Safer Skincare for Anti-Aging and Acne-Prone Skin | Diane Sanfilippo

My safer skincare routine for anti-aging and acne-prone skin

Diane Sanfilippo Beauty & Skincare, Beautycounter, Skincare 56 Comments

I promised I'd tell you which safer skincare for anti-aging and acne-prone skin products I'm using, so here you go!

Let me preface this by saying that I change up my products fairly often as I like to see what benefits I can get from new items while also not causing breakouts! If you have acne-prone skin at all, it can be tricky to find the right combination of products. What works for me may or may not work for you.This is my routine of safer skincare for anti-aging and acne-prone skin. That said, many of these are worth a shot and if they don't work for you, you can definitely return them!

So, these products work well for me for both by not causing breakouts and for the anti-aging benefits.

Safer Skincare for Anti-Aging and Acne-Prone Skin | Diane Sanfilippo

Cleansers. I'm alternating between two lately.

I'm currently alternating between two cleansers: the Charcoal Cleansing Bar and the Cleansing Balm.

I use the Charcoal Bar when I feel like my face needs some extra detox-y style cleaning (post-workout, or after wearing a lot of makeup, or if it is feeling a bit greasy). I use the Cleansing Balm when my skin is feeling either normal or dry, and like I want a bit of a treatment with my cleansing.

The Beautycounter Charcoal Cleansing Bar is the #1 product I recommend to anyone struggling with acne that feels inflammatory in nature. You know, the red, sore, feels like it's coming from the depths of your face type of acne. I don't know if this is the best for more whiteheads or smaller pimples, but for cystic and inflammatory acne, it's been amazing for my skin.

You'll find me using the Charcoal Bar with my Clarisonic pretty regularly as well. I find this helps the texture of my skin a ton. It's much smoother and less dull when I remember to use the Clarisonic.

I was nervous to try the Cleansing Balm since adding anything new to my routine with acne-prone skin is a bit scary, but I finally did and I'm so glad. Read more about my love for this client-favorite product in my post all about the Cleansing Balm.

Here's an article to read up on more uses for the Cleansing Balm aside from cleansing.


I've been using and loving the Rejuvenating Toner Pads. I find they work well both for evening out oiliness and for soothing dryness. That seems strange, but in some recent conversations with other consultants about dry skin, it was brought up that the toner can help even things out in either direction. So, whether my skin is feeling super dry or more oily, I use these at least once a day. Some people cut these pads in half to save on cost while using them, if you're so inclined.


We've all seen this meme by now, right?!

Well, I slowly started incorporating the Rejuvenating Radiance Serum into my nightly routine over the last few months and I'm loving it. I feel like between this and the moisturizer I'll discuss next, my skin seems, well, more radiant! It seems to have a bit more “bounce” and volume. Overall my skin just feels more hydrated but not oily.

While this line is typically recommended for more advanced age-fighting, I find that it works great for my skin. Since the Countermatch Collection (while perhaps better suited to someone my age – nearly 40) isn't recommended for acne-prone skin, it's not my go-to.

I did try several of the Countermatch Collection products, including the Adaptive Moisture Lotion, however. And, while I did like the hydration results I got from it, I didn't love the few pimples that popped up as well. So, for now I'm sticking with the Rejuvenating line.


On days when I am applying makeup (or just leaving the house to run errands!), I always use Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer which has SPF 20 in it. I wear the Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer in color #2, for reference. This is a really neutral, fair-skin shade but if you are more of a redhead-type complexion, #1 is good for you! If your skin is a deeper shade than mine, then go for #3 and so on. It's a very sheer amount of coverage so your best guess is probably going to be fine! If I get tan I'd probably use #3. Some people say the Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer is sort of like a BB cream, if you're looking to replace a less-safe version.

Again, I was hesitant to add a thicker moisturizer to my regular routine since I had moved away from creamy-textured products for many years now. Somehow I associate them with clogged pores and acne. However, I decided to bite the bullet once again and give the Rejuvenating Night Cream a try. I figured I would know pretty quickly if it was breaking me out since I usually don't add more than one new product at a time over the course of a week or so. (Note: this is a great strategy if you have either sensitive or acne-prone skin! Test adding only one new product to your routine for a few days or a week before adding the next.)

I'm loving how hydrated and dewey my skin looks after using this for just a couple of weeks on a regular basis. I'm definitely keeping this in my regular rotation.

Eye Cream.

I've consistently used the Rejuvenating Eye Cream for almost a year now. I'm only on my second pot of it because it lasts a long time, and I use it very liberally! If you have more sensitive skin, I'd opt for the Countermatch Eye Rescue Cream, but if not, then this is the eye cream for you.

Why an eye cream? The skin around our eyes is thinner than the skin on the rest of our face. And, as we age and lose collagen and elasticity in our skin, the skin under and around our eyes can become more wrinkly and dry very easily. Intense moisture delivered right in the under-eye area is a great way to prevent this advanced aging around the eyes.

Can someone tell me why I ignored all of the skincare “shoulds” in my early 30s?! I wish I had started all of this way sooner! Ah, youth! All that collagen that was naturally in my face really had me feeling bold back then! I'm glad I'm on the hydration train now!

Facial Oil.

While I don't use them every night currently, I do still love applying facial oils after toning and serum but before makeup if I'm applying cosmetics that day. I rotate between the #1 Brightening Facial Oil and #2 Plumping Facial Oil, just depending on my mood. When I apply facial oils, it's after either just a serum or after serum and night cream! Facial oils are a really great way to moisturize your face if you're acne-prone and worried about creams. I moisturized exclusively with facial oils for almost the last 2 years! I only recently added more cream-based products to the mix since my skin has been so under control.


Often I rotate between using all three of the Beautycounter+ Masks: The #1 Brightening + Vitamin C Mask, #2 Plumping + Peony Mask, and #3 Balancing + Charcoal Mask. Typically I multi-mask and apply these in zones around my face depending on what's happening with my skin at the time. I apply the #1 Mask anywhere I'm trying to lighten up some dark/sun spots. I apply the #2 Mask anywhere I have fine lines or some extra dryness. And, I apply the #3 Mask either all-over or where I have some breakouts or extra oiliness.

All of the masks leave my face feeling super smooth and refreshed – I'm a big fan of them!

My Anti-Aging Routine for Acne-Prone Skin: Skincare Series | Diane SanfilippoTo recap, here's my current anti-aging skincare routine for acne-prone skin:

Cleanse with either the Charcoal Cleansing Bar or Cleansing Balm using my Clarisonic with the bar at least 3x/week
Tone with Rejuvenating Toner Pads
Rejuvenating Radiance Serum (1 pump for just my face but 2 if I am applying to my neck/chest area)
Rejuvenating Eye Cream
(AM only) #1 Brightening Facial Oil or #2 Plumping Facial Oil
(AM only, optionally) Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer with SPF 20, then makeup on top of this if I am wearing it that day
Rejuvenating Night Cream

Whew! I truly never thought I'd use more than 2 or 3 products for my own routine, but here I am! And my skin has never been more clear, smooth, bright, or just plain radiant!

Have you tried any Beautycounter products yet?

Let me know what you think of it or how you've used it in the comments below!

Want to find out about what else I'm loving or special offers and gifts from me?

Join my Beautycounter specific email list!

Looking to make a Clean Swap for some of your current favorite beauty or skincare items?
Check out the Clean Swap promotion is going on right now through March 7, 2018! 

There are many ingredients allowed in beauty and skin care products that we believe should never be used: harsh sulfates, formaldehyde-releasers, artificial fragrances, PEGs, mineral oil, and carbon black. Ready to come clean? Start by replacing six of the worst offenders. Beautycounter offers alternatives that deliver the performance you look for with cleaner ingredients.

From 2/22- 3/7, purchase any of the below products and receive your choice of a deluxe sample* – pictured 2nd below –  for free. See website for details!


Beautycounter Clean Swap promotion | Diane Sanfilippo Beautycounter Clean Swap promotion | Diane Sanfilippo

Ready to join our movement and make the Clean Swap?
From 2/22- 3/7, purchase any of the above products and receive your choice of a deluxe sample* for free. Limit three samples per order.
*Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion 7ml, Body Wash 59ml, No. 2 Plumping Facial Oil 5ml, Volume & Shape Conditioner 50ml, Smooth & Control Conditioner 50ml


Note: I'm a Beautycounter consultant! This means that I earn a commission from the links to the product(s) in this post. Commissions like this are how bloggers, authors, and folks like me can earn a living while recommending products we truly love that we think you'll love, too! You can rest assured that I'd absolutely never recommend a product I don't truly love solely for financial gain. And, hey, if you love Beautycounter, too and you'd like to find out more about becoming a consultant, get in touch via my contact page and let me know!

Comments 56

  1. Good to know that the Countermatch line is not recommended for acne prone skin. I currently use the radiance serum & brightening oil so I guess I’ll just stick with that through the breakouts I’ve had lately. And the charcoal mask, obvi! #storyfam

  2. I am loving all the new beauty counter products I have started swapping into my makeup and skincare. I especially love the nudist palette and tint skin. I just received dew skin in my recent order. Alone I feel like it is not enough coverage for what I want but I love the combo of putting it on first then tint skin over. I am excited to start adding more to my collection especially since I finally became a member with my last order per your advice!!! I love shopping with you as a consultant and all you’re great giveaways!!!😘 #storyfam

  3. I would love to try the eye cream. I use the charcoal bar, #3 oil, cleansing balm, brightening mask, citrus lotion, everyday shampoo….(basically, every product for my body is from BC!) #storyfam

  4. Thank you for this great information! I currently use the charcoal bar, but sometimes it drys out my skin, so I am definitely looking for a good moisturizer. I am also intrigued by the charcoal mask. Thanks again and keep it up! #storyfam 🙂

  5. Thanks for the post! I’ve been slowly switching over my beauty products to safer options. I love the charcoal mask and rejuvenating day cream. I want to try the serum next as #thisisforty. #storyfam

  6. I think I have hormonal acne – so about once a month some spots pop up. I still use the countermatch line – sans the night cream. Have been thinking about the balancing oil soon! #storyfam

  7. Thanks for the info! I haven’t tried any Beautycounter products yet, but I’ve been intrigued for awhile so it might be time to go for it. I want to try it all! #storyfam

  8. I am LOVING my healthier skin with safer products! The charcoal bar from BeautyCounter is definitely my favorite so far. #storyfam

  9. I would love to try the cleansing balm because of everything you’ve said about it – I think it would be great for me. My skin has totally changed over the past few years, and so has my lifestyle so I need to catch up with age appropriate and safer skincare products! #storyfam

  10. I’m so glad that I started using Beautycounter! The Countermatch collection actually works really well on my skin so I’m loving it. I also love the Brightening Oil and Brightening mask. I received the mask as a gift with purchase from you. 😊 Thank you! #storyfam

  11. Thanks for the info about the counter match line not being great for acne prone skin. I’ve been using the charcoal bar and face oil but need something more for moisture and eyes. I’ve got sleep deprived new mama bags. #storyfam

  12. Looove my BC! I have dry skin so I’ve been using countermatch and absolutely loving it! Especially the overnight cream! #storyfam

  13. This is awesome info! I have hormonal based acne, as well as some that pop up around and on my nose (🤓) but typically really dry skin. My dermatologist has told me not to wear any makeup and my cleanser is super light. I’d be interested in testing some of the products you mentioned, as long as they are returnable. #storyfam

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  14. I would love to switch over to beautycounter products exclusively but for now it’s a few products at a time. I think the serum would be a great start to my anti aging routine. #Storyfam

  15. Living the cleansing balm more than I realized I would! Especially in this dry winter weather!! Now to try the radiance eye cream! Ordered three cleaner products today to get the three free goodies and finally try the shampoo! #storyfam

  16. I’m excited to try some of the product. Looking for safer products for myself along for my daughter who loves to play in my makeup.. #storyfam

  17. Diane! Thank you for sharing your BC regimen…. can’t wait to add a few more things to my beauty counter arsinal 😎 #storyfam

  18. Over the last year, I’ve been getting into a better routine for my skin and am loving the products I’ve tried from Beautycounter! This article gives me more ideas about how to switch up my own routine – thank you for the info! I also wish I would have started this all sooner! I guess late is better than never? 😉 #storyfam

  19. Thanks for sharing! There are so many options it’s hard to figure out what might be best, so this was really helpful. I’m dying to try to cleansing balm! #storyfam

  20. So I have never used this product before but seeing you post about it all the time has really piqued my interest. I didn’t take care of my skin in my thirties and now forty has knocked on the door, it is about that time. So many different products to choose from! Eek. Where to start?

    Looks like I have my work cut out for me!!!! #storyfam

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  21. I currently use the charcoal cleansing bar and 3 of the masks. Oh! And the makeup remover. I need to move to moisturizers and oils next. I have noticed a difference in my skin! I currently use jojoba oil on top of my nightly moisturizer since it’s so dry here in CO. Thank you for the post on your routine — it gives a good starting point to figure out my own! #storyfam

  22. I have acne prone skin as well when using certain products so this is very helpful. I’ve tried their shampoo, conditioner and hairspray which I really love! I would like to buy some of their skin care products eventually and now I have some ideas of where to start– so thank you! #storyfam

  23. I’ve tried moisturizers and oils but never a serum. I didn’t own the shoes but I’m pretty close to the age….perhaps it’s time to try that too. #storyfam

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  24. OMG I really need to get around to replacing more of my things! Really into the Dew Skin tinted moisturizer and the charcoal bar, they sound exactly like what I need! Devoted #storyfam over here 😉

  25. Yes, I love Beautycounter! I am a 40 year old mom with 5 kiddos. Life is busy but BC is amazing! My favorite products are the plumping oil and mask, counter match eye cream, rejuvenating eye cream, counter match night cream – although I do not like the pump dispenser, and both sunscreens which are a must for kids. The face stick doesn’t run into eyes and works beautifully.

  26. I was literally just thinking about switching over to Beauty Counter to give their skincare a try. I’ve tried Tula, but it’s causing my skin to break out. And, I really don’t want to go back to R&F (too expensive). Thank you for taking the time to post about your routine. Very appreciated!

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  27. I was curious why the countermatch line isn’t recommended for someone with acne prone skin? I see that the countermatch serum has almost no pore clogging ingredients as compared to the rejuvenating line that does.

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      A lot of us who have acne-prone skin who tried it did not react well. If you want to try it, go ahead! I don’t honestly believe in the concept of “pore clogging ingredients” – I think we all react differently to ingredients and that can cause acne or not as a result.

  28. This is great! I’m curious if you still use the coffee bean serum from primal life organics? If not, I’m assuming it is because you see better results with BeautyCounter? Thanks!

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      I haven’t used it in a while now! Many months. I have been using a brand new Beautycounter product most recently that we received at our annual conference and I can’t wait to share about it with everyone when it’s releasing!

  29. This info is just what I’ve been looking for, thank you so much for sharing and doing all of the footwork. I am approaching the 40 year mark shortly as well and I’m most interested in the rejuvenating products that fight dull skin. We have a limited budget now that I am a full time stay at home mom, so my main question is for overall rejuvenation and balanced hydration what three products would you recommend work the best in this area and last the longest?

    On a side note our entire family has been doing paleo 80% for almost 4 years thanks to your book and podcast!! I actually feel and look better than I did in high school after 6 kiddos in 9 years thanks to your original Practical Paleo. I’m asked almost on a daily basis what I do to maintain health after many pregnancies while running a full house of littles, and I always HIGHLY recommend you and Liz as go-to sources. As a busy homeschool mom you make converting to this lifestyle super easy and simple with the shopping lists and actually yummy meal plans which is important so we can stick with it. And as a former scientist in cellular biology the info and research you put out is very thorough, interesting, and convincing on every level yet accessible to everyone..You’ve also brought the whole artificial birth control issue to the main stream which I applaud you for. One of the most hot button issues ever but so detrimental to health. I don’t know if you ever have looked into or came across NFP natural family planning through Marquette University.

    I thank you again for this article and all you have done in the area of nutrition and women’s health. I can’t say thank you enough. Blessings of peace and joy to you and your loved ones!

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      Hi Nichole- can you shoot me an email on this so I can specifically direct you based on your budget? beauty (at) 🙂

      I’m so glad you are making good use of the work I do as well as Liz’s work!


  30. Pingback: New This Week / May 9, 2018 - Balanced Bites, Diane Sanfilippo

  31. Do you recommend a buy direct company for a business venture? Or have you considered that route? I wanted to add a line to benefit my high end salon customers. Thank you for the post!

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