Like many of us, I found myself entrenched in the depths of Tik Tok over Lockdown (I had already become addicted to the app in November 2019 – but we won’t discuss that!). More than other social media apps that have come before it, Tik Tok seemed to have a powerful influence over us. In March, we all dropped everything and began making whipped coffee, bleaching our jeans and dying the front two strands of our hair. While I’ve foregone plenty of these trends, some of them have stuck.
When Jeremy Scheck told me to add pasta water to my sauce, I never went back to draining the god-like substance again. The same goes for certain beauty trends: I binged videos on anything from learning the perfect e-girl eyeliner, to the pros of double cleansing. However, in an industry skilled at targeting insecurities for profit, and influencers promoting brands that aren’t always in the best interest of their audience, it can be difficult to tell authentic praise from targeted advertisements.
When I join a new social media platform, I slowly begin to find influencers whose opinions I trust. Someone who gained my trust on Tik Tok is @skincarebyhyram, an American influencer specialising in skincare. He provides product recommendations for a diverse range of budgets and skin-types, taking care to explain ingredient lists that had been gate-keeped for too long. It is through his guidance that I learned what ingredients I should look out for as someone with dry, sensitive and acne-prone skin.
Along with many other consumers, I invested in a number of CeraVe and The Ordinary products. Following Hyram’s advice, I went back to CeraVe, a brand my dermatologist had originally recommended after a particularly bad acne flare-up. Today, I still use the hydrating cleanser, moisturizer and sunscreen daily.
From The Ordinary, I favour the Hyaluronic Acid Serum for my dry skin, followed up with the caffeine solution on my eyes. These products don’t break the bank for university students, but have hydrated my skin after long hours spent in the library (or at Bottomless Brunch…). When I was looking for a new face mask, I turned to Hyram’s videos. He had recommended the First Aid Beauty Instant Repair Oatmeal Mask. Approximately once a week, I use the mask and find my skin to feel nourished and my acne to be soothed.
A new trend I’ve been loving when it pops up on my feed are shower routines. I realised that I needed to up my body care routine, investing in a Cocoa Butter body oil and Dove body lotion. I start by using a couple drops of oil on my feet, legs, arms, stomach and chest respectively. As I like to take my facial skin care products down my neck (a tip I learned from various beauty gurus over the years), body products aren’t necessary here. I then take my body lotion over these places, paying special attention to my elbows, knees, love handles, and the back of my feet where I get particularly dry. I’ve learned how important moisturized skin is, especially around this time of year and with repetitive hand washing due to Covid. I’ve grown fond of the simple pleasures of taking time inside the shower and after the fact to focus on myself, and my hair, face, and body.
It’s important to remember that skincare isn’t a one size fits all. It’s a process of trial and error, and can take years before you find products that are right for your skin. Listen to Hyram and you’ll soon learn about ingredients and what suits your body, as well as your lifestyle.