The skincare you need in any humid country

Here at Preen, we’re fully aware that adult life doesn’t always go as smoothly (and look as beautiful) as curated Instagram feeds. We all face challenges amidst all the good things. Meet Mikka Wee, a former food editor-turned-working gal in Singapore, who’s about to share all the ups and downs that come with adulting and living. Welcome to Bless This Mess

Being a year shy away from the big 3-0, you’d probably think I’d be more reflective and more introspective with my life. I myself thought that I would be spending more hours writing in my journal, contemplating on my existence, and refocusing my goals, especially now that I am entering my third decade of life here on Earth. However, I find myself—surprisingly—leaning towards the opposite of reflective and contemplative. For some odd reason, I’ve become more systematic and cognitive than ever, embracing routines and eagerly striking off items in my to-do list. Instead of wistfully wondering what being 30 would be like, I find myself filling up my spare time with workouts and re-runs of Game of Thrones. Best caption that could summarize my life right now: “WHO IS SHE?”

I guess, maybe it’s because I’ve found more contentment in life than I ever have. Don’t get me wrong, the bulk of my 20s (around 90 percent maybe of my 20-something years) have been spent wondering, taking leaps of faith, making huge declarations, and living could-have-beens. Lately, I’ve been more calculated and chill about life—my priorities have definitely shifted.

I know for certain that there are many misconceptions about the topic of skincare. Many associate it with vanity, but as someone entering her 30s, skincare has become a very important part of my lifestyle because I find that taking care of my skin is a very big form of self-care. Apart from massages, meditation, and the occasional chocolate bar, it makes me feel good knowing that I take good care of my body. And with my current lifestyle—prolonged exposure to radiation, sunlight, and mountains of paperwork, here are some essentials that help me get by especially in this hot weather.


Our ozone layer is seriously on the road to depletion, and I cannot stress the importance of slapping on some sunscreen before leaving home. UV rays are your enemy—apart from causing premature skin aging, they can be the cause of skin cancer. Wearing sunscreen lowers that risk, so even if it’s a cloudy day, you’ll never know how many UV rays are hanging out behind the clouds. I use COSRX’s Aloe Soothing Sun Cream because it’s light, has a good SPF, and doesn’t feel sticky on the face.


Essence might be a hefty investment, but it helps regulate the pH levels of your skin and contains a lot of amino acids that put the goodness back into your face. I am late into the essence game, having only started this year with the Biotherm Life Plankton Essence. I used to think that it was only another marketing ploy, but I was pleasantly surprised to see my skin more hydrated and fresh looking. The weather in Singapore and Manila can be ridiculously humid, and essence helps replenish the minerals that keep the skin glowing and plump.


I usually get a lot of dry patches around my face—especially near my eyes and lips. Just because it’s called “moisturizer” doesn’t mean it will make your skin oily. Apart from sunscreen, I always apply moisturizer to my face because it keeps my skin supple and hydrated, and it keeps my face from inflammations. The brand I’ve been using lately is the Dear, Klairs Rich Moist Soothing Cream, which is a great choice especially if you have sensitive skin like I do.

Lip balm

Especially during the summer, my lips get really dry and flaky—this often leads to cold sores and blisters. I swear by Burt’s Bees’ lip balms because of the formulation. It’s light and really effective in keeping lips from drying out.


Lastly, some good ‘ol water. Dehydration can lead to a lot of complications—I used to get UTI (urinary tract infection) a lot because I wasn’t drinking enough water. Apart from keeping you hydrated, water keeps your organs functioning well. How do you know if you’re not drinking enough water? If you pee and you notice that your urine looks like apple juice, then you need to get your fill of water. The ideal color should be that of lime juice—I know, it may sound TMI, but it’s a great way to gauge how your body is feeling inside. Don’t forget that your daily water intake depends on your body, so best to do your research first—whether it’s through a trusted website or through your physician.


While I will most definitely talk about realizing priorities and “the shift” I’ve been experiencing now that I’m turning 30, I can’t ignore the fact that a lot of my focus lately has been about taking care of my body and nourishing it from the inside out. In the context of my lifestyle, giving my body the care it deserves has become of utmost importance, as I believe it’s the one thing that will help me achieve the quality of life I want in the years to come.

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in her private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of, or any other entity of the Inquirer Group of Companies.


Art by Tricia Guevara

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