, 31, is a fan of these various products because she noticed that once she hit her late-20s, her skin became drier and responds better to gentler products. "I noticed my skin was losing collagen, it lost a bit of that bounce, and luster, so I had to exfoliate a lot because my skin turn-over rate was decreasing," she says.
Next up is Phan's favorite step: masking. She reaches for Neogen's Super Hydra Aqua Mask which has a capsule at the top of each single-use packet. As she breaks the capsule and the active ingredients run down the packet, she squeezes and shakes the packet to help blend the mix. "The reason I like that the active ingredients are separated is you get a fresh sheet mask every time," she says.
After she opens up the sheet mask, Phan moves her face into the mask, and removes the top mesh layer which she says makes her "feel like Patrick Bateman in American Psycho." While she waits ten minutes for the mask to become damp (never dry) Phan moves onto her hair routine.
She warms up a couple pumps of British M Organics Annatto Hair Oil in the palm of her hand and presses the lightweight oil onto her midlengths and ends. She then massages the leftover oil into her hands for extra moisture.
Now that her mask is "juuust right," she peels the sheet mask off and sweeps her second mask, Etude House's Moistfull Collagen Sleeping Pack onto her face. "It's a lightweight moisturizer, you don't feel anything on your face. It dries down very naturally, it doesn't have that sticky residue texture," she says.
Her final product is another sleeping mask, this time for her lips. Phan favors Klavuu's Nourishing Care Lip Sleeping Pack which she rubs into her lips using her ring finger. "When I put this baby on, the next morning when I wake up, my skin looks good, my lips are good, I don't have to do anything. Just concealer, eyebrows, and I'm done," she says with a smile.
Watch the rest of the video above to see all the products Michelle uses before she unwinds for bed and add them to your cart. Don't forget to subscribe to BAZAAR's Youtube channel so you never miss an episode of Go To Bed With Me, Little Black Book, Heel Hunters, This Looks is Money, and Food Diaries.