SHEN’s very own beloved esthetician, Monica Dawidowicz, walks us through her daily and nightly skincare routine, the products she loves and her skincare secrets. With an oily and acne prone disposition, Monica exercises her expertise in facials and skincare technology by mitigating and regulating excess oil production, all while maintaining a straightforward, manageable regimen that emphasizes antioxidant rich, soothing and hydrating ingredients.
Monica begins her morning routine with Nature of Things’ Clarifying Facial Polish, an enzymatic powder designed to combine with water for a gentle exfoliation. Monica knows the importance of exfoliation for optimized skincare, and though most exfoliants are too strong or rough to use daily, Monica says this facial polish is gentle enough to use each morning. Because of this, Monica loves to use and recommend this product!
She follows her daily exfoliation with Tammy Fender’s Bulgarian Rose Water, a balancing toner with essence of rose that is notably antioxidant rich and hydrating. Its balancing quality is excellent for acne prone and sensitive skin, but is suitable for all skin types.
Nature of Things’ Balancing Facial Essence is next, a multi-benefit facial essence that hydrates as it tones. With aloe and rose flower oil, this product soothes and hydrates while balancing oily and acne prone skin for a cleaner and calmer complexion.
Her penultimate step is VENN’s Age-Response Compound K Hyaluronic Booster. Monica says, “This product contains the powerful antioxidant Compound K, a great non-irritating, stable vitamin C alternative and 5 different weights of Hyaluronic acid for different levels of permeation and hydration. With Niacinamide (vitamin B3), this product strengthens the skin’s natural barrier, an essential protectant for our skin’s health and youthfulness. Our skin's natural barrier is easily compromised by over-exfoliation, sunburn, over use of stripping facial cleansers and other harsh products, so a formula that enhances and restores our skin's ability to protect itself is so important!”
Monica’s final step for days indoors is Haoma’s Preservation Day Cream, an ultra-rich source of stabilized vitamin C with remarkable skin-evening and cell-growth-promoting benefits. Its Malachite protects against blue light from digital technology (a silent villain in premature and rapid aging) and environmental aggressors, like air pollution.
But on days when Monica is planning on being outdoors, she prefers Elta MD’s UV Clear Tinted Broad-Spectrum SPF 46, formulated with niacinamide (vitamin B3), hyaluronic acid and lactic acid to calm and protect sensitive skin types prone to breakouts, rosacea and discoloration.
Monica’s evening routine is exactly the same, however at night she includes Retinol in her regimen. After cleansing and before toning, Monica applies Environ’s Concentrated 3 Vitamin A Serum, the strongest of Environ’s three retinol variations. “I have been using retinol for a very long time,” Monica says, “which is why I’m able to use the stronger variation. It’s important to work up to it.” The vitamin A in this product speeds up cellular turnover rates, meaning, your skin’s ability to shed its dead cells and reproduce new ones is enhanced by vitamin A, and this process drastically slows with age. In short, Vitamin A essentially normalizes all skin functions (acne, signs of aging, issues of pigmentation), which is why Monica loves retinol and highly recommends it for a number of skin conditions.
In addition to Monica’s daily and nightly routine, Monica performs LED light therapy on herself at home 3 times a week for 20-minute increments. She simultaneously receives red and blue light therapy for dual benefit. Red LED light permeates as deep as the bloodstream, stimulating collagen and elastin production, profound and rapid healing and anti-inflammatory effects, and increased product penetrability. The blue LED light does surface work primarily to effectively kill acne causing bacteria while remarkably regulating oil production. Both or either of these light therapies can take your skincare routine to the next level.
Final thoughts? Monica wants to leave you with one last, crucial tip, “People are afraid to exfoliate because they’ve read so much about the dangers of over-exfoliation, and while these dangers are real, it has scared people from exfoliating at all. Regularly exfoliating is a necessity for an effective skincare regimen. You don’t need to go crazy, but gently integrating it into your routine weekly will show tremendous results in unclogging pores, smoothing a rough complexion and eliminating tired and dull skin, not to mention your products taking effect more rapidly and beneficially.”