Emma was kind enough to share her pared-down beauty routine from the beautiful city of Ghent. She writes:
A little info about my skin and hair. Extremely dry, and sensitive. I have very curly hair, also extremely, extremely dry. The only trick that really works for me is oil, oil, oil (rice bran oil is my hero here, very affordable, neutral odor, and works like a charm). I have no trouble keeping lotions and potions out of my beauty routine, because too many failures made me think they don't work. In the past two years, I've given up on alternatives. Vanity stands in my way of me letting go of of my make-up- I think I am not alone here- but I do try and keep my routine as minimal-but-practical as possible.
So a lot of trial and error lead me to this easy concoction, which I use for everything hair-and-skin-related. Rice bran oil - a coin-sized amount- before washing with only water, plus a bit of oil on the ends afterward, and my hair is happy. People don't seem to believe me when I say I don't use product! My hair is so dry, I never, ever have to worry about it getting greasy. It just goes its own way, and I’m very okay with that.
I mix rose water, rice bran oil and a few drops of sea buckthorn oil and my skin is in heaven (also great for removing make-up). This mixture sets me back not more than 10€ per year, the winner over water for me. It feeds my skin, leaves it well moisturized and not overly smothered with oil. Heaven for me.
As I said, vanity is still a part of me. So in the mornings I do use a little foundation, blush and some eyeliner. Here my sensitive, dry skin leads me to brands that are effective, with as few nasty ingredients as possible (without compromising on results, of course). If I feel like it, I'll put on a little lipstick as well- it makes me feel good, lifts my mood, and my man's too (he is an absolute darling). At night I take it all off with my oil, and some water. Goes off like a charm, and my skin is hydrated for the evening.
I'm 28 years old and live in Ghent, Belgium. I was born with bad skin, literally, but over the years I've found that less is so much more. That is perhaps the best advice I can give- take a step back, and give your skin time to adjust. If, for example, you try a new potion or sample everyday, no way is that going to work. Simplicity is my go-to for everything, and the one thing that's certainly effective, even after many dermatologist visits. Also, I think I have a similar gut to Ariana's :-) Taking it easy with what you eat, and really enjoying it, is key to me.
That was it, quite simple in my own way. I hope you can get something out of it.
Thank you for sharing Emma! I wasn't able to find a plastic-free Shopstyle affiliate link to rice bran oil, but if you can't purchase rice bran in bulk in your area, hemp, rosehip, apricot, and pumpkin seed oil are similar in linoleic acid content. To make zero-waste rose water and rose oil, click here for a DIY.