Vichy Pureté Thermal Nourishing Cleansing Milk Balm (here-in-after-known-as: The Cleanser) is Something Special. It is softly scented and smells of white flowers... its very delicate and makes cleansing in the mornings and evenings a joy.
Its a milk balm, Ja, I know. The cleanser comes out of the bottle like a milk, I apply it to my dry skin and it behaves like a balm... it almost gets a bit thicker as you massage it into your skin as it lifts off last nights moisturisers or this mornings makeup. And while it says not to use this around the eyes, I have, and as long as you keep eyes closed and go gently-gently... this removes most day to day eye makeup and ordinary mascara (not the waterproof kind) with ease and very little elbow grease.
Vichy Pureté Thermal Perfecting Toner is also lovely. I love this as my morning toner. I use it straight after cleansing, on a cotton pad and swipe it over my face. Rich in hydrating ingredients I like to seal in these hydrators with my moisturiser, so I am generous with it. The copper sulfate gives it a nice blue colour but also helps inhibit bacteria which may cause breakouts. 200ml also costs just under €15, and will last at least 3 months.
If its not the Vichy toner I reach for, then its this one from The Body Shop's Vitamin E range. The Hydrating Toner smells soft and comforting and is also high in moisturising ingredients. Also 200ml, this costs €11.50 If my skin is behaving I use this. If I am feeling congested I reach for the Vichy one.
I love everything about the Body Shop Vitamin E Range, and I would have more of it, if I had a store closer to me... as it is I pop past a store when I go into Dublin (which isn't very often at the moment). My Toner is almost finished, so I'll be needing a new one soon!
Vichy Aqualia Thermal Awakening Eye Balm is the most amazing thing I have used around my eyeballs. EVER. I have only had it for a few days, but the effects are pretty much immediate. A little Pump dispenser delivers exactly enough of this light blue gel to do both eyes. Light and hydrating, this cooling balm de-puffs and fills in fine lines nearly immediately. And the effects last the whole day.
Its not the cheapest at €18.50 for 15ml, but there will be no wastage (hello little pump) and I am sure this will last the usual 2 - 3 months. I am so in love with this, I'll need to have a spare in my stash ASAP.
To complete my morning routine, which takes me a whole 5 minutes, is Vichy Aqualia Thermal Dynamic Hydration Rich Cream (€22 for 50mls). Not exactly the kind of thing that you would think a combo skin would get on with, but it is working for me. And I am LOVING THIS! I use a very small amount of cream, it is very rich and I don't want to overload my skin, but because my skin is still a bit damp from the toner: a teensy bit of cream does my whole face and neck and absorbs fairly quickly, locking in the hydration.
My combo skin is absolutely loving this hydrating morning routine. As a rule I don't generally wear heavy makeup during the day, so I am using a foundation for combination skin and using powder to take down any shine, because there is shine... But as the weeks go on, my skin is adapting to the extra hydration, it isn't producing as much sebum/oil as it used to when I was using products that were drying my skin out.
I'm not as dehydrated, and my skin is looking much much nicer. Its texture is smoother and less congested. To prevent any further pigmentation issues (I discovered I have melasma... its a bitch to get rid of) I follow this with a SPF50, normally a LRP one before going in with makeup.
I have been using this combo since getting back from the states and I can't see myself changing any time soon. It is a simple routine and its fast, which is what I need in the mornings.