• Hannah MacGregor

Combatting a breakout? Six holy grail products you need

Updated: Oct 5

Building a skincare routine is something of an art form nowadays. Upon the millions of products that are available to us now, it really is a minefield when choosing. It’s no wonder many of us just shy away from skincare altogether.

During lockdown, I decided that enough was enough and took the plunge into the world of skincare. After reading Caroline Hirons’ book several times over and spending most of my time watching Hyram on YouTube, I began to finally understand the meaning of skincare and how important having a routine really is.

I have found that brands such as La Roche-Posay, CeraVe, The Ordinary, and the Inkey List are the very best a uni student has on offer, as they are so affordable. So here are my six ‘holy grail’ products I’d recommend to anyone wanting to build a routine.


For cleansers, my first port of call when removing the build-up from the day is an oil-based/greasy cleanser. The Inkey List’s ‘Oat Cleansing Balm’ will erase even the toughest of makeup and SPF. For the second cleanse, my favourite is, and always will be, the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser, which has a gel consistency that leaves your skin feeling truly hydrated.

Moving on to moisturisers, my saving grace is from the CeraVe line again, which is their ‘Moisturising Lotion'. Despite it being labelled for ‘dry to very dry skin’, it still works wonders on my combination skin as it’s lightweight and applies effortlessly.

To combat the oil, a couple of drops of niacinamide after cleansing (and before your moisturiser and SPF) will work to reduce inflammation and keep the shine at bay. It’s also found to reduce discolouration (dark circles) under the eyes, so get into a routine of popping that on - especially after a few late nights out. I recommend The Ordinary’s Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%.

Although it's on the pricey side, a little certainly goes a long way with the Paula’s Choice 2% BHA Liquid exfoliant. It combats breakouts, unclogs pores, and is just a general miracle worker. It’s only needed two to three times a week (at most) and will leave you with a heavenly glow.

Finally, when it comes to suncream, many people dread finding an SPF which doesn’t leave a gloopy, white cast. But, with its lightweight, serum-like consistency, The La Roche-Posay Invisible Fluid sunscreen will change your perception of SPFs altogether. Equally, if you don’t want to spend a lot, I have also found a standard drug store one usually does the trick – just don’t forget to check for the UVA and UVB labels!


Edited by Tia Xiourouppas

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