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Let's pretend for a moment that I'm Caroline Hirons and everyone's waiting to see what makes it into my latest skincare kit! Today, I'm unveiling the products I'd include in my imaginary Autumn / Winter Kit and why they're great...
The first product I've chosen is a multi-tasking cleanser: the Ordinary's Squalane Cleanser | £13.95 (supersize) | full review. I think it's good to have a variety of price-points in these sorts of kits, as well as products that can 'do it all' and this fits the bill in both categories. This cleanser is formulated with a simple ingredient list, mainly comprised of squalane; a plant-derived, skin-similar oil that's great for sensitive winter skin. It has a unique cream-balm texture that emulsifies with water, so it's great for makeup removal or as a really moisturising morning cleanse. It's an essential in my skincare collection, so it was the first product I thought of when I decided to create this post.
As a toner, I've chosen a gentle exfoliating option for this kit. I'm not sure about you, but my skin gets drier and flakier during the colder months, so I really need to stay on top of it through exfoliation. At the same time, it also tends to feel far more sensitive, so it's important not to over-exfoliate. Therefore the Inkey List's PHA Toner | £9.99 | full review | is perfect for straddling these two skin goals! PHAs have a large molecular size, so absorb slowly into the skin, which can make them less irritating than something like an AHA or a BHA. I personally find this doesn't even give me mild tingling, I can use it every day if I so wish and it still gives me that soft, smooth skin finish, making quick work of dry patches.
I find that keeping it simple helps these sorts of kits appeal to as many people as possible, and during the winter months; we pretty much all need a hydrating, replenishing serum. My next pick is therefore the PSA Skin the Most Hyaluronic Super Nutrient Hydration Serum | £34 | brand review coming soon. I've almost used up an entire bottle of this serum and I only bought it in July; a pretty positive sign for someone who tests as many products as I do! This is a moisturising, non-sticky, non-tacky formula infused with hyaluronic acid (to pull water into the skin), panthenol (this helps water retention in the skin) and moisturising ingredients like safflower seed oil. All-in-all it's a solid serum to plump and soften the skin, as well as providing lasting moisture and hydration.
I'm also throwing an eye cream in here and it had to be an old favourite: the CeraVe Eye Repair Cream* | £12 | full review. I've been gifted this and also picked it up myself, but either way, it's a product I always have a tube of at the ready! It's a great option for the colder months because it's lightweight (so isn't restricted to dry skin types) but still provides moisture and protection. It's fragrance-free and many dermatologists recommend this brand for sensitive skin types. This is formulated with niacinamide, which (in the context of an eye cream) is primarily going to act to protect the skin and strengthen its natural barrier, and ceramides, which are lipids naturally found in our skin that sometimes need replenishing.
As a day cream, I'm including the Dr Jart Ceramidin Cream | £35.50 (15% off with code JASMINETALKS_LF) | full review. I guess this is probably more appropriate for dry and normal skin types, but I'm trying to focus on ingredients that help keep the skin strong, healthy and moisturised throughout the harsh colder months and this absolutely does that. As I mentioned, ceramides really replenish the skin and also help prevent transepidermal water loss and I find this specific formula so nourishing without being at all greasy. It's one I reach for every year without fail to keep dry, tight, irritated skin at bay until spring comes again.
For a night cream, it was probably pretty obvious to the regulars that I'd pick the Kate Somerville DeliKate Recovery Cream* | £69 | full review! This is a super-nourishing, skin-softening cream, also formulated with ceramides and created to help compromised skin return to health. As well as being great for dry and irritated skin, it feels so luxurious to use (alongside being fragrance-free) and leaves my skin beautifully smooth. I absolutely love this stuff and it's the perfect combination of function and form.
Finally I've picked another more luxury treat that's perfect for winter skin that's dry and lifeless: the Sunday Riley Juno Antioxidant + Superfood Face Oil | £27 | full review. I feel most people like a face oil during the winter and this is one of the more universal ones I've tried due to its nourishing but non-greasy texture. It's formulated with a bunch of fragrance-free, antioxidant-rich plant oils to protect the skin from environmental aggressors, as well as to replenish it with amino acids and omegas.
If you were pulling together a skincare bundle for Autumn / Winter, what would you put in it?