I’d like to preface this piece by saying that actually, despite all of my moaning, my skin isn’t naturally that terrible. Sure it’s prone to sensitivity, plagued with blackheads and showing some serious signs of sun damage in areas, but all in all, it’s really not that ghastly to look at. Providing I haven’t done anything to annoy it, if you squint or are stood a few metres away, my skin will likely look pretty smooth and clear.
The issue is, though, that as a beauty editor, I am doing things that annoy my skin all too often. Whether it’s trying out a retinol that is just too strong or chopping and changing my routine in a bid to trial all of the new launches, there’s no doubt in my mind that the main causes of my skin issues are down to my job. So with that being said, it will come as no surprise that sadly, I rarely have the opportunity to spend a great deal of time using the products that both my skin and I absolutely love.
With one exception, of course. No matter how jam-packed my skincare shelf is with products that need testing and trialling, I always manage to make the space for my go-to Sunday Riley products. In fact, I’ve convinced myself that if I don’t use them whenever I can, my skin will go into some sort of withdrawal-induced meltdown. (It probably won’t, but I’m not willing to test the theory.)
You see, unlike so many other skincare brands, Sunday Riley champions the idea that products should be fast-acting and offer up immediate results. And quite frankly, when my skin is in a bit of a state, that is all I want. When I have weeks’ worth of new product lined up waiting to be slathered onto my face, I certainly don’t have the time to wait around for months to see if a product actually works. And that is the thing I love most about my collection of Sunday Riley products. Not only do they actually do what they say on the tin, but they do it fast.
Formulated with some of the best and most powerful ingredients in the game, such as retinol, vitamin C, salicylic acid, ceramides and alpha hydroxy acids, Sunday Riley doesn’t mess around. Forget brands that build whole advertising campaigns around brand-new, trademarked ingredients, blending potent actives with botanicals, Sunday Riley keeps things simple, to the point and builds products around the ingredients that science has proven to really work.
And no, the products can’t perform miracles in minutes. Retinols and acids will still require long-term usage to see long-term results, but the instant glow and gratification you get from using the products is what keeps me going back every single time. Whenever people ask me what skincare brands are worth their time and money, Sunday Riley is always top of the list. In fact, I once got so passionate about it that the poor recipient of my spiel asked if I was employed by them. (I’m not, FYI.)
If I want to get across only one thing through this, it’s that if you really do have a skin concern and you feel at a bit of a loss with the whole thing, please do take a look and have a read up on some of the below Sunday Riley products. They don’t promise a miracle cure, but I can say that from personal experience, whenever I have an issue that I can’t get to the bottom of, I usually end up at a Sunday Riley product.
By far one of my favourite cleansers ever, this stuff contains clay to minimise the appearance of pores and keep oiliness in check but also uses neroli oil to calm and nourish. It leaves skin looking bright and feeling comfortable. I have used this product for years and fall back in love with it every time I crack open a new bottle.
Brand new from the brand (meaning I myself am yet to try this), this moisturiser harnesses the hydrating powers of ceramides. Vital in maintaining a healthy skin barrier, some of my favourite products ever have ceramides at the heart of their formulas. It's safe to say I can't wait to get my hands on this.
If you love a glow-enhancing face oil, this stuff doesn't just look great in the bottle. Rich in essential fatty acids, it provides skin the fundamental building blocks it needs to keep it looking and feeling healthy.
As far as glycolic treatments go, this one is definitely on the much more expensive side of things. However, coming from someone who doesn't usually get on too well with glycolic acid, even I can admit it leaves my skin looking clearer and more radiant.
The C.E.O. range is probably the one that gives the most instantly glowing results. With vitamin C to deliver antioxidant benefits and work on long-term skin health and glow, this oil also contains turmeric for an instantly more radiant finish.
This is deal for those who are experiencing pigmentation, dullness and dark spots. One of my close friends (who isn't in the beauty industry) refers to this powerful vitamin C serum as her "special potion."
As someone who has extremely dark circles, it's safe to say I'm a bit fed up of eye creams that promise to "brighten" always letting me down. And while this one doesn't get rid of my under-eye circles (nothing does), it does make me look more awake.
How luxurious can a cleansing balm actually be? Well, in the words of Cady Heron, the limit does not exist. With cocoa butter, blue tansy and chamomile, this balm to milk cleanser is one of the most beautifully calming products I have ever owned.
For those, like me, who have to be a little more careful when it comes to powerful active ingredients, this face cream delivers refreshing moisture with hyaluronic acid and uses papaya enzymes to deliver a super-gentle, but effective, exfoliation.
If the concept of the powerful A+ Retinoid Serum is a little intimidating, Luna is its luxurious, slightly gentler little sister. Mixing a retinoid with nourishing botanical oils, it aims to decrease the appearance of pores and fight the signs of premature ageing.
I must warn you it takes more than a little while to get used to the medicinal, slightly funky smell of this face oil. However, once you get there, it's so worth it. Ideal for those with skin prone to blackheads and breakouts, this salicylic acid–rich oil also contains tea tree and hexylresorcinol to diminish blemishes and promote an even-toned complexion.