It’s cold, bitter cold. And when it’s cold, there’s one thing that happens for sure, my skin is dry as a mf’er. It started about 5 years ago when I noticed that my face was tight, burning, and when I smiled it felt like my skin was cracking. I tried switching to a cream instead of a lotion thinking that would solve the issue. All that happened was my face got a sheen from the Shea butter and my skin still felt tight and wrinkled. I consulted with some beauty experts that I trusted and the first thing I was asked, “do you use a toner??” No, I don’t use a toner, wouldn’t that make it worse?! I thought toners were all alcohol based and that would only increase my problem and tightness in my face. What I learned is there are a multitude of toners out there. Ones that are geared for target issues like oiliness (hence the alcohol) but also ones that have hydrating properties and are meant to prepare your skin for moisturizers so that your moisturizer actually penetrates your skin. This was the key that changed my skin care regimen and my tightness in my face. So here’s my skincare regimen- I use a soap free and oil free gel cleanser in the shower, soap will dry your skin it’s too harsh, then once I get out of the shower, I use the hydrating toner before my skin has a chance to totally retract back into it’s tight state. I follow up with moisture surge by Clinique, it’s not a moisturizer though, it’s more like a serum which like a toner enhances your moisturizers. I then use the vitamin enriched face cream by Bobbi Brown, and the hydrating eye cream by Bobbi Brown. All my products are oil free and must be in order to keep my cystic acne at bay. The last and most important, is the grape water spray by Caudalie. I use this spray to set my makeup, I use it to freshen my makeup, or anytime during the day that my skin starts to feel tight again. This combination has been the best I’ve found for my skin type for the time being. I’m always experimenting though and when I find something else that changes the game, I’ll let you know!