I often get rather amazing, thoughtful and fairly deep-diving comments on my posts. I figure that my other readers might be interested in reading my answers (and I need to be my ridiculously verbose self), so I am starting a new feature: Ask HH. Ask your brilliant questions in comments and will do a regular digest with my answers. Of course, please keep in mind that I am not a dermatologist or an aesthetician, so my advice comes strictly from personal experience and obsessive research.

The first question comes from the lovely Akismet:

I’m in the midst of switching over from chemical-ish (Sunday Riley & La Mer & Chantecaille) products to natural but I’m having the hardest time deciding on what natural brands to use. Esp aft reading reviews on GA & Aesop which I thought were top of the list natural products I’m now confused.

Am trying to use less on my combination, rosecca, big pored , semi scarred & pigmentation damaged skin. What would be a couple of brands in the Natural line that you’d strongly recommend? Hope to hear from you soon! Thanks. Kind regards xx

Dearest Akismet,

For starters, congratulations! It may seem like a daunting task to switch over to green beauty (especially seeing as your taste in skincare clearly leans towards the high end and the exquisite), but it’s one of the best things you can do for your skin. I was once a La Mer/Chantecaille/La Prairie girl and my skin is so much better and less sensitive after making the switch.

It makes sense that Grown Alchemist and Aesop were your first choices: they both fall into the whole “carried at Barneys”, sexily minimalist category. I do want to make it clear that GA is actually a much cleaner brand that Aesop (and some of its products are completely clean). I tend to think of it as more of an anti-aging focused brand, but its Matte Balancing Moisturizer could be an interesting choice. Now for my actual recommendations.

Although I myself don’t have problems with oiliness/scarring/pigmentation, people who do, tend to absolutely swear by Yuli’s Cell Perfecto PM for diminishing acne scarring. I have never tried it, so cannot speak from personal experience, but as everyone knows, I adore Yuli’s other products. Since your skin is rosacea-prone, I would think that Yuli’s Cocoon Mist would be perfect: it’s incredibly gentle, calming and hydrating. If your skin is feeling oily, the Panacea Elixir is also a great bet. Yuli’s Liquid Courage is an excellent everyday oil and its high content of vitamin C can help with hyper-pigmentation.

My best friend who suffers from rosacea fell in love with La Bella Figura’s Modern Radiance Concentrate. I don’t know if you have any anti-aging concerns, but if you do, the MRC is an excellent choice. Plus, again: the Vit C is excellent for hyperpigmentation  and building up collagen, which can help with scarring. And speaking of hyper pigmentation, Odacite’s Papaya + Geranium serum concentrate was the only thing that managed to get rid of a stubborn dark spot on my cheekbone. Odacite also has a number of serums for oily/combination skins and its Beautiful Day Moisturizer is lovely, light and delicate and the MSM can help with blemishes.

Clearly, my list of recommended products is a mile-long, but I think you can make a great start with Yuli, LBF and Odacite. I am just SO excited for this journey you are starting! You are going to have so much fun! xx

The lovely Cecilia writes:

Hello HH,

I was wondering if you have a routine recommendation for the spring, (lighter cream or lotion), and for a long haul flight ( I travel for work quite often, Middle East, south east Asia, Latin America, even Russia!) I think my skin is constantly in the shocking mode.

Dearest Cecilia,

As for the lighter creams/lotions, I highly recommend the Odacite Beautiful Day (see above – it’s super-light, yet hydrating) and the Josh Rosebrook Nutrient Day Cream (light, hydrating, smells lovely, effective sun protection). You can also use Kypris’ Antioxidant Dew for a hit of lightweight moisture and antioxidants and you can layer it under your favorite oil if it doesn’t provide quite enough hydration (my skin is so dry, I need to over-moisturize it even in the summer).

As for the in-flight routine, if you follow me on Instagram, you know that I am serious about my carry-on stash. The key to a first class skincare experience onboard lies in three components: size, smell and supreme hydration (yes, I am really reaching for that alliteration). The size thing is obvious: the last thing you want to happen is for TSA to confiscate your treasures. The scent is also huge: you want something pleasant-smelling to help deal with the stale airplane air, yet not so overpowering as to make your neighbors want to stuff you into the overhead bin. Yet the most important thing is hydration. The airplane air sucks the moisture right out of your skin, so you want to both replenish and seal in moisture. So without further ado, here are my in-flight must haves. NB: I won’t be giving links to products linked elsewhere in this post.

Face Mists: absolutely essential. They hydrate the skin and freshen the stale air. I like to inhale deeply as I spray, so that I get some relief for my over-dry nasal cavities. My personal faves are the One Love Organics Vitamin D Mist (super-hydrating, helps retain moisture); Yuli’s Metamorphic and Cocoon Elixirs (can’t keep raving about them, but both are crazy hydrating, gentle, etc); and LBF’s Jardin De Fleurs (hydrating, helps retain moisture, smells like a heavenly jasmine garden). Some of my favorite sprays (May Lindstrom, De Mamiel) only come in sizes too large for carry-on, but you can always decant your favorite into a small spray bottle.

Face Oils: Use whatever you love and whatever oil makes your skin happiest. This is also a good time for oils that might otherwise be too rich. My plane faves are May Lindstrom’s The Youth Dew and OLO’s Vit C Serum.

“Sealants”: You need an occlusive barrier to help keep the moisture in your skin. Any balm would be an excellent bet (check out my winter balms post for some of my faves). I also like the Jao Creme: it’s not as occlusive as a balm, but very hydrating and does a great job of sealing in moisture.

Happy travels! xx

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