My AM Skincare Routine to Reverse Signs of Aging

This post shares my Am skincare routine that I use to reverse the signs of aging. 

morning skincare routine

This post about my am skincare routine may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my link, at no extra cost to you.

I have dabbled with skincare routines through the years but I have never really educated myself on the best skincare practices or taken the signs of my facial aging too seriously, UNTIL NOW!

At the time I am writing this, I am 42 years old and it feels like in the past year my face aged so quickly… my melasma is worse than ever, I am fighting jowls, my nasal labial folds are very pronounced, I have wrinkles around my lips, and my chest is so aged as well (this is in addition to the forehead lines and bunny lines on my nose that I’ve always had).

I sound like I’m picking apart my face or like I feel ugly but I’m not and I don’t. I have come to love the way God created me and I know that it is only natural to show signs of aging as we age, I’m just kind of shaken by how quickly it all seemed to happen.

For the past 5 years, I’ve been through A LOT with our son’s PANS diagnosis and what day-to-day life managing that disease is like, the covid shut-downs while being married to an ICU nurse always gone, homeschooling 5 kids, and working full time, and then being displaced from our home for 19 months after finding toxic mold…

I have a lot of trauma from what I went through and to be honest, I didn’t take care of myself or my skin during that time- I was trying to just survive.

I was miserable and probably also rarely smiled- which I bet led to loss of facial muscle. Stress is ROUGH on our bodies and I think the roughest on our skin and appearance. My husband’s hair went completely white during this time as well.

By the grace of God my son has healed SO much and so have I. We are back in our house and I finally have the time and mental space to focus on self-care again.

I started a very consistent skincare routine 3 months ago and in those 3 months, I have seen great results, results that encourage me to keep going, to keep learning, and to keep improving my health.

*I refer to the EWG Skin Deep database a lot. Here’s a link to the database and report builder.

My Goal In An AM Skincare Routine: 

As I embrace my 40s, I’ve realized the importance of a tailored AM skincare routine to address signs of aging like fine lines, dark spots, and uneven skin tone.

My journey through skincare has led me to understand the significance of each step, from NOT using a gentle cleanser to the final step of applying an antioxidant serum.

My goal for a AM skincare routine is four pronged: 

  1. To stay curious and to not take it too seriously. It is a gift to be able to learn what is working and what isn’t. There’s no need to constantly buy all the new things, instead, I’m trying to use a product I purchase completely before I make a judgment call about it, and then, when I run out to decide if I re-purchase it or if I try something different. By sharing with you my routine I’m also making a diary for myself to remember what I have done in the past that worked or didn’t work.
  2. To aim to use the lowest toxic products that still work really well. I know that sometimes I will choose to use a product that isn’t quite as low toxic if it offers results I can’t get with a lower-toxic product. This doesn’t mean I’ll throw caution to the wind but I will consider my budget and what the rest of my skincare routine looks like.
  3. Can I afford it? Some products will be staples and others might come and go but I know I won’t be able to afford to just add and add and add products. I will try to, over time decide what my long-term staples are (I think it’s healthiest to rotate through a few) and what formulations I try out. In addition, I like the idea of investing in beauty devices that might be more expensive up-front but are one-time purchases that will last for years. I want to figure out what the lowest toxic products are that work the best and still cost the least are…
  4. Is it part of a sustainable routine? I’ve heard there’s an at-home laser out there that takes an hour a day to use… there’s no way that I’m going to be able to devote that much time to one product. However, the Nira Precision laser is only taking me 2-3 minutes a day to use and that has not been a big deal at all to sneak in. Masks are another product that needs a bit more dedication so it’s probably wise to not own more than 1-2 mask or peel products at a time since they are only used once a week or so and you wouldn’t want to waste them.
  5. Use active ingredients that actually work: find the best products, that offer the best results, for the best price. 

My Current AM Skincare Routine

  1. Wash/rinse face with water and pat dry. I only use cleansers at night and have found that by not using a cleanser in the morning I don’t dry my skin out but also I don’t have any issues with excess oil. I think perhaps I have combination skin- a little dry in areas but balanced in others. Not washing in the morning helps protect the skin barrier. 
  2. Nira Precision Laser:   For a few minutes each morning, I use the Nira Precision Laser on areas with crepey skin and wrinkles, specifically: my nasal labial folds, around my lips, around my eyes, my bunny lines on my nose, the “1” line on my forehead above my nose. While it’s too soon to see results, its promise for collagen production keeps me hopeful.  I have only been using this laser for about a week so I can’t see any results yet but it’s for sure easy to use and with FDA approval and clinical results, I am hopeful! Use this code for 10% off: “ASHBROCKINTON”
  3. L’oreal Paris Revitalift Derm Intensives 10% Pure Vitamin C Concentrate: My next step involves applying a vitamin C serum. While the L’oreal Paris Revitalift Derm Intensives 10% Pure Vitamin C Concentrate hasn’t significantly lightened my dark spots, it’s a crucial step for protecting my skin from free radicals. I don’t love this vitamin C serum. I’ve used one other vitamin C and I also didn’t love that so I don’t quite know what to be looking for in a vitamin C… what results or effects to aim for or if it’s just protective. It feels great going on but there’s no change at all in my melasma. I will not be re-purchasing this product. EWG SCORE: 2
  4. L’oreal Paris Revitalift Derm Intensives 1.5% Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum, Fragrance Free:  I follow up with L’oreal Paris Revitalift Derm Intensives 1.5% Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum for that extra hydration. It’s especially great for dry skin types and works well under makeup.This is the second Hyaluronic Acid Serum I’ve used and I like it dramatically better than the Ordinary Hyaluronic Serum. It has a great texture, is easy to use, and it does feel hydrating. I have a hyaluronic serum that came with my Nira laser so I will be trying that after this product runs out and that will be good to give me a third hyaluronic acid to compare. At this point, I would definitely re-purchase the L’oreal Revitalift Hyaluronic Acid Serum.EWG SCORE: 2
  5. Frownies Aloe & Oat Gel Moisturizer Face & Neck :  This is my favorite face moisturizer that I’ve used based on the feel. It is lightweight but still has some body. It’s not waxy or oily at all and leaves your skin feeling really nice. The only issue/concern I have with using this moisturizer long-term is that it has an EWG score of 5 and I really try to not use any products above a 4 and ideally not above a 2. A score of 5 puts it in the lowtoxish but towards the “meh” line. The crazy thing is that the ingredients are super natural and plant-based- much more natural than the two other products above. The ingredients of concern are ALOE BARBADENSIS (ALOE VERA) LEAF JUICEPOPULUS TREMULOIDES BARK EXTRACT, and PELARGONIUM GRAVEOLENS OIL I will try to find a moisturizer to replace this one but I love it enough to compare future products to it and if it came in a bundle I would use it without thinking twice. EWG SCORE: 5
  6. Frownies Vitamin C & Vitamin E Skin Serum : This is probably my favorite product out of all of them. It has such a luxurious feel. It feels like the mix between a face oil and a serum. It is thick-ish but melts into your skin and leaves you with a glowy but not greasy look. I feel like this product is the one out of all of my AM skincare routine products that so far have made the biggest difference in my appearance. With an EWG score of “3,” I would consider this serum “low-toxic” and for sure I would consider it “clean skincare”. The ingredient in question is SYMPHYTUM OFFICINALE (COMFREY), which has been used for centuries in wound care. This is an example of where sometimes there could be too much of a good thing and for that reason, I will probably rotate the Frownies Vitamin C & E Skin Serum with another face oil with different ingredients. EWG SCORE: 3
  7. Garnier Green Labs Canna-B Pore Perfecting Serum Cream, Fragrance Free, SPF 30:  I finish my routine with the Garnier Green Labs Canna-B Pore Perfecting Serum Cream, which includes SPF 30. Though it’s not the best cleanser for my skin’s needs, its SPF protection is crucial for guarding against skin cancer and sun damage. This product is kind of weird… I only bought it because I needed face sunscreen and it was on sale and it had a low EWG score. It actually goes on amazingly and has a great last-step finish- almost like a glow primer. I love that it is SPF 30 but I think I need a higher SPF because my melasma is so bad. Although the EWG score is 2, I also don’t feel great about some of the ingredients (basically I think it had so many ingredients that were good that they balanced out the bad ingredients when calculating an average final score. I would not buy this product again but it isn’t bad…On a 40% off sale- absolutely I would buy it again, but at full price, I think I’ll try something different next time.  EWG SCORE: 2
  8. Facial Yoga Facial Yoga: Throughout the day, I practice facial yoga to maintain smooth skin and combat fine lines. This is a key part of my skincare routine for long-term benefits. I started about 2 months ago and I definitely think I see results, specifically, I see results in my jawline (less jowl) and I feel like my lips are also plumper. Check out the post I wrote about the best face yoga courses.

Planned Modifications and New Products:

I think I did a really good job coming up with a morning skincare routine for my first routine. I am starting to run out of some products and as I do, I am thinking of making these modifications as an experiment: 

  • Experimenting with Depology’s Matrixyl 3000 and Maelove’s Stargaze beginner’s retinol for their potential to enhance skin tone and texture.
  • I will retire the L’oreal Vitamin C
  • Find and use a good eye cream to help with any dark circles.
  • Find and use good toner with AHA or BHAs to help remove dead skin cells and help with cell turnover. 
  • Cycling the Frownies serum with Inika Rose Hip Oil for diverse nourishment.
  • I will try the Hyaluronic Serum that came with my Nira laser (even though I really liked the Revitalift serum)
  • Upgrading my SPF for better protection against environmental factors and sun damage.
  • Incorporating the Currentbody Red Light LED mask into my evening routine for its promising skin rejuvenation effects.
  • I will look for a replacement for the Frownies moisturizer, only to lower the EWG score- otherwise, I love the Frownies moisturizer and will likely cycle it. 
  • I will try another SPF with higher coverage.

Things I Do During My Nighttime Routine That I Don’t Do During My Morning Routine: 

  • Spot treatments to any zits.
  • Chemical exfoliants like glycolic acid, salicylic acid, or lactic acid
  • Face mask
  • Night cream
  • Double cleanse first with micellar water and then with an oil-based cleanser
  • Retinol product
  • Facial Oil: castor oil


I am LOVING keeping an am skincare routine. I never was able to be that consistent but I think when I started allowing myself to invest in products to target specific concerns and decided that these products needed to make a positive change I started to have a filter and reason for everything I was doing… not just doing steps because I thought that’s what grown-ups do.

I like evolving and trying new products.

This post was about my 2023 AM skincare routine. If you have any suggestions for nontoxic/lowtoxic skincare to help reverse the signs of aging, I’d love to hear your suggestions. 

More posts like this…

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Do Frownies Make Wrinkles Worse?

Face Yoga Courses: 9 Amazing Ones You Need to Know About

Enzyme Peel vs Chemical Peel: Which One Should You Choose?

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