Lisa’s Winter Skincare Routine

April 30, 2021 (updated February 5, 2024) — Written by

Say hello to my current skincare routine. I update this post quarterly so it continues to reflect what I am currently using and loving—be sure to check back! Here’s what’s giving my skin its glow this winter.

By: Lisa Fennessy


This post is beneficial in a couple of ways. First, let’s be honest—I get to try A LOT of product. Some things I try once or twice and others take up residency in my skincare routine. Some products I enjoy, but I wouldn’t purchase again; others I rave about and would purchase a million times over.

To help paint a picture of what you are seeing here, let’s create a TNK skincare-usage taxonomy, or hierarchy, if you will.

RELATED: My guide to the best skincare routine for your skin type.

TNK hierarchy of skincare

1 | Rave-worthy, scream it from the rooftops, saw a difference in my skin, will repurchase again and again. (Think Maya Chia’s The Straight A, ILIA’s Fullest Volumizing Mascara or 100% Pure Eye Gels.)

2 | Loved it while it lasted and would repurchase. Gorgeous products that offer skincare benefits, work and have a beautiful sensory experience. This category is robust!

3 | Enjoyed it while it lasted but won’t repurchase. There is definitely a category of products that are “fine” but just don’t stand out in any special way for me. This category is also robust.

4 | Liked it, but probably wouldn’t recommend it. This category is reserved for items I enjoyed but I would not recommend because maybe the scent profile is too specific, the packaging is off in some way or it didn’t deliver consistent enough results.

5 | Didn’t like it, wouldn’t recommend it. This category is reserved for items I personally didn’t enjoy or that just didn’t work for me.

What you see in this post is what I would classify as a level 2 (unless otherwise noted). Loved it and would repurchase. It’s items that are currently taking up residency and most likely what I will use to the end. I hope that sharing my current skincare routine will help demystify what an effective skincare routine can look like and hopefully inspire yours.

RELATED: Your guide to a nontoxic personal care starter kit & the best skincare routine for acne.

What’s up with my skin right now

COVID is going around again and I got it at the beginning of the year. The only good thing that came out of that is I blew through this book series and now I’m absolutely DYING for the next one to come out (which I saw somewhere on the internet that it drops December 2024). If you like romance, thrillers and fantasy, this is for you too. Think “How to Train Your Dragon” meets “Hunger Games” meets episode 8 of Bridgerton season 1 lol. So good. 

Anyways, I digress. What’s been interesting about having COVID twice now is that I got this bumpy rash on my forehead both times. The first time (two years ago) it lasted several weeks. This time it came and went in about a week. 

Because of that (and from laying in bed days on end), I’ve been all about the exfoliants. I have two that I’m loving right now. The first is the LA FERVANCE Gommage Extraordinaire. This is a gritty mask that you apply, leave on for 15 mins and then use wet fingertips to work in circular motions while it milks up. Then after you rinse it off it leaves my skin feeling super soft and smooth. I got this in December and I’ve been obsessed with it ever since. I luuuuurve a gritty exfoliator. More here

The other exfoliator I’ve been obsessed with is the ALPYN Beauty Pore Perfecting Liquid with 2% BHA & Borage. This is a leave-on liquid exfoliator with 2% salicylic acid that helps minimize pores and improve clarity without stripping or drying. A couple shakes onto a cotton round and this honestly gives me that old school Noxzema vibe—but in the best way. Like, I get to look at the cotton round after using it and know that we got the job done but also my face doesn’t feel like it’s going to crack off from being dried to within an inch of its life.

Other than that, I’ve been enjoying some new new from OSEA. Their new Collagen Dream Night Cream is beautiful. It’s moisturizing but doesn’t sit on top of skin. I like this because then my skincare doesn’t get all over my pillow. It also leaves my face feeling so soft. 

Also the new MINU Brightening Sunscreen Minerals is really interesting. It’s a gel-cream texture, tinted, light-weight and dries matte. This is so easy to layer.

And I’ve been reveling in the $216 de Mamiel First Fix Stress Response Serum that Beauty Heroes hooked us up with for less than $59 in January. Insane.

Here’s what else I’ve been using lately…

RELATED: Have sensitive skin? Check out Nicolle’s sensitive skincare routine.

A woman looking over her shoulder.

Morning Routine 

  1. Emma Lewisham Illuminating Oil Cleanser
  2. Live Botanical Frankincense Hydramist 
  3. de Mamiel First Fix
  4. KAMBIIO Excel
  5. MINU Brightening Sunscreen Minerals
  6. Three Ships Brighter Days Eye Masks

RELATED: My surprising results after trying Solawave for 1 day (with my before & after pics!)

A woman patting her cheeks.

Evening Routine 

  1. Emma Lewisham Illuminating Oil Cleanser
  2. Live Botanical Frankincense Hydramist 
  3. de Mamiel First Fix
  4. OSEA Collagen Dream Night Cream
  5. Maya Chia Advanced Eye Response Complex Retinol Cream

RELATED: Best tips from an esthetician to reduce wrinkles.

Coupon codes

Check out our Coupon Codes page to save on these products and more!

Have you tried any of these products? What do you think?

xo, lisa in cursive

TNK Team Note: This article contains affiliate links. TNK uses affiliate links as a source for revenue to fund operations of the business and to be less dependent on branded content. TNK stands behind all product recommendations. Still have questions about these links or our process? Feel free to email us.

By Lisa Fennessy

Lisa is the founder of The New Knew. Passionate about clean beauty, organic eats and nontoxic lifestyle, Lisa writes to create awareness. Conscious consumerism and informed decisions will impact the marketplace, our health and THE WORLD!


  1. Reply


    I’m one of those that keeps up with your routine and always end up trying something new. I’m finding what works for me as well and repurchasing what I like. (& splurging when I can)

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Natalie! Awesome, what have you found that you’ve loved so far??? xo, Lisa

  2. Reply


    Lisa, you and your skin look amazing! Just found your blog today. You radiate :)! I was wondering: do you have tips for forehead wrinkles? You don’t seem to have them :).

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Lies! I think using oils and face massage have helped me the most over the years. But also everyones genetics and skin are different so what helps one person might not help another. We talked to Hayley (TNK’s resident holistic esthetician) about this and here are her tips! Hope this helps! xo, Lisa

  3. Reply


    Just found your blog, and love it. I love your routines listed here. Do you use a moisturizer with your oils or serums in the morning?

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Pilar! I typically don’t use a traditional moisturizer. I prefer serums layered under oils 😍 – Hope this helps! xo, Lisa

  4. Reply


    do you have “level 1” products for morning and evening that you cold not do without? I just bought the Straight A!

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Pilar! Have you incorporated Manuka honey into your routine yet?! It’s a GAME CHANGER! (Cleansing, masking, honey tapping..) xo, Lisa

  5. Reply


    Wanted to compare to what I’m doing.

  6. Reply


    I love honey skincare products and I just purchased the oil cleanser and mask, thanks for posting!! I love they have travel sizes to try.

  7. Reply


    Please Help! In desperate need of clean recommendation for dry skin products that will not dry out skin after dry down time, and a recommendations for SPF that won’t dry down afterwards and make the skin feel like the a dry desert?

  8. Reply

    Dawn Crawford

    I am going to try all of these great ONE Love products, thank you! I can’t believe how glowy and radiant your skin looks! I have actually been using Leahlani Aqua A for about 6 months now at least, maybe longer. I have gone through about 4 or5 bottles of it. I LOVE it and have personlly found that it is a lot more powerful at reversing wrinkles for me than Maya Chia The Straight A. I used the straight A for a year and a half at least, every day …then I tried Aqua A as soon as it came out and I was floored by the results. I couldn’t believe it reversed age more than TSA did for me, because TSA is great. Aqua A was better than any clean retinol product I’ve ever used, and I’ve used them all. In fact when I run out of Aqua A and go back to some bottles of TSA thatI keep in my fridge for freshness, I have wrinkles that start creeping back within a week or two because Aqua A is just stronger for me at reversing wrinkles. I have also tried and loved Josh Rosenbrooks Granactive retinol- Active infusion oil, and Mara Beauty’s Algae retinol face oil. I have used both of those for 6 month straight., and while they are both lovely and definitely work well, they don’t compare to what Aqua A does at renewing my skin and reversing wrinkles. In order my favorites are: Aqua A, TSA, Maras retinol oil, Josh rosenbrooks retinol..I am now comparing Lovinah’s retinol oil and it is actually really really good. It might be as good as Aqua A, but it’s too early to tell for me. It seems pretty close to Aqua A with great results, but I need to test it for longer to be sure. Aqua A sinks in much faster and is more lightweight than Lovinah which I like because it gets into the skin faster than all the other retinols I mentioned…but at the same time, I love how plump and hydrated my skin is with Lovinah’s. The texture of the Lovinah retinol oil is more like TSA, but I think it i actually more plumping and sinks in a faster, it’s more plumping and hydrating to my skin than TSA. Dont get me wrong, I adore TSA, I’m just being honest about my experience. I love all the retinols I mentioned, they are all great products, but since I am 44 now, I am testing and comparing all the retinols because it is one of the best wrinkle fighting weapons in my skincare arsenal 🙂 I am curious what you think of Aqua A 🙂 Your skin looks AMAZING!

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Dawn! Wow thanks for all of this! I am currently doing a 30 day test of Aqua A so I can’t wait to compare! Really appreciate your testimonial. xo, Lisa

  9. Reply


    Thanks for sharing this on an ongoing basis. I have the Le Prunier Plum Oil and really love the smell. I feel like it leaves my skin kind of greasy – makeup seems to slide off when I use it. Do you think I’m using too much or any other tips?

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Virginia! Totally! So I think yes, you are using too much. Try using half of what you are using right now so if you are currently using 6 drops, try using 3 drops and see if that helps! Your skin should feel moisturized and plump but not greasy!

  10. Reply

    Callie DePina

    Hi Lisa! So you use the flower goo UNDER the aqua A? Does that reduce the effectiveness of the aqua a at all since it’s not as close to your skin or what’s the explanation for that order? (I just bought both and can’t wait to use them!)

    Also, did you end up doing a full review of the aqua a? Can’t find it on the blog!

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi CAllie! Reivew of Aqua A to come but in a nutshell, we love it. So yes, that is how you would order them. As a general rule of thumb skincare is layered from smallest molecule to largest molecule. So ideally that looks like: cleanse, mist, serum, moisturizer. The Flower Goo is the serum in this situation. It’s water-based so it sinks right in. You will notice you need something more than that and that’s where moisturizer comes in.

  11. Reply


    Hi Lisa,
    What do you think of MINU sunscreen gel?
    Thank you

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      It’s great! It’s technically tinted but does not provide any coverage. The tint just makes it so it’s not white on your face. And it dries pretty matte which some people will like. I need to use an oil under it so my skin still feels moisturized. But overall, it’s a pretty seamless experience!

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