Caring For Our Canvas

Olay Moisturiser, Serum and Eucerin Sunscreen

I was reading Ollie‘s post on budget makeup starter kit (spot on recommendations, girl!), and the first paragraph caught my eye.

A few months ago, I was chatting to a colleague of mine when she mentioned that she didn’t know the first thing about skincare and makeup and asked what I used. I was a very surprised to learn that at 26 years old, she had yet to start a daily skincare regime. She uses soap to wash her face and has never used moisturizer. Giving her face a closer inspection I realized that she indeed had a problem with acne, her lips were chapped and she wore no makeup. Something you’d expect on a teenager.

For someone who started their skincare regime when she was 11 years old, I admit I was flabbergasted to hear someone say she washes her face with soap. And I’m assuming a typical cake of bath soap, not facial bar soap. Then again, I wasn’t entirely surprised to hear that, because I’ve heard the same thing from other ladies too, who did not begin their skincare regime until their mid- to late twenties.

Now before you think I’m a snob for getting an early start on skincare, do hear me out. I thought I’d give you a bit of background on my skincare routine and how it came about.

I started using Kao Biore’s facial wash (it was in a blue/green and white tube) when I was 11, when my mother saw me sprouting pimples left, right and centre. I loved using it as it smelt very good to me at the time. I learned about toner and moisturiser from a family friend, Auntie M, when I was 13. I didn’t understand the concept of a toner then, but since she said that I should get myself familiarised with the 3-step skincare, I thought, eh why not? My mother gave me one of her GWP (Gift-With-Purchase) Clinique Clarifying Lotion and a tiny travel-sized bottle of Clinique’s Dramatically Different Moisturising Lotion to try out.

I actually hated the moisturiser at first. I found it greasy on my adolescent face, smelt like bad cheese, and resulted in more pimples. With my saved-up pocket money, I bought a small tube of moisturiser from Biore. As I grew older, I went back to using the Clinique yellow moisturiser (nicked-it-from-my-mum-since-I-was-too-cheap-to-buy-my-own). By then, the three-step skincare was routine for me. When I was 23 years old, I started using sunscreen, as recommended by my mum.

In retrospect, I have my mum to thank for introducing me to skincare. It’s never too early to start, and you’ll have a lot less problems to deal with when you’re older, because then it’ll be difficult to fix any skin problems you have. If budget is the problem, then I can boldly tell you to forget buying makeup, because if the canvas is not good to work with in the first place, makeup alone will not fix it. Okay, temporarily perhaps, but once the mask is taken down, you’re back to the original canvas.

Basic skincare does not have to be expensive. If you hardly wear makeup (or not at all), then a toner is not necessary. Facial wash, moisturiser and sunscreen. That is all you need if you’re on a tight budget. My grandmother’s been using Olay for over 60 years, and her skin’s beautiful. Sunscreen is the best anti-aging product around.

If you know someone – a colleague, a friend, a cousin, a sister, etc, whom you think should be on skincare and are not, gently give them a nudge. Lend them a helping hand into what you think they’d need to suit their skin and budget. You may not be an expert, but if you’re caring for your skin too, they’ll appreciate your advice.

Let’s continue to spread the love and work on caring for our canvas, shall we?

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19 comments… add one
  1. Nikki

    I can’t help but agree with you, I did not start caring my canvass as early as 11 but I think I started early on using facial wash instead of just soap and water. It makes a HUGE difference I swear, my sister is too lazy with facial washes and I can see the toil it gives to her skin after years! yes, spread the word of taking care of our skin!!!! Great great job posting about this!

  2. Jen

    Not related, but you were soliciting questions a few posts ago, so hope you don’t mind …

    What’s your favourite eyelash curler? Most of the ones I’ve tried were too curved if that makes any sense. Can you recommend some “flatter” curlers?

  3. prettybeautiful

    hmmmm i actually started the skincare and all when i was 11 or 12. and thanks to my mom, she sponsored me all the stuff, and also my aunt who is a beautician 😀 i actually started using sunscreen when i went to sec school, and i had quite steady and smooth face through out my teens, and for some weird reasons, my skin started havoc-ing these 2 years! horrible! what happened to me???? and now i am forced to spend even more money to stick on my face *SIGH*

    p/s: i hv a colleague, 26, who stopped using moisturizers/sunscreens and etc, claiming that she has serious breakout with the skincare. and she washes her face like 3-4x a day! i have explained to her about the benefits/cons but she just refused to listen. so…i guess at the end of the day, it is still the person’s choice.

  4. ohmypetticoat

    I believe that mummys are very important in helping their daughters on the right path of having a skincare routine. My mum used to drag me to have facial because she truly believed facials are important and now I have to thank her. Haha.

  5. ms.iu

    yes , i’m agree with you….everything start with our canvas !we must
    taking care of our precious skin… 😉
    & yes most olay products are good & also cheap! 😉

  6. Ollie

    My mum totally started me off with facial wash at 11/12 too, then gradually introduced moisturizer, toner and sunscreen. When I started working she recommended I powder my face as well. Grooming is also important and she didn’t want me to be walking around with a shiny face (after moisturizer). Now I don’t ever go to the office without a bit of blush and lipgloss too.

    Thanks for the tip on concealer and blush! It never crossed my mind before that applying makep on blemished skin would be challenging cos I’ve been blessed with a clear complexion. I tried hinting to my colleague that she should start a proper skincare regime before going into makeup but sometimes its really hard to convice other people.

  7. fuz

    AW what a great post on skincare!! 😀

  8. Indulgent Diva

    Great post, Tine. I started at an early age too…same as you 11-12-ish. Till today, I follow the 3 step skincare with sunscreen and on a weekly basis, I’d scrub and mask. That’s about all I do on my skin and you’re absolutely right, the canvas should be good first prior to putting any paint on it.

  9. Catherine

    I totally, totally agree with you! Skincare is so important, way more important than makeup. I started my “skincare routine” in middle school… probably around when I was 12 or 13 since I also had horrible acne. I think my first skincare purchase was a Biore gel cleanser and my mom bought a lightweight Neutrogena moisturizer for me. They weren’t perfect, but it was a start at least! I am very happy to report that I’ve found my HG skincare routine now though… almost for a year now (I’m 20 now)! And I wear sunscreen every single day. 😀

  10. Jenn

    I started using a facial cleanser when i was in high school, and my mum literally forced me to put a tube of sunscreen in my school bag and apply it before PE classes since i was really young. Needless to say i ignored her cuz sunscreens at that time were really goopy and sticky, and i pay the price now!! T_T

    Next time i’ll probably do the same… forcing my daughter to wear sunscreen! hahaha!! 😀

  11. jojoba

    believe it or not, i didn’t start anything till i was in uni. before that, i was a makeup and skincare NOTHING!!! my days in uni in the US taught me a lot of things, good and bad. and the skincare was built then by my old roommate (THANK GOD SHE CAME TO MY LIFE!!!)

    i thought it was all right that if a person uses just soap and no moisturiser so long as her skin is all right. i was like that and i was not least surprised reading your post. my mom’s still not having much skincare or makup till this day. (She is 66. and looking like 40!) i am not kidding. sometimes, less is more. but it’s WAY TOO LATE FOR ME now! i am an addict.

  12. cuteandcurls

    You are so lucky to have a very attentive mom. I cant remember how I got started on taking care of my skin but I know it was in my early teens. I think my first facial wash was either Biore or Eversoft 🙂 but I do remember my 1st moisturiser was Hazeline Snow – the original made from the UK one 🙂 that came in a glass bottle and not plastic heheehe ..for a scrub my grandmother makes this rice scrub on her own so i liked using that alot and it really softens my skin. I think OLAY truly does work i mean my mother in law is in her mid 60s now and she swears on Olay that she had been using for a very long time now and she looks good!

  13. Beauty Blog

    Nice tips. I liked them. They can be very helpful I think. And I promise to follow your advice and see how it works in my case. Thanks.
    The ones who are interested in skin care and want to look nice can find a great deal of information and helpful tips at here 😉

  14. fabulessbeauty

    I use Olay Complete as well! A great drugstore find.

  15. Shay

    I started skincare when I had acne in my early teenage years. My mum on the other hand couldn’t be bothered even though she had acne as well. She still uses soap. No matter how expensive the skincare was given to her, she doesn’t use. I’m the one who nags her to use. hehe…

  16. Evelyn

    -blushing- I am so ashame to say that I have only started cleansing my face since last year. I have not even gone into the basics of make up yet. Super late boomer here. None of my pichas have make up on (except the ppl’s weddings)

    Now a SPF thing is a must before I go out but I still wish I dun have to put anything at all on my face.

  17. goldenmouse

    Great post! I remember my mum doesn’t encourage me to put any skincare on my face when i was young. But back to school, i remember my friends talking bout skincare and they even take some of theirs to me and ask me to apply before sleep!!hahahahaahahha

  18. honeybee

    Yeah I have to thank my Mum first for introducing me to the so called ‘cleanser’ when I was 12 – coz that’s the time when I started growing all the pimples =p
    I think my first cleanser was Cetaphil. Honestly, I don’t really like it that much but it’s better than nothing ay? Then I realised the need to tone and moisturise 3 years later… (wow it took me so many years to know that we have to moisturise after cleansing!)

    Btw Tine, just wanna say that I love your blog! So glad that I came across it =p

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