Wondering which of our plant-oil blended serums is right for your skin? No problem! We'll help you narrow the perfect serum for you in this guide...
...But first, what makes our serums different?
They are powered by restorative, balancing, protective plant oils! In each of our blends, we've handpicked oils based on their individual properties and unique abilities to target specific skin concerns. In fact, plant-based oils can, and should be, your skin's new best friend! Check out why below.
3 Reasons Why Plant-Based Oils Are Your Skin’s BFF.
Listing all the benefits of plant-based oils for our skin is beyond the scope of this guide, so let’s zero in on just a few of the benefits that plant-based oils can provide!
1) Bye Bye Bacteria
P.acnes bacteria loves oil, more specifically, the oil our body produces (sebum)! This is one of the (secondary) reasons I believe oil has gotten a bad rap (read about the first here). The more natural oils on our face, the more P.acne bacteria have to feast on, and the more it multiplies.
Which is why ensuring our oil production is balanced – not too much (bacteria smorgasbord!) and not too little (Sahara dessert like skin which equals dehydration, which equals build up in pores, which equals acne, congestion, dull skin, poor skin texture, etc).
Since P.acnes loves oil, it gathers in areas that are abundant in oil. So why add more oil to the party? Because not only is P.acne attracted to oil (so any P.acnes that is hanging out on your skin comes running to plant-based oils the same it would to our natural oils (sebum)! This effect happens when you use our serums as a booster to your skincare routine or when you use them to oil cleanse). The reason we WANT P.acnes to come running into our serums is that what P.acnes doesn’t realize is that the plant-based oils are carrying one very important party favour: antibacterial properties!
So instead of having a feast of oil, P.acne’s fun is ruined as it gets wiped out by the antibacterial properties contained in the plant-based oils in our serums!
Some plant-based oils that are particularly high in astringent properties include hazelnut and grapeseed. Which is why we've included these in our blends for gals who need more P.acnes eradicating powers like Acne B.O.P. Serum and Balance Serum.
2) Reverse The Oil Slick
Introducing more oil to our face (albeit plant-based) combats oily skin!
It’s true! Our oil production can be adjusted in two ways: internally and externally. Both are equally important.
How do we adjust our oil production externally?
Regulating oil externally is a delicate balance of providing your skin with exactly what it needs for the outer most layers of skin to be healthy and clear.
When the skin feels like it has enough protection, and it’s natural lipid (oil) barrier isn’t compromised, it responds by downregulating oil (sebum) production. If it doesn’t feel adequately protected (like when it’s been stripped or dehydrated), it responds by increasing oil production.
So how can we ensure our skin it’s protected?
We can do this daily with a balanced routine, particularly one that includes plant-based oils and a good dose of hydration. Plant-based oils can be worked into your routine in numerous ways. Any step in your routine can include plant-based oils: from your cleanser to your moisturizer to your boosting products like mists, serums, and masks.
Plant-based oils are particularly good at reversing the oil slick because they contain essential fatty acids which help repair our lipid barrier (our skin’s natural defense) and antioxidants (that stop free radicals from causing more damage).
- GLA (a type of omega 6) corrects deficiencies in our oils which is super important when trying to reassure our skin that it doesn’t need to kick oil production into high gear. Borage oil and evening primrose oil are both particularly high in GLA.
- Palmitoleic Acid (omega 7) helps repair damage by providing additional support to our skin. How? palmitoleic acid is a natural component of skin (a building block of healthy, radiant skin!) so the skin goes to work quickly in putting it to work repairing and calming any current damage. Palmitoleic acid also acts as an anti-microbial agent which is extremely beneficial to the balance of our skin flora. Hazelnut oil, macadamia nut oil, and avocado oil are a few examples of excellent sources of palmitoleic acid.
3) Beauty Building Blocks
Lastly, plant-based oils give our skin a serious boost by providing some of the necessary building blocks it needs to do its vital jobs (like being the first line of defense for our immune system).
Collagen, which is the most important building block for our skin (if our skin was a house, collagen would be the load-bearing walls) and plant-based oils can provide our skin with some of the building blocks it needs to build collagen.
Avocado oil is known for its ability to naturally trigger the skin to increase collagen (and that’s a very good thing)!
Avocado oil can be found in our Forever Young Facial Moisturizer, Raw Radiance Facial Moisturizer, Lip Balm +, and Easy on the Eyes Eye Cream.
Facial Serum Guide
Now that we know what makes Grounded Sage serums amazing, let's find the right serum for you!
Each category below has the serums in order of what I'd recommend first through last in terms of how actively the serum addresses the skin care goal from the strongest to the weakest.
Have multiple skin care goals? No problem! That's likely the case for most Radiant Rebels. Simply pick the serum that shows up most often under the symptoms you want to address.
BASED ON FLORAL AURORAS
(listed in order based on what I'd recommend first to last)
Don't know your floral aurora? Take the quiz here!
1. Acne BOP Serum
2. Balance Serum
1. Balance Serum (balance serum is the way to go for desert marigolds!)
2. Acne BOP Serum
3. Rosy Repair Serum
1. Rosy Repair Serum
2. Flourish and Nourish Serum
3. Balance Serum (only if you’re an orchid who can handle citrus as this formula has vitamin C in it)
1. Flourish and Nourish
2. Balance Serum
1. Acne BOP Serum (even though periwinkles aren’t prone to breakouts, this formula is balanced in that it tackles dryness/congestion AND oiliness in equal measures - so a balanced serum for a balanced Floral Aura)
2. Balance Serum (if you need more support than what the Acne BOP serum is providing in the winter)
1. Acne BOP Serum
2. Balance Serum
THE GENERAL RULE OF THUMB
Lastly, let's take a quick moment to talk about how to incorporate serum(s) into your current routine in a way that makes the most sense and will be most effective for your skin.
For general use as part of your skin routine (whether it's morning or night), the best time to incorporate your serum is after your hydrator & mist but before your moisturizer. Just like moisturizers lock serums into your skin, serums help lock mists into your skin. You don’t have to wait for a mist to fully absorb before applying your serum but you should wait a few minutes between applying your serum and moisturizer to allow for some deep absorption of the serum.
One of my favourite tricks for the winter is what I refer to as the "Royal Serum Treatment". It's really simple and easy to incorporate into your nighttime routine. I use the Balance Serum in this example, but you can use any of our serums in this fashion.
Here's how I do the "Royal Serum Treatment":
- After washing my face, I apply my hydrator.
- Then I add a drop of Balance Serum to my moisturizer (just in my palm) before I apply it to my face.
- At this point, I'll do anything I need to do before bed like brush my teeth, let the dogs out, fill up the humidifier in the bedroom, changing into my PJs, etc.
- Then right before bed, I take a LOT of Balance Serum - more than what would absorb overnight - and apply that. This would be after my moisturizer has already completely absorbed. A good five minutes should suffice between putting on your moisturizer and applying the serum. To apply the serum, I simply put a quarter to a loonie (or twoonie) sized amount in the palm of my hand, briefly rub my palms together so there's serum on both, then pat the serum onto the areas I want to treat. For me, that's the lower 2/3 of my face (so cheeks, nose, chin, jawline, temples, around my mouth - but not my lips - I don't want to taste test the serum lol).
- I then put a towel across my pillow (in case I roll around in the night) and I go to bed with all that serum on because it acts as a protective layer AND gives my skin something to draw on all night and absorb as it can. I usually read for an hour before falling asleep so I lay on my back so the serum has at least an hour to work before I fall asleep and potentially roll around.
- Note: if you're someone who rolls around a lot you could do this method during the day although I find it's most effective at night while our skin is doing its nightly processes. The treatment is also best suited to the nighttime because it protects our skin from dry indoor air, and the amount of time we're in bed is longer than most people are able to do a skincare treatment for during the day.
The way this helps is 2 fold:
- This amount of serum acts as a complete lipid barrier. It fills in any gaps in your lipid barrier and therefore, keeps hydration from leaching out.
- It gave your skin the raw materials it needed to repair your actual lipid barrier. If you apply the right amount, by the morning the serum will have ALMOST all absorbed. This means throughout the night your skin can continue its repair work without running out of serum to draw on for its vital work.
Generally, I can get away with doing this serum trick a couple of times a week (or less) depending on what my skin has been exposed to. In the summer I might do this trick once every other week or so. In the winter, once a week seems to work best for my skin. The great thing about this treatment is you can use it as often as needed - just keep an eye on how your skin is feeling and doing, and apply the treatment accordingly.
Special Note: This trick often scares a lot of acne prone gals, but don't let that fear stop you! The oils in our Balance Serum are very similar to our natural oils. This is good because our skin knows what to do with these oils (ie: how to put their raw materials to work at repairing, replenishing, strengthening, etc). Since they are so close to our natural oils, p. acnes bacteria are attracted to it. This might sound like a bad thing, but it’s actually a VERY good thing; the bacteria come running, thinking they've found the mother load of sebum (our skins natural oil), but really what it found is plant-based oils with antibacterial properties - so the bacteria comes running and then gets killed off! Booya! How’s that for boobytrap?
That's it! If you've been on the fence about adding a serum to your routine, we hope we've helped to settle some questions and that you've been able to align your skin with the perfect serum for you!
With love & radiance,