#AskTheskinradar: What skincare does a beauty editor really use?

In this week's #AskTheskinradar, our beauty editor reveals the skincare products that really make the grade. It's the question that I get asked all the time. So what do you use on your skin? From the plethora of skincare products that land on my desk — and believe me there's a lot — here are the ones that I've come to love over the years. Why? For me, they work consistently and in some cases, instantly. I can say with certainty that the following items are some of the best products I've ever used. The best part? These universal products are not too specific — so they suit most skin types. To discover my picks, scroll down. 

#1. Cleanser: Phace Bioactive's Detoxifying Gel Cleanser
Why I love it: It’s a myth that if you’re a beauty editor you automatically have clear skin, because I definitely battle my fair share of breakouts. But I can honestly say that as soon as I started using Phace Bioactive’s Detoxifying Gel Cleanser, a soap-free, non-foaming, exfoliating formula, my skin cleared up. I realized how important it is to have the right pH in your skincare, because the wrong levels of pH in any product can cause skin irritations, which can lead to more blemishes. Vicious cycle, am I right? Anyway, I’m hooked on this cleanser, and if you haven’t tried it yet, I highly recommend it—I think you’ll be as obsessed as I am!

$38 USD: available at Phacebioactive.com

#2. Makeup Remover Cleansing Oil: bareMinerals Oil Obsessed Total Cleansing Oil 
Why I love it: To put it frankly, I was shocked when I first used this oil. The consistency is much lighter and more watery than the others—more like a serum instead of a thick oil. Thus, it made it incredibly easy to work the oil into my skin and dissolve my makeup—it glided easily over my skin without any need to add water. When I finally did add warm water, it transformed into a milky texture that was easily rinsed away. When I patted my face with a towel and looked in the mirror, I couldn’t believe it—there was absolutely no trace of eye makeup left on my face whatsoever. I was blown away by the consistency, the scent, the ingredients (sunflower, bilberry, cucumber oils, and mineral-rich sea salts), and its ability to remove my makeup with barely any effort. Needless to say, this product has earned a permanent place in my cleansing rotation.

$30 USD: available at Sephora.com

#3. Facial Oil: Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil
Why I love it: The gospel of retinol has been preached ad nauseam by every skin expert with a pulse. With its dark-spot-destroying, wrinkle-eradicating, pimple-vanishing powers, it's the gold standard of a gorgeous complexion. But there’s a catch — you need to sacrifice your skin’s moisture barrier as you reap the rewards. Sensing that frustration, a handful of companies are exploring combining ingredients and formulas to create the retinol Holy Grail — super strength without being super-drying. Which is where retinol oils come in. This relatively new concept uses oil as a delivery system, simultaneously hydrating and intensively treating skin. Riley's Luna Sleeping Night Oil uses a gentler trans-retinoic acid (a.k.a. vitamin A, the active ingredient in all retinol products) and incorporates it with cold-pressed oils like avocado, Concord grape seed, chia, and blue tansy — which gives the oil its unique hue. This combo cancels out the aforementioned side effects of retinols. Pure genius. 

$105 USD, available at Sephora.com

#4. Dark Spot Corrector: Sloane Inc White Plasma S6.5
Why I love it: Powered by a propietary complex of synergistic brightening actives, this high-tech serum works at multiple levels to fulfill your blanc desires. A new generation tyrosinase inhibitor neutralizes dark spots without the irritation from harsh traditional fading creams, and prevents their reappearance by calming melanin-cell activating inflammation and bolstering skin against new environmental damage. Oil-free serum, hydroquinone-free and AHA-free – the White Plasma treats sensitive, post-laser or acne-prone skin with tender loving care while dealing dullness and discoloration with a potent punch. This removes my dark spots in a flash. Pure, pure genius.

$96.30 SGD, available at Sloaneshop.com

#5. Antioxidant Serum: Skinceuticals CE Ferulic
Why I love it: In a word: magic. But really, it’s the patented formula (that many have tried to replicate). The blend of vitamin C, E, and ferulic acid is an anti-aging powerhouse. Alone all three antioxidants are powerful skin-savers, but together, they boost the antioxidant activity of each other. The particular form of vitamin C used in CE Ferulic is the only form that prevents moisture loss in the skin. And it does so while it brightens dark spots and evens texture. The potent combination also boosts the power of your SPF fourfold. Which means it fights off sun damage while correcting existing damage.

$162 USD, available at Skinceuticals.com

#6. Daytime Moisturizer: Sloane Inc Skin Superfood Red Algae S8.9
Why I love it: Sloane Inc Skin Superfood Red Algae contains Astaxanthin, a super-antioxidant which like the sunscreen, will be your lifelong BFF to stave off age-accelerating free radical damage from pollution, hectic schedules, smoking and dietary indiscretions. Astaxanthin is the world’s most powerful antioxidant, for maximal rejuvenation. Studies have consistently shown that Astaxanthin protects the skin against sunburn and UV damage, and improves skin smoothness, elasticity, hydration, fine lines and pigmentation. A little amount, applied in the morning before you start your day, goes a long way in keeping your sin radiant and glowing for years to come.

$214 SGD, available at Sloaneshop.com

#7: Night Cream: Dermalogica PowerBright Trx Pure Night Cream
Why I love it: Another one of my favorites. Dermalogica's PowerBright Trx Pure Night cream contains copious amount of antioxidants, cell-communicating niacinamide, and skin-conditioning emollients. The active blend of skin brightening & collagen stimulating agents like (Vitamin C, Oligopeptide etc) helps to restore skin luminosity and fight signs of aging. The inclusion of Cranberry and Raspberry Seed oils in the product help restore critical barrier lipids, optimizing 
skin hydration and reducing the appearance of fine dehydration lines. Formulated without artificial fragrances, colors or parabens. I usually use this at night. Just because you’re resting doesn’t mean your skin is off the clock. In fact, night time is the right time to dial up your brightness and pare years off the face since your skin is at its restorative best.

$155 SGD, available at all Asterspring stores

#8: Eye Cream: Elizabeth Arden Prevage Anti Ageing + Intensive Repair Eye Serum
Why I love it: Not only does this tried-and-true eye serum continue to win fans with its idebenone (an antioxidant and free-radical-fighting workhorse) — technology that works to treat everything from fine lines to dark circles — but it also reduces age spots and eye-area sun damage.

$130 USD, available at Elizabetharden.com

#9. Color Correcting Sunscreen: Clarins UV Plus Anti-pollution Day Screen Multi-protection SPF50/PA++++
Why I love it: Any Singaporean beauty junkie roughly goes through a tube of sunscreen every month. There’s been lots of talk about the effects of pollution on the skin in the recent years. But for those not in the know here’s a quick summary – it increases free radical production in the skin, causes premature ageing, weakens your skin barrier and can even lead to acne. (On top of dry skin – the worst kind of acne to tackle, by the way.) The best way to combat pollution in the skin? Antioxidants, which neutralise excess free radical production caused by UV rays and pollution.

In Clarins’ latest UV Plus Anti-pollution Day Screen Multi-protection SPF50/PA++++, a new antioxidant plant extract has been added. This plant extract is said to increase the production of a protein found naturally on the skin’s surface, which traps free radicals before they can penetrate the skin. The sunscreen is available in three shades: Neutral, pink and blue. Pink and blue tinted skincare items can help to brighten the skin surface, and neutralise the look of dark spots, making the skin look fairer.

$74 SGD, available at all Clarins.com.sg

#10. Acne Fighter: Mario Badescu Drying Lotion
Why I Love it: Ask any woman who’s ever struggled with acne and she’ll at least have heard of this cult acne-fighter. I swear that just one drop of Mario Badescu’s famous drying lotion can heal and dry a zit up overnight; the calamine, colloidal sulfur, and salicylic acid ensure it. Even Kylie Jenner loves it. 

$36 SGD, available at Sephora.sg

#11. Facial Mist: Caudalie Beauty Elixir
Why I love it: this face mist is truly an elixir of sorts. Spray in on before moisturizer or on top of your makeup as a setting spray and watch the magic happen before your eyes. 

$77 SGD, available at Sephora.sg

#12. Sheet Mask: My Beauty Diary Facial Sheet Masks
Why I love it: This Taiwanese brand produces truly stellar masks. The masks are chock-full of nourishing, antioxidant, brightening, anti-inflammatory, and skin-conditioning extracts and active ingredients. My favorites are: Red Wine, Imperial Birds' Nest, Pearl Powder, and Black Pearl. A single use will transform your glow factor instantly. Another plus? The affordable price tag!

$16.90 SGD (for a box of 10), available at all leading drugstores & supermarkets

#13. Exfoliating MaskKiehl’s Tumeric & Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Masque
Why I love it: Before the introduction of this genius mask, I used to concoct my own turmeric mask daily. This genius masque is a skin brightener that uses turmeric extract, that famous skin radiance-booster that’s already a stalwart in Ayurvedic, Chinese and Egyptian traditional medicines. Its other superpowers include detoxifying the skin of impurities, antioxidant properties, and the ability to balance sebum on the skin.

$49 SGD, available at all Kiehl's stores

#14: Sleeping Mask: Shiseido Ikubi Beauty Sleeping Mask
Why I love it: complete your skin rescue with the Ibuki Beauty Sleeping Mask to combat the damaging effects of those long sleepless nights. Even if you haven't clocked in the requisite eight hours, this little jar of wonder stimulates a good night's sleep with its primary ingredient of phytoplankton extract, known to withstand even the harsh desert heat. This innovative overnight leave-on mask features vitamins C and E to help tired-looking skin appear clearer, brighter, and more radiant. The non-greasy, non-sticky formula leaves skin feeling dewy and hydrated, while a gentle violet fragrance generates relaxation to prepare you for a pleasant sleep. 

$60 SGD, available at all Shiseido counters

#15: Smart Devices: Skin Inc Optimizer Voyage Tri-Light
Why I love it: Skin Inc's newest Optimizer Voyage Tri-Light is everything you need in a device. Combining LED light with low-frequency therapy, you can customise and give yourself the kind of treatments you would typically have in a doctor's office — albeit at a lower but safe dose, and from the comfort of your couch. 

The three LED Chromotherapy treatments in each device activate light receptors in the skin cells and stimulate them. Each light has a different property and you can use them on different areas of the face. The red light is for renewal and repair — it works on damaged skin cells and increases collagen and elastin production. The blue light is soothing and calming. This is a godsend for oily, acne-prone or congested skin and when you're having breakouts at that time of the month. Finally the yellow light works on skin's glow, reviving dullness.
$398 SGD. At Skin Inc stores and Sephora outlets



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The Skin Radar is an online avenue which documents my tumbling thoughts, ideas and musings from my daily life, mainly based on skincare and beauty. It is designed to take the clutter out of beauty journalism to provide trustworthy and objective insights, new finds and sneak peaks- all in a beautiful and clean platform.

I test all products & treatments with age and skin colour in mind, break down the latest health fads, and source for expert opinions from international skincare leaders. All in all, my goal is to make sure that I am on top of every beauty innovation and skincare trend the world has to offer.