LOVESKIN Founder Joanna Lehndorf talks all things skin care.
What is your skin type?
My skin tends to be dry, especially between my eyebrows.
What is your current skin routine?
I’m very focussed on a simple, natural, effective routine. As a mother and business owner I need to be efficient with my time, so whatever I use needs to work without introducing unnecessary products, unnecessary steps or nasty chemicals.
In the evening:
LOVESKIN Tui Cleanser to remove my makeup in the evenings. Sometimes I put it on before I get in the shower and take it off with our Muslin Face Cloth. I’ll often take 5 minutes for some Skin Soaking with a warm damp cloth. This is especially good for pressing moisture into the skin and preparing the skin to receive the hydrating serum. Following the cleanser I use our Kakara Rose Mist to add moisture to my skin. I love the delicate Rose fragrance and soothing sensation of the particles settling on my skin. After that I apply Arohanui Facial Serum for Dry/ Mature Skin to my face, neck and décolletage. This leaves my skin beautifully hydrated, without feeling oily. I’m 45 years old now, so my skin loves the moisture. This whole routine takes less than 5 minutes from start to finish.
When I get into bed I will usually spend up to 5 minutes massaging my face with our Rose Quartz Guasha Stone. This reduces puffiness, improves circulation and makes a visible difference to the elasticity of my skin. It’s also a really lovely ritual. I use it to relieve tension in my forehead, which can develop as a result of staring at screens throughout the day.
In the morning:
I just wipe my face with a warm damp, muslin face cloth, either at the hand basin or in the shower. I don’t recommend cleansing morning and evening. Overnight we’ve generally only been sleeping. Our skin hasn’t been exposed to dirt, or makeup which requires removal. This time is critical to allow our skin the opportunity to heal and replenish any damage that may have occurred. Cleansing again in the morning, especially with the wrong kind of cleanser, can just undo all that natural replenishment.
I follow that up with another application of our Arohanui Facial Serum for Dry/ Mature Skin. If I have any dry patches or dry lids I apply some Ora Balm to the area. Then I’m ready for my sunscreen and makeup.
How has your routine changed over time ?
When I was about 15 years old I started to breakout, so my Mother bought me a nylon bristled face brush and foaming face wash. I scrubbed my face til it was shiny and red to try and get rid of the acne, but the harder I scrubbed the worse the skin became. I ended up with acne and blackheads all over my face.
Eventually I was put on a course of Roaccutane to break the cycle of recurring breakouts and bad skin that I couldn’t seem to recover from. Accutane is a horrible drug. It removes all the moisture from your skin. It has also been linked with mental health issues in young people.
Ultimately my skin cleared up, but it was dry and dull. I was clueless about how to achieve lovely skin, so I just assumed I was destined to have unremarkable skin. I used the usual mix of creams, exfoliators and masks with unremarkable results.
It wasn’t until I was in my late 30’s that I learned of the benefits of botanical oils for skin. I visited a beautician who used them almost exclusively in her treatments. This was in the early 2000’s and it was still quite unusual to use all natural botanical oils blends without exfoliating products, creams or synthetic ingredients. After that treatment my skin glowed. It had never looked better. So I started to investigate the benefits of plant oils for skincare.
What is your approach to skin health?
I feel very strongly that our skin, like the rest of our body, is calibrated to homeostasis. Meaning that our skin is always trying to achieve balance and balanced skin looks healthy. It is the things we do to our skin or which are present in our skincare, makeup, diet or environment that cause our skin to become imbalanced. Imbalanced skin can lead to oiliness, breakouts, eczema, sensitivity, dryness and premature ageing.
Most mainstream beauty marketing tries to suggest that we need to fight against our skin’s natural processes; fight acne, fight breakouts, fight signs of ageing. Most mainstream approaches to skincare are aggressive and damaging to the skin and often lead to oiliness, promote dryness, fine lines, sensitivity, acne and breakouts.
However, if we trust our skin to repair itself and use products to support the skin’s natural processes, instead of fighting against it, our skin will naturally return to it’s naturally healthy state.
What tips would you give to someone wanting to start a natural LOVESKIN skincare routine to care for their skin?
- Adjust your mindset. You don’t need aggressive treatments and harsh chemicals to achieve clear, glowing skin. Anything that causes your skin to feel red, raw, or hot is too harsh and is causing damage to your skin, which it will ultimately have to recover from. Gentle is best.
- Just because a product is natural doesn’t mean it’s gentle. Natural and organic skincare can still strip the important, natural oils from your skin, cause damage and lead to acne and breakouts.
Not all oils are equal. Some oils are comedogenic, meaning they block pores, which can lead to acne and breakouts. Some well known, popular plant oils, such as Rosehip are very dry to the skin and can be irritating to some skin types. Some oils are made with synthetic ingredients, which gives them a longer shelf life, but they are less beneficial to the skin, and can leave it feeling oily.
- Don’t rush something you want to last forever. Healing your skin is not a quick fix, it’s the permanent restoration of your skin’s health. It can take up to a month for previous damage to start to repair. Be patient, trust the wisdom of the natural, healing process.