Paula's Favorite Products
My Paula’s Choice Skincare Routine
Listed below are the skincare products I rely on to help my skin type (oily and occasionally prone to breakouts) and handle my major skin concerns (wrinkles, loss of firmness, uneven skin tone and bumps).
As mentioned above, it took some experimenting for me to figure out what worked best for my temperamental skin. If you’re in the same boat of wondering what to use, don’t be afraid to try a variety of products and frequencies of application to see how your skin responds, just as I did!
SKIN BALANCING Oil-Reducing Cleanser
I use this twice a day and at night with a soft washcloth to ensure I get all my makeup off. This has been my go-to cleanser since I formulated it. It’s PERFECT for my oily skin. It’s so gentle I also use it to wash off my eye makeup. I appreciate the soft, mild lather and non-drying clean feeling it imparts!
SKIN BALANCING Pore-Refining Toner
During the day I don’t use a traditional moisturizer on my face; rather, I apply my skin-replenishing, niacinamide-rich SKIN BALANCING Toner that gives my oily, combination skin everything it needs to feel smooth, refreshed (but not aggravated!) and hydrated! It also has anti-aging ingredients to deliver that benefit as well. In the world of toners, it is really a standout.
RESIST 10% Niacinamide Booster
This booster is has become my must-have Paula’s Choice Skincare product. The research about niacinamide and its unparalleled benefit for skin has grown immensely over the past several years, and my booster is the result of putting that research to work. Niacinamide diminishes signs of aging, helps skin stay hydrated naturally, and minimizes pores. I use it over my toner every morning.
RESIST Ultra-Light Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum
Every other day or in dry weather, after I’ve applied my toner and booster, I apply my RESIST Ultra-Light Serum. This powerhouse formula gives my skin a concentrated blend of antioxidants, skin-replenishing ingredients, and skin-storing ingredients. These essential ingredients give my skin what it needs to renew and transform its appearance.
RESIST Super-Light Wrinkle Defense SPF 30
Everyone who knows me knows I would NEVER leave the house without wearing a sunscreen with SPF 30 on any part of my body and face that might see daylight. I wear it even when I’m indoors as the bad rays of the sun come through windows, too! But because I have oily skin, most sunscreens don’t feel comfortable. RESIST Super-Light SPF 30 is sheer perfection for me. I also use it around my eyes for sun protection. It’s truly lightweight and loaded with additional beneficial ingredients that my skin drinks in and thrives on!
ALL OVER Hair & Body Shampoo
This is one of the oldest products in my line and I’ve used it from the first day I created it. I have a very sensitive scalp and there are just very few fragrance-free, mild products like this. Its versatility also means less products in my shower and, for those who know me, I’m not someone who likes clutter. The concentrated formula lasts forever, it leaves my hair and body beautifully clean but not dry, a really wonderful result. And yes, this is safe for color-treated hair (the #1 question we’re asked about this product).
SMOOTH FINISH Conditioner
This is a surprising hair-care product because it works for my thick, curly, frizzy, dyed hair where other conditioners have let me down. If you use just a small amount, it can also work for someone with thinner, fine hair. It’s incredibly rich but rinses easily, moisturizing and detangling my hair. It’s also fragrance free and very concentrated, so it lasts forever like my shampoo does. After rinsing my hair really feels soft, shiny, and my frizziness is tamed.
SKIN BALANCING Oil-Reducing Cleanser which is the same one I use for daytime (see above).
GENTLE TOUCH Makeup Remover
This is one of the best makeup removers I’ve ever used. Its dual-phase formula activates when you shake it, giving you the best of both worlds, extremely mild cleansing ingredients and a silky fluid to take off any kind of makeup. I use it to take off any remaining makeup after I wash my face or before I wash my face if I’m wearing M.A.C.’s incredibly water-proof Liquid Last eyeliner or NYX’s tenacious Matte Lipstick (this lipstick NEVER bleeds).
SKIN PERFECTING 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant
After my cleanser and makeup remover, I use my leave-on 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant which for me is liquid gold, I feel that strongly about it. I made this completely non-abrasive exfoliant just for me. Exfoliation is an incredibly important skincare step and I wanted one that could exfoliate but without the abrasion scrubs and cleansing brushes cause. The natural type of exfoliation a well-formulated BHA can provide from day one is a knock-your-socks-off revelation. And that’s exactly what I experienced. It immediately alleviated many of the problems my oily, sun-damaged skin caused me, from congested pores to rough skin, redness, and multiple signs of aging. Since I began using it, I wake up every morning with my skin feeling unbelievably smooth and my skin tone looking more radiant.
RESIST BHA 9
My skin can be stubborn, with hard-to-get-rid-of imperfections, especially bumps and congested pores caused by very oily skin. Every now and then, or sometimes fairly often, my skin need extra help. That’s why I created my RESIST BHA 9. It’s my go-to spot fix to address these problems so when I wake up everything is smoother and less red. Thank goodness! First I put on the 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant and then I apply the BHA 9 over trouble spots. I sometimes use this in the morning, too, if a really bad bump has developed.
RESIST Anti-Aging Eye Cream
Many of you know that it took me a long time to formulate an eye cream. I always just recommended using a great moisturizer around the eyes. But an overwhelming number of requests for me to create one led me to formulate my first eye cream, and I’m very proud of it. What I brought together is a rich, emollient balm-like texture that you dab on more like a mask than rubbing it in like a moisturizer. This allows the unique, specialized blend of ingredients to absorb but keeps the skin- protecting buttery emollients on the surface. Brightening, softening, rich hydrating and anti-aging ingredients are also what makes this eye cream very special.
RESIST Triple-Action Dark Spot Eraser 7% AHA Lotion
I am very conscious of how old-looking the brown, dark spots on my hands, arms, and areas of my face make me look. Even though I have been extremely diligent about applying sunscreen since I was 34, there were a lot of years before that when I was frequently tanning (we just didn’t know better back then). Sadly, that accumulated damage caused these spots to show up later in my life. I apply my RESIST Triple-Action Dark Spot Eraser with hydroquinone every other day or every day if they start reappearing again (these spots are stubborn). For certain, sunscreen is absolutely necessary to help make sure these irksome imperfections stay away!
CLINICAL Ultra-Rich Soothing Body Butter
Even though my face is oily, my hands, elbows, arms, and legs aren’t! This buttery-rich yet non-greasy cream has saved my uncomfortably dry skin from looking flaky, rough, and dehydrated. I keep a tube on my bedside table, my desk, in my car, my purse, and in my kitchen to apply when that uncomfortable dry skin feeling starts (thankfully that happens far less often since I started using it).
LIP and BODY Treatment Balm
When I think of the Paula’s Choice products I haven’t ever been without, many come to mind but without question, the one I have been using the longest is my Lip and Body Treatment Balm. From the day I first applied it, I have never had dry, flaky lips at any time of year! Just like my Ultra-Rich Soothing Body Butter, I keep one in my desk, car, kitchen, purse, and next to my bed on the night table. I can’t imagine what would happen to my lips without it!