6 Ways To Step Up Your Winter Skin-Care Routine

6 Ways To Step Up Your Winter Skin-Care Routine

Cold temps. Dry air. Indoor heaters. (Help!) Winter is in full effect, and if we had to guess, your skin needs a little extra support in the hydration department. Fear not—we’ve got just the things to boost your winter routine and radiance with everything from a seriously soothing face cream to a non-stripping cleansing balm. Ready to glow? 

  1. A Hydrating Cleanser 

First things first—a thorough cleanse. Let moisturizers, serums, and oils really work their magic by starting with a clean canvas. But don’t reach for just any cleanser. Look for a non-stripping formula that hydrates while it removes makeup and impurities, like our Counter+ Lotus Glow Cleansing Balm. It soothes and de-stresses skin with lotus extract, jojoba seed oil, and avocado seed oil—the perfect concoction for your skin, post-holiday events.  

  1. A Transformative Treatment (or Two) 

Our Clean Dreams Set is the secret to better beauty sleep, working all night to reveal smoother, softer skin with an AHA/beta hydroxy acid peel (Counter+ Overnight Resurfacing Peel) and the cream of all creams (Countertime Tetrapeptide Supreme Cream). Editor’s note: This set of minis will only be around for the holidays, but you can shop both products separately (and in full size) anytime. Shop Counter+ Overnight Resurfacing Peel here, and Countertime Tetrapeptide Supreme Cream here

  1. A Feel-Good Detox 

If December’s indulgences are starting to show up on your skin, let us introduce you to our Detox and Done Duo. Treat yourself to a little TLC by applying a smoothing, soothing layer of our nutrient-rich Counter+ Charcoal Mask using our brand-new 3-in-1 Facial Tool. Not only does it feel like your very own trip to the spa, but it also purifies and balances skin while drawing out impurities. 

  1. A Brightening Oil 

Just a few drops of Counter+ No. 1 Brightening Facial Oil, and you’ll be looking oh-so luminous. This lightweight blend goes on silky-smooth with avocado oil for intense hydration, vitamin C to help visibly brighten skin, and black currant oil to support with healthy skin barrier function. Pro tip: For an extra radiant makeup look, tap this oil into your skin before you apply foundation. 

  1. A Helping Hand 

Going somewhere this season? It’s more important than ever to sanitize—the clean way. Just like most, we’re not into the notoriously drying effects of traditional hand sanitizers, which is why we stick with Hand Savior Radiance Boosting Serum + Hand Sanitizer*. It’s a skin-reviving, radiance-boosting blend of hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, and organic sugar-derived alcohol that’s clinically tested to kill 99.99% of bacteria—so you can stay soft, smooth, and safe wherever you are.  

*Available in US only.

  1. A Luxurious Body Balm 

If lightweight lotion isn’t doing the trick, it’s time to bring in backup. Enter Melting Body Balm, a unique blend of argan and avocado oils that softens, hydrates, and conditions skin. After a warm bath or shower, there’s no better feeling—or scent. Plus, it doubles as a clean skin-care treatment for cuticles, elbows, and other dry spots.  

So, are you ready to win at winter skin? Check out all of these hydrating heroes and more.  

Maximize Our Holiday Sets With These 6 Tips

Maximize Our Holiday Sets With These 6 Tips

Sure, our limited-edition Holiday sets are easy on the eyes, straight out of the stocking or gift bag. But there’s more than what meets the eye with our exclusive sets (aside from safer ingredients and sustainable packaging, of course). To prove it, we’re sharing six hacks on how to make the most of these products—which all make great gift ideas for the clean beauty connoisseurs and self-care lovers in your life:

1. There’s a beauty tool for that

Give your fingers a break—Detox and Done Duo is here to give a hand. Our 3-in-1 Facial Tool isn’t just for its Counter+ Charcoal Facial Mask counterpart: This smooth, dual-sided silicone tool is compatible with all of our facial masks, serums, and oils—like our best-selling Countertime Tripeptide Radiance Serum and Counter+ No. 1 Brightening Facial Oil

Simply dispense or scoop your favorite skin-care product onto the spatula side for even application, and massage it in using the exfoliating bristle side. It’s the beauty tool you never knew you needed—what more could a skin-care lover ask for? Go ahead, give yourself or a loved one the gift of a facial massage with this multitasker. 

2. Bring the spa home for the holidays

Soft, hydrated skin is just a soak away with Good Scents Bath Oil Trio, a unique gift idea that lets you customize and switch up your at-home spa night, every night. Pour and unwind with our three aromatherapeutic scents that truly live up to their names: 

  • Feeling low energy? Give yourself a #betterbeauty boost with Invigorate, composed of rosemary, eucalyptus, and peppermint oils.  
  • Looking to clear your mind? Add Clarify and its ginger, cedarwood, and coriander oils to the mix. 
  • Ready to release some tension? Indulge in De-Stress and its calming chamomile, eucalyptus, and patchouli oils.

Pair these scents with Sugarbuff Body Polish in the tub, followed by Melting Body Balm or Luminous Hydration Body Oil after drying off. There you have it—your new go-to bathtime ritual, featuring our Holiday gift set made for every mood. 

3. Safer beauty for safe travels

For those who are away for the holidays, we’ve got a few gift ideas in mind that’ll make any jet-setter feel right at home, no matter what the destination: Our Mini Must HavesWash & Go Minis, and Clean Dreams Set are all ideal for travel and trial. 

They’re TSA-approved, so you can throw them in your carry-on and enjoy clean dreams wherever you’re flying. Oh, and the mini bottles are refillable with our full-sized favorites. Who doesn’t love a sustainable self-care moment?

4. Eyeliner, made easy

Achieving a cat eye is a piece of cake with our Good Glitz Duo. Here’s a tip: Smudge the Noir shade from our talc-free eyeshadow palette along your lash line, then use a wet brush to extend the pigment beyond the lash line for a subtle, smokey cat eye. No more reaching for the makeup remover, which means more time to show off your glam holiday look. 

5. Highlight (hack) of the night

There’s always time to add highlight, even when you’re running late for your festivities. A swipe of Think Big All-In-One Mascara, squeeze of The Jellies, and touch of Lid Glow Cream Shadow from the Ready, Set Makeup Trio will get you fresh-faced in a pinch. 

But ever have those days when you want a little extra oomph? Our friends from HQ like to dab the leftover Lid Glow Cream Shadow’s shimmery Moonlit shade from their fingers to the high points of their face (think the bridge of your nose and cheekbones) to add more dimension. Let’s just say, the results did not disappoint.

6. Stocking stuffers for every skin type  

And last but not least, for the friends and loved ones who have everything: Split up the Clean Sweep Minis set to check off that holiday list. (You can even keep a piece to yourself…your secret’s safe with us.) We’ve got all your bases covered with a cleanser for every skin type: sensitive, blemish-prone, oily—you name it. This lineup of safer skin-care essentials comes in portable sizes, making the perfect thoughtful stocking stuffers. 

Now you’re all set to share the #betterbeauty love and keep the excitement going through the holidays and beyond, long after each unboxing, swatch, and selfie. You can’t go wrong when you #giftclean—so go ahead, cross off everyone on that holiday gift list (yourself included). 

Are You Doing This Right? 5 Clean Beauty Tips and Tricks

Are You Doing This Right? 5 Clean Beauty Tips and Tricks

“Am I doing this right?” This is a question we’ve all considered, probably mid-application of our skin-care or makeup routines. So, we reached out to the experts—our Chief Artistic Officer, Christy Coleman, and our Founder and CEO Gregg Renfrew’s personal dermatologist, Dr. Ellen Marmur—for tips and tricks on how to make the most of your clean beauty products:  

1. “How do I apply mascara like a pro?”  

Mascara doesn’t have to be messy. Follow Coleman’s mascara tips to swipe without the stress:  

  • Only curl your lashes BEFORE applying mascara. Doing so afterwards can damage your lashes. 
  • Apply from root to tip—keeping the density of the formula at the root of the upper lash gives the appearance of wearing eyeliner.  
  • Let your first layer dry before adding a second or third for more length—this helps with the layering. Coffee break, anyone? 
  • Struggling with your lower lashes? Use the tip of the wand vertically to “shimmy” down to the tip of the lash (Think Big All-In-One Mascara has a flexible, tapered wand that works wonders). 

You’ll get your lashes on lock in no time. 

2. “Can I reapply SPF if I’m already wearing makeup?” 

SPF reapplication is key every two to four hours, depending on the sunscreen (double check the Product Facts for full use instructions). But what if you’re already wearing a full face of makeup? You don’t have to sacrifice your makeup masterpiece for sun safety. This is Coleman’s advice to stay protected all day from UV rays, without ruining your look:  

“Squeeze a dime-sized amount of sunscreen into the palm of your hand and blend well to  achieve a thin consistency. Gently press into the skin—do not rub so as not to disrupt your  makeup.” 

Better yet, reapply a tinted moisturizer with built-in sun protection—like Dew Skin, which offers both lightweight coverage and SPF 20.  

3. “Fingers, brush, or sponge?”  

Decisions, decisions, decisions. When it comes to choosing makeup tools, Coleman says it all depends on the product and your desired coverage:  

  • Going for a natural look? Our Retractable Foundation Brush is a quick, easy, and foolproof tool for a “second skin” effect.  
  • Going glam? Makeup sponges, like The Better Blender, allow for a more precise, mess-free application with varied levels of coverage.  
  • On the go? Your fingers are your best friends. Use your fingertips to gently conceal blemishes, achieve a sheer finish with tinted moisturizers like Dew Skin, or effortlessly apply makeup products like Lid Glow Cream Shadow

4. “What’s the deal with facial oils?”  

There’s no question that facial oils are a skin-care essential. But let’s avoid any skin-care mistakes by addressing the questions we DO have: how do you use them, and where do they even fall into your routine?  

  • Facial oils should be used after your moisturizer to seal it in, or you can mix a few drops into your moisturizer for an extra boost of hydration.  
  • Not sure which facial oil is right for you? Narrow it down to our three hydrating formulas, whether you want to focus on brighteningplumping, or balancing your complexion. 
  • And now for a PSA from Dr. Marmur’s LIVE @ Abbot Kinney session: Don’t forget to apply the oils on your neck, too—and pro skin-care tip: Use the leftovers from the palm of your hand to show your cuticles some TLC.  

5. “How do I find a shade that actually matches?” 

Know that feeling of satisfaction when you discover your exact foundation or concealer shade? We can help you find your Skin Twin. Check out our handy guide, and keep these tips and tricks in mind:  

  • Apply a small amount of foundation or concealer along your jawline, blend, and let the formula dry before evaluating the shade match. It should disappear into your skin. 
  • Looking to conceal blemishes? Choose a shade that is closest to your natural skin tone. 
  • Going for a brighter, wide-awake look? Try a shade one or two shades lighter than your natural skin tone. 

There you have it! No more crossing your fingers and hoping for the best—now you’re ready to start building your best skin-care and makeup habits. Here’s to using safer products with clean confidence.  

5 Clean Beauty Myths, Debunked

5 Clean Beauty Myths, Debunked

There’s a lot of chatter when it comes to the realm of clean beauty. What’s fact and what’s fiction? Which ingredients are harmful? What does “clean” really mean? As advocates for a safer future with a very clear definition of “clean,” we’re ready to help with the myth busting while raising the bar on #betterbeauty. Having next-level transparency means leaving no room for misinterpretation. Without further ado, it’s time to get to the facts—and debunk some clean beauty fiction along the way:  

Beauty Myth #1: Clean beauty products aren’t as effective. 

We’ve proven that product performance and safety can go hand in hand, and the beauty industry seems to agree: Our best-in-class products have been awarded with Allure’s Best of Beauty Award, Refinery29’s Editor’s Pick, the Women’s Health Healthy Skin Award, and Cosmopolitan’s Beauty Award, just to name a few. 

For us, it all starts with safety. We go beyond our Never List™ (1,800+ questionable ingredients we never use in our formulations) to screen and assess every ingredient we use alongside our Blueprint for Clean™ (12 safety standards that our formula and manufacturing partners must adhere to). Long story short: Our innovative formulas deliver proven results—safely. 

Beauty Myth #2: Clean beauty products don’t use preservatives.  

This is a tricky one, but preservatives are needed in any cosmetic product that contains water or aloe for safety and performance. In fact, the FDA doesn’t allow the sale of products without preservatives. It doesn’t mean they aren’t as clean—preservatives actually prevent the growth of potentially harmful microbial growth (i.e., bacteria, yeast, or fungus).  

We screen every preservative for safety, testing several types (none of which are on our Never List™) and choosing options that are effective in very small concentrations. Our in-house chemists are on a continuous quest to find innovative preservation alternatives and develop groundbreaking, self-preserving formulas. Case in point: Counter+ All Bright C Serum’s unique 10% vitamin C blend. 

Beauty Myth #3: It’s hard to find beauty products that are truly cruelty-free.  

The bad news? There’s no government regulation in the U.S. or Canada for the term “cruelty-free.” The good news? You can easily find companies listed as “Leaping Bunny Certified” that help make shopping for animal-friendly products easier and more trustworthy. 

We’re proud to be certified by Leaping Bunny, a program operated by the Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics under the Corporate Standard of Compassion for Animals. This partnership represents our commitment to not test ingredients or products on animals, and we require that all our contract manufacturers commit to the same high standard—because beauty should not mean pain. 

Beauty Myth #4: Sustainable beauty takes too much effort.  

Doing your part is easier than you think! We set high standards with our packaging to help make sustainable living easier for you. Try these three simple steps for a clean conscience with your #betterbeauty routine:  

  • Refill and repeat: Instead of sending products straight to a landfill after use, why not re-use them over and over? The Clean Deo is one of our best-selling refillable products—when you run out, simply pop a refill in its chic case.  
  • Swap materials: We’re transitioning to more sustainable materials, like glass (i.e., our entire Countertime line) and post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastic/resin (i.e., Melting Body Balm). Do your part by shopping these clean faves—and don’t forget to recycle them after.  
  • Rethink recycling: Ever stand over your trash can or recycling bin, holding a used product and thinking, “What do I do with this?” Been there, done that—that’s why we partner with How2Recycle® to take the guesswork out of recycling. Just glimpse at the labels or online product pages to find clear instructions on how to recycle or dispose of your empty packaging. 

By 2025, 100% of our packaging will be recycled, recyclable, refillable, reused, or compostable—you can hold us to that. Follow along and learn about our upcoming sustainable packaging initiatives

Beauty Myth #5: A clean mascara sacrifices on other things—like volume.  

Big false. Our Think Big All-In-One Mascara is built on the principles of lift, length, and volume, with a clean formula to boot. Another beauty myth is that a bigger wand means bigger lashes—and we debunk that one, too. Its soft, molded, and flexible brush is designed to dispense the perfect amount of mascara and effortlessly define each lash from root to tip. 

We’re talking lash-care conditioners that support stronger, longer, and healthier-looking lashes—and true black pigment that gives dramatically rich black color without the use of carbon black or PFAS chemicals, which we exclude due to potential health concerns. Choosing safer, effective ingredients is how we turn up the volume in our #betterbeauty routine. 

We’re always game for a beauty-myth-busting session. After all, formulate, advocate, and educate is our motto for creating clean products that look, feel, and do good. Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming: getting safer (and yes, effective) products into the hands of everyone. 

Get Primed for Anything With Glow First Priming Serum

Get Primed for Anything With Glow First Priming Serum

Ever wondered “What exactly is primer, and do I really need it?” Glad you asked. We’ve been hard at work innovating a product driven by the desire for makeup-prep-meets-skin-care, and that’s how Glow First Priming Serum was born. 

Here’s more on how our new multitasking serum-primer hybrid can upgrade your clean makeup and skin-care routine:  

 1. Makeup at Its Prime 

 Glow First Priming Serum really goes—or shall we say, glows—the distance as the first step in your makeup routine. Going straight from back-to-back meetings to happy hour? Its potent gel-serum formula allows for an even makeup application and extends foundation wear for up to 12 hours*—no need to squeeze touchups into your busy schedule.   

You can thank biopolymer, one of the clean ingredients derived from red algae and tara gum that helps smooth the skin’s surface and improve makeup wear. Pair it with our weightless, hydrating Skin Twin Featherweight Foundation, and you’ll be unstoppable. 

*Based on a 32-subject clinical study after 12 hours. 

 
2. Primed for Anything—Or Nothing 

Contrary to popular belief, primers—especially ours—aren’t just for special occasions. Glow First Priming Serum not only complements your makeup but can also be worn alone. Apply it after your skin-care routine, and voilà! You’ve got instant luminosity and hydration. Responsibly sourced mica provides a natural-looking radiance for that feel-good glow.  

Even better, you can look good in the long run with visible skin improvements over time. Get to know its supercharged, skin-loving ingredients and the safer skin-care science behind it:  

  • Microdroplet technology: approximately 4,000 encapsulated jojoba ester bubbles suspended in a gel-serum that burst upon application, providing fresh hydration and optimal smoothing benefits. 
  • Jojoba esters, which are known to mimic the skin’s natural oils to promote moisturization and create an even canvas.   
  • Tripeptides (like those in our cult-favorite Countertime Tripeptide Radiance Serum) help defend against pollution and skin-drying environmental aggressors while helping boost brightness, elasticity, and tone.  
  • Hello safer ingredients, bye cyclic silicones (which have been linked to reproductive and/or developmental toxicity). We screen each ingredient against 23 safety endpoints (like carcinogenicity and reproductive/developmental harm). 

Go ahead, show off your complexion’s healthy-looking glow! After you cleanse your face, prep with toner, treat with serums, and protect with moisturizer, use Glow First Priming Serum as a last step in your skin-care routine.  

Get yourself a primer that can do both. Planning on adding our double-duty Glow First Priming Serum to your #betterbeauty lineup? It’ll be waiting right here, ready to fit into both your makeup and skin-care routines.