I wouldn’t call myself a skincare ‘guru’, but it’s something I’ve been interested in since my teens. Maybe that’s because I had a bout of terrible acne in my teens, or maybe it’s because I’ve seen the effects of an excellent skincare routine first hand. Over the years, as I’ve tried a few different skincare routines and brands, it’s become something that I consider a huge part of my self-care.
Now that I’m in my 30’s (and less than a year away from our wedding!) I’m comfortable with continuing the multi-targeted approach that I feel has changed my skin over the past 2 years. With the help of the skincare team at Cape Aesthetics, I’ve slowly been adding to my routine over the past 3 to 4 years. Now, at 31 years old, I find that I’m loving my skin more than ever – with or without makeup.
With so many thousands of products and treatments available, and so many skincare innovations coming to market every year, finding the routine that is going to work for you can feel really complicated (and expensive!). I put my skincare in the hands of the experts at Cape Aesthetics, because if I’m going to invest my money in skincare, I want to be sure that I’m investing in the right, medically-backed stuff. And since I’ve had quite a few requests recently, I’m sharing my own (relatively uncomplicated) routine and explaining why I love the products I’ve been using.
My 30-Something Skincare Routine
My personal feeling on skincare is that I want to be backing up the work and money I’m putting into products, with medical intervention. Treatments like Botox and Dermapen might not be for everyone, but I feel that they have made all the difference to my skin’s texture and in slowing down the development of both fine lines and deep wrinkles (goodbye forever, forehead wrinkle that makes me look perpetually furious!).
All the products in my routine are from Lamelle Research Laboratories. Because I’ve been seeing Cara (for Botox) and Sally (for facials and Dermapen) at Cape Aesthetics since my mid-20’s, I’ve slowly been incorporating recommended products from the range as I age and my skin and routine change. What I like about Lamelle is that their products offer excellent quality at what I feel is a manageable price, are locally made in South Africa and are backed by medical science. Here’s my 30-something skincare routine.
My Quick 3-Step Skincare Routine
STEP 1: Dermaheal Foaming Cleanser
A luxurious-feeling, soap-free foaming cleanser. pH-balanced and mild enough to use twice a day to cleanse and tone. It’s specially formulated with a moisturising complex that hydrates as you cleanse. I use this with my QYKSONIC Zoe cleansing sonic brush | Lamelle Dermaheal Foaming Cleanser, R260
Why I like it: I love that it gets all my makeup off but doesn’t leave the skin around my eyes feeling dry. I also like that it’s a gel texture, but foams into a rich lather.
STEP 2: Dermaheal Cellular Repair
This rich moisturiser uses complete growth factor, cytokine and MMP-inhibiting complex, combining it with the powerful antioxidant Pycnogenol®’s free radical-neutralising abilities and a vitamin C-based collagen boosters | Lamelle Dermaheal Cellular Repair Cream, R870
Why I like it: I personally love a very rich moisturiser but I don’t like it to be so heavy that it makes my makeup shiny. I feel like it’s intensely moisturising without being saturating.
STEP 3: Helase 50+ Sunscreen
In short, it’s the ultimate upgrade from your normal, everyday SPF 50.
Helase 50+ protects against the full spectrum of sunlight while the super-antioxidant Pycnogenol® destroys harmful free radicals to decrease the number of harmful enzymes that cause thinning and sagging of the skin. On top of this, it decreases the damaging and ageing inflammation in the skin, while actively stopping the effects of aging on the skin and keeping the immunity of the skin intact when exposed to sunlight | Lamelle Helase 50+ Sunscreen, R525
Why I like it: I hate feeling like my sunscreen is causing blackheads and this one doesn’t feel like it’s doing that. Also, it packs so much more of a punch than an everyday sunscreen, so I feel like it’s doing double the work!
So that’s my every day, no-matter-what routine. If I only have the budget to replace a few items at once, this would be my must-have arsenal. I also have a variety of serums and other products, which I apply based on how my skin is looking and feeling on any given day.
My Extra Skincare Steps to Boost My Routine
When: Daily, in the morning
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and helps protect your skin from free radicals. Basically, Vitamin C is necessary for the growth, development and repair of all body tissues – including the formation of collagen. But sometimes skin can’t tolerate pure Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), so this lipid-soluble form of Vitamin C delivers ascorbic acid-comparable results but is gentle enough to be used on sensitive and dry skin | Lamelle Correctives Vita C-Lipid Serum, R849
Why I like it: Did you read the part about Vitamin C supporting the formation of collagen? It also smells nice – a very subtle orange scent.
When: Daily, in the morning and evening
Noticeable, instantaneous hydration. It’s made with four different types of hyaluronic acid, each with a unique hydrating effect on your skin, as well as special HAFi fragments that stimulate your skin’s own hyaluronic acid production. For the first time in skincare, a hyaluronidase inhibitor protects aging skin against the aggressive breakdown of hyaluronic acid in your skin | Lamelle Correctives HA+ Serum, R680
Why I like it: This product has changed the texture of my skin. It’s slick and smooth to apply and it penetrates my skin really quickly. It also stimulates your body’s own hyaluronic acid production!
When: Three times a week, in the evening
Offering a safe effective and patented form of retinoic acid that boosts cell turnover and promoting healthy elastin – restructuring the skin with very little discomfort. It improves the texture of your skin by reducing fine lines and wrinkles, offering improved exfoliation and assisting with product penetration | Lamelle Correctives RA Cream, R780
Why I like it: I can actually feel when I wake up in the morning that my skin feels super hydrated. It also looks smooth, taught and glowy.
When: Three times a week, in the evening
Made using your body’s natural exfoliation regulator, Cathepsin D, it’s an enzymatic exfoliator that exfoliates evenly without disrupting the skin barrier, for noticeably smoother skin texture. When used consistently, it helps to improve wrinkles, boost moisture levels and improve skin firmness | Lamelle Correctives Cathepzyme 1, R575
Why I like it: I really don’t like using a physical exfoliator as it irritates my skin and actually causes a more uneven texture. This product feels effective, slightly warming my skin, but doesn’t irritate or ‘scratch’ my skin. My favourite exfoliator ever!
When: Daily, in the morning and evening
I don’t technically need this product yet – but I really wanted to try it! It’s made with probiotics lysate and enhanced with polysaccharides, B glucans, amino acids, fatty acids, and special plant extracts to fight the appearance of wrinkles, redness, irritation and sagging | Lamelle Skin Essence Corrector, R395
Why I like it: I don’t like the smell (it smells a bit like apple cider vinegar) and to be honest I don’t know much about those ingredients, but I love the way my skin feels when I apply it! It feels like it’s creating a clean and prepped base for the rest of my products.
My Medical Intervention Regimen
I started getting Botox every 4-6 months when I was 27, specifically to combat a deep frown line between my brows and three horizontal lines across my forehead. About 5 days after the treatment, I notice that I look more ‘awake’ or well-rested. It gives my skin a more youthful appearance and has dramatically slowed down the development of crows feet and that much-hated frown line. It also very slightly lifts my brows and gives my forehead a lovely smooth glow.
In 2019 I had my first series of four Dermapen treatments over four months. The Dermapen treatments improved the texture of my skin (roughness, uneven texture), all but eliminated any fine lines that might have been trying me, dramatically improved the light pigmentation caused by days and days in the sun and also assisted with added firmness.
The combination of these two treatments completely turned my skin around. They are both long-game treatments, which need to be maintained in order to really be effective. Although Botox does give a more ‘instant fix’ to wrinkles and lines, it has really beneficial with extended use. Dermapen’s results actually snuck up on me a few months after my first treatment, as skin takes time to really benefit from the collagen and healing protein-boosting treatments.
In terms of maintenance, I really see results when I have these treatments every 4-6 months and maintain my skincare routine. Cost-wise, that’s an investment of R2000 for Dermapen and around R2000 for Botox every 4-6 months. My basic skincare routine has cost R1700 every 3 months. The serums last for ages and I can actually stretch them to up to 6 months with careful use.
*This post is brought to you in collaboration with Lamelle Research Laboratories. This is not the kind of partnership where the brand would approach me and I would try the product and then share it if I like it. I am excited to be working with Lamelle because I have already been purchasing their products for many years and truly feel that the brand is an effective yet affordable offering for South African women like me. To find out more about Lamelle Research Laboratories, visit their website at www.lamelle.co.za. My first 4 Dermapen treatments were gifted by Cape Aesthetics, but I have since booked further treatments on my own account. Botox is a medical treatment and none of my treatments have ever been gifted.