Model & Cosmetic Chemist April Basi Shares Her Beauty Tips

Hey guys, I was recently interviewed about my career as a model/cosmetic chemist by stylist Arianna Jones on her new blog (nuancethejournal) and thought you all might like to see what we got up to. Check it out below, I'm sure you'll love it just as much as I had fun doing it.


In a post Into-The-Gloss world April Basi is a bit of a unicorn. And since we can find the skincare routines of everyone from the First Lady of the United States to Midwestern Moms replicating their favorite formulas on a budget, it’s hard to know who actually has life-changing gems and who was just destined to have clear, enviable skin. This gal April, though, is not only a model (read: beautiful for a living) but she is also a cosmetics chemist (as in, she knows what’s going on under the hood, too). So I asked her for help.
The idea of starting a skincare routine had always been so daunting for me- I could never make heads or tails of beauty claims and walking into Sephora was stress-inducing sensory overload. I just wanted to know the basics.
Can I get rid of dark patches of skin or is it just my destiny. Do models have radiant skin because they know something we civilians don’t or are they models because they have flawless skin?
To cut through the noise (and soothe my beauty-related anxieties), let’s turn to the ultimate industry insider, April Basi, model, and cosmetics chemist.


My mom is not a big skincare person at all and she uses a lot of makeup. That's probably why I was concerned [02:06 inaudible] a little bit because I saw her apply makeup and I always wondered and sometimes she complained about pores and stuff like that and I mean I feel like she didn't know either. She just kind of thought, "Oh, wash your face at night and go to sleep", and then put your make up on the next morning.
Honestly, it was not until I started being a model that I really started getting into it because obviously as a model we have to keep our skin clean. I didn't realize after getting sort of advice from an agency to take better care of my skin and what I should eat to get my skin looking a lot better, that's really when I started paying more attention to it and just do a lot more research and then I really got into it when I started working in the industry.


Actually, 50 to 80 percent of our skin is inherited from our families, dates back to even like our great-grandfathers and all the way down our history line and then as far as lifestyle choices that can affect our skin types it's about 40% of that. So a huge chunk of your skin type is from your family history [14:30 inaudible]. Yes, you can start to take better care of it by knowing your skin and knowing how your skin reacts, maybe see a dermatologist and see how your skin reacts to certain products and that way you can start to tackle it a little bit better but for the most part, your skin is going to look like what your family's skin is.


I start with my cleansing brush and I got mine from Walmart, I love Walmart. I know they have the clear sonic ones for $200, but I'm not- it's just a brush. I don't need to pay $200 for a brush. It sounds outrageous to me, I am not going to do it. So, I went to Walmart and I grabbed one from Conair for 15 bucks and I use that. For my cleanser, I am trying to start using more natural mixed in with not-so-natural ingredients in my routine because I do need my sulphic acid. That's not a natural ingredient but I do need it because of my combo skin. So I use a cleanser that is all natural and I use Ole Henriksen, a foaming cleanser. I combine both on that cleansing brush and I use the highest speed and I really get in there. I really just scrub my way until I feel like my skin-- you just kind of know when your skin feels free of any debris or anything.
So as soon as I am done with that, then I go take my shower and then as soon as I get out of the shower I would obviously dry my face and I start using my derma roller, which I recently just incorporated actually into my skincare routine. I didn't use to use it but I work-- I have all the time in the world to research product so I had to use it. I was like, "You know what? Let me find something for myself too to help my skin because I recently starting to have more adult acne. I used to not have acne at all when I was younger but now I do. Every time I put makeup on I notice my skin starts to just break out for whatever reason but-- so now I'm stricter about finding stuff that actually works for my skin. So I use a derma roller.
I have fine lines in my forehead that were caused by just frequently frowning as a child [Laughs] I've just always had them and I really have noticed a huge difference. They have significantly reduced a lot, too. And then after that, I use my Vitamin C oil. I need that to seep into my skin that's why I puncture it anyway so that I have the little holes to let the vitamins really seep in there. It helps with the dark circles, it is a great exfoliant for your skin and you almost really start feeling their products go into your skin, it's amazing.
And then right after, if I have an acne spot, I use tea tree oil. Tea tree oil is a great exfoliant as well. It helps to get rid of excess oil in your skin too and it actually travels just as deep as the DHA would into your skin and then I follow it up with a spot treatment- an acne treatment oil and then I preferably use one that has BPO which is Benzoyl Peroxide. So I top the Tea Tree Oil with the BPO on my acne. 


Cleanser, Moisturizer, Sunscreen. That’s it.
(spot treat if needed)


“I had a facial like two or three weeks ago and she asked me what strength sunblock I use and I said, ‘A hundred SPF", and she said, "Oh no, you don't need to do that.’
She said, "You are literally tripling-- tripling or quadrupling actually, the amount of sunblock you should use to get about the same results that you would get if you use a 30 SPF". She said, ‘Yeah, you'll probably be getting 96% more.’ If you're getting 92% protection from the sun on the SPF of 30, if you use an SPF of 100 you're probably only getting 96% so only 4% benefit and you're putting a lot more chemicals with a hundred SPF, it's not worth it.

So the SPF 30 is best.”



Alpha Hydorxy Acids (AHAs)-
  • Clears out dead cells on the skin’s surface and doesn’t go very deep. When used often as an exfoliant, it can dry out skin and thin the epidermis (the top layer of your skin) so be very careful. Generally speaking, AHA's work better for people with fair skin (less oily).
Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHAs)-
  • Goes deep under the epidermis to tackle oil the skin naturally produces. Generally, folks with darker skin and those from the Mediterranean should use more BHAs than AHAs.
Benzoyl Peroxide (BPO)-
  • Effective acne treatment found in spot treatments & other skincare products
Cleansing Brush-
  • Helps your cleanser really get in there. Splurge if you want.
  • Derma Roller-
    • punctures the skin w/ needles of different gauges. Use small needles on thin skin. Helps products penetrate, increases cell regeneration & reduces fine lines.
    • Not actually bad for you. Helps skincare products feel smooth.
    Tea Tree Oil-
    • Great exfoliant, rids the skin of excess oil
    Vitamin C-
    • Also known as Absorbic Acid. Reduces dark circles, great exfoliant for skin.