For spring, we’re running a series showcasing the skincare products of our most-loved beauty influencers and what they’re buying at Sephora. Each week, we’re sending one of our favorite gurus to their local store to document their entire shopping spree on Byrdie’s Snapchat. Make sure to tune in each Saturday to follow along, and check back here monthly to see (and shop!) the items that made it into their Sephora carts. Enjoy.
While most people are aware of their skin concerns, it can be hard to find products to target those concerns. But what if it could be as simple as knowing which tried-and-true ingredient to use to tackle your problem areas? Well, if we had to narrow in on specific ingredient families, it’d include retinoids (targets wrinkles), AHAs (minimizes the appearance of pores), antioxidants (helps with first signs of aging), and, of course, vitamin C (improves skin dullness). As countless studies have confirmed, these are some of the best topical ingredients on the market, and the beauty professionals and devotees we talk to week in and week out agree.
But one thing to note is that not all products are created equal. If you’re looking to prevent first signs of aging, you may need a different product than someone trying to tackle deep wrinkles, for example. And that’s why we’re turning to four beauty gurus to help you narrow down your search. Dullness? Enlarged pores? First signs of aging? Wrinkles? Byrdie’s news editor, Victoria Hoff, and beauty vloggers Deepica Mutyala, Melissa Alatorre, and Rachel Nguyen have got you covered. Today they’re sharing their must-have spring product picks from Sephora to tackle some of the most annoying skin concerns.
Have you found the right products for your skin type and concerns? Find out which products and ingredients you need.
Byrdie news editor Victoria Hoff is no novice when it comes to skincare. She’s constantly trying out new products, and she’s always on the hunt for the next great thing. Given that she works in the beauty industry, when the weekend rolls around, Hoff usually keeps things minimal. “I don’t really wear a lot of makeup on the weekends, so keeping my skin even, glowing, and fresh is really important while I’m running around all day,” she shares. What ingredient does Hoff swear by to combat dullness?
You guessed it: vitamin C. It’s great for giving you that glow sans makeup, but it also comes in handy after an especially long night (read: when your skin is looking hungover). Right now, Hoff is pretty obsessed with Ole Henriksen Truth Serum ($48); she tells us it’s her secret weapon. She uses it every morning and sometimes in the evening after a long night for double the brightening power. “It fights dullness and hydrates because it’s packed with vitamin C, collagen, and orange and green tea extracts.
It also smells like oranges, which is lovely.” Even after running errands all day, Hoff’s skin remained dewy and bright. No need for touch-ups with that natural glow. “This stuff is magic!” she adds.
Similarly, on-air beauty expert and YouTube extraordinaire Deepica Mutyala needed something to help with her lackluster skin and decided to make a trip over to the Sephora in Times Square. “I’ve recently become obsessed with skin after realizing that makeup is only as good as your skincare,” she told us. With that in mind, she was hoping to get some info on which serums would be right for her because they’re easy to incorporate into a routine and great for targeting specific concerns. “I have dry skin, and I’m always worried about wrinkles and dullness,” she explains.
In search of answers, she met with Sephora Skincare Advisor Sasha, who was able to give her two recommendations.
Sasha suggested that Mutyala start using Peter Thomas Roth Professional 3% Retinoid Plus ($82) in the evening to tackle wrinkles. The non-irritating overnight serum is formulated with retinoids, aka the key to fighting wrinkles. It improves the look of the size, length, and depth of fine lines and deep wrinkles. In addition, it evens out tone and smooths your skin’s texture.
The second was Caudalie Vine[Activ] Glow Activating Anti-Wrinkle Serum ($52), as it’s perfect for the city girl on the go. This light, non-sticky serum is packed with vitamin C to give your skin a healthy-looking glow, antioxidants to protect against environmental irritants like pollution that age the skin, and hyaluronic acid to hydrate and fight wrinkles. It’s great for someone like Mutyala to incorporate into her morning routine—as someone living in a city with lots of pollution, her skin will benefit.
Since Melissa Alatorre is a makeup artist, she’s always applying (and reapplying) makeup, so by the end of the week, her skin is in need of some serious TLC. The L.A.-based vlogger hit up Sephora at The Grove to see what she needed to get her skin ready for a new week. “My skin is normal to dry, and I’m hypersensitive to a lot of ingredients,” she explained to Missy, the store’s Senior Skincare Advisor.
“If you’re a fan of Drunk Elephant, you definitely need to try its new T.L.C. Sukari Babyfacial ($80),” says Missy. “It’s a 25% AHA, 2% BHA at-home facial that gently but effectively resurfaces skin and exfoliates to minimize the appearance of pores and smooths texture, leaving it feeling soft and glowing.” Bonus: Currently when you buy Drunk Elephant Babyfacial, it comes with a mini Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil to apply after to hydrate your skin!
With skin texture tackled, it was time to move onto brightening. “Sunday Riley C.E.O. C + E antiOXIDANT Protect + Repair Moisturizer ($65) visually brightens skin with a next-generation form of vitamin C and fights environmental damage like pollution with antioxidants,” explains Missy, noting that it’s great for Alatorre since there’s a lot of pollution in L.A. It’s a rich, hydrating (yet non-greasy) formula that, when used morning and night, will give a healthier-looking complexion (that looks more youthful, no less). And it’s great even for those with sensitive skin. “I got a sample of this earlier in the week, and my skin has never looked better,” says Alatorre. “I can’t leave the store without it.”
On the other hand, Rachel Nguyen, the L.A.-based blogger behind That’s Chic, has her tried-and-true products she always turns to for minimizing the appearance of her pores and combatting first signs of aging, especially when she’s getting ready for a night out. One of the most important steps in her regimen is making sure her skin is clean so she has a fresh canvas to start with. The second most vital step? “You’re going to want to exfoliate,” explains Nguyen.
Her go-to? Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Peel Extra Strength Daily Peel ($88). “It’s a daily peel treatment, and it should be used in two steps. Start with the step-one pad: Rub it into your skin using a circular motion until it’s dry, and wait two minutes. Follow up with the pad in step two using the same technique, and you’re done!”
So what’s so great about the treatment? Its formula contains glycolic and salicylic acids that’ll gently exfoliate to minimize the appearance of pores and reveal a smoother texture and radiant complexion, creating the perfect canvas for a flawless makeup application. You can use them in the morning or night; just be sure to use SPF in the a.m. to protect your skin. Side note: If you’ve always been scared of the word acid, don’t be! These are gentle, and they’re the key to minimizing the look of pores.
Once that’s taken care of, Nguyen always finishes up with a moisturizer. Right now, she’s into fresh Black Tea Firming Corset Cream ($95), a lightweight moisturizer to combat first signs of aging that’s great for the face and the neck (yes, your neck needs TLC too!). “This stuff is luxurious,” Nguyen notes. “I like massaging it in an upward motion while it soaks into my skin.” It visually firms for a more lifted and defined appearance, and fights signs of aging caused by environmental damage, using a blend of black tea extract, kombucha, and more.
It’s basically a miracle in a pot, and Nguyen loves using it before heading out for a night on the town.
In need of a routine refresh of your own? Head to your local Sephora to find the products that’ll tackle your skin’s concerns—or just add the above to your shopping cart.