I’ve told y’all before how much I love Drunk Elephant, but that’s not all I use for my skincare routine. I have a few other products that have helped transform my skin from ongoing breakouts to a smooth, clear, bright complexion.
But, first, some background…
Throughout my adolescence, I took my good skin for granted. Thanks to my genetics, I had practically flawless skin and didn’t have to do much for it. I slept in makeup and didn’t put on sunscreen without much thought.
That all changed in my mid-20s when I moved to California… I started breaking out ALL. THE. TIME. I thought it was the dry weather or exposure to a new type of water here in California, but looking back, I think it a lot of it was hormones and stress. To this day, I’ve never been able to pinpoint exactly what caused the breakouts.
I was constantly embarrassed by my breakouts, always adding extra makeup to cover my blemishes and popped pimple scars, which often made them worse. I went to a dermatologist who only dried out my skin without stopping the breakouts. I went to an esthetician whose treatments were very costly and needed to be kept up every other week. I tried a wide range of pricey products that were recommended to me by friends and gorgeous Instagram influencers, and nothing worked.
Then, a couple years ago when I was in Sephora, one of the saleswomen recommended I try Drunk Elephant sunscreen. I did, and I loved it. I liked it so much that I went on a deep dive researching all the brand’s clean products and basically bought all of them to try. I started noticing results just after a couple weeks and stuck with it. I’m so delighted to share that I haven’t had one of my old breakouts in over 2 years! I knew it was working when someone asked me what I used on my skin to make it so smooth! After years of battling with my skin, it was the best feeling to have someone ask me that!
Today, I have a bit of melasma and sun damage, but I’m working to treat those, too. My skin is definitely not perfect, but this is the best I’ve felt in a very long time!
Below, I outlined my exact daily skincare routine for you to get an idea of how I use Drunk Elephant products, along with a few other brands. I need to add this disclaimer: The products I use in my routine may not work for you, just like all the MANY products I tried that others recommended to me… BUT, Drunk Elephant only uses clean ingredients (which means pregnancy and breastfeeding safe!) and they have cheaper trial sizes (called the “littles”), so I think it’s very worth trying!
Morning Skincare Routine:
I always wash my face before going to bed, so I rarely wash my face in the morning. If I do wash my face in the morning, I use a scoop of this butter cleanser. I use a couple other exfoliating products, so I rarely ever use the Bamboo Booster, because I don’t want to over-exfoliate. I feel like this cleanser melts away any leftover makeup or grime from the day before. It’s very gentle on my skin.
I put two pumps of this toner on a cotton pad and swipe all over my face (minus the eye area) first thing in the morning. This toner gently brightens and exfoliates. REN uses only clean ingredients, so there is no irritation. Once I added this product into my skincare routine, I noticed a significant difference in my skin being smoother and brighter!
I love this Ole Henriksen Banana Bright Eye Cream. I truly feel like it makes my eyes brighter – much needed for my lack of sleep with a baby and toddler! It also works as a great primer for my makeup.
I learned several years ago the benefits of using a vitamin C serum to help heal blemishes and boost skin glow, but I couldn’t find one that I liked. Drunk Elephant’s C-Firma is very potent – “packed with powerful antioxidants, essential nutrients, fruit enzymes and a chronopeptide that all work together to firm and brighten the appearance of skin while improving the signs of photoaging.” It’s the only vitamin C serum I’ve tried where I’ve actually seen results.
Prior to using this hydrating serum, I was consistently in search for the right daytime moisturizer. I could never find one that I liked to wear under makeup. I always felt greasy and like my makeup would fall off. This B-Hydra Serum is so light but also offers the perfect punch of moisture. I discovered that I need to add two pumps of this serum to properly hydrate my face while also using a couple of exfoliating products.
This is the product that introduced me to Drunk Elephant and spawned my DE obsession. It was important to me to have a sunscreen with Zinc but not make my complexion white. I’ve tried a couple other tinted zinc sunscreens, but what I like about this one is how it makes you GLOW and how easy it is to wear under makeup (or glow WITHOUT makeup!). I mix it with the product below for when I need even more glow if I’m applying self tanner to my body or want a sun-kissed look.
I mix the D-Bronzi with my sunscreen when I want an additional boost of bronze without the sun exposure. I don’t like to add my self-tanner to my face, so this is the perfect product to put on my to look like I’ve been on vacation. Bonus: It’s comprised of a mix of protective antioxidants to boosts skin’s defenses against pollution and environmental stressors. It’s like Vitamin D without the damaging exposure!
Nighttime Skincare Routine
This cleanser is one of my top products from Drunk Elephant. It wasn’t until I started having breakouts that I realized my cleanser could be my biggest culprit for irritated skin. I had been using harsh cleansers that promised to solve breakouts, but then it dawned on me that most of them are designed for adolescent, hormonal skin! I’m in my 30’s, not 15 years old. This cleanser is so gentle and removes ALL my makeup from the day to prepare my skin for the next products I put on to create skin magic overnight.
Okay, I need to keep it real with y’all… This is my least fave DE product on this list. I think it does the job of hydrating my eyes, but that’s about it. I haven’t seen dramatic results of eliminating wrinkles, like it’s supposed to do, but maybe my wrinkles would be worse without using this… I’m honestly not sure. With that said, if you have an overnight eye serum that you recommend that helps with fine lines while hydrating, please tell me!!! In the meantime, use this to keep your eye area hydrated overnight.
This retinol cream is potent – you know because of its yellow tint. Unfortunately, you can’t use while pregnant or breastfeeding, but I saw great results using it when I was able to use it. This retinol is wayyyy better than any I’ve tried and think it’s 100% worth its price tag!
This is another one of my top products from Drunk Elephant, because it WORKS! The morning after my first use, I immediately noticed a smoother complexion – seriously! I’m going to be bold enough to say that I think it provides similar results to retinol! The glycolic acid exfoliates and helps resurface skin and for a clearer, smoother looking complexion. The best part is that I experienced no harsh side effects, like dryness or irritation, when mixed with the moisturizer below. I use this nightly now, because I’m breastfeeding and don’t want to use retinol. When I’m using the retinol, I do not use this product, because I think that’s too much exfoliation.
Drunk Elephant has two moisturizers: Lala Retro (this one) and Protini Polypeptide Cream. I’ve seen so many influencers recommend the Protini, but after trying both, Lala Retro is the moisturizer that works for me. It feels thicker and more moisturizing to me, which is needed in the dry California climate where I live and while using exfoliating products. I use this every single night, and I never wake up with dry, tight skin.
So, that wraps my current morning and night skincare routine. I’d love to know what products I may be missing that I could add to my routine… Please hit me up with your current faves! Comment below or connect with me on Instagram!
AFFILIATE DISCLOSURE: Some of this post contains affiliate links for the products I use and LOVE. If you take action on these links (like clicking, buying, etc.), I may receive compensation at no cost to you. As always, all opinions are my own, and I’ll only recommend what I truly love.