Have you ever really thought about your shaving routine? In case you’re looking to up your skincare and shaving game, we’re chatting with Oui Shave founder, Karen Young. Below, she offers insight into what we should be keeping in mind when we put a razor to skin, plus she shares the breakdown of her own personal morning and nighttime beauty routines!
What is the first thing you do after you wake up in the morning?
I’m currently on a 30-day meditation journey. I’ve always had trouble pausing my mind for more than five minutes, so this is no easy feat. I’m starting with 10 minutes and adding one minute per day, gradually, until I can do 30 minutes. I wake up around 5 a.m., and as a morning person (yep, I’m one of those), my to-do list starts running in my head immediately. I’m hoping meditation will help to center me a bit more, and I’ll stop emailing people at 6:30 a.m. expecting a response. Oops!
What’s for breakfast?
When I make breakfast for myself, it often involves a smoothie. Right now, I’m on a major matcha kick; I can’t get enough of this smoky green tea powder. On rotation at the moment is: ½ banana, ½ Haitian mango (they’re sweeter), almond milk, a slice of pineapple and a teaspoon of matcha. It’s beyond delicious. I’ve never been the girl who gets full from a smoothie, so I also make one or two soft-boiled eggs.
Name your favorite morning beauty products?
My skin is so sensitive that I’ve learned time and again that less is better—and that includes brands! Mario Badescu has done wonders to help with my hormonal breakouts. The minute the weather warms, my T-zone gets out of control, and so I wash with the Glycolic Foaming Cleanser. I apply it using my Clarisonic Mia, which is one my best skincare purchases ever! A few years ago, my esthetician introduced me to toners, and I’ve never looked back. I’m currently in love with the Bobbi Brown Extra Bright Advanced Moisture Lotion. It’s packed with vitamin C and the brightening effects are almost immediate. I apply it with a cotton pad to keep my fingers away from my skin for as long as possible. I finish up with Vitamin C Serum from Apotheke.
I’m a big believer in skin first, but my hand has been forced, as I’m allergic to most makeup products. This doesn’t mean I don’t have some fun though! I use Tarte Inner Rim Brightener on the inside of my eyes; I think it’s the caffeine of eye makeup. So far the only mascara that doesn’t cause my eyes to swell shut is the Buxom line from BareMinerals. What I love most is that I can choose the wand that suits my lashes. I use the “thick and defined” for my super curly lashes. I rarely leave home without blush and a highlighter, both of which I’ve found amazing colors for my skintone at Bobbi Brown.
When it comes to your daily shave, are you a morning gal or do you check it off your list at night?
Apparently, my stubble doesn’t sleep, so I absolutely must shave in the morning.
Give us a rundown of the shaving necessities we, as women, should be using every day.
Shaving doesn’t need to be complex, but your best shave is a matter of great materials and a good technique. Start by exfoliating; whether dry brush, scrub cloth or a body scrub. Exfoliating not only removes dead skin cells, it also lifts the hair up and away from your skin, allowing the razor to get closer to the base of the hair. This is a must if you get ingrown hairs!
Next, apply oil or a thick shave lotion. It’s so important to make sure you have an emollient base between your skin and a sharp razor. Shave and follow up with a moisturizer immediately out of the shower, while your pores are still open and ready to absorb a great body oil or lotion.
What can you absolutely not start your day without?
Is it terrible to say my phone? I check Instagram, read the news and catch up on anything that’s happened while I slept.
Favorite evening beauty products?
I repeat the same beauty routine in the evening as I do in the morning, but to give my skin a break, I’ll usually only use the Clarisonic once a day. If I plan to wear makeup, I reserve the brush for the end of the day when my skin really needs the extra cleansing. I follow the same steps: Cleanse, tone and moisturize, this time with a heavier cream—Bobbi Brown’s Extra Bright Advanced Moisture Cream. Paired with the toner, it has done wonders for evening out my complexion.
How do you relax before hitting the sheets at night?
I’m guilty of catching up on Netflix or Hulu before I fall asleep. I’m such a fan of cooking or travel documentaries: “Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown,” “Michael Pollan: Cooked” and “The Mind of a Chef.” For laughs, I watch “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” and “The Mindy Project.” And the shows I shouldn’t be watching or else I don’t sleep well, but I do anyway, are “Billions” and “Orange Is the New Black.” I’d like to start meditating before bed instead because it really helps me to sleep soundly.
If you could only use one beauty product before bed, what would it be?
For me, it must be moisturizer. Even when I’m oiled within an inch of my life, sheets still pull the moisture from my skin. Without a thick cream on my face, I risk looking as though I’ve spent the night in the desert.
Any midnight snacks you love to indulge in?
I live near a Middle Eastern grocery in Brooklyn where you can buy nuts, cheese, olives, chocolates—you name it—in bulk. I could go on about the incredible feta cheese and kalamata olives, but my indulgence is the dark chocolate-covered pomegranates. I’ll take five pounds, please!
With things like your company mission to end human trafficking and your range of responsibilities as an entrepreneur, we imagine that your mind must be reeling come nighttime! What’s the last thing you tend to think about before going to bed?
My to-do list. But it’s actually a good thing; I try to brain dump into the notes section of my phone so that I can refine it the next day. A lack of sleep keeps me from doing anything well, so even if it’s not ideal to think about my to-dos before bed, it’s out of my mind and on “paper.”
Take us through your evening beauty routine, step by step!
Nighttime is when I take a few extra minutes to focus on the technique of applying my skincare products well. I start by taking off my mascara using Organic Coconut Pre-Cleanse Oil from Om Aroma. It has the most wonderful lavender scent! I use a few drops and rub it around my eye area, concentrating on the lashes; it works like a charm to remove mascara. I cleanse with the Glycolic Foaming Cleanser, followed by the Extra Bright Advanced Moisture Lotion. My esthetician taught me the importance of applying toner in gentle sweeping motions upwards, which also happens to feel like a luxurious moment at the end of a busy day. I use the same Om Aroma oil around my eyes (a tiny drop goes a long way), patting it in with my ring finger. I finish off with Extra Bright Advanced Moisture Cream. I’m obsessed with body oils, and slather myself in them right out of the shower, especially on Tuesdays when I swim. Luckily, I have plenty on hand.