My pre make-up routine

As I’m sure all of you that wear makeup realise, the base that your put your makeup on is just as, if not more important than the makeup you’re putting on your face. Now this doesn’t mean that if you don’t have flawless skin your makeup will look trash, because my skin is far from flawless, but I think that prepping your skin for makeup is extremely important.

I have problematic skin, its combination and acne prone so looking after it has become a necessity. Luckily for me, I love trying new skincare and just looking after my skin. After a long long while of trying different things, I think I can comfortably say I have a pretty good routine that preps my skin for makeup. Saying that, I’d be silly to say that it works every time, because my skin is always changing and if i’m having a particularly dry skin day, or I’ve got a few breakouts and I don’t adapt my routine to take this into consideration, it’s not going to look the greatest.

Lets start with the first thing. This starts before I even think about applying makeup. My skin needs a routine, something that I stick to, multiple times a day, every day. My skin needs this to keep the oil at bay, keep my skin clean, and hydrate the areas that get more dry. I know if I haven’t looked after my skin in the days before, my skin might not look the greatest, even if I follow this pre makeup routine. Skincare isn’t really something I can go back and fourth on, and I’m jealous of ANYONE who can get away with it.

Now lets get onto the actual routine. Cleanse. I have to cleanse my face before I apply makeup, not wipe it with a face wipe, I need cleanser and water. I have a few cleansers that I use (check The cleansers that I use daily). Now depending on the cleanser, I either cleanse once or twice. If I’m using the foaming cleanser I may cleanse twice. This cleanser doesn’t dry my skin out so I don’t mind using it twice, and I feel as if I’ve got a bit more protection from spots if I do. Also, I’ve found that I don’t need to use an exfoliating cleanser before I apply makeup to still get smooth skin. I still get just as smooth skin using the gel or foam cleansers as I do using the exfoliator, but I don’t have to rinse my face as much to make sure I’ve removed all the little beads.


Once I’ve cleansed my face, I move onto my skincare straight away. Although the cleanser doesn’t dry out my skin, having water on your skin can dry it out too so I like to put moisture back into my skin as soon as I can.

I tone after I cleanse. I have a few different toners depending on how my skin feels that day. I have the body shop tea tree toner for when I’m struggling with spots, and I have a more gentle toner by simple for if my skin is a bit more sensitive, or if I’ve used an exfoliating mask. The key to a good skincare routine is to keep your skin in good balance, going too far one way, like using too many harsh products for example, can do more bad things  than good.

After toner, I occasionally apply a mixture of witch hazel and aloe vera gel to my skin. This is good at hydrating, preventing acne, and helping fade scaring and plumping the skin. I love using this mixture as both ingredients have great benefits, and they are cooling on the skin, which can be nice after using a toner. On some days I will also use the body shop tea tree daily anti imperfection solution. This I only use when I’m suffering with acne as this is really good at drying them out and has antiseptic properties. These steps of my skincare are very circumstantial as to whether I use them, especially before makeup application because they can be drying and dry skin doesn’t make for good makeup application for me.


A step that I never skip is using a serum. I have 2 that I currently use, one is a firm serum that is supposed to hydrate and plump the skin, the other is a vitamin C serum from Superdrug. This one I usually mix into my moisturiser as Vitamin C can be quite harsh on the skin.


Before I moisturise my whole face, I apply a dot of eye cream under my eyes and gently wipe over my whole lid and under eye area. My under eyes are very dry so I like to do as much as possible to hydrate them. I use the balance me wonder eye cream at the moment.

The moisturiser I use daily is the cetaphil sensitive/dry moisturising lotion for body. I know, for body and I’m using it on my face, but i find that it holds a great level of hydration, but isn’t really thick. It also comes in a pump bottle which is super convenient and easy. I like to mix a little of the body shops drops of light pure translucency essence lotion into my moisturiser. I’m honestly not sure if I can see any difference in my skin because of this, but I always feel better when I apply some of this.


Some other moisturisers I like to use are the rich moisturising and the light moisturisers by simple, the garner essentials hydrating day care cream, and my garner moisture+ matte, or moisture+ protect.  I try to use the protect daily because it has SPF, and I use the matte if I apply too much face oil and I want to mattify my skin a little.

As mentioned in the last point, I always use a face oil. My skin gets very oily in my T-zone, but I still always use a face oil, because hydrated skin is more healthy, and glowing, and it’s a lot easier to blot day oil from makeup than it is to hydrate makeup without making it look terrible.

I either use bio oil, or a glow oil that contains hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid has been known to hydrate skin for a long time so it makes sense to use it. I like to apply quite a generous amount of oil, but it depends on what i’ll be doing whilst wearing makeup, and what the weather’s going to be like.


I think the most important thing about my pre makeup skincare, is giving my skin plenty of time to absorb the moisture and get ready for makeup. I find if i leave my skin for about half an hour after applying my skincare, it is firm and hydrated and smooth. My make up always looks better if i give it enough time after doing my skincare.

I hope this can help some of you with your pre makeup routine, and please let me know if there are any steps you recommend I take. I’m always looking for ways to improve my skincare routine.

Thank you for reading


2 thoughts on “My pre make-up routine

    1. I haven’t tried the lush one, but I’m always up for trying new things 😄 tea tree is the only thing that can keep my skin under control, it’s magic really!


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