Love the Skin You’re In!

Hey dolls!

Let’s talk skincare for a hot minute. You all know I love makeup (or “makeupses” as my boo Rosie calls it) but listen. Great skin takes your sexy to new heights. What do we want? Fresh, glowing, supple skin! When do we want it? Upon the immediate.

Skincare is very much a different strokes for different folks situation- what works for me may not work for you. But can you really ever go wrong with Mother Nature? NAH.

I try to keep my skincare regime as natural as possible. I avoid anything with harsh fragrances, chemical nasties or anything with too many unpronounceable ingredients (I follow the ingredients rule when it comes to food too). If you’re buying an aloe vera face wash, why does it contain a list of 27 ingredients? Hmm? Is this life?

So here is my laughably simple skincare regime. It keeps me glowing and baby smooth, with only the very occasional spot (which I also zap mercilessly with Mother Nature’s bounty- keep reading).

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L-R: Vitamin E oil, aloe vera gel (the struggle kind for now, because I couldn’t find my fave brand outchea in Accra), Simple Regeneration Age Resisting Facial Wash, Simple Kind to Skin Soothing Facial Toner, Oil of Olay Beauty Fluid, and pure tea tree oil.

Morning: After I’ve woken up and scrolled through All of The Instagram checked in on current affairs, I skip out of bed and wash my face with Simple Anti-Ageing Facial Wash. This creamy cleanser gets me squeaky clean but feels really nourishing with none of that tight after-soap feeling. I then follow that up with a refreshing toner. I tend to alternate between the following three:

Pure witch hazel for when my skin feels a bit spotty or congested: All-natural and cleansing with antibacterial properties

Rosewater for when my skin feels a teeny bit sensitive: Amazing toning and calming properties. Plus you’ll smell like an exotic Turkish rose garden #WinningAtLife

Simple Kind to Skin Soothing Facial Toner for all other times: Does what it says on the bottle- gently clarifies, soothes and tones

Once my toner has dried, I moisturise with one of the oldies but goodies: Oil of Olay (Ulay? Why did they ever change it?) Beauty Fluid for combination/oily skin with SPF 15. What I love about this moisturiser is that it’s not that awful gel-like consistency that you get with most lotions targeted towards oily/combination skin. It’s really nourishing and keeps my skin supple. To be honest I no longer fight my oily skin like I used to. I like the dewy look, and they say we oily chicks stay looking younger for longer *flips hair*

Dassit! Three simple steps fam. And then I follow with whatever face- painting I fancy. Alrighty now let’s fast-forward to the end of the day…

*cue fake montage of me running through the city in heels, coffee in hand, slaying at board meetings, hopping into taxis with flawless style*

*now cue real montage of me bare-knuckle-fighting a taxi driver in Osu, standing in Max Mart trying to understand why baked beans are quadruple the RRP written on the can*

Evening: And we’re home! It’s night-night time. Let’s take our face off. The first thing I do is wipe off my makeup with baby wipes. That’s right girl. Why am I spending £4080 on L’Oréal or Garnier face wipes when baby wipes are less than two quid for a bumper pack? Plus they are soooo much gentler on your skin than that expensive rubbish. Always go for un-fragranced. The reason I wipe my face before washing is to get rid of as much makeup as possible in advance. Also for some reason, I’ve never been able to wash my face without flooding the entire bathroom/house/planet. Getting rid of most of the grime with wipes means less time at the sink!

I then proceed to wash twice with warm water and my trusty Simple Regeneration Age Resisting Facial Wash. I also repeat my toning step. And then I move on to my final step; going all out on any blemishes which have dared to appear during the day. Forget all the expensive spot-fighting potions. You don’t need that shiz. All you need are tea tree oil and aloe vera gel.

Guys I can’t overstate this: pure aloe vera gel is everything you have ever needed in life. Got spots? Get the aloe. Rashes? Sunburn? Get the aloe. Boyfriend acting up? ALOEEEE. Most nights, I slather on a thin layer of pure aloe vera gel (apply it the way you would put on a face mask, avoiding your sensitive eye area and your mouth). I wait for it to dry before hitting the sack. My fave brand is Aloe Pura with Tea Tree oil, and for a while I was miserable that I couldn’t get it here. But then a friend of mine casually handed me a fresh cutting from his aloe plant. I almost wept with gratitude.

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Fresh aloe is the holy grail. If you have one of these plants, you will basically be 1000 years old, still serving smooth Angela Bassett realness. Very easy to use, too.

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Just cut off a small section of the leaf, and slice off the sharp thorns along each side. Slice through the gel in the middle and open up the leaf. Then just rub the gel directly onto your skin. Allow to dry, et voila! Word of warning though- pure aloe vera gel is horribly bitter so do not get this stuff in your mouth *shudders*

Tea tree oil is my other spot slayer. I just dab it on blemishes at night, and the spots are usually gone (or at least drastically improved) in the morning! Pure tea tree oil is strong though, so if you have sensitive skin you may want to dilute it in water and apply with cotton wool.

On the occasions where no spot-fighting is necessary, I wash my face, use toner and apply a few drops of organic rosehip oil to my skin. This ruby-red oil is effing awesome for plumping up the skin, smoothing, and keeping wrinkles at bay. In terms of anti-ageing I’m hoping genetics will keep me baby faced. My mum is almost 60 and she’s outchea looking 12. Still you can never be too careful, so I massage in this antioxidant-packed oil whenever I can at night.

I’ve run out of this at the moment, so I’ve replaced it with pure vitamin E oil. This stuff is great for giving maximum glow and healing scars. Don’t spend a fortune on vitamin E oil though! All you need to do is buy the gel capsules and pop ’em to get at the golden oil inside. Then just gently massage into the skin.

And there you have it! A diva is ready for beddy-byes. Face routine done!

For my body I swear by Nivea Nourishing body lotion. I call it “The Good Nivea” because they have made so many different varieties, none of which live up to the original. You want the one in the iconic dark blue bottle, enriched with almond oil. My dad has used this lotion ever since I can remember (his skin is flawless by the way), and the scent always makes me think of him. I especially love Nivea for dark skin because it gives a gorgeous glow like nothing else. Other recommendations for my glow getters- pure coconut oil and pure shea butter. On the days I don’t use Nivea, I use either one of these.

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L-R: Pure extra virgin coconut oil (apologies for the smooshed label), The Good Nivea, pure shea butter.

You’ll be shining bright like a diamond! This always reminds me of my grandmother. When my brothers and I were little, she used to bathe us and baste us liberally in cocoa butter. We were walking around sparkling and sliding off the furniture (which was of course covered in plastic). LOLz!

So dolls, please don’t be scurred when it comes to developing a good skincare regimen. Take your time, figure out what works for you, and remember: SKIN IS IN, hunty.

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Pssst! I’m really nice, so please feel free to ask me any questions in the comments below! Hugsies.

Love,
Adjpants

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Fab at 30,000 ft

Anyone else scared of flying? Say what you like about how it’s the safest mode of transport. The fact is there is NO REASON why these things should stay in the sky!

Having said all that, flying is useful and incredible and necessary so one must man up. Since I’ve spent most of my life in a different continent to my family, I’m a frequent flyer. But things really escalated when I moved to Australia a few years ago- we’re talking 23 hour flights to the UK and West Africa. Suddenly a tube of lip balm in my carry-on wasn’t going to cut it. If the plane went down, would I want to meet my Lord and Saviour looking a hot mess? No ma’am I would not.

And so my globetrotting beauty kit was born.

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From the top down:

Simple Baby Wipes– I cannot stress the importance of having these on any long flight. Perfect for if you want to remove/refresh your makeup once you get on board, or for a quick “ho-bath” (please don’t make me explain what this is… please) during a stopover. So cheap and so essential.

Olay Complete Beauty Fluid– Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise. There is nothing drier than recycled cabin air, so you need to slather on a decent moisturiser to keep you glowing and fabulous on board.

Avene Eau Thermal Spring Water– I swear by this stuff. It’s canned pure water from a thermal spring in France. On those long flights when your skin is drying out and even your eyeballs are starting to feel scratchy, this is an absolute lifesaver. Just close your eyes and spritz gently, and your face will be perfectly misted with what feels like bottled unicorn tears. I know you’re worried that people will stare, thinking “LOOK at this chick in Economy class spritzing like she’s a celeb!” Let. Them. Stare. You didn’t ask to be this fierce.

Lucas’ Pawpaw Ointment– I became obsessed with this amazing unguent when I was living in Australia. Over there it’s a staple product in every handbag. It’s literally magic- use it on dry skin, pimples, chapped lips, rashes, unruly eyebrows, the plague (true story bro. Ok maybe not). I use it as a heavy duty lip balm/ clear faux mascara on flights, and also smear it on any dry patches of skin.

Sleek Be Beautiful BB Cream– Sigh. All you fresh-faced gals who never wear makeup may not understand this, but I don’t like being seen in public without my face on. Without makeup on I look like Dennis Rodman on a very bad day. I’m not about that life, so I take care of my skin and use makeup to enhance my face. Flights are no exception, so I love this BB cream to even out my skin tone and present a glowing, flawless visage. I have quite oily skin so I usually then dust my face with some translucent setting powder.

Clean Eau de Parfum in “Warm Cotton”– You know the fresh scent of your skin straight after a shower? Like fresh clean soap and laundry straight off the drying line? That’s exactly what this smells like. This handy little rollerball is perfect for long flights when you have to go without a shower for a day (this is torture for me). A quick dab on each wrist and bam! Fresh as a daisy with no cloying or heavy fragrance.

Body Shop Unperfumed Elderflower Eye Gel– Once again in case you didn’t hear me the first time- MOISTURISE. This light, fast-absorbing gel is amazing for tired eyes. Another quick tip? If you’re a contact lens wearer like me, be sure to carry soothing eye drops and wear your glasses.

Rexona Women Cotton Fresh Deodorant– TRAVEL STENCH. Enough said.

Cuticura Antibacterial Hand Gel– Escalator hand-rails, questionable airport bathrooms… I’m a germophobe so a quick squirt of this germ-slaying gel calms me every time.

Nivea Smooth Nourishing Hand Cream– This is hands down (pun totally intended) my favourite hand cream at the moment. It’s rich and soothing and smells like a meadow of dreams. Perfect for frequent re-application during long flights.

Revlon Just Bitten Lipstain in Sweetheart Valentine– When you’re tired and feeling less than glorious after hours on a plane, there’s nothing that perks up your face more than a pop of colour. I love lipstains because they do what they say on the pack- they stain. They take seconds to slick on and you don’t need a mirror. This is a gorgeous deep pink, and it’s so highly pigmented that it shows up brilliantly even on chocolate skin like mine. It also doubles as a sheer cheek-stain. Winning at life.

So there you have it! What are your high-flying essentials?